Here’s another new, wondrous addition to the Martha Stewart Crafts line by EK Success– the “Craft Station.” It’s a multi-use light box/cutting surface/stamping positioner that is full of whistles, bells, and potential. And lucky me, I get to be among the first to review it! Let’s dig in….
Here’s how it’s described on the website:
Our Craft Station offers endless possibilities for creativity. This all-in-one system makes hundreds of projects a breeze. LED light illuminates your projects making it easy to trace designs and align stamps for accurate impressions. Moveable ruler arm with blade offers smooth fluid movement making paper cutting neat and accurate. Plus, blade replacement is hands-free, quick and easy. With so many uses and functions, our Craft Station will be the showcase of your craft space.
â€¢ LED light box with 12in x 12in glass
â€¢ Movable ruler arm with blade shuttle
â€¢ Embossing stylus, Cutting KnifeÂ
â€¢ 100 + tracing and cutting templates (fonts, borders, frames, tags, journaling lines)
â€¢ Alignment guide (1/2″ grid)
â€¢ Blade replacement cartridge with 2 blades.
Box Measures 16.75in x 15.25in.
Wow. That’s LOT of information…. but can I actually figure out how to use it?? Let’s start with what I saw when I opened the box & got it set up.
There is a slot BEHIND the glass plate, where you can slide in some gridded plastic templates, so you can draw straight lines and/or perfect angles:
Now you can use the Craft Station just like your regular paper trimmer!
I used the diagonal grids to measure and cut some vellum for a Christmas Tree card.
Next, I tried some dry embossing. If you’ve ever tried embossing on a regular table top- or (eek) pressed up against a window- you know that this is super-handy.
The Craft Station from Martha Stewart Crafts may just be the tool that re-awakens my desire to dry-emboss EVERYTHING. It really makes it super-easy to get great results!
Note: Keep some painter’s tape handy so that you can tape your stencil and paper securely down while dry-embossing. It’ll keep everything from shifting about.
Then I used the “arm” to use as a stamp positioner. But….here’s the deal: only one side of the cutting surface as a raised lip to brace your project against. I like to nestle my stamping projects into a corner, so they won’t shift while I’m stamping- but the Craft Station is “missing” one on the bottom edge. I kept worrying about it shifting. Make sure you keep some painter’s tape handy for that, too.
Lastly, I wanted to try some of those pretty, fancy designs on the acrylic sheets that you slide in under the mat. I positioned my bookmark on top…and couldn’t see the lines to trace. It was only text-weight paper, so this was a big disappointment. The plain lines are bold enough to see, but the fancy/filigree/calligraphy ones just don’t show through enough- the designs are too close and/or lacy. Simpler, plainer, (and frankly more practical) designs should have been included instead.
So here’s what I liked about it:
- Nice glass surface
- Excellent for paper cutting
- Bright with cool light
- Handy on/off switch
- Great low-profile made it easy to work on.
Here’s what I wasn’t crazy about:
- Only a “lip”on one side
- Can’t really see the designs on the acetate design sheets when trying to trace with anything other than vellum.
- No place to store your tools, (I got spoiled with the Martha Stewart Scoring Board.)
- Lights bothered my eyes after a while.
This tool comes with a substantial price tag- it’s $164.00 USD and will start shipping on 12/06/11. I would have a hard time buying this for myself….but that being said, if it appeared under my Christmas tree I wouldn’t return it.
If you are considering purchasing a Martha Stewart Craft Station, I’d appreciate it if you used my affiliate links:
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