Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Useful Ephemera!

Have you ever picked up ephemera at an estate sale, rummage sale or salvage store purely for its design and nostalgic qualities, only to discover later that this thing you bought actually serves a useful purpose?

That very thing happened to me last night!

I was packaging up my new stamp sets (available HERE!) and was using these bags that were the perfect width, but were far too long.  I had to cut off about half of it in order to put my customized wrapper on top. What a waste!

But wait......

TA-DA!!  Isn't this AWESOME?!  I bought this lovely thing about three years ago at one of my favorite stores - American Science and Surplus in Milwaukee.  It is in PERFECT condition - I'm willing to be that this was sitting in some warehouse somewhere for the last 40 years.  I paid $2.95 for it and was planning on using it solely for the awesome kitch factor here on the box....

See the 1970 copyright at the bottom?
I was 2 when this product was made!  :D

....and in this instruction booklet, too!  But because I didn't want to waste the other half of the bag, I thought I'd give it a try.  

You can tell that this product is from 1970 - check out the directions!  There's no idiot-proofing, no legalese, no ridiculous safety precautions - in fact, on the first page it says it's so easy, even a child can use it!  That would NEVER fly today - can you imagine the lawsuits?

Oh, and take a gander at this two-pronged plug - YIKES!!!  When's the last time you saw one of these?  And thanks for letting me know that's it's a plug by including the universal sign for "shock" right on the thing!  :D

My kit didn't come with the roll of plastic that was supposed to be included, but I didn't need it anyway and after 43 years, I'm sure it would've been as brittle as old cellophane tape.  

Okay!  I'm ready to use the machine!  Ready, set....nothin'.  (Oh, but can we talk for a minute about the AWESOME "wood" paneling paired with the au courant avocado fashion color?  SWOON!)

I'm ashamed to tell you that apparently this idiot needs those new-fangled instructions - I waited for the little light to come on before I tried it.  Well, that didn't work because the only time the light is on is when it's sealing the bag.  DERP. 

After some tinkering (and yes, I did burn my finger slightly when I checked to see if the coil was working), SUCCESS!  

See that nice sealed line?  That's American manufacturing quality at its finest!  

Best $2.95 I've ever spent.  And now, if you purchase one of my stamp sets, you just might get one of these self-sealed bags, 43 years in the making!  :D

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Part of a Team

Greetings, everyone!

Oh my goodness - I've been gone too long!  It's been an incredibly busy summer!  I've been teaching a lot, and taking classes, and organizing exhibits, and giving tours of the new MOWA - WHEW!  But it's great to be back!  :D

Another of my newest projects is being on the design team for Arnold Grummer's Paper Making!  I'm THRILLED to be a part of it - it's a 6 month gig, so I get to make projects using handmade paper (created the AG way, with recycled materials!) every month until January.

I uploaded my first blog post yesterday to their blog (read it HERE!), and here was the project I created!

Not only did I get to use my stash of handmade papers, I also incorporated my own stamp set!  :)  The theme was "Christmas in July", so that's why everything is in red and green.  :)

I am so grateful to the Arnold Grummer family for letting me in on the fun this year - Kim, Greg and Mabe, you're all such wonderful folks.  Thank you so much also to Terri Sproul, who heads up the design team and keeps us all in line!  I'm already having a BLAST!  :D