Tuesday, July 2, 2013


Well here I sit still waiting for my main package of pretty papers.  I did decide on the line(s) I would use:  I heart Summer by Simple Stories (not exactly white based or navy inclusive but I like it) and What a Wonderful Day by Fancy Pants (whiter with navy - delicious) with some MME Sky's the Limit and AC DL Lucky Charm (of course) mixed in.  So what's the deal, you may well ask... well I'm gonna go on a small tangent right here and now!

As discussed before, it is my unwaiverable opinion that customer service is of upmost importance in any retail endeavor.  In the new (and improved???) scrapworld, almost the only way to get brand spanking new product (unless you live close to that scrap sexfest Archivers) is by mailorder.  Since one cannot judge customer service by the one-on-one personable interactions, one must find an alternative - and since it is a mail-order business, it only makes sense to me that a company's CS be judged by their shipping.  In other words, shipping costs & discounts, time from order placement to being shipped, availability of package tracking, and time from warehouse to my scraproom (or driveway because I always meet the mailman if I'm expecting a package!).  This month I was quite fortunate(?) to be able to put this CS theory to work in a most practical way with orders being placed at three main scrap stores:  BlueMoon Scrapbooking, Simon Says Stamp, A Cherry on Top (and believe it or not only slightly went over my kit budget). 

I am not going to name names here, but I am going to disclose circumstances.  At approximately 12:15 am on Wednesday, June 26th I placed two orders (Order A = 6 items, Order B = 18 items) and then Order C (20 items) at 12:05 am on June 28th.  Let me start by saying here is the status of the three orders: 
  • Order A = NOT SHIPPED AS OF TONIGHT per the website (7 days and counting)... $5.99 flatrate shipping ($75> = free shipping) via USPS.
  • Order B = Shipped Wednesday June 26th via FedEx; expected delivery Friday July 5th (10 days) ($50> = free shipping)
  • Order C = Shipped Friday June 28th via USPS, delivered Monday at 2:00 pm...Shipping $11 ($100> free)
Okay, I admit that $11.00 is pretty high for shipping... my policy is to never pay more than $10 (of which I begrudge every cent!) and honestly, I didn't as I got a 15% discount on items and shipping.  But the sheer fact that I received my items within 3 days - well, hmmmm.

I ship with FedEx (at the cheapest rate possible) and it never takes more than 5 days for my shipment to get anywhere (and only 3 in-state).  Thus the entire 10-day FedEx episode has me more than a little peeved.  I would think that it would be worthwhile for this company to look into using the good ole post office if their service is better than what FedEx is offering... and I will definitely be making this suggestion if and when my stuff ever arrives.

As far as the fact that it has been 7 days and my 6 packages of wood veneer - 2 pkgs each of two designs and 1 pkg each of two designs, pretty simple huh?!! - haven't even been shipped can be in no way justified.  To say that I am more than frustrated is an understatement.   And just to be clear, there have been no notifications of backorder; and, in fact, just to make sure tonight I placed the exact order in a new cart going all the way to the point of hitting buy before wiping out the cart.

Even if the shipping information on Orders A & B are incorrect on the webpage and I receive both shipments tomorrow, it will take serious consideration before orders will ever be placed with these companies again.  I know that many people may say that you can't control the mail service...  Ah, I know this all too well from many experiences working with a utility company!!! But at the same time, I also know that it is the ultimate responsibility of any business - and especially a retail organization - to ensure the timely delivery of their product.  After all, it is the only real means to determine customer service - because as Momma used to say, first impressions are the lasting impressions and timely receipt of product is the first impression of a mail-order customer (quality doesn't count as that is entirely in manufacturers' hands). 

While I know for certain that many companies receive a delivery notification (2Peas), I am not sure how that relates to in-house tracking.  Maybe it's time to give up all this automation and go back to paper invoices that aren't filed until a delivery receipt is stapled to it... the old days when we picked up an invoice off our desk and said, "Why isn't there a shipping receipt on this invoice?" and then a couple days later, "Why is this still on my desk... where is the delivery receipt?".  Somedays not only do I miss my good old-fashioned Local Scrap Store, but I absolutely hate mail-order in general.  Especially as I have 100 photos to scrap and no paper to put them on.

That is not entirely true... I do have one Fancy Pants Collection Kit, a few sheets of MME and a little bitty bit of Lucky Charm.  But I just couldn't wait anymore to start scrapping - I was totally forgetting how! - so here are a few pages I just had to do over the weekend.  Please remember that I am constantly working on more than one scrapbook and that many of the photos will be scrapped more than once to provide for each of those albums... so if you see the same photos next week in an entirely different layout, it doesn't necessarily mean I ripped up the layouts you're seeing today - but then again, it just might!

Patterned Paper: Amy Tangerine for AC, October Afternoon; Thickers: AT for AC; Stamps: AT for AC, MME; Wood: AT for AC, Studio Calico; Mist: Heidi Swapp, October Afternoon; Ink: Colorbox

Cardstock: Hobby Lobby; Patterned Paper, Thickers, & Felt:  American Crafts; Bag & Journal Card: Websters Pages; Sticker: October Afternoon; Flair: American Craft, A Flair for Buttons; Wood: Freckled Fawn, Studio Calico; Punch: Martha Stewart
Cardstock: Coredinations, Hobby Lobby; Patterned Paper, Thickers & Journaling Card: American Crafts; Tape: Bella Blvd; Flair: Karen Foster, A Flair for Buttons; Stickers: October Afternoon; Enamel Dots: My Minds Eye; Mistable: Studio Calico; Mist: October Afternoon

Cardstock: Hobby Lobby; Patterned Paper: American Crafts, Basic Grey; Journaling Spot & Thickers: American Crafts; Letter Stickers: October Afternoon; Tags: Canvas Corp; Wood: Studio Calico; Flair: American Crafts, Karen Foster; Other: Twine & Tape

Cardstock: Die Cuts with a View; Patterned Paper: American Crafts, My Minds Eye; Letter Stickers: American Crafts, October Afternoon; Stickers: October Afternoon; Stamp, Glitter & DieCut: American Crafts; Ink: Tsukiniko; Wood: Freckled Fawn, Studio Calico; Enamel Dots: Teresa Collins; Tape & Frame: Recollections for Micheals; Twine: My Minds Eye; Mists & RubOn: Heidi Swapp; Sequins: Michaels
I know I've said it before, but I can't believe that I scrapped strictly double-page layouts for over 10 years.  Now it is an absolute struggle to produce one - I just sit there staring at paper thinking "What now?!".  And now I've got several to do for my trip album.  Just know in advance that each and every one will be a sweatfest and will definitely be finished due to utterly giving up! 

Other notes about these layouts:  1.  The gold 'flamingos' letters are my first try at DIY thickers.  So happy I had them on hand and love the way they turned out - of course I never have a problem with fairydust all over the room!  2.  The flamingos layout totally got cut off on the left side, but it matches the right page of the layout - just much to late to redo photos.  3.  Don't love the 'cool down' layout so it will probably be redone and then done again for the family album.  4.  I'll be cutting down the star tape on the 'home' layout in the morning because here I notice how too long it is. 5. Happy Happy to use the stamps on the 'George & Logan' layout as I'm trying to train myself to use them more.

So sorry about the photos being more crooked than usual! I've broken my glasses - fell asleep with them on! - and spent all my glasses money on extraneous scrappy stuff.  So for the next couple of weeks, they will be what they will be.

I hope everyone is happy and crafty.  Scrap On!

And that's all she wrote...

P.S.  For what it's worth, there are a few things that I know regarding the Big 3 shipping methods:  FedEx is cheaper than UPS (surprised me!) and the United States Postal Service is faster than either of the other two (probably because they work 7 days a week versus the 5 days of the other companies).   Just something to think about when you're looking into shipping for yourself or by companies you do business with.

"Creativity is a type of learning process where the teacher and pupil are located in the same individual."- Arthur Koestler


  1. So I hate when customer service is off and I bet I can play guess the company by what you have said for more than just the shipping amounts. Company A is Simon Says Stamps.....many people on message boards have stated that they hate dealing with this company, their shipping stinks and Kristina's blatent disregard for her customers is legendary. She really doesn't care. Company B is Blue Moon Scrapping and I don't have any knowledge of this company as I have never dealt with them. Company C is A Cherry On Top and I am so happy that they have this review from you and from everyone I have heard about on the message boards. I plan to order a lot from them after CHA so I am happy to hear your experience.

    Your mama was right about first impressions....they are lasting impressions.

    Love your layouts and here is hoping the shipment shows up soon!!!

    1. Spot On Susan!!! I think I ordered from Simon once before and hated the shipping amount because the order was so very (2 items) small... but had no clue about the utter disregard! Ordered from Blue Moon a couple of months ago and don't remember having any issue at all. But maybe it's different if you pay shipping vs their free shipping where they buy the 'hang out in Phoenix for 5 days' route. I do order from ACOT quite often - love them... only issue is they don't carry Freckled Fawn which I my absolute fave accessories designer! Scrap On!

  2. OK, for the record...DON'T cut the star tape on the "Home" page--I like that it points straight to Miss Logan. The banner takes the eye across the page, the star tape takes the eye straight down to the photo! PERFECT. =D Just like you planned it that way!!!

    And I'm super sorry about your shipping woes. I have that problem too. A few companies will ship UPS or FedEx and then send it via the Post Office for the last few miles. This always ALWAYS takes longer than it should! Most of the time I can DRIVE up to the warehouse and be back--with a stop in Paris for brunch--before the package has even left the warehouse!!

    Also--lovin' your pages! LOVE the flair everywhere!!! LOVE the colors! And you know I love all the layers!!!

    1. Okay! You got it - I love your critical eye... so much better than mine. You always see those details that I just miss.
      Well, I only have one more 'store' that I haven't used yet, may give them a shot next month. But right now, I am highly recommending ACOT and 2Peas for quick shipping. I really am going to send a note to BlueMoon to recommend they reevaluate their shipping method - what can it hurt?
      Thanks so much for the all the love... as always.

  3. I feel your pain! Still waiting on an order from SSS that I placed on June 22 when they were having their summer sale. When I check my account, all it says is "ordered". No notification of when it will actually ship. So annoying!

    1. Becca... fasten your seatbelt! I emailed SSS yesterday to see what the deal was (sorta nicely but not too nicely). Got email today saying "we strive to get our orders shipped within 3 business days...your goodies will be shipping in the next day or two." Really? I have 6 items, actually only 4 if your think about the fact that there are 2 of a couple of them, and all wood veneer. And it's taken 10-11 days (at the very least) to ship. While the email was pleasant enough, it actually pissed me off all the more. I am mindful to cancel my order - I am gonna think on it for about one more hour and in the meantime see if anyone else has my product in stock. This is utterly ridiculous. I cannot imagine that you have been waiting 11+ days for your order to ship. I personally will never order from this company again - your lesson is even greater to me than mine. I am so sorry for your frustration and hope you get your merchandise soon. Scrap On!