A Place to Enhance and Inspire to be CR8TiV !

The Stamps of Life – Stamp club review


Hi, CR8TiV Kittens ! We’re almost through the week and tomorrow is Friday !!! YAY !! Hope you have marvelous things planned for your weekend. So I believe I posted not to long ago that I have joined two(2) monthly stamp subscriptions. One is by Paper Wishes “Hot off the Press stampers club” and the Stamps of Life stamp club by Stephanie Barnard. I’ll create a review for the Paper Wishes stampers club some other time.

Today I wanted to focus on the Stamp of Life stamp club. I pay $12.83 a month … SUPER affordable and about the price of one stamp set ! I received my first stamp set in January which was a pretty sweet way to start off 2016 if you ask me. The stamp set is the Bandage stamp set. If you’re not a stamp club member you can still purchase these stamps separately from her online store @ She has so many goodies in her store and all at such affordable prices.

So below ↓ is picture and an example of what I had create with the stamp set and the stamp set itself.


Isn’t that nurse kitty the cutest thing ever ? I kinda love the fact that I am originally a handrawn artist so if there’s a stamp image I do not have or there is no such stamp … I just create my own !! Plus I think the handrawn look gives your cards a more personal touch than everything being stamped images.

So let me tell you my personal review about the stamps … I LOVE THEM !! They stamp crisp clear images right off the packaging. Most … well, I should say some stamps take a bit of priming before they can stamp crisp clear images. By priming you either have to stamp them multiple times on scraps of paper so they’ll coat with ink properly or give them a gentle scuff with an emery board so they’ll ink up right.

The Stamps of Life stamps require none of that !! I had not used my bandages stamp set, yet. Thankfully I didn’t have anyone with boo boos or requiring a Get Well card. Although I could just make them ahead of time in case. But I gave my stamp set a go last night and that was stamped right off the packaging. I didn’t prime them or anything ! Just stuck onto my acrylic block and inked up with my Tuxedo Black Memento ink.

The Bandage stamp set was from last month “January”. This month for February, I got a Hippo stamp set. No offense, Stephanie. But I wasn’t very fond of the hippos. But that’s where you need to get a little CR8TiV. I was looking at this stamp set and wondering what I can do with Hippos and a CR8TiV light bulb went on. I thought I’d do a CR8TiV twist on the stamp set and to me they kinda looked like Bears than Hippos.

So below ↓ is the picture of the stamp set and my CR8TiV twist of turning the Hippos into Bears. I used a Darice Forest Embossing folder to add in the Forest trees. There’s no sentiment added to it, yet ! Until I find a use or need for this card I’ll add one on later. I first stamped the images and them embossed the card. I did my best to color it in to hide some of the embossed areas.


I didn’t do any masking but rather what I did was just wipe off the bits of ink on the areas of the stamp I did not want such as the Hippos tail and toes. I think it turned out quite nice and gives you a great example of stretching your stamps and showing you that you don’t have to go with the theme of a specific stamp set. Mix and Match and be CR8TiV.

Overall if you’re a cardmaker I highly recommend joining the Stamps of Life stamp club. It’s SUPER affordable and every month will be like Christmas as you anticipate the *new* stamp set that is to arrive in your mailbox. If there’s ever a stamp set you don’t like place it into a box and create a CR8TiVity box for a youngster or friend who you think might be interested in cardmaking or papercrafting. They can also be donated to local hospitals or art classes. Go check out the Stamps of Life … I’m sure there’s something there that’ll tickle your fancy.

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Join the Club … Stamp Clubs.


Hi, Everyone ! Hope your 2016 New Year is off to a great start ! Mine seems to be heading on a positive path so far. *Don’t Jinx it* So today I wanted to share with you two(2) stamping clubs I joined. I’m sure you know of a subscription club out there. There’s SOo… many to choose from now !! There’s the Kawaii Crate, LootBox, Snakku, etc.

But one of my current hobby addictions is Cardmaking. I have slowly started growing a small collection of clear stamps and rubber stamps. I wanted to try out a stamp subscription. I originally saw my 1st stamp subscription in the Paper wishes catalog. Their stamp club is $18 *Shipping included* and you receive a 6×6 or 8×8 stamp set. I just joined this stamp subscription so I haven’t received any stamps yet but will do a Full Review once I get my first set.

Here’s the link to that subscription ↓

Another stampers subscription kit I joined is called The Stamps of Life and it’s SUPER affordable ! It’s only $12 a month !! The Stamps of Life subscription kit is $10.95 with $1 shipping in the US or $1.50 in Canada or $2.50 for the rest of the world. They website is very cute and their shop is full of so many adorable stamps !

Here’s a link to that subscription ↓

Both PaperWishes and The Stamps of Life have other subscription kits as well such as die cut subscription, card kits, etc. Join as many as suits your fancy ! I honestly think these subscription clubs are a deal bcuz one stamp set depending on where and what brand can cost you just as much as these stamp subscriptions and that’s just for one stamp set.

I know the stamp set I receive will solely be based on surprise as you don’t get to pick and choose which stamp set you want but sometimes the element of surprise is nice. Of course there will be Hits and Misses where you get a stamp set that you don’t like or won’t have a need for. Well, pass it on !! Either give it to a friend who’s just starting out on the cardmaking journey or if you have a shop pop it on your shop or use it as a giveaway item on your website. blog, or Facebook page.

One great idea is to gather all the stamps you don’t really like or have use for and create a DIY Cardmakers kit to gift to a young child. Sow the seed of cardmaking into a young child’s heart. If you have a niece, nephew, grandchildren, or even a Sister or friend gift them the kit for their special occasion whether Birthday or whatever. You could also create a kit and gift it to a child in the hospital. Imagine the smiles on every persons face in the hospital bcuz the child you gifted the kit to is making cards for everyone in the hospital.

B3 CR8TiV !! iNSPiR3 !! Hopefully tomorrow I will be able to share with you my recent craft store haul since it seems to be popular that people share their craft store hauls with other crafters. I got a pretty good amount of stuff thanks to Christmas money, GiftCards, and my husband !



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SUPER Affordable Watercolor Markers …


Hi, Everyone ! I recently came across this great tip on YouTube where regular Crayola markers or any washable markers can be used as Watercolor markers. I have always wished I could afford a pack of Tombow markers, Spectrum Noir, or Sakura Koi Brush markers or any Watercolor marker set for that matter. But now that I have come across this tip I don’t yearn for those sets anymore.

I have the 50 Crayola Marker set shown above and tested out this tip and it was totally Awesome ! I found it worked alot better to use a clear sheet of plastic like reuse the plastic film that comes on your clear stamps or use a clear stamping block. So you scribble with the Crayola marker on the clear stamping block then pick up the color with a damp paintbrush I used my water-brush pen and the marker ink works like watercolor !!

I tried using my RoseArt markers and CraZArt markers also some cheap dollar store markers. As long as the markers say Washable they are water soluble so you can use them like watercolor markers. I’ll post up a photo of an example when I get the chance but here’s the link to the YouTube video where I saw the tip …

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Calligraphy – Dip Pens

Hello ! Hope your having a great weekend so far. It’s been chilly so I’ve been trying to stay warm. (n_n) Stay Cr8TiV helps a great deal to keep my mind off the chilly waft sneaking through my windows.

I think I did a post about my dabbling in Calligraphy. I had an old calligraphy fountain pen that I had bought awhile back but wasn’t doing calligraphy lettering with it but rather just using it as a regular pen.

Until I bought a book on Calligraphy which hit me on the head that I had been using the pen wrong. All these beautiful Calligraphy lettering fonts and I was just using it like a regular pen. (>⌂<“) D’Oh !

But I am always learning something *new* which I love about being CR8TiV. So the book I had bought was Modern Calligraphy and Hand Lettering. I originally got into Hand Lettering watching YouTube videos by Kristina Werner or Made by Marzipan which sometimes features hand-lettering.

Eventually I got better at Calligraphy doing Old English, BlackLetter, Italic, etc. I was mainly using my fountain pen and the Sakura Pigma Calligrapher pens. I then learned about dip pens and was intrigued as well as adored the elegant script letterings.

I was going to purchase a small dip pen set from my local craft store but my husband bought me the Speedball Calligraphy Collector’s Set *pictured below* …


I highly recommend this set if you are going to try out dip pens. It gives you pretty much ALL the basic nibs, holders, and small jars of ink to try out. In this set you get … Four(4) Broad Nibs “C-2, C-3, A-5, B-6” ~ Four(4) Flexible Nibs “512, 513, 102 Quill, and 101” and three(3) ink colors … Black, Red, and Blue. The last jar is a pen cleaner solution

My only complaint would have to be that the jars aren’t very secure and that my black ink jar leaked out and two screws on the wooden box hinge is missing. But those are minor issues that do not affect the performance of the pens or nibs.

The pen holders in this set which includes … Oblique holder, Regular holder, and Quill holder. You get two(2) regular holders except one is a fancy black and gold marbled design whilst the other is plain black.

In my opinion the Speedball inks that come with the set doesn’t perform well at least in my opinion. The Red and Blue ink color is very vibrant though. But I felt the quality of the inks weren’t that great. So I went to search for a better ink.

Today I decided to use up some Michael’s coupons which expire today and after doing some research I heard that the FW Liquid Acrylic inks work great for dip pens as well as Gouache. I did purchase some Artist Loft Gouache but haven’t tested it out.

So the FW Liquid Acrylic set I purchased was the Pearlescent set *See image below*. (nεn”) I’m a real sucker for shiny, glittery, and shimmery colors and inks. So I was eager to try these out with my dip pen.


The colors in this set is gorgeous !! My favorite has to be the Galactic Blue as Blue is my favorite color and any hue of Blue is my favorite too. Each dropper inside seems to be sealed or at least mine were as I had to take a pin and unclog each dropper.

It was a bit of a downer that the packaging of this set or any FW ink set I saw at Michael’s wasn’t very secure as there’s no shrink wrap or anything securing the packaging. Just a piece of tape to keep the lid closed.

With that being said I noticed that the Platinum Pink ink level was a bit low compared to the others. None of the bottles are sealed either so the bottles in the set can easily be tampered with as well. But I was in love with the shimmery, glittery colors, and that Blue was my kinda blue. :P L0L

Below is a test sample of each color …


How beautiful is that Galatic Blue ? (♥ω♥) You can see on the top “Test” I wrote in Galatic Blue it’s very shimmery. I used the regular nib holder with a 512 nib. I tested every color except the White Pearl as I didn’t think it’d show up on the White cardstock paper.

The Copperplate Gold is not a FW ink but rather the Dr. Ph. Martin’s Iridescent ink *See image below*


I wanted a very shiny Gold to use when doing calligraphy script on Black or Dark colored paper. As you can see from the “Test” on the upper part of the list the gold is very shiny. When I tried it on black colored paper the gold turned to kinda a bronze-ish color instead of gold but still shiny. I’ll post a picture of that when I get a chance.

I orginally wasn’t sure if the Dr. Ph. Martin’s ink would work with Dip pens as unlike the FW pen which shows a image of a Dip pen nib on the side that displays what types of mediums the ink is good for. The Dr. Ph. Martin’s ink just says it’s good for Calligraphy, Brush, and Airbrush.

I wasn’t sure if by Calligraphy they meant fountain pens or dip pens as well. But they work wonderfully with dip pens and both the FW ink and the Dr. Ph Martin’s perform smoothly without any inconsistencies or ink blobs. If you are going to be doing Copperplate lettering or script letter with the Speedball Calligraphy set I highly suggest using the Oblique pen and the 101 nib. The 512 works great for that too but I like the 101 better for the thick and thin lines.

The book that comes with the set doesn’t really help much as far as giving beginners tips or tricks but it has some great font examples but as far as learning deeper about calligraphy with dip pens I highly suggest the Creative Lettering and Beyond book. *See image below*


In my opinion this book talks more about dip pens and the basics you need to know in half the book. Of course your other best place to learn the basics is YouTube. OpenInkStand Art & Calligraphy is a good channel to subscribe to  … Link →

Overall I am really liking this whole dip pen experience and I am hoping to think of other CR8TiV ways to using dip pens into my art and crafts that just Calligraphy. I am hoping that Santa will get me a Glass dip pen like the J. Herbin for Christmas. I will definitely post up a review if I got a Glass Dip pen for Christmas.

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Doodle and Lettering Challenge 2015 …


Woo ! Who’s still eating leftovers from Thanksgiving ? Luckily for me my family is pretty small just me, my Mom, my older Brother, older Sister, and Niece. So we generally don’t cook enough that there’d be leftovers. My favorite foods from the Thanksgiving meal would have to be the Mac n Cheese, Prime Rib, and Mashed Potatoes. I could eat those everyday if I could. :P

Anyways we’re down to the final days of November and then we’ll be counting down the last days of 2015. I can’t believe it’s already going to be 2016. The year seems to have just flew right by. (T ~ T) Have any of you stuck by your 2015 New Years resolutions ? I am horrible at them and never met or ever complete my New Years resolutions as I often make them unrealistic.

But anyways I had fun doing the October drawing challenge and came across these on Pinterest. Although the 2nd one says September I think I’ll mix it up and take something from either of the lists. So starting December 1st I’ll start on the Doodling and Lettering challenge and of course I’ll be posting them on my Facebook page.

I also got a product review for those who are into Calligraphy or want to know more or learn how to use dip pens. My hubby as a Thanksgiving present got me a really great dip pen set and I think it’s great for beginners and for those who aren’t but want a nice set without having to buy thing separately. I’ll post up the review soon.

Til then stay CR8TiV and may your Holiday Christmas shopping be stress-free.

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Blick Sketch Markers .VS. Copic Sketch Markers

24532-1969-2ww-mHello, today I’m wanna talk about a marker set that not too many people know about. An Art store named Blick *Formerly known as Dick Blick* has come up with their own Copic Markers called the Blick Studio Brush Marker set and it’s a bit more affordable than the Copics. The 96 color set is only $202.96 where as the 72 color Copic Sketch Markers will cost you about $350 for 24 markers less than the Blick Studio set.

(- ∩ -,) I have not quite yet been able to afford myself a set to really do a thorough review but I have told a few artist friends about the marker set and one has provided me feedback on the markers and how he was amazed at how much they feel and perform like Copics. They are dual-tipped and like the Copic Sketch markers … One end is a Chisel tip and the other a Brush nib. So my blog post is based off his feedback mainly until I can get a set of my own to do a personal review in detail.

Blick also carries their version of Promarkers/Prismacolor markers called the Blick Studio Markers. The price for these markers are about the same as the Blick Studio Brush Markers. If you have a Blick store near you they might sell single markers. I have bought a few skin tones single markers and they preform just as nicely as my Promarkers or my Prismacolor sample markers. They are very inexpensive to buy as single markers !! If I’m not mistake they cost $2.99 each which is pretty reasonable and the markers last a long time !! I have had my single skin tones markers for several years and still just as juicy as when I first bought them. They have not yet dried up or run out. My favorite one so far is the color called Camel.

If I had the money I would purchase both the 96 color Studio Marker set and the 96 color Studio Brush Marker set. When you’re on a tight budget you gotta try alternatives and sometimes the alternatives are better than the more expensive brands.

I hope that someday I’ll be able to afford these sets so that I can do a detailed review of them for you all as well as create more artwork for you to see. If you haven’t been following me on Facebook I’ve been trying to keep up with my 30 day drawing challenge off the lists I posted in the previous blog post. I’ve been incorporating one or the other or both challenges from both lists.

But if you wanna check out these markers for yourself … Here’s the links below ↓

Blick Studio Markers →
Blick Studio Brush Markers →

Leave a comment below if you’ve tried these markers and what your opinion is/are about them comparing to Copics.


30 Challenge ….


Well, it is officially the 1st of October and October seems to be the month where a lot of Artist of all different types of mediums start on a 30 day challenge. If you remember last year I participated in the #Inktober challenge which you were to draw something for 30 days in Ink. I had a lot of fun drawing something everyday for the challenge even though it’s something I do on a regular basis anyways. :P L0L

This year I thought I’d do the same but since they aren’t redoing the #Inktober challenge I thought I’d try one of the 30 day drawing challenges I’ve seen floating around the internet like the ones pictured above. ↑ I will post the daily challenge photos on my Facebook page from either of those two lists. If you can view the list each are different with 30 different things listed. The 2nd one with the Maneki Neko =(∩ᴥ∩)= seems to have more interesting challenges listed than the basic one I normally saw floating around the internet.

Anyways I hope that you do consider taking the 30 day challenge for the month of October to do something you really Love to do for 30 days or try to learn something *new* for 30 days. B3 Inspired … B3 CR8TIV … ♥ ~ MYT CR8TiV !!

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The Artists Struggle …


Hey, Everyone !! Been awhile since I last blogged anything. So last night my husband and I went to a local event called the 626 Night Market which was pretty much a Night Swap meet sorta with many different booths and most of them being handmade items and food trucks. Being I have Social Anxiety Disorder “SAD” I wasn’t to thrilled about being around a crowd of people and when I say crowd I mean like eyelash to eyelash … canned sardines packed crowd of people. Probably over 1000 people walking around browsing the booths, checking out the foods, etc.

It wasn’t until my husband and I were just about ready to head home that we found a section that we didn’t explore yet and I kinda wanna call it the Art District as it was a small nook or section of Artist booths who were displaying and selling their Art works. It was really inspiring to see these booths as one of my dreams is to someday have a booth with my own handmade items and artwork up for display and sales.

My husband and I briefly chatted with one of the artists and he talked about the struggles he went through to get to where he’s at right now. How it took a couple years and a few homeless living outta his car moments in his Life to get there and I agree being an Artist is tough. I would have to say out of all the careers and professions you can choose … choosing to be an Artist is probably the hardest one. It’s rough mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually … Uhhh … let’s just say it’s hard on ALL levels !!

I’ve been doing art all my Life and just about a few years ago decided to try Social media mainly to just share my artwork and slowly working towards trying to make a few bucks for art supplies and personal Artist dreams/ambitions but it’s been tough to get anyone to seriously wanna pay for something you made. I am grateful enough that my Facebook page has 307 likes which I am eternally happy about. But due to current circumstances my Etsy shop stays stagnant as I am currently not in the position to ship out package like I would need to if I sold my handmade polymer clay sculptures or canvas art, etc.

Part of me did sulk and feel disappointed/discouraged that I have not made it well enough to have a Artist booth like they did but I’m not going to give up and hopefully overtime my current situations will improve to where I can start doing small local events and set up a booth to display my art and sell a few things. But only time will tell and until that day comes I’ll continue to share my art on Facebook, Instagram, and post things up on Etsy when I have a few $$$ to post something up. But the Life of an Artist although a satisfying one is definitely a struggle one of the reasons for struggle is Haters Gonna Hate. But that ain’t gonna stop me from doing what I love !!

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Back to School … (T~T) Boo Hoo !


backtoschooloUntitledWell, it’s August and that means Summer is coming to an end. The day every student dreads is coming closer and to some it’s already begun and that is … going back to School !! I don’t go to school anymore and my schooling days are behind me but I look forward to Back to School bcuz that’s the time you can go on a SUPER shopping haul of supplies at SUPER cheap prices !  Now til the end of September you can stock up on your colored pencils, markers, scissors, glue, etc. as most major Office Supply store and Target start their Back to School sales where you can grab a pack of Crayola colored pencils *50 count* for under $3 or buy backs of notebook paper for like 10¢.

I make sure to grab the coloring pencils, markers, stock up on white polymer erasers, #2 pencils, and don’t forget many stores have storage and organizer boxes on sale too. So I stock up on a couple of those plastic storage cabinets with drawers and everything else you’d need like desk lamps, chairs, etc. Now is the time to replace that craft chair that’s covered in paint, no longer supporting your back, etc. I could use a desk lamp for when I take photos of my handmade creations and just to give me a better lighting.

Am I the only one who get’s excited when it’s Back to School ? It’s like when you get excited after Halloween is over so you can snag your favorite bag of candy for 50% off or more. LOL Some Arts and Craft stores like Michaels has entire store Back to School sales so you can snag that Prismacolor set or Copic markers on discount. On my list is brush markers and a calligraphy set. If I can get my hands on the Pilot Parallel pen that would be awesome !! I’m trying to get better in handlettering and calligraphy but finding that high quality calligraphy pen or brush pen at a price within my budgets is difficult. I have tried just using one of my fine point paintbrushes and acrylic paint but I think I’m too newbie to be doing calligraphy with a paintbrush.

But definitely excited to refresh my colored pencil bin, grab some more markers, erasers, pencils, and a pair of scissors for fussy cutting stamped images for my handmade cards. :D Be great if I get my hands on some post-it tape or more of those post-it notes with edge to edge adhesive. Those are great to use when masking your stamps and I wanna master that technique down for my handmade cards. Just can’t wait for the sale to begin !! LOL

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Recollections Embossing Kit – Product Review

UntitledHi, Everyone !! Happy Monday or Hope your Mundane Monday is Happy ! If you follow my Facebook page ** I posted that I was excited that I had purchased a embossing kit from Michaels using a 40% off coupon. The kit is by Recollections and although I’m not a fan of the color Pink … it’s cute and growing on me !

So I thought I’d post up a product review for those of you looking to dabble in heat embossing. The kit costs $39.99 at Michaels but with the 40% off coupon I got it for about $26-27 with the tax and everything included. Now I read somewhere online that the ink pads and embossing powders that came with it were no good and useless so I did pick up a VersaMark ink pad and a bottle of clear glitter embossing powder by Recollection just in case.


So the heat tool says Recollection labeled on the heat tool but it’s actually the Zap! Heat Tool *see photo above* made by American Crafts especially manufactured for Recollections brand I guess as the instructions included in this embossing kit are for the Zap! heat tool. Umm … overall I had no start-up issues. The instructions do warn that it might smoke for a minute as the protective coating on the coils burn off. I did not have any smoking but did smell the familiar smell of the protective coating burning off. It’s familiar bcuz my heater had the same smell when I first bought it.

Anyways it warmed up REAL fast maybe within 1-2 minutes it was ready to go. I turned it off and went to test the embossing powders next. The review I read about the embossing powders being junk is true. Even with the VersaMark ink the embossing powder did not stick and had a texture that did not feel like embossing powder but more like very fine craft sand.

Soon as I stamped my image in VersaMark and sprinkled on the black embossing powder it just rolled right off when I tapped the excess off. So I brushed off the embossing powder and used the clear glitter embossing powder I bought just in case and that sticked a lot better. Heat embossed it and was loving the look of it !! I may need to buy a darker colored *opaque* embossing powder as I could not see it once it heat embossed. It disappeared into my white cardstock leaving a faint glittery outline. So I couldn’t tell if I heat embossed it long enough or if I was embossing it correctly. But I think I did.

Now let me share with you a little trick that you’ll probably notice most cardmakers do in tutorials where they heat emboss. You’ll see them use a Embossing Buddy or Embossing Powder Tool before they stamp their embossed image so that the embossing powder only sticks to embossing image. I just use a make-up brush or small cotton ball lightly dipped in baby powder. You don’t really need an Embossing buddy or Powder Tool. The powder inside the tools are generally just a talc powder like Baby Powder.

I always have a blush or facial powder make-up brush in my art desk to brush away eraser crumbs when I draw and cotton balls, swabs, etc for blending. They’re cheap and can be easily found at the dollar stores. If you’re going to be using make-up brushes to apply baby powder before Embossing I suggest buying two different sized brushes. One large like blush powder brush and another for eyeshadow or shimmer dust brush as one has fine tip smaller brush and other is large round brush. The smaller tip brush can also be used to brush away stray embossing powder. A regular small paintbrush would work too.

As for the ink pads that comes with the kit … They’ve never been opened and package up tight but when I opened them to test it out … ALL the ink pads were dry and even a few drops of water or rubbing alcohol didn’t revamp them. So definitely when you buy this embossing kit from Michaels or Online be sure to grab some embossing powders and a VersaMark ink pad. I have yet to try this but I heard you can stamp an image with the VersaMark ink and use fine glitter to emboss with too. Overall I think you’re getting a good deal ! I haven’t used the tray that comes in the kit as I just use my scrap cardstock to dump the embossing powder in and out of the jar.

Umm … the box is comes in is very nice but very poor in durability. The inside has a very pretty rose pattern but just opening and closing the box twice and the corner of the box split. I had to patch with a bit of duct tape but my OCD now has to cover the entire box with duct tape as it bugged me that only that corner had duct tape. (>⌂<“) Overall I think if you’re a beginner looking to start dabbling with Heat Embossing this is a great kit to buy or gift to someone who wants to Heat Emboss. I give this 4 ★★★★☆ outta 5 ★’s

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