ASGLogo Stamp, Scrap, & Art Tour - Rockford, IL
March 14 &15, 2009

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A trade show called Stamp, Scrap, & Art Tour, was held in Rockford over the weekend of March 14 & 15 at the Clock Tower on E. State Street. Twenty vendors had booths showing tips, techniques, and new products for scrapbooking, greeting cards, rubber stamping, and other crafts. The bolded names in this article are links to websites. The Tour's website is

The vendors were a mix of local and distant stores and online stores, from Maine to Washington to Florida, plus Michigan, Wisconsin, and Illinois. Most booths had a demonstration area where a "booth babe" would show some technique and many allowed show attendees to sit and actually use the products to make a sample.



Pretzel City Paper, a Freeport local store, had an excellent demo with a "make it and take it". The demo showed using a new type of sticker that has delicate outlines. While there were lots of types of art, the demonstrator used an egg shape with flowers inside, perfect for an Easter greeting. Place the delicate outline sticker on paper then color in the flowers. The inexpensive sheet of egg stickers were a hit and were sold out before noon on Saturday.

I found a similar sticker sheet with calla lillies and a sample card with a butterfly sticker. The butterfly card was made by putting the sticker on transparency paper, then colored with Glaze Pens, as the ink is transparent and effect of the light shining through to the bottom layer was beautiful on her sample card.

The corner punches shown in the picture to the right really enhanced the card making. Bought two of those. OK, one is for my sister whose birthday is in April. A perfect excuse to buy two, right?

Pretzel City Paper has a store in Freeport, at 1031 W. Empire St. (815 232-1181 or the web at



Corner punches enhance layering papers. The egg stickers also came in gold. The fine outline of the sticker made it easy to color accurately. Fun techniques to make a good looking card and this booth is my pick for Best of Show. AND they are local!


I met three ladies in matching Tshirts. The front logo said "Marathon Stampers". The back of the shirts say, "Stampin' til the Cows Come Home!"




I ate lunch with the Marathon Stampers and found that the two sisters (on the right and left in the photo) live in Dekalb and come to the show every year with their long-time friend who lives further south in Illinois. When they get together, the rubber stamping sessions are the "marathon"; husbands and children be damned .

They said they'd found an X-rated section of rubber stamps at the Seaside Stampin' Ink Booth. It was carefully marked to peruse at your own risk. Shute. I forgot to go back and look at that.

Another vendor, Deals from Wisconsin, ( had very inexpensive crafting tools. The man running the booth said that their store was close to a Fiskars outlet in Wisconsin and they were able to pick up seconds, hence the cheaper prices. A variety packet of eight sheets of 12 x 12 inch card stock for scrapbooking was only $1. The sheet of words had one misspelling, probably the reason the pack was a "second". Shaped paper punches were also only $1, but the plastic handles had some marring. Minor problems to a thrifty crafter.


One cute project was a fold up paper gift box, diamond-shaped with ears and feet like a bunny rabbit. Inky Antics from Ohio ( sold a kit with a rubber stamp for shape, ears, feet, and instructions. Simple to make, yet cute to fill with candy or a little gift.

Bugawumps -- where do vendors get their names? -- from Northbrook, IL was demonstrating oil pastel crayons to color up a background. The colors were then blended with baby oil on a cotton ball. I heard one customer ask if they had the cotton balls for sale, too, which they did! Yet another technique I have not tried.



Tessler Stamps came all the way from California. The booth had quite a lot of different products, including the cool stamp pads, shown above, that have 12 colors of ink in a checkerboard. I missed the demo with the stamp pads. Darn.




Altered Arts Magazine had a booth at the show and a very poised child was giving the demos!

Sweet Impressions from Fowlerville, MI ( had an extensive demonstration of marking, stamping, or perforating vellum using a grid of holes as a work surface. The crafter could use a stylus over the holes to emboss bumps inside a stamped design or use a needle tool to punch a fine grid of holes inside a design. The stylus she used had a magnetic tip and interchangeable knob heads. She also had a needle tool for making perforations. Their website has a good picture of the hole punched designs.





Darcie's County Folk, booth pictured above, is one of four vendors from Cleveland, OH. This booth had a lot of packages of card stock shaped and printed to make various bags and boxes, including some cute bird houses. The make-it-and-take-it project shown above was a wreath card, with shrinky plastic do-dads to glue on.

The website for Art Gone Wild provides links for all four Cleveland vendors. Must be a lot of stampers in Cleveland.


Just for Fun, out of Florida, was featuring their line of stamps and mylar stencils that let you cut a photo into postage stamp sized pieces and recombine them on a card. They even had scissors that cut the edge of your photo with the rounded cuts as an old-style postage stamp has.



Most of the booths had extensive arrays of completed greeting cards, showing how to use stamps or other paper crafts.
Truly inspirational.

Just for Fun's website is



One large booth was from Stamp La Jolla,, selling stencils, glitter, glitter embossing powder, stamps, stamp pads, you name it. Their website explains the very California sounding name (pronounce it Stamp La Hoi Ya). They originated in San Diego, CA but have moved to Ashville, Ohio. I love their color wheel, almost visible in the photo, that is made with glitter embossing powders --that's a lot of colors.

I enjoy surveying the people --vendors and attendees - to see the mix of male/female. There were a few men shopping, several sitting on the edges waiting, and quite a few working the registers in the booths. One male vendor told me that his wife started the business but now they both work it and attend twenty shows a year around the country.

A great way to celebrate spring is to visit a show full of new ideas and creative people. The Stamp, Scrap, & Art Tour is an annual favorite.

Post Script: Esther Dixon, a local quilter and stamper, emailed me to say that her daughter had won the big prize basket of the weekend. Plus Esther won a $100 coupon for merchandise that only took her a delightful hour to spend.


Thanks for reading!



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