Well, yesterday's Stamp-a-Stack has come and gone. It was ... a valuable experience, in the "boy did I learn alot, mostly from mistakes" sense. I had participants with a vast range of stamping abilities, from never having stamped before to expert. I had assumed they were all intermediate to expert -- the cards weren't hard, but instead of showing them step-by-step how to do each card, I held up the sample cards and gave a run-through on how to do them, which completely overwhelmed two of my stampers. Fortunately, an "expert stamper" friend of mine came just for the social aspect (she's already designed her Christmas cards and didn't want to pay to make more), so she sat down with the beginner, while I sat with the other "overwhelmee" and helped them go step-by-step through the cards they were working on. The other ladies were fine. I felt really bad, though, about my rush-job instructions. So if I ever do another one of these, I'll go step-by-step through making each card before I turn them loose, maybe even have them make one of each so they'll have the hands-on experience before they do the others in the set.
But the thing that was REALLY awful was how atrociously I screwed up both the math and my own thinking in calculating what I needed in the way of supplies and how much to cut for each person. Basically, each person was to make four cards of each of the four designs ... sixteen cards total per person. Well, in my numerically-challenged brain, somehow four cards per person per design turned into SIXTEEN cards per person per design! I took the total for each person and applied it to each individual kit! So I ordered 4x the amount of cardstock I needed! Instead of making enough money to cover my costs and labor (which, let me tell you, would've been heavy enough at four-per and was REALLY nasty at sixteen-per!), I am waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay in the hole. We're talking the difference between $50 or so and $200!! I'm glad my husband is committed to me and wasn't standing near the kitchen knives when he found out. So, yes, when I discovered my mistake (when Aidan, stuffing the kit supplies into baggies, said, "Mom, if they're doing four of each card, why am I supposed to put sixteen of each into the bags?") it was late and, because I was exhausted, it seemed so absurd as to be funny. But later, after the financial impact hit me, it ceased to be amusing. Try appalling. Try "Lord, have mercy!!"
So -- if I ever do this again, or any similar thing where supplies must be calculated and cut, Bjorn and Aidan are going to do the calculating, NOT ME!!! My word! Anybody wanna buy a ton of Christmas colored cardstock? All pre-cut, all you need are the stamps! *SIGH*
I don't know how the participants felt about the SAS, but I was pretty disappointed with it, mostly because of my own goofs and the fact that I wasn't the consummate, perfect demonstrator/hostess. Oh, well, at least I got one sale out of it (the non-participating friend.)
On a better note ... I have seen the Winter Mini Catalog, and it is FULL of great stuff! Awesome ribbons, great stamp sets, and the color combos they use for the samples are just gorgeous! I can't wait for December to get here! (Well, that and the fact that it's my birthday month AND Christmas, so I'm asking for money for stamps!)
Well, the church youth group is here, so I need to go be a decent hostess. Nice thing with them is, since they have the youth minister here, they don't need me hovering every minute! I can actually sit down!!!