Wow. I am just overwhelmed by the response of support. I have read every single comment (twice!) and I sit here in silence just humbled. So many of you literally brought tears to my eyes. Doesn’t that sound so dramatic??!! It’s so true though. I CANNOT thank you enough for all of your input. Some of you made me laugh too – especially about being able to show a piece of candy or a Zumba video or a picture of my daughter because SU doesn’t sell it lol!! And, SU sending non-SU product sniffing dogs into my house – too funny. Tracy, your comment about the petition was awesome. There are some of you that agreed with the Stampin’ Up! policy, which I can understand, too. There are two sides to every coin.
I learned several things from all of your comments:
- Women in the papercrafting world are truly amazing. I kind of figured, “well, yes, people watch my videos when I put them out there”. When I saw how many of you were emotionally engaged in this issue and totally charged up over my situation, I thought, “wow, it’s more than just watching a video to people.” You showed me that you really care about and appreciate what I do. I cannot tell you how much that meant to me!!!
- When I got my first notice from Stampin’ Up! on Monday, I assumed that Stampin’ Up! really couldn’t care less about me – my sales are a drop in the bucket for them. But, when I read how many of you have bought more products from your existing demonstrators because of what I showed you, it’s a much bigger issue for them… I’m not sure they realized that when they sent me the email.
- I don’t mean this to sound like psycho-babble, but honestly, you made me feel worthy of more. I was so very unsure of myself when I posted last night. I’m not sure what prompted me to put it out there and not just resolve the situation on my own, but now I know why. I learned so much about you guys and also myself through all your comments. From that perspective, SU has given me a gift.
Many people asked me how dependent I am on the income from Stampin’ Up!. To be honest, by the time I buy all the new products because old ones are retiring and can’t be used anymore and pay the monthly online SU fee (I also have to pay for a Stampin’ Up! branded and hosted site so that I can sell online – a complete waste of money), I’m pretty much breaking even. Breaking even means that I earn enough to cover my SU purchases. Above that, there is nothing. A financially lucrative business? No. However, I must say that being able to pay for most of my supplies is definitely a plus.
Some other people asked about my relationship with Stampin’ Up! and what would happen if I don’t comply. It is a voluntary relationship. If I don’t like their rules, or they believe I am not abiding by their rules, we part ways and that’s it. In the end, they define the rules. If I want to play by those rules, then I can. If not, then I just don’t join the game. They have a right to dictate the rules, as it’s their company. Whether we all agree with the rules is unfortunately irrelevant to them at the moment. Kimberli emailed me… “why would they want to stop business that you are drawing in for them?” Good question. Time will tell. As Dorothy T put it… it’s “a no win for everyone involved.”
Ok, ladies. I’m not sure what you have done, lol, but I got a voicemail from Libby today. She wants her email address removed from my blog. I think she was afraid that I might post her email if she emailed me about it! So, since I really have no intent to harm Stampin’ Up!, you will notice that her email address has been removed and replaced with email@example.com, per her request. Hubby thought this was hilarious by the way!!
Libby also said that she is extending Stampin’ Up!’s deadline to Monday. She would like the opportunity to talk with me about the SU policies and how they are in place to protect both demonstrators and Stampin’ Up!. It didn’t sound like anything had changed, which frankly I wouldn’t expect anyway.
I believe that everything happens for a reason. Per Marilyn, it could be a “blessing in disguise in a kicking-you-in-the-butt sort of way”. Several people pointed out that cards that use supplies from just one company are “boring”. I have to admit that I do see a sort of “stamping, cutting, and layering” consistency across a lot of SU demonstrators. Sometimes I like to use a SU product with something else (i.e. a Ranger applicator) to bring out a different result. I just cannot imagine limiting the creativity.
Stephanie summed it up rather nicely… “I would stop and think about what is important to you….making cards and giving others inspiration or selling SU?” That simple statement really made me think. And then, from Lisa W… “I had just lost a sister and was trying to distract myself with something that would cheer me up. I actually was laughing and enjoying you creating your cards.” Okay, that comment seriously did just stop me in my tracks and make me ask myself Stephanie’s question.
The answer for me is pretty clear… making cards and giving others inspiration. I didn’t realize until last night how much I had reached others in a positive way and it very much surprised me. And it made me feel good about what I do. Don’t you often wonder if you’re doing what you’re supposed to be doing? I mean in the grand-scheme-of-things sort of way. I do, a lot.
I plan to resign as a Stampin’ Up! Demonstrator, but I am excited about what may lie ahead.
The only other decision I need to make is whether I will continue to use Stampin’ Up! products. All of you know how much I love the products, not to mention how much I have! Although it might seem satisfying to just boycott, I’m not sure that’s a good decision for me or for you. You all still have products that you want to use – right?
Ironically enough, my post for next week was about how to use Stampin’ Up! markers so they look like Copic markers (can you believe it?). I recorded the video over the weekend, before this whole drama. I discovered a new technique using watercolor paper, markers, and a blender pen. It’s just so cool that I have to post it. I know a lot of you already have the markers, so I’m excited about showing you something new, even though I’m not feeling so great about SU right now. I am hoping that will change with time.
On that note, I will close with a comment I heard from a lot of you in various ways… “When God closes a door, he opens a window”. You’re right!! Thank you, thank you, thank you – words cannot express how much I appreciate the time each of you took to write me.