In most relationships (specifically, the romantic kind) there are two phases: the honeymoon phase and reality.
During the honeymoon phase, all you can think about is your new love. Your sweetheart is your “everything.” Your pulse quickens when your eyes meet; you quiver when your hands touch; you just can’t stop thinking about him. You want to see the world, together; you want to experience everything life has to offer…together. You might even neglect long-time friends in favour of spending time with your him.
Well, that’s exactly what happened with me and my Cameo. I fell for Cam and I fell hard! In fact, I had pretty much decided I would end my relationship with my “Happy Birthday” stamp and I would, forevermore, cut the words out on my Cameo and glue them onto my cards. And, I vowed to forsake all die-cutting shapes and let Cameo take over.
I got hooked on buying Cameo shapes. In fact, it got so bad that I could barely sleep on Monday nights waiting for the weekly Tuesday half-price sale. All I needed was my Cameo. Just me and my Cameo…and four or five hundred Cameo shapes…and some paper. Yes, I was in LOVE!
Ah, but I did say there were two phases to a relationship, remember? Okay, well, that second phase, known as reality is kind of important. That’s the phase during which your sanity returns. That’s when you remember that there ARE other things and other people in the world besides your Honey Bunny… in my case, Cam. Oh, don’t get me wrong, this return-to-sanity phase doesn’t mean you fall out of love. Nope, not at all. It’s just that those crazy-happy neurochemicals in your brain start to settle down and you begin to act normal, again. Remember normal?
So, what inspired me to write this article is the fact that today, after a year-long honeymoon with my Cameo, I realized that there are many other colours in the rainbow and many other tools in my craft studio. I was making a Christmas card and trying to glue the 14 letters of “Merry Christmas” onto the front of it without getting glue on the cardstock. Like that’s ever going to happen!
As luck would have it, I glued my index finger to my thumb and had to stop to pry them apart and scrub the glue off. It was at that moment that I happened to noticed, sitting way up on a shelf, a card that I had made last year. It, too, had “Merry Christmas” on the front. But, I had done it the old-fashioned way, using a beautiful stamp and a rich pearl embossing powder. The stamped sentiment on the card just happened to catch the light, giving it a look of sheer elegance.
And, my point is…
What did I learn from this (you ask, hoping that there really is a point to my story)? I learned that, while my Silhouette is great for some things, it is just one of the many tools in my studio. I also learned that, if you use the same tools all the time, you can get stuck in a rut and start turning out cookie-cutter projects.
So, the honeymoon with Cam is over and I’m sane, once more! I’m still in love with my Cameo, but it I have returned to Planet Sanity, and it’s good to be reunited with my wonderful family of crafting tools.
Nowadays, I use my Cameo for cutting out:
- large-scale sentiments for scrapbooking (not the little fiddley ones, unless it’s absolutely necessary)
- multiple copies of the same shape
- intricate cuts that would either be too frustrating or take too long to cut out by hand (or simply impossible, as in the case of doilies) Note: I found the “Sunshine and Lollipops” photo on-line and I have used it only in this post.
- vinyl stencils–the Cameo is, of course, the master of stencil-cutting
I know that me and my Cameo will enjoy a long and happy future, together, now that I have realistic expectations for our relationship. Like they say, “no man can be everything!” Well, I guess one tool can’t do it all, either!
A last few words of caution, which I offer based on my own experience:
- always take whatever is free (i.e., free shape-of-the-week)
- try not to get carried away when buying shapes–even if they are half-price. A lot of those shapes that you think you will use one day, will likely sit in a folder, forgotten. So best to buy on an as-need basis, even if you do pay the full $0.99. It’s cheaper, in the long run
- use your shapes creatively. I have often modified shapes to suit my needs
- before you buy a new shape, check your library to see if you have one that is similar
- don’t forget about your die-cutting tools, like your Nestabilities and your punches–they are often quicker to use than the Cameo.
So that’s my two-cents’ worth for today. I hope I gave you some food-for-thought. If you have some Cameo or other crafting advice that you would like to share, please leave me a comment and I will be happy to share it with my readers.