So yikes, it has been almost a month since I got back from Creative Escape 4, and so I think the time is long overdue to give you my top 10 thoughts about the great Creative Escape:
1. Unbelievable sisterhood - you know when you strip away the zebra prints, the pink cowboy hats and the tiaras what I was most struck by was how genuinely sweet and caring everyone was and how much true carefree fun all of these women had. When people ask why anyone would pay all that money to attend a scrapbook conference - and admittedly it is a silly thing to do - I would say because life is hard and Creative Escape is really, really fun.
2. Tim Holtz really is as good as you think he is - My favorite instructor and favorite class hands down, was Tim Holtz and his suitcase mini-album class. First of all it was the only class in which me and my mom were actually able to finish the project. Second, he was just a great teacher, his class was more than a rushed set of instructions, it was a whole presentation. Anyone who follows Tim knows he is really into Disney, and he showed a cool video at the beginning of his class with Walt Disney all about the importance of imagination, I was inspired. He also did a great job explaining all of the Ranger inks and goodies he gave us to use. And most importantly we left the class with this really great project - perfect for us ladies with boys in our lives. Check out the project and his impressions of the event on his blog.
3. All for charity? or just a little crazy? - Quick how much would you pay for these lamps? Now what if I told you the pink one was designed by Heidi Swapp, and the other lamp was designed by Tim Holtz? Would you pay $2,000 . . . $3,000 . . . how about $8,000 for Heidi Swapp's lamp and $29,000 for Tim Holtz's lamp. Yeah, you're reading that right. Heidi, Tim and other designers created lamps to be raffled and auctioned for charity - the proceeds were going to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. The auction event was wonderful, exciting and just a little looney. It was a nice send off.
4. 45 Minutes in the Bazzill Warehouse, Is a Good Thing - So the first thing I did when I got to Arizona for Creative Escape, was jump on a bus and head straight to Bazzill's warehouse to start shopping. If you didn't know the Bazzill paper company is located in Arizona. Creative Escape offers a tour of Bazzill's offices and a chance to shop in their overstock warehouse. Talk about being a kid in a candy store. My mom and I left with bags and bags of stuff, and the deals were great. In fact between the Bazzill warehouse store, and the on-site scrapbook store, the shopping was really good. I'm still unpacking stuff.
5. The ladies on the Yahoo! Message board Rock! - Right after I got my e-mail saying I could register for Creative Escape - otherwise known as the "golden ticket", I joined the Creative Escape messageboard, and about 3000 messages later, I can safely say those ladies are really the heart of Creative Escape and a big part of what makes Creative Escape so much fun. My mom even got in on the action and participated in a card swap. I learned a lot, laughed a lot and made a couple of friends.
6. Scrapbooking and Spa Treatments Go Together - A hot stone pedicure and a mojito - talk about a creative escape! The Aji spa at the Sheraton Wild Horse Resort was wonderful.
7. Sprinkles Cupcakes are Yummy - So Sprinkles cupcakes were not a part of the event, but the kind ladies on the Yahoo! message board put together a run to the Sprinkles cupcake store, and since I think it's important to have a cupcake whenever possible, we got a few. They were great.
8. Classes were a Little too Fast, but the Day was a Little too Long - You know I had a feeling I was the slowest scrapbooker in the world, but Creative Escape really proved it to me. I don't know how other people felt, but I thought the pace of the classes was just too fast. I also thought some of the classes were not well designed. The only project I actually finished Tim Holtz's suitcase mini-album - more about that in a minute. At the same time, 4 long classes beginning at 8:00 a.m. each day was really hard to get through. I don't know about you but vacation and 8:00 a.m. classes don't go together. By lunch time on Saturday I was ready to play a little hooky, and I cut out early to go to the pool - and I wasn't alone. Sometimes you need to escape, even at Creative Escape.
9. Favorite Projects were Lynette Carroll's photo wall art project and the 7-Gypsies wall art project - I really enjoyed Lynette Carroll's photo wall project. I did not finish it in class due to the number of pieces, but I can't wait to get it done at home. It will definitely find a place in my scrap space. I also really liked the wall art project from 7-Gypsies. I'm generally not a big fan of vintage, but this project was really cool and I happen to have the perfect pictures to go with it.
10. Arizona is really, really hot. - Let's face it when it is 113 degrees outside, I really can't think of anything better to do than spend the day in a highly air conditioned room learning new crafting techniques from my favorite scrapbook craft designers.