Reflecting on 2015

Hi everyone!

For our final blog post this year, I decided to spend some time reflecting on all that happened here at Anna Griffin Inc. in 2015 – and WOW, what a year it has been! There are so many incredible highlights that made this year extra special for us, and we wanted to share them with you!

This year we climbed to nearly 100,000 total social media followers across Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube and the blog. YouTube videos that started as sneak peeks in my office have turned into how-to’s, giveaways and more that have been viewed around the world. What an honor that is! Our hope is that you have taken away just a fraction of the inspiration this year that you have given us along the way.

The Anna Griffin lines of invitations, stationery, fabric accessories, quilt fabric and paper crafts can be found in over 6600 retail stores and on 2 TV shopping channels across the globe. This year we created over 300 new invitations, stationery and fabric accessory items, 30 quilt fabric collections and 122 crafting items for television sales.

2015 was also a fabulous year for new ventures and partnerships.  It marked our launch into the world of bedding and home décor, with Anna Griffin Home collections on HSN and QVC UK. In March we had the privilege of being part of HSN’s Cinderella event by creating special items inspired by the fairy tale. Our stationery and Christmas card making end caps were a big success in JoAnn stores nationwide and we look forward to new things to come. We partnered with our friends at American Crafts to launch the Anna Griffin Minc machine Today’s Special, and teamed up with Therm O Web to bring you innovative adhesives. Our partnership with Cricut continued to thrive, as we had three 24-Hour Craft days together to bring you Mix and Match embossing folders and two amazing Cricut Explore Air world launches.

Speaking of TV, we were live on HSN for 2,900 minutes in 2015. That is 50 hours of paper craft programming! We had 4 Today’s Specials and 40,000 of you chose to sign up for our autoship programs. Want to know the most fun statistic of all? If you tally up all of the cards that were made from Anna Griffin card making kits this year, it would be nearly 2.2 million cards. Unbelievable!

We were honored to receive the Best New Product Award in the Desktop category at the National Stationery Show. In addition, HSN awarded us the Quality Assurance and Customer Excellence Award at their annual Partner Awards Gala this year. We know your standards for products and service are high and the fact that we are exceeding expectations is one of the greatest accomplishments imaginable.

Last but certainly not least, we held our first ever weekend long crafting event to round out this incredible year. The first Anna Griffin | Create was the crafting weekend of a lifetime! People came from 40 states and 3 countries to share the joy that crafting brings, and it was the definition of beautiful in the making.

What a year! Are you ready for 2016?  I am going to start on Tuesday, January 5th with the first sneak peek of my upcoming 6th Anniversary shows on HSN January 26th, so stay tuned.

I am going to leave you with a glimpse of what has come in the mail this week. Thank you all for your generosity and sharing your talents with me! I absolutely love opening the mail!

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Have a very Merry Christmas and a fantastic New Year, everyone!

Love,

Anna

Christmas Pop Up Card Tutorial

Hi!

Only 10 days until Christmas! We are counting down the days and wrapping up the last of our handmade holiday cards. The Christmas Pop Up Card Making Kit is still inspiring us every day, so we wanted to share a beautiful gold card project that is gilded in gold foil and boughs of holly. Let’s get started!

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We pulled out a matching gold damask card base and pop up insert, two gold borders, a gold foil tree, gold flourishes, holly sprigs and sentiments for the front and inside of the card. The only other supplies you’ll need outside of the kit are double sided adhesive and a craft knife.

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First, we attached the pop up insert to the card base- this video will give you a closer look at the easiest way to adhere these together if you are new to pop ups. Then add the borders to the top and bottom of the insert.

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What’s fun about this card is we used techniques on the foil flourishes that you may not have tried before. You’ll attach one flourish to the top of the card as shown. For the second flourish, trim off the two “tails” on the right side with a craft knife, add a tiny bit of adhesive to the front right of the flourish and adhere it just behind the right pop up structure. This gives you a lot of added dimension and the card will still open and close effortlessly!

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Then we scored and folded a third flourish to make it look like it’s melting off of the card. Some of you may have seen this technique in our pop up cards before, but if you haven’t then you absolutely have to try it. It really takes them to the next level.

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Now adhere the gold Christmas tree to the top of the center structure and the sentiment to the structure on the left.

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That is so pretty as it is, but we are going to go a couple steps further. Next we took a small holly sprig and trimmed it in half with a craft knife. Don’t ever be afraid to cut your embellishments to make them go further on cards!  We tucked these behind the top flourish and the circle “And a Happy New Year” sentiment.

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Now take the remaining large holly sprigs and trim them, too. You can cut out any part of the image you choose.. there are no mistakes in crafting! Use these as the finishing touches on your card.

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So gorgeous! We opted to keep this card simple on the front so the inside is a surprise, but you could also add a couple of gold flourishes or holly embellishments.

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Now that is beautiful in the making!

We also wanted to send a special thank you for all the magnificent mail we’ve received the past couple of weeks! Wow!

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Bye for now!

Anna

Holiday Trimmings II Card Tutorial

Hi there!

We hope you had a fabulous Thanksgiving holiday. Can you believe it is officially December? That means it is time to get moving on all of your Christmas cards, and we are here to help! This card from the Holiday Trimmings II Card Making Kit is the perfect place to start.

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This collection is the encore version of our popular Holiday Trimmings Card Making Kit. Two of our favorite elements in the kit are the glitter flourishes and foiled 3D bows, and this card uses both of them to make a simple but stunning statement. When you finish crafting with the contents of this green box, you’ll have 30 finished (and highly embellished) cards.

To start, we selected the kraft dot card base and adhered a 4”x6” red striped layer. Make sure not to adhere it completely to the card just yet- you’ll be tucking the gold flourishes behind this piece!

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Now we’re going to show you a trick that will make your glittered flourishes go a long way. Use a craft knife to cut two of the medallions in half, adhere to each corner of the red layer as shown and tuck the ends underneath. Don’t forget that these embellishments are already stickers- just peel off the back!

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We chose the wreath, 3D bow and a Happy Christmas sentiment to finish off this card. The wreath is the perfect size to cover up the rough edges of the medallions! We recommend using foam dots or double-sided adhesive to secure the paper bow, and we love curling the tails with a pencil for added dimension.

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Sign the back and it’s ready to mail! How easy is that? Here are a couple more cards we made from this kit to get you in the spirit…

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Last but not least, more thank yous we received from Anna Griffin | Create attendees! These two beautiful projects were given to us at the event from Sally Fasano and Dawn von Rosen in California.

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The mail just keeps coming and we could not be more grateful for this outpouring of support!

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Bye for now!
Anna