I have never been to an exclusively “paper” event before – despite having quite a varied repetoire in the art and craft fields.  This particular event is held twice a year in Melbourne and attracts thousands of people interested in scrapbooking, journaling, paper tole, decoupage, Artists Trading Cards, stamping, card making and anything else you can imagine made with paper.

I am attracted to paper – I make the odd ATC (with a fabric emphasis) – but I like the infinite variety of design. I am impressed with the use of very fine laser cut chipboard, fine MDF and even heavy duty cardboard as a means of creating shapes, letters and symbols for use by the creative mind.

One of the most delightful features of this show was the free “Make and Take” opportunities offered to show visitors.  The stand that was behind scrapmatts.com (where I was working) had a free ‘make and take’ table with chairs for four participants…. it was never empty!  It appeared they had a waiting list for places on the Friday – goodness knows what Staurday was like! The embellished tag that the girls made there was fantastic.  They learned about working with card board, the right type of glues to use, working with transparencies and giving a proper finish to the work with distress inks and the correct sealer.  If I had managed the time, I would have taken the mini class myself as I was more than  intrigued with what I saw.

I met a delightful young lady who had discovered the art of casting shapes using a heavy grade embossing powder.  She was making some fascinating jewelry pieces combining the cast pieces with copper wire. These shapes could also be used in any other form of “paperwork”.

I have come home with some of the scrapmatts product as I quite like the size, scale and challenge of ATCs.  All I need now is the time to have a play with them! Andrew has cut a range of frame shapes and base boards that are the correct size for ATCs in a range of colours to suit lots of projects.  As these are made from matt board they can easily be painted, stamped, sponged, embossed and, much to the delight of a number of customers, fitted through the “Cuttlebug”. All the scrap matts are available for sale via online ordering at www.scrapmatts.com or from Andrew direct if you happen to be coming to Brisbane for the Craft and Quilt Fair this week!

There was something at this show that would have appealed to anyone with a crafty bent – even if you don’t call yourself a paper arts person, I am sure there would have been something to interest you.