A small diversion from the ongoing monthly kit club research. I recently went to my local Hobby Lobby because they do have some surprises (i.e., I picked up a Cest a la Vie embellishment pack a week or so ago, although they only had the 6x6 pad of paper---argh@#& I would have purchased the 12x12...but not the 6x6, I just don't make good use of those).
But I did notice that they had several collection packs of fairly recent releases, Altwell, Flutter, Millie and June, and Life is Beautiful from Fancy Pants in particular, and they had a Bo Bunny Christmas collection pack in the clearance section, which I immediately snatched right up as I had really wanted that line when it came out, but was under my self imposed spending moratorium at the time!
The next week, their ad stated that paper (and collection packs and pads) were all on sale at 50% off! This meant that the Fancy Pants collection packs were like $5.00 each!!! So I went right in and grabbed up a couple.
But, once I got home and opened the packs, I noticed that the paper quality was not the same as the couple of single pieces I had received as part of one of my monthly kit clubs. The paper was double sided and cardstock weight, but not as thick as the "originals", nor was the color on some of the sheets the same. Blacks were more grayed, reds slightly dulled, etc. When will I learn? Sometimes you get what you pay for. And what did I expect for $5.00?!
Come on Fancy Pants! Come on Hobby Lobby! I would gladly spend the little bit more on the collections to get the same original print quality. But now, I will probably forego purchasing these at Hobby Lobby (unless I can open up a pack and feel the paper...um, I'm thinking the store may frown upon this practice).
All this being said, I thought about returning the collections, but the price that I paid for them is at the minimum worth the price of the puffy alpha and sticker sheets that were included in the packs. I figure that I will use the slightly off color papers for stamping or die cutting for cards or I can always use it as a base to glue other paper on top of. I will keep them (and I absolutely love the skinny, puffy alpha sets from Fancy Pants!). But I won't probably be buying any more. Sad, really. The big box stores put the little shops out of business, and then they cheapen the quality of the items they carry. Our choices get narrower and narrower. Which makes it an even clearer choice for me to utilize monthly kit clubs to get original quality papers and embellishments!
And the Bo Bunny Christmas pack? That collection was older and was still of original print quality, so I am good with that (plus what I really wanted it for was to make Christmas cards, so I am cutting much of it up anyway).
In the end, the lesson is buyer beware? You get what you pay for? Support the small businesses that bring you a quality product? Know your products and be flexible in your choices?
All of the above... All of the above.