Sunday 30 March 2014

Grandma's Mother's day card

You may think I'm late posting this Mother's day card, but in fact I'm very early. Because it's a Mother's day card for my Grandma, and in Finland Mother's day isn't until mid-May. This card is inspired by two challenges, this week's Mojo Monday sketch and this week's Color Throwdown. I especially loved the color throwdown as pink-green-brown is one of my absolute favourite color combos ever. As the theme for this week's The Pink Elephant challenge is "use your favourite color combo" I decided to enter this card there as well.

For this card, the star is the amazingly beautiful designer paper. I used cardstock in Sahara Sand, and printed the sentiment in Early Espresso. It says "Grandma, Happy Mother's Day" in Finnish. I inked the edges of the sentiment in Blushing bride, and die cut the doily in Sahara sand. I am still ecstatic about my Big Shot, I have had it for a few months now, and I still get ridiculously happy every time I die cut or emboss something, just because I can!  I used the banner punch in the same designer paper (this is the reverse side of the paper) and in Old Olive cardstock. I know it's a bit of a cheat but the Old Olive went better with the designer paper than Pear Pizzazz, and the challenge rules say that you don't have to use the exact colours as long as you use something similar so I decided to take a bit of a creative licence on this one. I inked around the edges of the banners in Early Espresso and slightly shaped the banners so that they are curled up a little bit. I also stamped a rose inside the card and coloured it in Blushing Bride, Pink Pirouette, Pear Pizzazz and Wild Wasabi. I hope my Grandma will like the card when she gets it in May.

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Sahara Sand, Old Olive, Hobbycraft cream 160 gsm cardstock
Inks: Stampin' Up Blushing Bride and Early Espresso
Papers: Stampin' Up Tea for two DSP
Other: Nellie's multiframes MFD020 dies, and for the inside of the card and the envelope Inspirations clear stamp set and Stampin' Up markers in Blushing Bride, Pear Pizzazz, Pink Pirouette and Wild Wasabi 

Thursday 27 March 2014

Thank you cards with Mixed Bunch

Browsing through some old card photos I realised I never blogged about these wee little ones. In fact, I found quite a lot of cards I didn't even remember making! So I will try to get around to blogging about them at some point. This whole card thing is getting out of hand, I love making them but I hardly send any cards. So I have dozens and dozens... I keep thinking I should try to sell them, not so much to make money but mostly just to cover my expenses and most of all, just get rid of them!

These little colourful monochrome cards were created because my Mum needed a bunch of thank you cards (hence Kiitos - thank you in Finnish). I didn't want to make anything too complicated as I needed to make ten of them. I thought something bright and colourful is always appreciated. Stamping and punching the flowers was a quick job, as was stamping and fussy cutting the Chalk talk tags (this was back in the day before I had bought the dies). The most time consuming part was stamping the sentence using alphabet stamps as I don't have a Finnish thank you stamp. I bling-ed it up with a bit of ice stickles around the edges of the sentiments as well as in the middle of the flowers and finished off with a small adhesive gem.

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Crumb Cake, Melon Mambo, Old Olive, Pumpkin Pie, Rich Razzleberry and Tempting Turquoise, Hobbycraft white 160 gsm cardstock
Inks: Stampin' Up Melon Mambo, Old Olive, Pumpkin Pie, Rich Razzleberry and Tempting Turquoise
Stamps: Stampin' Up Chalk Talk and Mixed Bunch, Hobbycraft Clear Stamps Typewriter Alphabet
Other: Stampin' Up Blossom Punch, Rangers Ice Stickles glitter glue, Stampin' Up adhesive gems

Sunday 23 March 2014

Condolence cards

I've been rather lucky in my life and have had minimal need for condolence cards. Recently someone very dear to me suffered an unexpected loss, so I thought I would make a card for them. For this card I used the sketch from Freshly Made Sketches 128. It's a rather simple sketch, so I thought it was perfect for the card I wanted to make.
I wanted to keep the card simple, but with a little bit of spring colour in there so that it wouldn't be too depressing. I needed one card with a greeting in Finnish and one in Swedish (long story...) so I printed the sentiments on my computer. Other than that, it's rather simple with some stamping, some punching and a big bow.

Cardstock: Leonardo Stationery 350 gsm Smooth White Card, Hobbycraft 160 gsm cream cardstock, Stampin' Up black cardstock
Stamps: Stampin' Up Hardwood, Petite petals
Inks: Stampin' Up  Daffodil Delight, Early Espresso
Other: Petite petals punch, black ribbon from my stash

Swallowtail and Color throwdown #284

I was really inspired by this week's Color Throwdown challenge. And based on the amazing creations from both the DT and participating crafters, so were many others. I just love the colour combo of dark blue and purple, this time with a bit of turquoise to brighten it up. The It turns out I don't have any of the three colours in the challenge this week, but that's ok as you are allowed to use anything you have in your stash that comes close.

This card was born out of a bit of a stamping accident to be honest. I had some problems getting a good stamp with the Swallowtail stamp that I was planning to use for a completely different card. But I didn't want to abandon these half successful attempts at stamping, so I decided to colour them and cut out the parts of the butterfly that looked good. I always get a sense of achievement when I manage to save something from going straight into the bin (which is why I tend to hold onto every little scrap and unsuccessful attempt at crafting, in case I need it one day. Have you seen the program about hoarders? I'm the crafting equivalent...). I made two very different cards, one for the challenge, and one CAS. I always have trouble with CAS, I just want to go on adding stuff to them, but this time I just decided I will put the card away quickly so I can't add anything else to it. By the way, I got myself a new white cardstock to try out to make the card base from, after a bit of research I settled on teh Leonardo Stationery 350 gsm card as I wanted a really sturdy cardstock. So far so good, I really like it although it's a bit tricky to fold neatly because of it's thickness, so I may have to go back to 300 gsm eventually although I love love love the quality feel of the really thick card.

The card for the challenge is above, I coloured it with Peacock Feathers, Seedless Preserves and Evergreen Bough. I stamped the swallowtail again in Rich Razzleberry onto Rich Razzleberry cardstock and matted it onto Bermuda Bay cardstock. I stamped the sentiment from Chalk Talk in Pacific Point and matted it onto Chipped Sapphire cardstock.

For the other card, I coloured the butterfly using Tim Holtz seasonals markers (I got the whole set of all 12 seasonal markers as I just love the bright colours and use them a lot). I matted onto yellow carstock and stamped a sentiment from the Yippee-Skippee! set added a stamp from Fresh Vintage. It is a bit on the simple side, but it's good to challenge yourself and make different things to keep an open mind.

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Rich Razzleberry, Bermuda Bay, Very Vanilla, Tim Holtz Distress collection Chipped Sapphire, Hobbycraft Three Shades of Yellow 160 gsm cardstock, Leonardo Stationery Smooth White Card 350 gsm. 
Inks: Stampin Up Early Espresso, Pacific Point, Rich Razzleberry, Tim Holtz Distress Ink Peacock Feathers
Markers: Tim Holtz Distress Markers Peacock Feathers, Evergreen Bough, Mowed Lawn, Picked Raspberry, Seedless Preserves, Shaded Lilac, Squeezed Lemonade
Stamps: Stampin' Up Chalk Talk, Fresh Vintage, Swallowtail, Yippee-Skippee!

Sunday 16 March 2014

Petal Parade in Rich Razzleberry and Coastal Cabana

I've been busy crafting this weekend, I believe the best cure for a cold is a good crafting session. And all the crafting challenges out there are a wonderful source of inspiration if you need to get your creative juices flowing. So, browsing the interwebs, I wanted to participate in the CAS(E) this Sketch #68 challenge. During the week, I had a quick play with my new Petal Parade stamp set just stamping randomly onto a sheet. I ended up making two cards from the stamped sheet. One for the challenge, and another just because I really love the colour combo of Rich Razzleberry, Coastal Cabana and Smoky Slate. I often struggle with my colour combos, not liking them in the end, but I think this turned out rather good!

For the challenge card, I made a banner from the sheet I stamped and matted it onto Rich Razzleberry cardstock. I used a die to cut out the doily in Coastal Cabana and coloured the sentiment using markers and stamped onto white cardstock. Punching the small banners only took seconds with the banner punch and then it was just a quick job to attach everything to Smoky Slate card.

The second card has similar components but a different layout and a little bling added for good measure.

Inks: Stampin' Up Coastal Cabana, Rich Razzleberry, Smoky Slate
Cardstock: Stampin' Up Coastal Cabana, Rich Razzleberry, Smoky Slate, Hobbycraft white 160 gsm cardstock
Stamps: Stampin' Up Petal Parade, Yippee-Skippee! 
Other: Nellie's multiframes doily and circle die, Stampin' Up banner punch, Stampin' Up adhesive gems.

Saturday 15 March 2014

Madison Avenue thank you card

I got out of bed ridiculously early this morning as I seem to have managed to catch a bit of a cold. Lying down made my sinuses feel like they were exploding. So I was up long before the sun, and what better to do on a Saturday morning at ridiculous o'clock than to catch up on some card challenges and get inspired!

This time two challenges caught my fancy. The Freshly Made Sketches #127 got my the inspiration neurons firing and I decided to combine it with the Stampin' Royalty #219 colour challenge which this week was So Saffron, Pistachio Pudding and Early Espresso. Another colour combination I wouldn't have picked myself, and completely out of my comfort zone.

To me the colour combo seemed quite retro, and to me the most retro stamp set ever is the Stampin' Up Madison Avenue set. I love it, but hardly ever get around to using it. I also have the matching embossing folder which I think I haven't used at all so far. That's pretty much how this card came together. I used the stamp-a-ma-jic to align the stamps for the flower and to place the little sentiment from the Tiny Tags stamp set.

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Early Espresso, So Saffron, Pistachio Pudding, Craft UK kraft card
Ink: Stampin' Up Early Espresso, Pistachio Pudding
Stamps: Stampin' Up Madison Avenue, Tiny Tags
Paper: Stampin' Up Tea for Two DSP
Other: Embossing folder Vine Street, Scalloped Tag Topper Punch, butterfly brad from my stash

Friday 14 March 2014

Pink and Swallowtail

Oh dear, I just realised it's been quite a while since my last blog post. I have several cards in the making, but my longer commute to work doesn't leave much crafting time. I haven't even had a chance to play with all of my new goodies from Stampin' Up from several weeks ago. And today, I got the first Cardmaking&Papercraft magazine with lovely goodies as well. My dear former colleagues got me a year's subscription of the magazine as a leaving present, and they couldn't have got me a more thoughtful present, I absolutely love it. It's such a luxury I would never have gotten myself, but now I get a new magazine plopping in through my mailbox for the next year, and every time, I will think fondly of my lovely ex-colleagues.

On to today's card. I fell in love with the Swallowtail stamp as soon as I saw it. It is so incredibly detailed, and also very versatile. In fact, it was one of the first Stampin' Up stamps I ever bought. Here, I used it for a Birthday Card. I stamped the swallowtail onto vellum using Distress embossing ink and embossed using a white embossing powder. For the background, I used a paper from the Stampin' Up Sunshine and Bright Skies DSP, and matted it onto a pink cardstock from the Papermania Red capsule kit.

Ink: Tim Holtz Distress Embossing Ink
Stamps: Stampin' Up Swallowtail, Hobbycraft Clear Stamps General Sentiments
Cardstock: Craft UK Kraft card 6x6 in, Papermania Sizzling Red Hot set
Paper: Stampin' Up Sunshine and Sprinkles, Dovecraft Premium Vellum 110 gsm
Other: Papermania Seafoam White Embossing Powder, Stampin' Up adhesive gems

Friday 7 March 2014

Multiple challenges Birthday Card

I usually tend to frown just a little bit at cards which are entered in a large number of challenges. I usually want to focus on one major theme, but each to their own. However, pretty much by accident I realised this card actually qualifies for three challenges! So this is certainly a case of the pot calling the kettle black. I started with The Colour Throwdown #282 with the below colour combo. I really like the colour combos as they get me using different colours to the ones I usually use. I always tend to gravitate towards the pinks and purples, so anything different is always welcome, and takes me out of my comfort zone a bit. 

Unfortunately I don't have Lucky Limeade, so I substituted with Pear Pizzazz. I also saw this amazing card from Teri's Craft Spot on my blog feed, and stole some ideas from that card. In addition, I got my latest order from Stampin' Up just a few days ago, including the wonderful En Fran├žais background stamp which I was dying to try out, along with the tag topper punch. I then realised I can enter this card in the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday "Tag it" challenge as well. When I was thinking about which sentiment to choose for the card I realised the theme for the Pink Elephant Challenge is Birthday, so I printed a simple Happy Birthday in Real Red using a free font called Forever in My Heart, so all of a sudden I hit three challenges in one. And that is how the cookie crumbles. 

Inks: Stampin' Up Daffodil Delight, Pear Pizzazz, Real Red, Crumb Cake, Tim Holtz distress embossing ink
Cardstock: Craft UK kraft card, Stampin' Up Daffodil Delight, Pear Pizzazz, Real Red, Crumb Cake
Stamps: Stampin' Up En Fran├žais, Hardwood, Petite Petals
Punches: Petite Petals, Tag Topper punch
Other: red ribbon from my stash, Sizzix Flower and vines #2 die, Papermania Seafoam White Embossing Powder

Thursday 6 March 2014

Simon Says Stamp challenges - time and tags

Yesterday I spent most of the evening in my craft room working on this tag. I haven't done many tags before, but obviously I have admired all the amazing tags out there created by amazingly talented crafters. And one of my tag heroes is without a doubt Tim Holtz, and his grungy, shabby take on crafting. I also love working with the Tim Holtz craft supplies, and Vintage Photo is probably my most used distress ink of them all, it's just a perfect colour.

This time I was inspired by two challenges, the Simon Says Stamp Monday challenge "tick tock", which is about time. With my holiday drawing to a close soon, I have been thinking about time a lot, especially about how it flies when you are having a wonderful time. I have enjoyed my time in the garden, kitchen and craft room, but these short one and a half week have just flown by, so I definitely wanted to participate in this challenge as it was so... timely... for my current situation. When I saw that the Simon Says Wednesday challenge was "tag it" and it also encouraged the use of Ranger product (for once something that I do have a huge selection of) I knew I wanted to combine the two challenges. I have been meaning to do a tag or two for quite a while, but halfway through I always give up as they don't turn out quite as I wanted them to. This time I was determined to get one done!

I only had one piece of crafting supplies with clocks on it for the time theme, and that was the Tim Holtz texture fades embossing folder Pocket Watches from Sizzix. Without a doubt this had to be the focal point of my tag. I started by inking a Ranger Inkssentials #8 Craft tag using Victorian Velvet, Seedless Preserves, Vintage Photo and Walnut stain to create a leathery look. I then embossed using my Sizzix and coloured the embossed areas using the Picket Fence marker. I used the Stampin' Up white pigment ink to stamp the Tim Holtz script stamp around the edges of the embossed areas of the tag, and used the Picket fence marker to draw some stitching to the top of the tag. I then distressed the edges of the tag.

Then onto the embellishments. I used the Tim Holtz Alterations Gadget gears die form Sizzix to die cut the gears, and inked with the same colours and added two layers of Ranger Ice Stickles in Coffee ice. I stamped the angels from Tim Holtz Stampers anonymous Regal Flourish set in Walnut stain and fussycut using scissors (this was definitely the most time consuming part of the tag) and then inked using Vintage Photo and Walnut Stain. I also stamped a banner from the Tim Holtz Stampers Anonymous Sketch CMS131 set in walnut stain, fussycut it and inked. I wrote the sentiment free hand. Lastly, for that little bit of colour, I used the Tim Holtz distress paints in Picked Raspberry and Seedless preserves to stamp the adorable butterfly from the Tim Holtz Visual Artistry Heartfelt set onto vellum, fussycut it and inked around the edges with Vintage Photo and Walnut stain. As a final touch, I added some paper twine and a die cut lace border using the Tim Holtz Vintage Lace sizzlit which I inked using the same colours as the tag.

My first completed tag! I'm quite chuffed, although of course it never ends up looking as you wanted it in the first place. But I'm quite happy with this none the less, a good effort.

Card: Ranger Craft tags #8, Daler & Rowney 190gsm watercolour paper, Hobbycraft 160 gsm white cardstock, Dovecraft Premium Vellum 110 gsm
Inks: Tim Holtz distress inks in Seedless Preserves, Victorian Velvet, Vintage Photo, Walnut Stain, Stampin' Up 
Stamps: Banner from Tim Holtz Stampers Anonymous Sketch CMS131 set, angels from Tim Holtz Stampers anonymous Regal Flourish, butterfly from the Tim Holtz Visual Artistry Heartfelt set, Tim Holtz script stamp
Dies: Tim Holtz Alterations Sizzlits Vintage Lace, Tim Holtz Alterations Gadget Gears
Other: Tim Holtz Texture Fades embossing folder Pocket Watches, Tim Holtz distress marker Picket Fence, Tim Holtz distress marker Black Soot, Ranger Ice Stickles glitter glue in Coffee Ice, Tim Holtz idea-ology paper twine

Tuesday 4 March 2014

Retro sketch challenge


I have been settling into a holiday rhythm over here. I wake up at the same time with my Culinary Consultant and pack his lunch while he gets ready to go to work. I then make myself a cup of coffee and some breakfast (which might or might not be a waffle with jam most mornings) and check my RSS feed. Having had almost no crafting time yesterday thanks to the amazing sunshine and a lot of gardening work, I immediately got really inspired by this blog post from Laura Mackie's blog which linked to the Retro Sketch challenge and decided I want to block out some crafting time today. I'm not usually very inspired by sketch challenges, but this design was just so incredibly cute, I couldn't resist. This is what the sketch looks like. Head over there to see some incredible creations using the sketch by clicking the picture.

I thought a super cute sketch deserves a super cute stamp set so I stamped the dragon and frog from Lawn Fawn Critters Ever After onto water colour paper and coloured with Tim Holtz distress markers and an Aqua-Flo brush. I used a mix of crafting papers to create the banners, and used the cute hears and stars from the stamp set to create the top banner and inked around the edges in Blushing Bride. I die cut the sentiment using a die from the Stampin' Up Chalk Talk set, and finally attached the cute little critters using dimensionals. Last but not least I added some bling to the frog king's crown. 

Aren't these guys the cutest ever??

Inks: StazOn Jet Black, Stampin' Up Regal Rose, Rich Razzleberry, Wild Wasabi and Blushing Bride.
Markers: Tim Holtz distress Mustard Seed, Bundled Sage, Mowed Lawn, Spun Sugar, Picked Raspberry, Seedless Preserve, Spiced Marmelade
Stamps: Lawn Fawn Critters Ever After
Cardstock: Craft UK kraft card, Daler & Rowney 190gsm watercolour paper, Hobbycraft 160 gsm white cardstock
Paper: Stampin' Up Sunshine and Sprinkles DSP, Dovecraft Princess Fairytale 
Other: Stampin' Up adhesive gems, Stampin' Up Chalk Talk framelits, Hobbycraft heart boarder punch, Aqua-Flo brush

Sunday 2 March 2014

Testdriving My Digital Studio

For a while I have been thinking about trying out the Stampin' Up My Digital Studio (MDS) software. It's basically a digital scrapbooking software, but it's quite versatile so you can make lots of things from scrapbook pages and photo albums to cards and practically anything. You can use a supplied template or create everything from scratch or do anything in between. There is a completely free, no-hassle and no-obligations 30-day trial of the software. You can download it from the Stampin' Up store. It's a 1Gb download, so for my countryside internet connection, it took quite a while.

On to the actual software. You can download it for either Windows or Mac, and it's really quick and easy to install, just click a button and it does the rest. When you start the software it prompts you to select your type of project and then shows you the main dashboard.

I started with creating a layout for a photo I had. I used the colour picker to match the element colours to colours on the photo, I thought that was a great tool to use. The photo I used is one of those photo-booth strips with four photos, hence the elongated shape of the photo. It took me quite a while to create this layout, but it was the first project I did. Using the large background stamps slowed things down quite a bit, but I think the end result was quite fun although now that I look at it and compare to another scrapbook layout I made earlier, it's quite similar... I may not have the most creative mind.

I also created a greeting card, which was very quick and easy to do. I did enjoy creating the card, but I'm not sure if I would feel as much accomplishment in sending a digitally designed, printed card compared to a hand crafted physical paper card where you can see all the different layers and elements. But I have my craft room which I can stock full of crafting supplies, and for people who don't have that, I think this could be a great way to be creative without having to physically hoard a crazy amount of crafting supplies. I ended up using the Mixed Bunch set, which I also have as a real stamp. I just love it, it's so incredibly versatile!
I printed the card as well, which ended up being a bit of a tricky affair as my printer doesn't provide all that many options for flexible layouts for printing, and I needed to get some empty space on the cardstock in the right place to be able to fold the card. In the end, I had to export it as a jpg (as my printer's most flexible printing interface is for photos and it wouldn't recognize pdfs...) including an empty first page, this way I was able to position it correctly onto a sheet of A4 paper. Not too difficult now that I know how to do it, but slightly annoying before I figured it out. Again, not the fault of the software, but the lack of printing options on my printer. Apparently, SU also offer a printing service, so you can order your photo books etc directly from them if you prefer. 

I have several reservations about the software, some of them maybe more justified than others. First of all, the software was excruciatingly slow on my MacBook Pro from a few years back. I had to wait between most of the operations for several seconds, and the big stamps took much longer than that to load. I was also very frustrated with the difficulty to select objects, I often had to mouse around and try to click several points of an object before it would get selected. This might be connected with the performance issues, but I can't know for sure. So it took me quite a while to build my test cards and backgrounds, just because it took forever to move things around. Particularly the large background stamps were hopeless, in the photo layout where I used two of them, I wanted to pull my hair out from time to time.

Also, there was a few bugs where the software just threw up some java error messages and refused to do what I wanted to. However thankfully it seemed quite stabile, so I didn't lose any of my projects. I should have made a note of what I was trying to do when I got the error messages, but unfortunately I didn't and I can't remember anymore what created the problems.

My main objection, and I admit this is not quite a fair point, is that although the demo comes with quite a nice selection of add-ins, and the full version with even more, Stampin' Up's model of making money is obviously to sell add-ins. Obviously at just shy of £14, the software is not expensive and Stampin' Up is a for-profit company, so they are completely free to sell anything and it's up to everyone whether they want to buy the additional content or not. You can buy additional DSPs, stamps and other elements for a few pounds each and I can see that being a slippery slope for a craft hoarder like me. I believe I would be just as bad at hoarding digital content as I am at hoarding real life, physical crafting stuff. And I can see so much money being spent on that. So for me, knowing myself and my obsession with crafting, I would end up spending soooo much money on this. Kudos to Stampin' Up for making the content so amazing that I can't resist it!

However, there is obviously a lot of upsides to MDS as well. It is very intuitive to use, if you have ever used any other image manipulation programs, or even Powerpoint, you will be able to jump right in and start creating. And there are lots of tutorial videos online, starting from the very basics and covering everything up to advanced stuff. Browsing through the videos I found lots of little tips and tricks that seem so obvious once someone has shown you how to do it, but you wouldn't think of on your own. The software truly is very versatile and will allow you to do almost anything your imagination comes up with. 

The other good thing is that you can import any non-Stampin' Up components you want as well. The background papers are jpg files and the stamps, punches and embellishments are svg files. There are tutorials out there how to do it, and the internet is full of downloadable content, so if you really only want to pay for the software and not spend another penny, that is also possible. Obviously it's a shame that the Stampin' Up stuff is so adorable that it is really hard to resist. One benefit I would see of the digital downloads, which are so much cheaper than buying actual physical crafting supplies, is like the other day when I ordered a rather expensive stamp set basically to make one card for one specific person. Yes, I do think I will end up using that stamp set in the future as well, but it might have been worth it paying about £4 for a digital version instead of £18 for the real deal. But then again, giving a completely hand-crafted paper card instead of a printout of a digital one also has it's upside, so it's again a question of preference.

All in all, I'm weighing the pros and cons and I'm not sure whether I will buy the software. However, my main reservation is mostly about whether I would actually use it very much. And I can also see a never-ending obsession to buy more and more add-ins, resulting in my credit card trying to run away and hide every time I turn on the computer. Also, the snail pace of using the software on my computer (not sure if the problem is the software or the slightly old computer, I suspect a combo of both) do weigh in on my decision. If you are a starting crafter who doesn't have a lot of space for physical crafting but you would like to scrapbook and do photo albums, this might be something for you (although I recognise there are as many providers of photo album services are there are grains of sand on the beach, so there is plenty to choose from). If you are a more established crafter, it depends on how much you enjoy working with physical paper and how much you enjoy working in a digital environment whether this is worth it for you. In the end, the software with the standard set of add-ins comes at about the same price as one single stamp set, and you will definitely get more bang for your buck here, but it's only worth it if you will actually use it.