May 4, 2007

Is this us?

In 1899, the head of the United States Patent office supposedly said, "Everything that can be invented has been invented" and suggested the office be closed. If it is a true quote, he was obviously very, very wrong.

But, I am starting to wonder if this doesn't apply to the scrapbook industry - okay, I know it's not REALLY 100% true, but for some, it may be. For instance, my "Useless Product of the Year" award is definitely going to a new gadget by Making Memories called a Tag Curler. It's a tool that takes little metal tags that have wings and crimps the wings around things like paper or ribbon. Where is my "HUH?!" smiley? Are the tags made of steel? Nope, I'm assuming they are made of a soft metal or they would be too heavy for your cards or ribbons. So, please tell me, why can't I use the FREE tag curlers attached to my hands called FINGERS? Couple this with the "new" Ribbon Iron by another company, and you have yourself a couple of puzzling and only marginally useful tools. Actually, the Ribbon Iron might come in handy, but I can buy the same flat iron in the hair dryer section of my local store. So, it's not pink - who cares!

We (the industry) really seem to be struggling lately to find new tools that are actually useful - or that can't be had somewhere else. For instance, I have had a P-Touch labeler for years and have even used it on my scrapbook pages from time to time. Well, now we have the exact same thing in a soft pink and at a higher price as a "scrapbook labeler". At least Around the Block changed the Tape Labeler enough to make it something "new". Who hasn't wished you could get the plastic label tape in fun colors or change the font? That's an old tool with a truly new twist - not just a new color.

The "tag curler" really takes the cake, though. Making Memories was one of the first companies in the industry to really rise like a super star but the star has faded if they think we need to shell out $25 for something that bends soft metal... I think they just "jumped the shark".

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