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Vendor Spotlight & GIVEAWAY: Imaginisce i-rock Tool

Reported by Julie Tiu


Imaginisce
recently announced their newest product, the i-rock, a handheld heat-setting tool that will affix studs, crystals, rhinestones, pearls and mirrors to paper, fabric and more. I was lucky enough to test drive this innovative tool, and found it to be quite useful.

The tool itself comes on its own (gems are separate), and you will need 3 AA batteries. Cordless! Very convenient.

Check it out on the kitchen scale: One-quarter pound. It’s fairly light… and easy to hold.

Okay, we’ve established some stats, but does it work? Yes it does, and pretty well. The instructions are easy to follow and also online, however, I did not like that it made no mention of a little red light that is on the tool. Does the light indicate that the tool is hot and ready to go? No, it doesn’t. The light only turns on twice: 1) when you flip the switch on, and 2) when you depress the button as you hold the tool to affix a gem. I would almost prefer that the light stay on, so you know the tool is hot.

Otherwise, it’s simple to use. Because it is a heat-setting tool, be careful that you don’t lay it too close to plastic or paper while you are working. And keep a small bowl of cold water nearby in case you do accidentally burn yourself, just like when working with a hot glue gun. This is definitely not a child-appropriate tool.

The i-rock has a good variety of accessories, the studs and stencil kits

Plain crystals and Multi-colored crystals in Hot Rocks Compacts

Glam Rocks Rhinestuds in five different styles (picture courtesy of Imaginisce.com)

Along with the i-rock and accessories, I received a fantastic assortment of paper, embellishments and stamps. The style is so reminiscent of childhood birthday parties, but with a contemporary twist.

Animal Crackers collection by Imaginisce

Reverse side of the pages


Let’s get testing

Instructions say to heat the i-rock for at least 15 seconds. I found that was not enough time, more like 30-45 seconds. The stud (first on left) is the quickest setting at 2-3 seconds with a completely heated tool. As you continue right, the glam rocks and smaller crystal adhered quickly also at 4-5 seconds. The larger crystals took as long as 10-15 seconds to adhere.

Sizes range from 2.3 mm to 6 mm.

Love the added dimension and texture!

Projects

The stencil kit in place on a child’s cotton t-shirt

Working with the template is easy!

Rhinestuds fit perfectly in the template

Pulled off the template after marking remaining spots with a pencil. The crystal sizes left in the kit (in that color) were too large for the template.

Finished t-shirt for a special little girl

Backside of the t-shirt: adhesive can melt through, be careful and use a protective layer (brown paper bag, for instance) when applying the studs or crystals on your fabric projects

Store-bought cards embellished with rhinestuds and crystals (Cards by Paula Deen designs)

Cute card with studs (paper by Imaginisce: Animal Crackers)

Stamp by Imaginisce

Hard to imagine just how tiny those studs are!

The paper was cute enough, but the studs just add a little more dimension.

Taking a simple, business card sized foam frame and decorative paper and turn it into something cute… will the Glam Rocks adhere?

“Glam-ming” up my foam frame…

Voila, finished! (flower embellishment by Imaginsce)
More studs on foam (sticker and ribbon embellishments by Imaginisce: Animal Crackers)

Studded magnets “rock” the refrigerator

Pros:
  • Easy to maneuver in small projects
  • No mess
  • Quick heating time
  • Lots of accessories
Cons:
  • Exposed heating tip poses a safety hazard
  • Even though heating time is quick, it didn’t seem as fast as quoted in the instructions
  • Preferred tweezers to the jewel-setter stick that comes with Glam Rocks
MSRP
I never would have thought this tool would be as versatile as it is, and would recommend it for your embellishing needs!

GIVEAWAY!
Want to win this great product? Our friends at Imaginisce are giving away an iRock Tool to one lucky reader. To win, just leave a comment on this blog answering any or all of these questions, we love to hear your opinions!


Will the i-rock tool rock your world? Do you use gems and rhinestones on your projects and how do you adhere them? What do you love or hate about your current method? Share your gem-tastic projects and stories!


You have until Friday, February 18th at 6pm CST to comment.

Disclosure

Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!

Vendor Spotlight & GIVEAWAY: Imaginisce iRock Tool


EDITOR’S NOTE: We are happy to have a guest blogger today. The very talented and crafty, Jessica Diedrich. Jessica is a former Craft Critique reporter, and we couldn’t be happier that she agreed to review this product.

Reported by: Jessica Diedrich
Hey everyone!
Jessica here 🙂  Some of you might know me from my days as a staff reporter for Craft Critique a few years ago, or perhaps by my blog, The Whimsical Butterfly.  I am a work-at-home mom of four beautiful kidlets and am enjoying life between carpools and homework as a designer for a few rubber stamp companies.  I am blessed to be able to do what I do, make money, and explore my creative side which is always evolving.  I’ve been a designer and blogger for about 3 years now, but have been stamping and scrapbooking for closer to seven.   My passion is cardmaking and coloring but I am very much enjoying re-acquainting myself with scrapbooking lately, as well!   Thanks for having me back here for a fun product review-I hope you find it helpful!


I am a LOVER of bling.  Adding a little sparkle or rhinestone flourish to ANY project is fine by me!  In fact some of my favorite projects are because of the sparkle and shine that just a little touch of bling can add.

There are a ton of options for adding bling to a papercrafting project.  Self-adhesive sheets of bling come from single small stones to beautiful, ornate flourishes, although they can be pricey.  Bling without any kind of adhesive backing can be less costly, but can be a very tedious and messy experience when you have to use glue and tweezers.

Then there’s the i-rock by Imaginisce.   Small, compact, and affordably priced at about $12, the i-rock is a fun way to add bling to your cards or projects.   Here’s how it works:

You’ll need to add 3 AA batteries (not included) to the i-rock.   This is fairly easy to do by simply removing the cap/cover on the bottom of the tool which is clearly marked and easy to operate.

After loading the batteries, it’s ready to go, so now’s the time to decide what kind of bling you want to apply to your project.   There are a few different options for this.   There are Hot Rocks compacts, Glam Rocks bottles, extra applicator tools, and also some really fun stencils to create pretty patterns while taking the guesswork out of placement.

The price points for the consumable end of the i-rock system are also very affordable.  The Hot Rocks offer 800 multi-size gems for about $11 or $12, while the bottles of Glam Rocks are about $3 or $4.  Compared to the self-adhesive sheets that do not require heat setting, this is a very good price, as one small sheet of adhesive bling with an average of maybe 50 small stones can retail for about $4 all by itself.

I would definitely recommend using the applicator tool, and perhaps working with the stencils first before free-handing it.  The applicator simply needs to be moistened at the tip and easily picks up stray or small bling that would otherwise be way too hard to handle, even with tweezers.

I chose to work with the stencils for my first i-rock experience.  It’s important to tape down your stencil lightly so that it doesn’t slip while sorting and placing the stones.

Using the applicator stick made picking up even the smallest stones relatively easy, although this does take some time to do.

I decided to make a simple card using the stenciled pattern as the focal point of my card.  Once all the gems were put in place, I was ready to turn on and heat up the i-rock tool.

Turning it on is as simple as switching to the “on” position and pressing and holding the button down for about 15 seconds to allow the tool to heat up.   The light will go on when you press the button; if it doesn’t, you probably just need new batteries. The tool cools off fairly quickly, so there’s no need to heat it up until you are finished placing your gems and are ready to affix them to your papercrafting project.

Once the tool was heated, I began the process of adhering the gems to the paper.

HOW DOES THIS WORK?

Basically, the heat radiates through the gem until you feel the glue on the underside heat up.  You’ll feel a slight ‘give’ or ‘slide’ when this occurs and you know that the glue has been activated.  I will say that the small stones and metal studs are a piece of cake, but the larger sized gems took a fairly long time to heat all the way through.

Once all the gems were heated and glued in place using the i-rock tool, I was ready to pull up my stencil and VOILA!  Here is the finished product:

I was excited with the way this turned out, and with the quality of the product in terms of holding power. It was a little labor-intensive though; the whole thing took about 20 minutes to make.  This of course, was my first time and for not having ever picked up the tool before, I was pleased with the results 🙂

I was so excited to try again, I created another card using the brand new adorable Animal Crackers line by Imaginisce!

After stamping and coloring the Snag-Em Stamps “Monkey”, I created a card using the adorable Animal Crackers line of papers and embellishments (chipboard sticker and ribbon).   It was then time to pull out the i-rock tool and have a little more fun.

This time I chose to use the Glam Rocks.  These are metallic stud-like gems and heat up much faster than their plastic counterparts.  It’s only recommended to hold the i-rock tool over each gem for about 3 seconds, actually.  These were much easier to affix once I got the hang of things and worked great with the applicator sticks as well.

The stamp lent itself perfectly to placing the gems, don’t you think?  Once I had them all laid out, I quickly set them with the i-rock tool and again was pleased with the result!

Here is my finished card:

Now that you’ve seen the finished products, let’s take a moment to review the pros and cons:

Pros:

  • compact, lightweight, and easy to use
  • great array of products to use within the line
  • affordable and cost-effective

Cons:

  • somewhat time consuming
  • can be messy if spilled
  • larger-sized gems don’t heat up very quickly

All in all, I’m excited to continue using the i-rock and getting used to this new way to apply bling to my cards and projects.  I’m definitely wanting to get more of the stencils that they have to go along with the product as I love the swirls and flourishes and believe that I will get many happy uses out of this tool, which just so happens to be pink.  Thank you to Imaginisce for creating a unique and innovative papercrafting tool!

The i-rock Crystal Heat-Setting Tool is available from Amazon.com.

GIVEAWAY!
Want to win this great product? Our friends at Imaginisce are giving away an iRock Tool to one lucky reader. To win, just leave a comment on this blog answering any or all of these questions, we love to hear your opinions!

What do you think of the i-rock?  Do you own it?  Have you tried it?  Any helpful tips or suggestions?

You have until Friday, February 18th at 6pm CST to comment.

Disclosure

Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!

CHA: ScraPerfect’s New Tools

Reported by Maria Del Pinto

The joy of adding small embellishments onto a project can be diminished by the difficulty in picking up and placing them onto the project.  One of the biggest problem in working with rhinestones, sequins, and other tiny embellishments is that they are hard to pick up.  Well at the ScraPerfect booth they had a tool to solve that problem!

Amy Roszak, the owner of ScraPerfect, is committed to develop tools to help you craft smarter.  Her new “Embellie Gellie” was created to solve the problem of picking up small embellishments.

Plus, it helps you place it in just the right spot.

The other product that caught our eye was the “Best Glue Ever”.  This glue dries quickly and clear. What makes it special is that it get tackier as it dries.  So you can use the glue for a variety of projects.  It can be used to attach charms, glitter, and other assorted items.

The fine tip is great to write out write out words and patterns on projects for use with glitter or foil.  The chart below give you an idea of some of the many ways you can use this glue.

At the ScraPerfect website, there is a video that shows different ways to utilized these products to make the most of them.

Another product on hand, was the “Perfect Cleaning Cloth”.  It removes fingerprints, dirt, and fibers from eye glasses, photos, crystals, camera lenses, dark colored papers, and more.  It was quite interesting to watch the cloth clean an “AB Crystal” bracelet without the use of liquid chemicals.  The shine that returned to the bracelet was impressive.

You may already be familiar with the rest of the ScraPerfect product line. If you are not, a quick visit to their website will give you more information.

Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!