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Kit Club Basics

What is a Kit Club?
A kit club is a service which assembles a kit of scrapbooking supplies from various companies and creates a kit for purchase each month. You join the club and receive these kits each month. Most companies offer a main kit each month and then additional smaller kits called Add-Ons which are optional to purchase and include other elements that coordinate with the main kit for people who really want to soup up their experience.

March kit from Label Tulip

What are the benefits of joining a kit club?
- If you live in a rural area or one without many scrapbooking stores a kit club is a way to always get current and new product delivered to your door.
- Many kit clubs commission exclusive items from scrapbooking manufacturers that are not available for sale anywhere else.
- Some kit clubs create their own products (a popular one is acrylic stamps) which coordinate with the kit and are not available for sale anywhere else.
- Many times you receive products in your kits that you would not regularly pick out on your own. Some people see this as a negative, but others find it a positive. It pushes them from their box and they end up finding new products they love. I feel in love with transparencies while forcing myself to use them in a kit.
- Online inspiration. Most kit clubs have Design Teams and message boards linked with galleries. The great benefit to this is seeing their designers create with the exact same products you have in your kit. You can get inspiration, ideas and tips for using your products.
- Many enjoy the message boards and friendships of kit clubs. Depending on the size of the club, you can make close-knit friendships and connections with other scrappers.
- Many clubs offer online challenges, tutorials, give-away and online crops on their message boards.

Do I have to subscribe?
Most kit clubs have a subscription plan. Meaning you have to subscribe for a certain length of time and then you are locked in to receiving the kits each month and they charge your credit card monthly.

If I don't have to subscribe, then what are the benefits of subscribing?
1. You are guaranteed that kit will be available and shipped to you. Most kit clubs purchase enough product to create kits for their current amount of subscribers and then a margin of additional kits for one time sale. If a certain kit is very popular, they could sell out of their additional kits quickly and you could miss out on a kit you are really inspired by.

2. Most kit clubs offer a discount per month if you commit to a term of membership. Buying a kit individually may cost $32.00, but for subscribers are only charged $25.00 for the same kit.

April Kit from Bad Girls Kits

How much do they cost? Well, that is a difficult question to answer. As with anything, there is a broad range of cost. I have seen kits upwards of $90 and others around $20. If you are interested in joining a club, your available disposable income will need to be matched with a club's general prices. This will require some research on your part....or you can also check out our coming article where we compare major clubs, their prices, value and styles.

I live outside of the US...can I still join? Yes, many clubs offer international shipment, but you will want to be sure to get a firm price quote on shipping costs before you commit to buy.

How do I know which kit club is right for me?
There are a few criteria that must be looked at first.

Cost: What can you afford to commit to every month? It's easy to get carried away when inspired. Make sure you write down a budget and stick to it as you do your research.

Style: I always suggest that if people want to join a club that they go to the club's site and view their main kit for the previous 6 months. If you feel their kits are generally in line with your style, but also include a few items which would challenge you...that is the club for you.

Inspiration: Some people just want the new products to work with. But other customers may want more direction. If you want direction, examples and creative support...look for a club with a large design team and check their online message board.

Do they have tutorials? An area to ask the Design Team questions? A heavily stocked idea gallery? Does their team offer a wide variety of projects along with their layouts? Do you see ideas that inspire and excite you while just browsing for the first time?

April kit from Studio Calico

How will The Scrap Review be reviewing Kit Clubs?
Each month, 2-3 members of our Design Team will be working with certain kits from clubs. These will not be a review, but a highlight of that club. Our reporters will write what they liked and showcase what they made from the kit.

Once a year The Scrap review will do an all-out Kit Club comparison. This will include Customer Service scores, shipping costs, value for your money, customer satisfaction and kit cohesion. This will take much more research on the part of our team and therefore, will only be evaluated yearly. Look for this year's evaluation sometime in 2009. Until then, enjoy the Kit Club spotlights from our team and do some research of your own using the criteria above.


mustangkayla said...

Can't wait to see the Kit Club Spotlights and the Yearly Kit Club Comparison! I've always been curious how they compared but haven't had time to do the research on it! THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!! You guys ROCK!!!!

Theresa said...

Love my monthly kits! I'll be interested to see if you decide to review those I participate in, or have participated with in the past. And of course, there might be some new ones out there I haven't run across yet. This will be a very interesting topic to follow throughout the year!

Cassie said...

I love my monthly kits!!!! I subscribe to a few...I can never have enough so I loo forward to your reviews. :)

Emily Pitts said...

what a great feature this will be! i'm a little partial to one kit in particular, but i know there are some awesome ones out there that have a great variety of inspiration!

JennV said...

I would love to hear about kit clubs! I subscribe to one now but my subscription is up in a couple of months. Always on the search for something new!

Haberdawoman said...

I subscribe to 1 kit club but would love to read your reviews.

Andrea said...

I subscribe to two kit clubs right now, though I think I need to let one go because money is tight. I think it is a great idea and I love the inspiration you get from the kits!

Jaime said...

I am looking forward to this, I am always looking for differnt kit clubs

Cassi said...

i'm really looking forward to your indepth comparison of kits!

Rhayne said...

Yay! This is one topic I've been dieing to see. I have researched a lot of clubs but never feel certain that I'd like what I get. And sometimes they can get quite costly so I want to know exactly what I'm getting myself into. Thanks for the sneak peek and I can't wait for the full out comparison. I can't believe you're all willing to take on such a huge task!

Tricia said...

I've been a kit club subscriber for years and am a big fan. I am able to buy what I want locally but I love having someone put things together for me in ways that don't always occur to me. Also, I usually get some hot new products in each kit. I've tried several different clubs over time and am now in the process of checking out some new ones. I am anxious to read your reviews here.

Unknown said...

Wow, this will be so much better than me trying to find all kit clubs! I subscribe to one now, but have opted out of a few months, due to the projects not being my type.

chris said...

I'm looking forward to your yearly review. There are so many kit clubs out there now it's hard to figure out which one best matches my scrapbooking style.