Monday, 26 January 2015

...It's here...THE WMS SALE

Please note only USA residents should select USA stock, all other orders ship from UK, so please select UK stock if you are not a USA resident! thank you! 

Please also note that other discounts will not be valid with this sale.

Please note only USA residents should select USA stock, all other orders ship from UK, so please select UK stock if you are not a USA resident! thank you!

Please note only USA residents should select USA stock, all other orders ship from UK, so please select UK stock if you are not a USA resident! thank you!

Please note only USA residents should select USA stock, all other orders ship from UK, so please select UK stock if you are not a USA resident! thank you! 

Folks, welcome to THE WMS sale. We are now in our 6th year of business and we have a LOT of stock. With all of the upcoming changes to EU legislation, which will directly affect how we do business in future, we are taking this opportunity to reduce our inventory. This will make it easier for us to handle the changes, some of which have to be implemented now and some of which have to be in place before 1 January 2016.

This might seem like a long way away, but we have a lot to do this year if we want to remain EU compliant and also to carry out plans we already had such as a new and improved webstore. So we need to start now, today!

There are some fantastic bargains to be had and I would urge you to shop the retiring sale first as when those are gone, I have no plans to restock them.

We do not operate sales on a regular basis and have no plans to do so in the future - we pride ourselves on bringing unique product to you at the best possible price, so this may be your one chance to grab your favourite set at a great price.

This sale event will run until just before midnight this coming Sunday (1st Feb) or until stock runs out. Some of the sets are limited in stock at present and we will not be restocking anything before the end of the sale.

We hope you get some bargain goodies and please, tell all of your friends!!

Thursday, 22 January 2015

...Salty Snow Day

While cleaning out the office the other day I found my watercolour paints! Decided to try out this trend for watercolouring and loved it. I painted a sort of hill shape with the darkest blue and then added lighter blue and finally a touch of green at the top. I was going for a sort of northern-lights type of sky. I stamped a large tree (from the Fosty in the Pines set) in versacolour and then used white embossing powder. I heat set it. I wanted to add a little sparkle, so I used the heat gun to re-melt the embossing powder and sprinkled on some superfine glitter. Then I added a little snow swirl by dotting with my gel pen.

This was a fast card, I trimmed the panel slightly smaller than a card front and then used the paint brush to paint a little  border close to the edge of the card base. Once dry I attached the front panel. The sentiment is from Warm Fuzzies.

I used to love to paint with watercolours and one of my favourite things to help create texture was to sprinkle salt onto the wet paint, it sort of sucks the paint in and creates little areas of concentrated colour, sometimes you don't want the speckle effect, but I liked it for this snowy card. Since I was going to stamp over the paint, I waited till it was all dry and then rubbed all the salt off, leaving the surface smooth for stamping. You can leave the salt on if you like the texture. I would not recommend this technique for archival work tho, I'm not sure the salt would be a good long term partner to precious pictures etc.

Right, I'm off, I'm working on a big sale at the store, just waiting for a tech dude to write me a bit of code so I can add my wee sale soon!

Sunday, 18 January 2015

...Giveaway Winner!!

We have a winner!

Christine said... 91

I love the store, the stamps and definitely your delivery times. I appreciate how you keep customers informed of any delays, out of stock and changes in policy. My improvement would be to the WM Forum. I have lots of trouble logging in and now have 3 identities. It means that I tend to rely on Pinterest and don't get to see as much inspiration from WM that I would like.

Congratulations Christine!! You win the giveaway! Pop me your address on and I will get your goodies shipped out to you!

Thank you to everyone who played along in our giveaway, there were some really good points raised and I will be trying to apply the ones that would improve our services - cheers ladies - I really appreciate the feedback!

I'll be running another giveaway in a few days, I have more stuff to go! :)

Thursday, 15 January 2015

...Giveaway! Leave a comment to enter.

Gals I'm having a little clearout - I'm rearranging the office, I have a bunch of stuff in duplicate and some other goodies that you might like. I have stuffed all of these into an envelope today and I'm going to draw a comment from this post to win the lot, shipped free direct to your door. We ship anywhere, so all you international ladies are welcome to enter also!

Here's what you need to do to be in with a chance of winning this bundle:

Leave a comment on this post to tell me the one thing you would change about Waltzingmouse stamps as a company.

Comments for this post will be private until the competition ends, I will then draw a random winner and publish the comments. I'm doing it this way because I want you to really think about what one thing would make a difference to your experience of WMS and I don't want you to be inadvertently influenced by other comments.

This competition will end at 11.45pm my time on Saturday 17th January.

Let's hear you - I am very interested to see if we can do anything to improve your experience of WMS! Since I am tweaking the site anyhow, now's the time!

Sunday, 11 January 2015

... January Moon and New EU laws regarding digitals

Evening Folks! This pic is of the first full moon of the new year, 2015. The first full moon of the new year, traditionally called the Wolf Moon and was associated with the hungry winter months still to come and takes it's name from the howls of packs of hungry wolves stalking the edges of villages.... One reason to be glad I live in Ireland/UK.... not many wolves here... unless of course you consider the tax man...

The EU have just introduced a new law governing the collection of VAT tax from folks who sell digital items via the internet...that would be me, and possibly you, if you sell even so much as one knitting pattern/.svg cutting file/digital scrapbook files to anyone living in the EU. And nope, it does not matter where YOU live, if you reside on planet earth and are selling digital downloads to anyone in EU, you need to know about this. Google EU VAT and you will be sure to come across the info.

In their wisdom, the EU have decided that VAT must now be paid to the country that the purchaser resides in, rather than in the country where the item is being sold, as was the case previously. There are about a million reasons why I believe this is not a good idea, but the one most important to you and me is this - Instead of sending in a couple of tax returns each year to HMRC (the tax folks in UK), If I want to continue selling Digital downloads, I am now expected to complete and submit 4 VAT returns per year to EACH of the 28 odd EU countries, over a possible 75 levels of VAT.

Now, WMS is a small company, a tiny company in fact. I made the decision to stay small so that I could manage it while I raise my children. I do everything myself, I design the stamps, I design and produce the packaging, I handle orders and customer queries, I handle all the site graphics, I manage all of the stock. I have a US shipper who manages the US orders, but I handle the rest of the world. I do this partly because I wanted to be able to control my output, but also because I wanted to keep costs down as much as possible so that I could someday make a living from this and contribute to my family financially. Thing is, I buy only the best USA polymer, I use only the best USA manufacturers and I have all those goodies shipped all the way over here from USA, so my costs are already high compared to large corporations that can purchase in bulk at better prices from far overseas.

Now the EU and government have decided that I, and thousands of small companies like me, should take time out to submit over 100 tax returns per year...ok...sure...I don't actually need to sleep anyway....

You will see, very soon, that thousands of small digitally based companies will have to close. Thousands of small mom and pop independents, just like me, will not be able to afford the accountancy costs. Folks like me who were hoping to expand their digital businesses will have to shut up shop, or supply through third party sites such as amazon, where prices will no doubt rise to cover the extra costs.

Soon, when you go looking for cutting files and knitting patterns, scrapbook files and crochet patterns etc, you are not going to have the same wealth of choice that you did before - especially if you live in EU. I know of many, many stores who are currently, as we speak, having their sites reconfigured to block all EU customers. I now of many, many folks raising their prices to try to help and offset the costs of all the extra admin and accountancy.

Well I'm not quitting. I am working a way around this. I have been working on this all over Christmas and New Year, I spent the entire night of New Year's eve and into the next day taking all the saleable digitals down off my website so that I would not be breaking any laws when they came into force on the 1st January.

I am working on new settings for digitals at the store and once I have fixed this I will be relaunching all of our cutting files which match stamps as FREEBIES. All templates and other files will be available in the same formats as before, but instead of an instant download, we will now be required to email them to our customers. This will keep us compliant in 2015.

The really horrendous information is that they intend to apply this new VAT law to all physical goods from 1 January 2016. So anyone, anywhere, who is selling stamps, inkpads, farmers wellies, name it, will have to register and pay taxes in the EU countries that they are selling to.

At this time I have an outline plan of how we are going to handle this nightmare when it comes, but I will be evaluating other ideas and trying to get the best possible solution into place before the deadline.

I just wanted to let you know what's going on and why WMS has not yet begun our 2015 release program. Like many companies we only heard about this in the couple of weeks leading up to Christmas. In my opinion HMRC did not communicate this new law in either a timely or effective manner and many folks were caught out and either closed their stores completely before January 1st, or have already blocked EU buyers. Many Etsy stores are still on Vacation mode while this is being grappled with.

I want to thank you all for patiently waiting for us to manage this curve ball and get back into our scheduled routine.

Sale - advance notice

Our next release will be in February, but before that we will be having a sale at the store. I am going to clear out some inventory so that when I come to rejig the store settings to cope with this new law, I won't have so many products to wade through. Thank you for your patience.