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Creator of the Bowdabra® bow-making tool, which debuted on QVC, selling out 5,000 units in less than 10 minutes;
Created Nuvelle Crafts, LLC;
Developer of a variety of import/export programs for ompanies;
Started Corporate Gifts, Inc., a company that helps people launch their own gift basket businesses at home;
BA, Psychology from USC and MBA in Int'l Management from Thunderbird, the Garvin School of International Management.
CBN.com Sandy Sandler is a corporate gift expert and creator of the QVC best-seller, Bowdabra, a bow-making tool that helps people make professional, hand-tied bows. Her products and supplies are designed to transform the creatively-challenged into creative pros by creating beautiful crafts, accessories, and home décor.
She's described herself as "creatively challenged," but that hasn't stopped her from making arts and crafts. Many other people help her design her crafts and products. While Sandy doesn’t think of herself as artistic, she loves doing crafts and thinks everyone can be creative. Sandy believes projects should be quick, easy, and fun, and she wants to be able to look at a craft project and do it. She feels we need to get back to the basics of making things by hand, and these projects can be done inexpensively. Sandy is focused on doing arts and crafts for kids to develop in them an "I Can Do" attitude.
Christmas is a good time to spend with the family and do crafts with children, making your own family traditions. You can never get that time back, and families should enjoy it while they have it. One cannot put a price on the value, time, and satisfaction of having made things yourself. It helps kids in being successful later in life, taking risks, and doing something themselves. It also builds self esteem. There is no right or wrong way to do things. You don't have to be a designer. If you like what you create, that's all that matters. It's also having the guts to have your own personal taste.
The holidays are a great time make your own family traditions. Table settings don't have to be fancy or elaborate – they can be pre-made and part of the tradition. Each year you can buy different glasses or butter plates at the dollar store and personalize them with paint. Families can come up with their own ideas.
The items Sandy will be making on The 700 Club today are:
CHRISTMAS TREE PIN
- Take two different color chenille stems (pipe cleaners) and twist them together (alternating them like a candy cane). Then bend the twisted chenille stems into the shape of a Christmas tree. Using craft glue or fabritac, glue the pin onto the back of the tree.
- Take a chenille stem and thread pony beads evenly onto the stem. Place a star bead at the top. Bend the stem into the shape of a tree. Using craft glue or fabritac, glue the pin onto the back of the tree.
WREATH WITH BOW
Sandy loves to recycle wreaths. Take an old green wreath and jazz it up!
- First make a bow and then attach some wired ornaments to the bow. Then wire more ornaments strategically onto the wreath. Next take a length on ribbon (size of the wreath will determine the length of the ribbon) and wrap it onto the wreath to add more color.
The easiest thing to do is to purchase a pre-made foamie frame for the name cards, but if you have a bit more time, or can't find them in a store near you, you can make your own.
- Using a sticky back sheet of foamie material, trace the shape of your frame and the space for the picture. (For the space for the picture, make sure that you cut it a little smaller than the picture you which to use.) Using a straight edge x-acto knife, cut to make your frame. Trace the frame onto a piece of card stock and cut it out. This will be the backing. Place the picture on the backing, and then peel the protective sheet off of the foamie and carefully place it on the picture and card stock. Using whatever you like, decorate the foamie – perhaps glue on several little pom poms and/or some foamie sticky back leaves. Then using craft paint, paint the clothes pins in a color to match and decorate them with glitter or sticky jewels. Clip to clothes pins to the frames and this will be your stand.
BOW FOR CHAIRS
- Cut a 24-inch length of bow wire and fold it in half. Cut each length of ribbon in half. You’ll have six to eight 10-inch or varied length pieces. Dovetail both ends of all pieces. Lay the ribbon into the bowdabra and alternate ribbon type. Make sure that each piece of ribbon has its “right side” facing up. Scrunch down the ribbon with the Bowdabra wand.
- Center the silk flowers in the Bowdabra. Then place the silk flowers into the Bowdabra. Scrunch everything down with the Bowdabra wand. Pull the bow wire tight while still in the Bowdabra. Take bow out of the Bowdabra, separate the two loose ends of the bow wire and bring them around and to the back of the bow. Tie a tight knot to secure. Fluff the bow and arrange the flowers.
CENTERPIECE WITH BOWS
- Make three poinsettia bows. Place a red or green pillar candle at the center of where you want your centerpiece to be. Then place the three poinsettia bows around the candle.
Sandy found success as a product marketer in 1990, when she introduced the “Klika” to the U.S. market. Over 3 million Klikas sold in just nine months. After a few years developing a variety of import/export programs for companies, Sandy started what became Corporate Gifts, Inc. a company that helps people launch their own gift basket businesses from home. This venture is what led her to develop the Bowdabra.
Sandy was having a hard time training people to hand-tie professional-looking bows. She wasn’t alone. When she attended gift and craft trade shows, Sandy recognized that the bow-tying workshops always drew crowds. However, despite the demonstrators’ best efforts, retailers and crafters were still unable to create professional bows on their own. After a great deal of research, Sandy contracted with a design engineer and began working on the Bowdabra. When it was finished, she had an inexpensive “goof-proof” bow-maker that made a wide range of professional-looking bows. With the help of an angel investor, production began on the Bowdabra and Sandy prepared to begin presenting it to retailers.
But American retailers turned down the Bowdabra in favor of competitors' bowmakers they admitted were inferior. Frustrated with paltry response by the U.S. market, Sandy headed overseas to market the product she so believed in. The Bowdabra began to sell container loads in Europe, Brazil, and Australia. Sandy decided it was time to bring the product back State side and created Nuvelle Crafts, LLC, which is based in Las Vegas, Nevada.
In December of 1998, the Bowdabra debuted on QVC, selling out 5,000 units in less than 10 minutes. Over time, QVC reached $2.5 million in retail sales of the Bowdabra. Now, it can be found in craft retailers all over the country, with sales and customer loyalty continuing to rise.
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