'You're doing what? For how many hours?"
That's what incredulous people ask Robin Hummel when she's gearing up for an all-day "crop" session at the Scrapper's Playground and Park in North Babylon.
Once a week or so, the educational consultant from Huntington packs up her paper, embellishments and tools from home and spreads out inside the scrapbooking store's workroom, which has glass-topped tables and leather office chairs. She'll spend the next four to six (or more) hours crafting, trimming and layering her way through album pages or other projects. And she'll have company.
"It's a sick addiction," says Chevonne Pannullo of Deer Park, who has a standing Friday morning appointment with a handful of friends who meet at Scrapper's Playground and spend all day working on their albums in an atmosphere that's devoid of e-mail, television and other distractions.
How it works
Crop sessions are at Long Island scrapbook stores and other locations. Attendees bring their own photos and materials, paying a daily fee for a spot at a long table to work for as long as they'd like. Organizers provide creative advice, plus access to scrapbooking tools people might not have at home, such as expensive Cricut or Sizzix machines that cut paper into custom shapes.
"It's a social event," says Diana Gaizo, owner of Not Just Scrap in Centereach, where patrons congregate for marathon 14-hour "Crop Til You Drop" sessions two Saturdays a month ($35, includes lunch and dinner). "You're not being pulled by the laundry, the phone or the children. You're dedicating time to be here and getting scrapbooking done."
Where to go
Daily crop sessions are held 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at tables set up inside the store ($5-$10, Sunday crop is noon-5 p.m.). Friday and Saturday night crops run 6 p.m.-midnight ($15 includes pizza).
Owner Sue O'Malley welcomes croppers 10 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays ($5) and weekends ($10). Twelve-hour sessions will be held Nov. 21 and Dec. 5 ($25, includes pizza). Professional designer KC Burningham will host a special crop 6-11 p.m. this Friday ($15, reservations recommended).
Special event crops
Twice a year, self-described scrapbook fanatic Kathy Johnston organizes a long weekend getaway that gives attendees a whopping 54 hours of dedicated time to get projects done. Crafters can come for a single day - or slumber at the hotel for a night or two.
Double-occupancy packages from $254 (includes two nights lodging and all meals); $50-$85 day trip (includes meal). Several other packages available.
Stampin' Up! demonstrator Terri Brennan's all-day crop is geared toward scrapbookers and card-makers. Includes a goodie bag, a make-and-take project, plus use of a Big Shot paper-cutting machine. Registration deadline is Thursday. Cost is $35.
Creative Memories consultant Susan Gentile-Hackett of East Quogue is hosting her first Long Island crop-and-shop. Participants can start cropping Friday afternoon - there will be vendor tables, workshops and massages - working all night, if they wish. Saturday morning, it's off to Tanger Outlets, where she's arranged for coupons and discounts.
$129 double occupancy (includes dinner, dessert and breakfast); $59 crop only (includes dessert).