so much to laura, gabi, june & tracy for the invaluable wisdom! you guys are the greatest & i really REALLY appreciate your taking the time to help me with this!
(definitely one of my "3BT"s for the day!)
i now feel like i've left the "i'm so confused my head is going to explode" phase. which is a relief! :) i read a BUNCH more last night & this morning, including: a slew of manufacturers' pages, a few message boards, some tutorials, a LOT of ebay listings and
...the diecutter master list thread on 2peas that tracy sent...
which is BY FAR the most thorough & comprehensive listing i found in one place online, and which (mysteriously) didn't pop up during any of the aforesaid googling! (ta v much, tracy!!!)
i think i've pretty much narrowed it down to either an original sizzix or a cuttlebug. and it seems like using a 40% off coupon at michaels (i happen to have one for next week) will get me to around the same price as getting one on ebay (when you factor in shipping). i had thought there'd be LOTS of inexpensive older machines available from people who were upgrading to newer systems, but it turns out...not so much...ppl who have an original sizzix seem to hang on to it. which kinda gives me confidence about that machine, actually.
so now i only have to decide if i need a diecutter at all, and if i'll use it enough, and stuff like that. and me being me, this could take some time!!! :) my plan at the moment is to forget all about it until sunday (when my coupon begins; also when we return from our tut-based expedition!) and then see what my gut reaction is at that point.
in the meantime if anyone else has advice, comments, or strong feelings (positive or negative) towards either of my prospective choices, i will welcome & value your input!
...sizzix?... ...cuttlebug?... ...sizzix?... ...cuttlebug?... ...sizzix?... ...cuttlebug?...
(...yeah, this could take a while...)