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CHA Winter review is in!

Greetings! Hope you are all having a wonderful week. I’m still wondering where February went? Seems like we just started the month, and here we are soon to be into March!

At the end of Jan, a few of my fellow employees traveled with Paulette Jarvey, to CHA. For those of you who don’t know what CHA is (it is for retailers, not usually not for consumers) we will give you a little insider information! ;-)

CHA: Craft & Hobby Association, one of the season’s largest selections of craft products under one roof. Attendees (retailers) get the opportunity to learn new skills, gain knowledge on trends, networking and attend workshops, seminars, demo and special events! Giving everyone the opportunities to bring exciting new ideas and products back to our favorite people…our customers!

 

Our team from Hot off the Press, was

Malia Harrington, Retail Specialist

Malia Leineweber, Key Accounts

Stan Rickert, Buyer

Paulette & Mike Jarvey

 

Maila Harrington, Retail Specialist

The 2012 Winter Craft & Hobby Association Show was amazing this year! Although it was a smaller show (fewer vendors) more Retailers came out this year than last. Our booth was very busy all 4 days! The Hot Off The Press® line was well received by Retailers for not only having a variety of styles, looks and color combinations, but tremendous value and low minimums. We were invited to do not one, but two workshops and both were completely sold out.

 

Paulette, teaching at one of the workshops

We were also nominated for an Innovations Award for our Color Me Copper Paper™ (maybe we’ll win next time!) The atmosphere overall was light, upbeat and optimistic about the economy with Retailers ready to write orders at the show. What a great start to the year! We can’t wait for the summer show!

 

Malia Leineweber, Key Accounts
This year we tried something new and displayed our paper packs, papier tole and scrapbooking Dazzles™ as coordinating collections in the booth. What a statement the new booth format made! Presenting coordinating elements together not only made for easier ordering but also really showed off how versatile Hot Off The Press designs are. From soft and pretty to fun and bold we had something for everyone. My favorite is the Boutique Papers and coordinating elements but customers seemed to really gravitate to Handmade Memories and Heritage paper packs.

Our Copper Color Me™ was up for an innovation award and brought many new faces to the booth. We demo’d how quick and easy the Color Me™ papers were to use and the feedback was great. We also got great reviews on the new Artful Card Kit line. Customers really appreciated product tailored for cardmaking at a good value. Chocolate Dipped and Spun Sugar designs were the most popular but I suspect Cherry on Top will be moving up the ranks rapidly.

With a huge selection and low price point Dazzles popped up on most orders. The Mix’Em Dazzles™ were well received and I often found myself saying  “yes, you get all 3 sheets in a package … correct, the retail is only $3.99!” Now, onto new templates — I suspected Pinwheels would be the customer favorite but Iris Folding definitely stole the show.  I’m sure we’ll be seeing more Iris Folding designs with our next set of releases! Speaking of folding, the projects displayed from our newest DVD, Folded & Fabulous, were ooh’d and ahhh’d over … although I suppose that could be said for just about everything in the booth!

 

Stan Rickert, Buyer

This show seemed much more positive and upbeat from past shows and it genuinely felt like there is an upswing in the industry. Spent most of the day walking the floor and meeting with current vendors.

Banners, Flags and Garland are not a “new” trend but were everywhere! Also all over the floor was tissue tape (Washi Tape) in every pattern and color you can imagine. (You might just find those coming to Paper Wishes.com) Collage books or “Smash “ books as they are called also seemed to a recurring trend.

We look forward to pulling it all together and seeing what goodies we have in store for the next couple of catalogs we have coming this year!

 

 

Paulette Jarvey, President

We traveled two days early so we (my husband, Mike and me) could enjoy Disneyland and California Adventure with our son, Adam, and his girlfriend. I grew up in Anaheim, so returning is always a bit nostalgic. We had 80º weather, no rain and had so very much fun. Two rides on the White Water Rapids (we dried quickly in the warm weather), four on Space Mountain, two on Indiana Jones, three on Toy Story Mania–that gives you an idea of what we enjoy.

Friday: Everything arrived perfectly! That’s important when you’re setting up a show. All 40-feet of the show held the 81 new HOTP items.

 

Our Booth!

 

Saturday: Copper Color Me™ was a finalist in CHA’s Innovations Award. There were 120 entries so that was very nice. The 20 finalists each gave a 60 second presentation to 220 attendees. Some people didn’t think I could speak for only 60 seconds, but I nailed it! We didn’t win but it was great to be part of the presentations

Our first workshop was Saturday night and held 75 people. I gave them M&Ms to get started then really worked them hard to complete three projects within the two hours. They made wonderful things and had fun but they sure looked tired.

Sunday:  So nice to find out that in Southern California on a Sunday, if you need a doctor (which I did) you can get an appointment within 45 minutes. We became friends with a cab driver and he got us to Kaiser, only a few blocks from the hotel. I was seen and got the prescriptions. A skin infection would get worse before it got better and the doctor recommended I stay off my feel. Yes, he knew that would only work at night since we were doing a trade show.

The booth team knew something was wrong when I called to tell them we’d be late for opening day. Malia L., Malia H. (yes two Malias work for me!), Adam and Stan said they would take care of everything and they did.

Although I couldn’t walk the show I did get to see many people. Also, Crafter’s Workshop was next to us so I could visit with Jamie and talk about new techniques with her templates (she will send us a video). Saw the new flowers from Mark Richards that will be in the April Paper Wishes catalog. They are stitched and so very pretty.

Monday: Taught another two-hour workshop repeating the Saturday one because it sold out so quickly. This was a more talkative group which always makes it harder to get through the projects. But they did it. Wow, 150 retailers!

The show is quite international. Got to see Cindy from A Scrappe Angels Heaven in Australia–one of my favorite retailers and a very smart one, too. Also saw KK from New Zealand who does the most amazing pergamano. Aquila from South Africa came and purchased after terrible floods in their stores. Some retailers even bring us candy‹they know the way to our hearts. Yum, chocolate covered macadamia nuts!  I had dinner with our British distributor Pottery Crafts who takes our items into the TV channel Create & Craft. They will also have our goods at the Stitches trade show in Feb. in England. Then had breakfast with the UK and Australian magazine folks from Practical Publishing. They will be tucking Paper Wishes into their magazines this spring. We plan to work with them even more in 2012.

Met with the Joann’s buyers and they will take more suede colors and some new ripple holographic papers into the stores this May. We’ll show them in the April Paper Wishes. Very exciting. We talked Dazzles™, too.

Met with the HSN buyers and had a chance to strategize about some Christmas Artful Card kits that I want to try with a new printing process to add foiling. They are up for it so we’ll get designing!

Also met with our factory reps one of which showed me some materials I have never seen before. Yes! I’m excited to expand the accents and embellishments that will work with our papers for the second half of the year. I can’t reveal the materials but they are glittery, raised and repositionable and very, very fun!  That’s why I like trade shows. Always something new, a chance to catch up with friends and sometimes unexpected ideas!! Stay tuned.

 

 

WOW, sounds like all of them had a great time, and a very successful show! The best part of it, is that you as our customers get to see the end results of the shows. From our HOTP product line to our picks from the show…they are all based on customers wants and needs!

Thank you Stan, Malia’s and Paulette for sharing with us! We all look forward to seeing all the New products in the upcoming catalogs!!!

~ Cristina

 

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