Hello, hello, hello!
This is going to be a kind of unusual post because I had a kind of unusual day! I believe I mentioned in my last post that I'm the new host of the brand new "Artist to Artist" segment on Scrapbook Memories TV (PBS). Today was my very first day of filming as a host! Eeek!
I cannot even tell you how nervous I was.
My stomach was flipping and flopping.
My first interview was scheduled for 8am (an hour before the CHA floor opens to retailers) at the Ranger booth, with Claudine Hellmuth. She shared the most fabulous project using sticky back canvas and multi medium. I can't wait for the segment to air, because I think people are going to flip! Plus, Claudine is so darn nice! We had a great time together. But, I digress.
Let me back up and begin at the beginning.
Scrapbook Memories TV has been on PBS forever. Or at least the past decade. Most of the segments are very project focused. The host and guest create a project and discuss the merits of the tools and supplies. The "Artist to Artist" segment will take a slightly different point-of-view. Normally, you're inspired by the project. On the "Artist to Artist" segments, we will endeavour to inspire you with the project AND the guest. We'll be discussing inspiration, training, design principles, etc. I think it's going to be great. (I hope, I hope, I hope!)
So, I spent the day with the crew from KS Productions...
...and their rolling TV studio. It's quite an impressive set up. Here's a shot from a little further away:
Scrapbook Memories TV host Julie McGuffee was my compatriot for the day as she filmed several project segments for the upcoming season of the show.
Here she is (above, right) in the Hampton Art booth. Here are a few quick photos of the Hampton Art booth:
We then headed for the Piggy Tales booth, where I had the pleasure of interviewing Mou Saha, one of my all time favorite scrapbookers! Mou (pronounced Moe) adds wonderful artsy, handmade touches to absolutely everything she does. She showed me how she uses a palette knife to apply acrylic paint to her pages and I am hooked! I'm heading home to try that one out myself! I don't have any photos from our segment, so I thought I'd share this layout from her blog:
I love her artsy mix of color, stitching, paint, doodling, and handwriting. (And dig the Prima packaging on that layout to boot!)
Filming continued at Me and My Big Ideas (MAMBI).
Talk about a fancy booth. This thing was impressive. While Julie was filming, I wandered about and took a few photos of the booth:
So, the most common giveaway is bags. The ones pictured above are paper. A lot of other booths give away cloth ones. Some booths give away aprons. Lots of manufacturers hand over paper packs if you place an order. There are plenty of pins floating around. But, people do get grabby about it. I watched a woman grab five of those bags (above), and I thought to myself, "What the heck is she going to do with those?" It's like some kind of "gimme gimme" mania sets in. Personally, I'm campaigning for umbrellas next year. I would love to get an umbrella with a company's logo on it. That would be super useful!
Julie McGuffee and the crew had another shoot or two that didn't involve me, so I wandered off on my own. I returned to the Prima booth to take a few more photographs. On my first visit, I was so busy photographing the product and other people's amazing layouts and projects, that I neglected to photograph my own. I still didn't manage to get them all...ah, well. I'll be sure to share some "cleaner" images next week of absolutely everything I made for the show. In the meantime, here's a bunch of it:
She was so sweet and working really hard. They were making some seriously adorable cupcakes as make & takes and the hot glue guns were burning away. If you don't know Charity's work, do yourself a favor and check out her blog. Her work is very clean and graphic, but with amazing little touches. Very inspiring! I think she's very talented. Here's a peek at the Nikki Silvis booth (definitely a kitschy vibe going on):
Okay, so I take back what I said about Tattered Angels being the only booth to credit their designers. These projects also have little tags crediting the designer.
Next, I bumped into the Scrapbook Memories TV crew at the Flower Soft booth. You can see the producer, Kathie Stull, giving host Julie McGuffee some instructions:
Flower Soft is basically these little colored sprinkle things that add dimension to your stamped work, as in the card below.
...and absolutely fabulous. She's so full of energy and pizazz. You never know what she's going to do! She's a very fun and very talented woman, though I have to admit that she makes me a little bit nervous. She can be very intimidating. We taped a great segment using her melting pot. It is jaw dropping what she can do with that thing. I've even been to Ranger U. and I'm still impressed!
After Suze, I met up with Kim and we did a bit more shopping for Portrait Bug.
Ever since the last CHA, I've been harrassing Kim about Tsukineko. They make awesome inks of all kinds. I have tried to explain the differences between the various inks many times, but she always falls asleep in the middle. So, she let me do a bit of the ordering:
Tsukineko has put their Walnut Ink into little misters, reminsicent of Ranger's Mini Misters.
And they handed us a sheet that explained how to mix their products to create your own Glimmer Mist...
...which is also something that Ranger does. I say, the more the merrier. I just want my bling-y spray!
I ended the day by taping two more segments for Scrapbook Memories TV. Julie McGuffee had to catch a plane, so I took over for her. Man, I got all nervous all over again! First up was Spellbinders...
...which was really so cool. They make these dies that both emboss and cut and can be used as stencils.
It's a super neat idea. I took a few more photos in the booth:
And then it was off to Blumenthal Lansing and the wide world of buttons! Kim grabbed my camera and took some photos, so here they are:
Do you see how shiny I am? They kept having to powder me every five seconds!
My guest was Helen (I know her last name is pronounced Slab-a-doo, but I can't recall the spelling and google isn't helping me) and she and I made button necklaces that were so easy and quick! It was really fun. I'm a huge fan of buttons. And I had never heard of Blumenthal Lansing before. They have such an impressive variety of buttons. And their booth had gorgeous projects that make me want to hot glue buttons to everything I own!
They say that timing is everything. We wrapped up just before they turned out the lights and announced the end of the show. Lucky, lucky, lucky!
We ended our day at Taverna Opa, where everyone gets up and dances on their table. I took a quick video, if you'd like to see the craziness:
I'm going to do a major wrap-up post in the next few days, but here are some quick thoughts from the day:
- The business of the business. I think of CHA as an opportunity for retailers to buy new products. But, it became very apparent to me that while that's true, there are a lot of backroom deals and networking that goes on. So, even though the show was small, there was still a ton of business getting done.
- Along those lines, I think that a lot of product testing goes on at CHA. Both formally and informally. Most of the people at CHA have to be assumed to be savvy customers. They're store owners, design team members, teachers, designers, and press. I believe that manufacturers can "test" their products on these group. Do people "get" the product? What kind of questions do they have? Do they buy the product after seeing it demo'd?
- I do think it is important to go to CHA - both for retailers and manufacturers. Why? Well, for manufacturers, beyond the two points listed above, I think people are less likely to buy from companies that aren't at the show. I know Kim was. There's something about seeing it in person that can really push you one way or the other. Especially with embellishments. Seeing the size, the finish, feeling the quality, etc. Which leads me to why I think retailers should attend: you have to see it in person. One of the things that I hate is when I go into a store and the salesperson is less knowledgeable than I am. I want them to be experts. At CHA, you have the opportunity to learn about the product, know what brands are out there, pick up some tips and tricks, etc.
Well, that's it for now. I'll be back soon with a big wrap up and some overarching analysis of the event.
Let me know if there's stuff you'd like to hear about, or if you have questions, and I'll try to incorporate it into my post!