Poketo has some great work, you really should check out their website and see for yourself. I just noticed their collection of artsy t-shirts, particularly this one, and I just love ‘em. Art to wear from some of my personal favorite artists? Sign me up baby!
If you’re a fan of super soft t-shirts and artists Betsy Walton, Pepa Prieto, Melissa Contreras, Lisa Congdon, Pietari Posti, Stella Im Hultberg… You have to click here because you will love what you see. I found five that I want to buy, and I’m not even a t-shirt person because most are boxy, shapeless, and thick – more for the boys. These little numbers are cut for the curvy goddess (and they have others cut for the boys), and they’re lightweight so they can go from summer to autumn simply by layering, a long sleeve shirt here, a jacket there. But you don’t need a fashion lesson and trust me, I’m not teachin’ because no one has ever referred to me as a fashionista. But I love me some art, I adore these shirts, and I live in jeans so I think I’m going to give in and order some.
Poketo totally impresses me. Founders/owners Ted and Angie just can’t help themselves, they have that magic touch. Great job with these artsy tees you two. And to the artists, you knocked this ball out of the park. Lisa, Betsy, Stella, Melissa…. You ladies are remarkable. You constantly raise the bar and I love seeing your art popping up everywhere, often in unexpected places. It’s brilliant.
(images from poketo)
I was on the phone with Tara Hogan from INK+WIT recently discussing the National Stationary Show and thought some of you would enjoy a little inside scoop on what it’s like to be an exhibitor there. Tara was kind enough to send along a few photos of the booth that she shared with three other small business owners, Jennifer from JHill Design, Janet from RSVP Press, and Anna from Sub-Studio. They all pretty much made the connection through this post, which is why I wanted to follow up to see how everything turned out.
These ladies decided to share a booth to cut down on costs since the show can be quite expensive for the little guys. I thought it may help to ask these ladies for their take on the overall experience of being new to such a massive show and what the experience was like for them personally. The hope is to shed light on the exhibitor experience from a small business perspective in case you have thought to set up a booth in the future. I’d like to open this post up to include some of your questions should you have any, fire away below!
In addition to Tara’s helpful words, I also asked Jennifer Hill from JHill Design, who was part of the booth, to share some thoughts on the topic. Let’s get started with Tara from INK+WIT.
Tara’s take on the show overall:
It was a great show full of designers and artists I had never met in person or seen before. That factor and meeting publishers, editors, press, and bloggers in person were the most successful for me. There was a lot of energy going on in the booths steadily with exception to the last 2 days which were quite slow overall for everyone. It was nice to see that during the last slow day all of the exhibitors were walking around trading products and meeting each other. I go got to talk to the lovely sisters Sabrina and Eunice form Hello Lucky for quite some time and they are super sweet! Their whole group is quite sincere and charming.
Tara’s thoughts on sharing a booth:
It is a great way to split costs but beware of how much space you need and how you split up the booth. Anna, Jennifer, Janet, and I luckily worked it all out and only had minor bumps to deal with which also worked out. However, our space was limited in size and we could not have a main area to sit and rest or take orders. We had to use a clipboard near our individual wall spaces and it was very unwelcoming to buyers. I would have liked the space to have a small table for a visitor to rest and relax so we could have spoken longer and had more privacy. But, you get what you pay for and we all were able to get to the show without breaking the bank. It was worth it but I would have my own booth next time for the sake of space and overall clear identification of what my brand is as buyers were a little confused about 4 different lines in one space. We clarified that we were 4 lines and all was well but a lot of passers by only grabbed one business card at times thinking we were all one group. The pros for new and smaller exhibitors is the costs so if you need to figure out how to get to the show without spending thousands then find a few people that are business savvy, trustworthy and ready to work as team to get accomplish a split booth. You do not want to get into a tiff about the space so work it out in the beginning to make sure all is fair.
For me the show was more of a meet and greet with the majority of buyers saying they would place their orders after the show. I gave away a good amount of catalogs and business cards, and also collected a good amount of cards so that I could follow up with buyers later. I was surprised at how many people from the press we met and was thankful that I had made a bunch of press kits to give out. I am very glad that I did the show though because I met some major stores that I never would have met by just emailing. I also got to meet stores that I currently sell to and others that I have talked with online. It also got me thinking about my line, in terms of what is missing and how it was organized.
I think sharing a booth was such a good way to go the first time around. It let us share the booth, furniture, fixture, and electricity costs (booths are far from cheap). Since the 4 of us were quite different it brought in a good mix of buyers. There was a lot of down time and it was nice to have people to chat with, people to watch your line for you while you took a walk around to see the other vendors. We were lucky that we all got along so well (since we’d never met in person before, we had met through decor8 – thank you by the way!), and were totally supportive of one another. I really miss not having them around now!
(photography from ink + wit, rsvp press, and jhill design)
Nicole over at the envy-inducing Making It Lovely blog all about (mostly) her darling home had these starburst mirrors on her wish list today. They are currently on sale over at Pottery Barn Kids and it looks like they won’t be returning after they clear ‘em out, so scoop these lovelies while they last. I could care less that they are featured in a bedroom belonging to a six-year-old, I see them in a grown up space and if one ever tires of them in white, slap on a few coats of black paint and they’ll go from proper to pimpin’.
(image from pbkids)
It’s time to inspire and be inspired! I recently read about the beautiful pack of fabric and notions that Emily Martin from the Black Apple sent to Marisa Haedike at Creative Thursday and I felt like I should do something to inspire others in this way so I came up with an idea to create Inspiration Packs and give them away. But I need your help.
Many artists read this blog and after talking last week to my friend Tara Hogan at Ink & Wit, I realized that lots of you have scraps galore that you’d like to get rid of. Why not donate them to a good cause? Tara thinks it would be nice if makers considered donating their leftovers to others instead of allowing them to overtake their craft room or worse, throw them away. I couldn’t agree more.
Would you like to donate a few of your scraps?
Inspiration Pack Details: Anyone can donate at least 10 items minimum. Please make sure that everything is in good condition and clean. Fabric scraps should be no smaller than a 6 x 6 square. If you are feeling generous and have yardage to donate, please indicate the amount before shipping. From fabric to buttons, your own prints or cards that perhaps didn’t print out perfectly, scrap papers, ribbon, if you have leftovers that you would like to donate to give others a little creative inspiration, please contact me via email at decor8blog AT yahoo.com.
Once I have everything, I’ll spend the first week of July sorting through the goods and I’ll organize packages, photograph each of the 10 packs, and show them on decor8 along with a simple comment contest where I’ll randomly select 10 winners. If I get enough goods, I will create more than 10 gift packs (10-20).
Deadline: All donated items will need to arrive to my New Hampshire address no later than June 30th.
What you can submit (ideas): Fabric : Wallpaper Scraps : Stationery : Journals : Pages from Books : Buttons : Ribbons: Stickers : Stamps : Gift tags : Gift Wrap : Vintage Photographs : Pencils : Pens : Art Papers : Patterned Papers : Prints : Cards : Envelopes : Fabric Tim (ric rack, pom poms, etc.) : Postcards.
Also include: 10-20 of your business cards so that I can place your card inside a special envelope that will be included with each Inspiration Pack. That way the winner will know that some items in their pack came from you.
Why: Recycling is smart and helpful to others. The purpose is to recycle what you have and make someone else happy and inspired to do something creative.
Please do not send: Prints in tubes (flat pack only — rolls of wallpaper or gift wrap are fine though because I can cut it up and flat pack it to winners), Paint or liquids, magazines or books, glues, sprays, metal, staples, paperclips, tools, scissors. In other words, nothing that can spill, nothing toxic, explosives, nude or violent imagery (some people are sensitive), etc. I’m trusting you guys with this.
What’s in it for you? I will also dedicate a post to all who donate listing your name and blog or website address, and you will be entered into a drawing to win one free 120 x 120 static ad space here on decor8 for 3 months. The ad will launch along with the all new decor8 blog, I’ve beefed up this little blog and your ad will appear on the new site as it goes forth into the world sometime in July.
Thank you Emily, Marisa, and Tara for inspiring this idea. I can’t wait to see who will donate and how we can all inspire others through this creative recycling project!
(photography by marisa haedike)