Thursday, November 8, 2007

Trend Talk with Kelly and Jess

It’s that time of year – the time of year we can’t wait for – placing new exhibitors into the Show. All summer long, the applications come in over the web, by fax and in the mail. This week we excitedly began unraveling the future of the National Stationery Show – our newest exhibitors! Now, the real excitement begins as our team starts finding booth space for all of these companies.

Here’s Jess with the more than 300 companies wanting to come into the Show!

We live and work around these applications – representing real people, with great product – throughout the summer and right up until the beginning of November, when we can begin placing these companies onto the floorplan.

Every application goes in a folder, and is organized by date of application and requested booth size.

Here’s Kelly checking off a booth for someone.

It’s a fun time of year, because as we work with each application, one right after the other, we start to see trends. And, we are seeing a few notable trends right now. First off, remember last year’s HUGE polka dot trend? We have to tell you, we did not really see polka dots. Seriously, almost none. This is interesting, as polka dots have been so strong for a number of years.

So what have we been seeing?

Most surprisingly, the combination of blue and orange – we don’t remember seeing this color combo last year! The blue is a lighter shade (sometimes turquoise-y) and the orange is usually straightforward, or leaning toward orange-red. We can’t show you any pictures (we have to protect our new companies and their brand new ideas) but we can tell you that these colors have been seen on many different types of products ranging from greeting cards to office products to personalized plates.

Another trend that is continuing is florals and flourishes. The flowers are big and bold, and we’ve seen them as photography, watercolors, and graphic design – and always with very strong, vibrant colors. The flourishes are often just that – swirly designs, but also still lots of damask patterns.

Ribbon embellishments are still big - solids and patterns both; letterpress is going strong, and (as if you couldn’t tell by entering ANY clothing or home furnishings store) brown is still hot.

We’re so excited by the creativity in this industry! We can’t wait to meet all of these new exhibitors at the Show. (May seems so far away right now).

If you are someone who’s been thinking of applying to exhibit in the Show, you should apply now, as space is definitely limited, now that we are placing all of these great companies on the floorplan. And on that note – if you have already applied to the Show – you will be hearing from us within the next few weeks regarding your space.

If you are a retailer, make your plans to attend now! You can register today, and make your hotel and travel (link) arrangements for the May Show. Take our advice, plan now; your favorite hotel will book up fast! You will want to spend 2-3 days at the Show in order to explore the entire Show floor, have great conversations with the new exhibitors, and place your orders for your stores.

Perhaps May isn’t so far away after all!

Well, it’s time to get back to the floor plan! Until next time…

Kelly and Jess

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