Wednesday, May 14, 2014

As Seen At . . . CKC Manchester 2014

Creative Keepsakes Scrapbook Convention - Manchester is always highly anticipated by the Pollard Family.  It's a terrific way to for us to scout out products that might not be carried locally by our independent retailers.  

In addition, it gives me, as a member of the Paper Arts Community, an opportunity to connect with vendors, local designers, and get feedback from our consumers from throughout our New England Region.

Saturday, May 3rd, 2014 started early by taking a critical look at our crafty stash.  My little angel is a The Stamps of Life Club Member, so she's reviewed her inventory sheets to see where she would like to fill in a few missing stamp sets that coordinate with her monthly subscription.

Rather than take an extra inventory sheet to the show, I took pictures of the Copic Markers I have on hand with my iPhone and take along the digital version instead.

The CK Scrapbook Convention Show Program was invaluable - it gave us an overview of the show floor, information about all the classes and events, coupons to be redeemed at the show, and information about how to find our local independent paper arts retailers.
We were greeted with a WONDERFUL free "Paper Pumpkin" gift from our friends at Stampin' UP! for pre-registering.  The packaging was so inviting, we hardly wanted to open it - but open it, we DID!  It included a cling stamp set, mini ink pad, and a full Real Life Journal Kit complete with tabbed pages, stickers, rings and embellishments - a $19.99 value FREE!

Our first stop on the show floor was to visit Stephanie Barnard of The Stamps of Life.

It's always a treat to see Stephanie at CKC events while she's demonstrating {NEW} products.

Jill Tarayao was so gracious as she worked up the "Flip-its" cards for the Make-N-Take.

Stephanie and I were celebrating all that's inky with our friends from Butterfly Reflections.

We continued the Make-N-Take extravaganza at CKC Bookstore with our new friend, Colleen.  She was featuring the uber-popular We R Memory Keepers Envelope Punch Board.  I'm happy to share we had complete success making envelopes the very first try ~

I jumped in with Ashley as she showed my all the exclusive-to-the-show CKC Bookstore kits.  **NOTE many were sold out by the time we arrived, so get there EARLY!

CKC Bookstore Card Kits

CKC Bookstore Project Kits

CKC Bookstore Album Kit

CKC Bookstore *LOTS sold out**

Club SEI, a long-time CKC favorite, had a great selection of kits on hand, as well.  I really appreciated the packaging.  I'm not saying I do, but if it DID have a big stash, these kits would stack easily in my craft room ~

Club SEI had a great offering to fill my segmented pocket pages (you know you love 'em . . )

This pack of 3 assorted kraft envelopes jumped right off the shelf & into my cart!  Considering the stack of treasures that the kids bring home from school every week, I wish I'd gotten 10 ~

The Eyelet Outlet is based right here in Stratham, NH.  The coordinating embellies are irresistible!  The "brick" pattern (the design might have made us think of Legos) in both brads and washi tape was a big hit.  **This family-run business is A+ in our book!

Better than candy, our Copic Marker demand was satisfied at Scrap-mart.  If you haven't tried the fluorescent colors yet, you SHOULD!

The BEE Creative booth was humming.  NH designer, Khirsten Foss, was back at the Make-N-Take table again this year with alcohol markers by Spectrum Noir.

YES!  The Paper Loft had really unique scrapbook layout kits for us to peruse.  We were thrilled to find camping/scouting themes for us that offer a distinctive look.  They had a masculine collection that was not to be missed.

Doo Dilly Designs has a GREAT selection of distinctive layouts and embellishments.  I mean GIGANTICALLY great.  Sports, racing, BMX, music, theatre, pets . . . They had it all.  All the stuff your family is in to for hobby and lifestyle, they offer a terrific selection - but it's ONLY available at the show!  No online sales available!  Save your cash for this one, peeps, you're gonna need it ~

Keller's Creations is offering something entirely different - owner Kim Hyde designs her own graphics as well as embellishments and product selection.

Kim of Keller's Kreations even created a whole scrapbook kit for Scrapbook Girl.  Isn't that funny - we spend so much of ourselves investing in our memory keeping and she's the first one to launch as scrapbook themed paper line.  But Scrapbook Girl knew what we needed and she offers a perfect example of why we attend CKC events.

One of the best parts about CKC events are the classes.  This year, a huge amount of buzz coming from event attendees was relating to mixed-media.  I've been covering the mixed-media trend for a couple of years and it was obvious at the convention that it has really hit the consumer.

I was engaged over lunch discussing mixed-media with convention-goers, and attendees were LINED UP getting in to the mixed media classes that were offered.  It certainly has been wholly embraced by the scrapbooking community and I was thrilled to see that consumer demand satisfied with  CKC's programing.

In the end, we had a very successful day a CKC-Manchester.  Meeting with industry insiders, local artists and designers, maxing out on Make-N-Takes and stocking up on hard-to-find scrapbooking supplies was a day well spent.  Be sure to check their online schedule to see when the NEXT CK  Convention is coming to a town near YOU!

" . . and they stamped all the way home . . . "

Craft On, Laurel

Laurel Lee Pollard, Online Publisher, Promoter
New England Paper Crafts
"Ensuring the inspiring world of paper crafts continues to bloom."

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