I took a quick spin through the New Exhibitor section Sunday after Paris Hilton’s appearance and that was all it took to see the scrapbook-related new exhibitors.
It is a definite reflection on the state of the scrapbook industry that I don’t believe that any of the few exhibitors that I saw are completely brand new companies. Instead, they are companies that have been around for at least a little awhile and realize they need to exhibit at CHA to take their company to the next level in the business. In the not-too-distant past, the new exhibitor section at CHA shows was crammed with newly born scrapbook companies vying for the their piece of the exploding market. It used to be you could spend a whole day in the section and not really see all of the scrapbook-related companies. I did it in 2 hours yesterday, with lengthy visits to each booth.
So who was there?
Bella Blvd. has been around for awhile but this is their first show. They are showing four collections that all coordinate together to mix-n-match. The collections are somewhat themed, but not all of the elements within each collection are themed, making them fairly versatile. They indicated their travel collection was being extremely well received, which surprised me because of the economy, but the versatility of many of its components to be used for other subjects may be working for it.
This idea’s genius is in its simplicity! These tabs are designed to hold your ribbon on a ring so that it is easy to see, sample and use, and so it doesn’t wrinkle or need ironing. Below is a photo of the new 2″ wide version:
Here is what it looks like holding 180 pieces of ribbon:
Kraft cardstock fans may be interested in this one…it’s collections of patterned paper that are largely based on kraft-colored backgrounds. The company is also offering alphabet stickers and a few embellishments like ribbon.
This company was showing collections from two signature designers, Dena, and Brenda Pinnick (whose work many may recognize from QVC). Brenda’s blue, purple and green “Iris” collection was a special favorite of mine in the booth. [Note from Brenda’s comment below that it will also be available as fabric soon!]
Edited to add: Commenter Beth is correct that I somehow missed one new company that was in the New Exhibitor section during my flying visit to it. I found out about them later when I met someone that was there working for them. It is still striking, however, that I could only find one brand new company when not too long ago there would have been at least 5-10 at the Winter show.