Welcome back to Scrapbook Update’s CHA Top Ten Hot Picks list!
To see all the hot picks posted so far, visit this link. At the end, after I’ve published all ten of the picks, I’ll publish a summary list for easy reference.
So here, in no particular order, is the next hot pick for CHA Summer 2013 (aka Create-n-Connect)…
Project Life was, admittedly, something of an enigma in Las Vegas. While it seemed to have lost some of the rock star shine of its debut at the previous show, Project Life was still an omnipresent force on the show floor, driving sales not only for its own company but for many others as well.
Despite the lighter crowds in the company’s booth this time around, this release is actually quite a positive and critical step for the company for several reasons.
Compared to Anaheim in January, where founder Becky Higgins debuted the company with a huge set of new core kits, there was relatively few new core kits on display. There was one aimed at the genealogy market called Heritage, along with a new addition to their line of licenses from well-known designers. The bright and doodle-y “Sunshine” Kit is by Elsie and Emma, of A Beautiful Mess.
There was also two new core kits with a specialized theme, intended for scrapbooking LDS missions. That kit is available in “Elder” and “Sister” versions, and will be carried in Deseret Book starting in October, as well as some other outlets.
The new Project Life mini-kits were perhaps the most buzzed about of all the new Project Life products. The company introduced licensed designs pulled from collections designed by signature designers from other companies under the American Crafts umbrella: Dear Lizzy’s “Polka Dot Party”, Maggie Holmes’ “Flea Market”, and Amy Tangerine’s “Cut and Paste”.
But the most important introductions are perhaps the huge array of lower priced items that the company introduced, despite the fact they didn’t get nearly the buzz of the mini-kits. Retailers need lower-ticket items, under $10, to generate add-on and impulse sales. Until now, Project Life has had few items (basically just the cardstock/journal card packs) that fell into this critical price point. Consumers could buy an album, core kit, and plastics – and then be done with the company (and the retailer) for a year.
Not anymore! Among Project Life’s new introductions was a new product option called “Themed Cards”. These come in 36 different variety packs, and the packages contain 40-60 cards all tied to a particular theme. With an MSRP of $4.99 to $6.99, these packages are perfect impulse and add-on buys.
There’s also enough SKU’s that stores will be able to pick and choose what they carry and consumers will see different product in different places, making the product line seem more fresh.
These will make the perfect companion to the Project Life Mini-Albums, with the perfect amount of cards for creating one of those albums. They can also be mixed into a regular album. Insert “Soccer” cards with the soccer photos in your layouts, or “Celebrate” cards with the birthdays.
Interestingly, it appears that a few of the cards (at least in the Halloween pack) duplicate cards available in previous kits.
As well as the kits, the company expanded its collection of consumables, by adding letter, arrow, and date stickers (MSRP $3.99) in gray and tan.
There’s also two new types of journaling cards, for a total of four varieties now. Joining the previous grid and blank versions are the new lined and ledger packs. The ledger pack features an assortment of ledger grid designs, and has some color elements in some of the designs.
Tools are another great add-on sale, and Project Life is finally getting into that business as well. They finally came out with a long-requested corner punch (MSRP $9) to match their card corners, and also a date stamp (MSRP $4.99).
There’s also a wide new assortment of envelope page plastics, along with new page designs, and bulk assortment packs.