I have been a while in reporting my time at Spring Fair International, and so if you have been waiting for news I am sorry to have kept you.
My jaw dropped when we arrived at the empty greetings and stationery hall of the Birmingham NEC. I hadn't realised that the stand would be open ended and so the plan for my stand wasn't going to work. To cut a very long and rather stressful story short, we managed to acquire a cancelled stand opposite. We got some extra lighting rigged in and hey presto I had room for my new products and a whole extra stand. Every cloud.....
For those not familiar with trade shows, the halls are massive. This is just an example of how long and wide any one of the halls can be, and in fact even larger as we were situated part way down the hall. We were lucky to have a really friendly bunch of exhibitors surrounding us, and everyone was so kind and helpful. Plus, we were very close to a coffee shop, vital for those long hours of trading.
My helper again at the show was my Mum, who knows the business inside and out. She has got incredibly good at taking orders and dealing with queries, so I feel confident in leaving her on the stand should I need to dash off. We took it in turns to alternate between stands, sometimes just to stretch our legs and have a different view of the hall, but it seemed to work well.
At Spring Fair I launched a brand new range of stationery sets that I have been working on for a few months. The range 'Dilly & Eric' was inspired by some owl characters I drew previously for a greeting card and I thought they would work well for notelets. The sets went well at the show so I hope to make them available in the online shop very soon.
The show was a huge success, with orders taken at the show, and after. I have also started to work with a distributor in New Zealand (more on that soon). I made lots of new industry contacts and had a nice chat with existing customers too. Stock has been sent out to some lovely new stockists. It's been non-stop for a month!
I have already registered my interest for a stand in 2012, but my next show will be Harrogate Home & Gift in July.