As we amp up for the National Stationery Show starting on May 18th, I thought I’d share some behind the scenes peeks at what we’ve been doing and also thoughts on being a first time exhibitor.

I went in to this having had quite a bit of show experience with another wholesale business I ran 12 years ago. I felt I knew all the do’s and don’ts and yet somehow, with my own product line being so close to my heart, the level of detail has been so much more intense. After all, I’m sharing my work with the public in a way that is quite different from all the retail shows I participate in. With the feeling that everything had to be absolutely right first time, I set about reading some of my favorite blogs and following fellow exhibitors on Instagram. I discovered a wide community of designers and illustrators sharing their processes and ideas and any details I might have missed were filled in. Nole at Oh So Beautiful Paper documents extensively past and current shows and highlights great booths.

Emily Blistein, who owns a beautiful store called Clementine, writes a weekly article sharing her experiences and I found this truly helpful in creating a check list. And earlier this week, illustrator Emily McdDowell wrote a piece on her blog sharing her thoughts and this really struck a chord. With all this mind, I feel ready and prepared.

We started out by laying all our samples on the floor as if they were on the walls and measuring the space they occupied. Once we had that done, my studio assistant Trang put together some plans.


The back wall will be black with my logo and social media names in white. I was going to hand paint all this however, had a moment of clarity last week and have ordered decals instead. Keeping it simple is my new motto.


LEFT-bootThe side walls will be white with type in black and some fruit decals placed in spaces.RIGHT-bootI’m making  a small table to go along the back wall for writing orders, storing catalogs and hanging out at with retailers. I had so much wood left over from making the boys beds that we cut a piece to the size we want and ordered some legs from Ikea. I then dipped the legs in bright yellow paint along with the stools which are also from Ikea.




The catalogs arrived yesterday and are exactly as I had hoped. I wanted a simple newspaper fold out and the quality of these is fantastic.




And then on to press kits which are given out in the press room to magazines and writers. I wanted a really eye catching folder that when opened up would contain my bio, catalog and a few take away treats.




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Last but not least, my new samples came in and I’ll be putting these in my shop later today. I usually introduce my calendar for the following year in September but managed to get part of it finished to exhibit.






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Please come and visit me at booth 1210.