Tag Archives: Craft And Hobby Association

What the Heck are You Supposed to Do About the CHA Videos and New Product Releases?

Going Nuts
With all the CHA product announcements, are you starting to feel like you got hyped up on Christmas Eve and then woke up Christmas morning to find zero presents under the tree? Or are you overwhelmed with all the new product you feel you must have now?

CHA time is the most exciting time for the scrapbooking community. And it can also be a frustrating time. Everything is all about the amazing new products! But most of that product is not available for a while. And who knows which of those products will land in your regular stores? Plus, all the product-heavy ideas can be not only overwhelming for some, but sometimes totally intimidating!

I think about this every time the Craft & Hobby Association Trade Show (CHA) comes around. I’ve been saving ways to deal with it.

Here are six things you can do to . . .

  • decide what it is you really love
  • manage what you love so you can remember later
  • do something with your current inspiration
  • but also remain true to yourself…

1) Check the Manufacturer’s Website.

If you see stuff you like in one of the videos and want specific details –release dates, prices, complete views of entire lines — google the company’s website or blog. Many have good photos of the complete products.

For the past year Izzy and I have talked over and over again about how to make our CHA video tours more helpful to you. You can already view pictures of the new products all over the internet and we wanted to give you something more than just a video version of those same products.

We decided not to try to show all of the products but instead focus more on helping CHA to inspire you. We’re showing more projects and ideas for actually using the scrapbook products — our real focus now — and in the meantime, giving you a feel for the CHA experience since you can’t be there in person.

If you see something you like in our CHA videos and want to know more, google the company and get the info you need from them. Our videos are your starting point. We’ll help you identify which items you might like and show you what you might do with them. Then you can move on from there.

2) Shop Online Now.

Have you fallen in love with something in our videos? Disappointed that you can’t have it right now because they’re not releasing for a while? Sometimes the company already has products that are similar to the new releases. You might like those just as much! In the blog posts for the CHA video tours I’m linking to the ones I can find online to help you out!

3) Save the Blog Post Page for Your Favorite Videos.

Want to remember which products were your favorites so you can look for them over the next few months? You can save the post of those video tours! Bookmark the posts or save them to your Evernote. Evernote is free and works for both PC or Mac.

Over the next one to three months you can return to your favorite video tours to remember what you loved and what to look for.

If that’s too techie for you, keep a written list to remind you to go back later to see if they’ve shipped.

Within the blog posts I am adding shopping links to similar and related products by the same designer/manufacturer for many of the video tours and demo’s. When you come back to check your video you can click on the shopping links and then scroll down to the Related Products section. Maybe the ones you’re looking for will show up at that point!

If you like to order online, you can start a wish list of the items that come in. Then when you’re ready to order, you’ll have a list of everything you were interested in!

4) Talk to Your Store

Your store owner wants to stock the items that her customers will buy. It will help her if you tell her what you want! Some stores will even order an item you request and hold it for you.

5) Get Inspired to Use Supplies You Already Have

This year we’re showing a lot of creative ideas and projects that designers made with products. There is so much to learn from these ideas no matter what supplies are available to you! Don’t wait for new stuff to release. Let the inspiration move you right now!

6) Remember What You Value + Who You Are

Here’s something important to note: the projects and ideas at CHA have one main purpose — to sell product. The designers who made those projects received free supplies and an assignment to show off the products.

What is your main purpose when you are scrapbooking and papercrafting? Is it to sell product? For a few of you it is.

OR —

Is it to play with product? For many of you it is.

OR —

Or is to tell your stories? For a whole lot of us, it is this. So go ahead and get inspired. Try some new products. Fuel your creativity and make pretty things. But it’s also okay to focus on your photos and enjoy the relatively older products you already have. It’s also okay to decide to only buy some of the stuff you saw and wanted.

I always come home from CHA with a huge list of the things I know I want. I only actually purchase a relatively small percentage of those things. (And by the way, as part of the Paperclipping policy, I don’t accept any free products. I purchase everything I use at the regular price, just like you).

Get organized. Have fun. But also, get yourself a grain of salt to take with your daily doses of CHA as we continue to post video tours and demo’s!

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This Week at Paperclipping

  • CHA Video Tours & Demos – So far we’ve posted ten videos, starting with the fun introduction, Paperclipping Welcomes You to CHA! We are nowhere near done. There are many, many more so please continue watching the blog daily!

    Please note that these are not Members Videos. Members — you will get your usual two videos just like you always do. I would like for the first one to release next week, but it’s possible it may be slightly delayed.

    If you are not a Paperclipping Member, learn about the benefits here. Who knows, maybe you’ll decide you want to be a part of the group and have your membership in time to start getting the new videos this month!
  • The Paperclipping Roundtable – Almost Live from CHA
  • Monthly Paperclipping Challenge – The February Challenge is now live! Please join us! When the month ends we will pick one of you to highlight on the Paperclipping blog!

Heads Up!

  • The Paperclipping Digi Show – This week’s episode should be up between today and tomorrow! Watch for it!
  • More CHA Videos & Tours are coming! Watch for those, too!

All I have left to say before I end this week’s Paperclipping update is how awesome you all are and how fun you make my job! Many of you stopped me at CHA and introduced yourself and I loved it! Thank you!

I’ve also been enjoying all of you who are joining the conversation with your great comments, insights, and questions on all of the blog posts. Thank you for contributing and keeping it fun!

Look What I’m Bringing with Me to CHA!

Izzy's Steadicam
The camera man has attached new gear to himself for the Craft & Hobby Association Trade Show! Izzy actually purchased this for his cinematic projects, but hurray for scrapbookers — it will make our video tours of all the new and upcoming scrapbooking products even better. The video will be smoother!

Noell & Izzy at D'Vine Wine and Bistro

I’m blogging this from the road. Izzy and I are excited to bring to you the fun and excitement of the next four days! You can expect lots of videos to begin going up here on the blog later on Saturday and over the next little while with videos of the scrapbook industry’s newest products. Be sure to come back often to keep up!

And while I’m here, I can’t help posting a closer look Izzy’s newest tool!
Izzy's Steadicam

Why I No Longer Accept Free Products From Companies

I wrote the following letter to my newsletter subscribers as I was leaving the Craft & Hobby Association Trade Show last January of 2010.

* * *

Something happened when Izzy and I were covering the Craft & Hobby Association trade show that inspired us to make a major business decision. It’s a decision that affects my relationship with you as a scrapbooker. We walked the thousands of booths, choosing which ones had products and demo’s I thought would be of most interest to you, sometimes having to turn down requests for video coverage because we only have time to share what we think you’ll want most. Many of the manufacturers handed me packets of their products, hoping they will end up on projects that appear in my tutorials. This is a common practice in the industry — I don’t mean to make it sound like I’m anything special.

I have mixed emotions whenever it happens. On the one hand there’s the rush that we all feel whenever we’re offered something free. Especially when it’s something we already wanted, right? On the other hand, there was a creeping discomfort I couldn’t explain and really didn’t take the time to try to identify.

I made a comment to Izzy about all the talk at the trade show by scrapbook designers and press members needing to ship all their freebies home. He had an idea that, at first, I didn’t like. . .not after My Mind’s Eye had just offered to send me some products from their new mini-book line, a line that almost made me salivate all over their floor. But as Izzy and I talked about the possible impact of his idea, I realized I wanted to do it for sure. And all that day, as packets stuffed with beautiful scrappy goodness slipped into my hand, I slipped them back to their rightful owners and explained our new business decision.

A Major Business Decision

I am no longer accepting free product for use in my scrapbooking and paper-crafting projects.

I am not aware of anyone else in the industry doing this. Let me tell you why I decided to do it and what it means for you. Those who have been with me long know that I am quite honest with my opinions about scrapbook products, stores, and magazines. But even I recognize that it’s hard not to be at least slightly biased about a product that you didn’t have to buy yourself, especially when you know that that company will probably want to give you even more if you give their products good coverage.

It’s important for you to know that the products I use and recommend are products I like enough to actually pay for them. Myself. You will always know that I cannot be bought or sold by any company. How is that for enabling Paperclipping to offer you the best recommendations in the industry? Several people told me this is crazy because it’s an expensive decision to make. But that’s a price I’m willing to pay and a price I’m willing to pay for you.

Once again, this is a case where the Paperclipping Members are the ones who are making all of this possible. Much appreciation to our Paperclipping Members.