My take on the trends and the themes I saw in the show:
Custom Custom Custom
- Create your own clear stamps using the machines from Photocentric, inc.
- Use Melody Ross' new chipboard system from GCD to create custom textures on your chipboard or hers
- Blank and printed canvas albums from Pink Paislee–use their rub-ons to create a custom look or buy a pre-printed book
- Build Your Own Monster Iron-Ons by SEI — create what you want, boy girl or whatever:
- “Bare” papers that you can spray with a spray mist to create your own background–Basic Grey had 3 lines of these in cream, white, and I think kraft (but don't quote me on that last one), Paper Trunk came out with a gorgeous line of black patterns on kraft, and I heard MME has lines like that as well but I did not go in their booth this time.
- Spray inks — lots of people have spray inks now…
There were alot of companies promoting green products:
- EcoGreen Crafts: Paint, recycled glass embellies and ink–all totally green, totally safe
- Bulk pricing to cut down on trash from packaging: ribbon and buttons (Webster's Pages), Charms and metal accents (Vintaj), O-Wires (Zutter has always done this but it's still worth mentioning), buttons from Buttons Galore …
More and more different materials or improved materials (other than paper) showed up in scrapbooking:
- Corrugated cardboard from Zutter that I call “perfect” cuz you can peel one side off and perfect corrugated edges show–no more ruining your manicure to dig the paper out of the corrugated ridges. A Ruffles potato chip doesn't even have ridges as perfect as this cardboard!
- Nikki Sivils' buttons with burlap circles stitched to the top
- Mixed media books from Prima with canvas, chipboard and colored acrylic pages
- Canvas Corp now has muslin AND burlap to add to their canvas line of products
- American Crafts came out with adhesive back printed canvas sheets
- Studio Calico had adhesive backed fabric sticker strips that can be torn to get that feathered edge
- Crepe paper — thick sheets in pastels from Melissa Frances and printed black on white strips from Tattered Angels
- Charms – metal is back via Vintaj (love that you can order it in bulk) and Making Memories' new Jill Sutart line or Tattered Angels' new keys–LOVE THEM!
More For Your Buck
Finally manufacturers (some of them at least) are “getting it”that no one wants to or is able to spend $10 for one brad anymore. Like it was rocket science to figure that out? Anyways, along this line there were more tools for you to create your own custom books, embellishments, and more as well as products packaged in smaller quantities and for less. Also, there were alot more tools that were designed to be cheaper or to help you use your stuff up (don't require you to buy only their product to use with it):
- e-Line from Prima — all of it is $3 or less per pack, totally worth the money, still one of my all-time fave products from them. They added more flowers and Say It In Crystals Swirls to this line. For like $30 you can fill a bathtub with flowers if you wanted!
- More for your money on sticker sheets like the two sets of alphas plus journal spots from Bella Blvd (bought some of these for classes!)
- Diztrezz-It-All from Zutter for faster and more controlled edge distressing (no more ripping your paper in half)
- the eCraft machine is a new diecutting machine
- new Sizzix dies and a really large Big Shot machine form Ellison that can take Sizzix dies and the traditional metal and wood dies — it's one tool for EVERYTHING
- new Cuttlebug dies that cut, emboss, and can be inked through the die
- More I-Top items
- Paper packs with only 10-15 sheets in them versus 25 so stores can get more variety but not be locked in to 25 sheets of the same paper
- Fewer lines — now this doesn't really save anyone money but it makes it so stores aren't killing themselves trying to buy 32 lines from 40 companies. I think this makes it easier for stores to pace themselves and get a variety without having filled their store with new stuff only to have a customer come in and say “what's new?” or “why don't you have the entire line from XYZ company” when the store is filled with 30 lines from 30 other companies. What store can carry it all? None, not even any of the online stores carry it all! So smart thinking by the manufacturers to pare it back. And who needs 10 lines of hedgehog paper anyways?!
Colors & Themes
These are the colors I saw alot:
- Kelly Green
- Salmony Pink
- Muted color combos — like yellow, olive, and black in Pink Paislee's new Queen Bee line or the colors of Prima's new paper lines, Dear Lizzy from American Crafts in pastels, Donna Salazar's paper line with muted wood and denim tones…
- Vintage everything, from 50's mom in the kitchen to 70's brown, orange, yellow, and olive green color combos
- Seamstress/patterns/crafty motifs
- “Happy” Stuff: Polka Dots (Jenni Bowlin, Am Crafts, Bo Bunny), Farm Animals (Reminisce etc), Banners and cute clothes (American Crafts Dear Lizzy), Americana like Cherry Pie (Jenni Bowlin, Girls Paperie), cute stamps & images (My Cute Stamps, Hero Arts, My Little Shoebox, Helen Dardik for Creative Imaginations)
- Paper with a Treatment: Lacquer, Flock, Glitter, Embossing, Stitcing (Bazzill, Am Crafts, SEI, Prima and others had papers with treatments on them)
- Companies are more focused on what they do well — seems that products are wayyy more about quality than quantity this year.
Everyone always asks me what my favorite item/line/product at the show is. It is hard to pick one thing because over the course of just a few days you see THOUSANDS of products but then again, if something is super fabulous, you would remember it, right? So here is the honest truth about what I liked, what I bought, and what I think is worth the money:
- Diztrezz-It-All from Zutter. Yes, I am on their DT and yes I would tell you if it was bad — it is GOOD! I am not so into the distressed look but if you have ever tried to distress an edge with one of those fake letter opener style distressors and ripped your project in half, then you need the Diztrezz-It-All. Plus “sawing” away at your paper after a long stressful day can be very therapeutic ;)
- Gathered and stitched twill tape from Pink Paislee–love it!
- New glittered and fabric papers from American Crafts
- New thin, vibrantly colored cardstock from Canvas Corp–think “blade conservation” if you have a Wishblade, Silhouette, or Cricut!
- Melody Ross' Chipboard tools from GCD–can be used with ANY chipboard to give it a custom texture–love that!
- Build Your Own Monster iron-ons from SEI–I am sooo using these in a class!!
- Paper lines–I didn't really have too many that made me swoon but I ordered from Bo Bunny, Pink Paislee, Jenni Bowlin…
3 thoughts on “My Take on CHA”
dang ~ great re cap!!!! i loved being there are ordering products!!!! so fun!!
Jennifer….THANK YOU!!! WOW!!! Email me and I will send you some ChipArt tools and perhaps you can teach classes with those too!!! Thank you for this wonderful write-up…what an honor!!!
Jennifer: I was at CHA one day and can envision some of the items you have blogged about. Great job recapping.
I DID NOT see Melody Ross chipart tools but NOW I have TOO! :}
Thanks for the update!