Tuesday, July 22, 2008

CHA review Part One

Ok, I left my notebook at home, and I am at work now (even though I am still sick - blah) but I am going to tell you what I can remember and show you a few pics, then I will fill in later today or tomorrow with my notes and more pics. Ok?
First - some trends that I noticed.
1. lower price points - it seems that a lot of companies are listening to the customers and trying to provide smaller packages of products with lower price points. For example: this new felt from Queen and Co that comes on rolls and is sold by the yard for less than $1.99

I didnt ask the price, but Maya Road and a few other companies seemed to have spools of trims that will be sold by the yard. Personally, I thought that was great because I never want to buy the big $6 packs of coordinating ribbon, because it is just too expensive.
Also, I dont have a photo, but EVERYONE seems to be offering smaller packs of stamps and even individual stamps. I thought that was pretty cool because I can never seem to rationalize buying a whole big set of stamps for $20, but I could pick up an individual or two here and there.

#2 - Die cut paper - this isnt a new one, and I am sure you arent surprised but the die cut paper trend is alive and well. Of course, we have the Ki memories, the making memories noteworthy, and the ci narratives but now it seems almost every company offers at least one or two die cut papers. I was especially impressed by the die cut Christmas, Halloween and Valentines day papers from Little Yellow Bicycle. They were unique and very useable.
Here is a photo of the Christmas line from LYB:

I only took my small camera and my Halloween photo from LYB didnt turn out too well, but I pretty much have the same thing to say about both Halloween and Christmas (and valentines too) here - LOVE IT!! I am a little bit less traditional when it comes to holiday themes and I loved how these lines were traditional, but a lot of it could be used for other things too. I also loved the gorgeous die cut papers. and you can see in the photo here - right in the middle is a round album - loved that! and on the left of the album is a set of glitter transparency frames! I love that idea! Sort of like the Fancy pants glitter frames, but you get a whole set! They also had a set of die cut photo mats that is not shown in this photo but was also very cool! Those products were available in all the lines and I loved them ALL!

#3 - clear clear clear! - everyone is on the clear bandwagon now. There were SEVERAL companies, new and old, that are offering clear albums, and embellishments. Clear Scraps is offering some really cool 12x12 acrylic die cut sheets. They also have a new 'mini album' holder - which was really cool because it can hold pretty heavy mini albums without falling over. think of like a calendar that sits upright on your desk and you can flip pages. it was like that only you can punch your own holes for whatever mini album you want. or you could use it as a picture frame. maya road, and prima both expanded their clear product lines. apple pie memories is a new clear company that I really liked - they had customizeable books that you can put a name on the top - cut out of the acrylic - as sort of tabs. They also offer thinner acrylic that you can emboss and use for cards and other stuff.

#4 - texture! everywhere! - I can't tell you how many things I just had to TOUCH! I am in love with texture and pretty much everyone at CHA totally delivered on my addiction. The first one that comes to mind, and probably my show favorite is Chatterbox. Their Artsylicious and Together lines - wow! flocking, glittering, enamel, foil, fabric, felt - you name a texture and it is in these lines! just amazing! Then SEI had VELVET PAPER - wow! the flocking was just everywhere. If I were going to to try to tell you about all the flocked stuff, I would probably be better off telling you which lines were NOT flocked.

#5 - knockoffs - LOL! I guess you can't really call this a trend, but there were a lot of things that I was referring to as knockoffs. I am not necessarily implying that these 'knock offs' are a bad thing - some of them seem to be improvements over the original. For example - Maya Road came out with a new 'Maya Mist' which is basically a knock off of the Glimmer Mist. It is more glittery though and comes in plain colors, silver and gold. The idea is that you spray the plain color, then top it with the glittery silver or gold and the color blends with the glitter to create a ton of different effects. I sort of already mentioned some other 'knock offs' like the acrylic albums that are showing up everywhere, die cut papers, glitter transparency frames, and then the other big one - thickers! It seems that lots of companies want to get in on the popularity of the thickers (can you blame them) and have come out with their own dimensional letter stickers. the one that comes to mind is prima. they have a new line of felt letters. They come in a variety of colors and it seems that they have a LOT of letters in each pack.


Shannon said...

this is the kind of cha review i wanna see! so chock full of info, thanks!

Darlene said...

Love the info here! Thanks so much for taking the time to inform us. Great job and I'm glad you had fun at CHA.

Marti said...

Thanks for the great review! Loving the look of those letters!