Behind the Scenes
How It Felt Attending Our First Trade Show Since the Shutdown
Excitement to Share the Opportunity
We pulled out the display pieces, fabric, and decorations that had been sitting dormant for over a year. We sorted everything out, reorganized, added the sample products for the new designs, and loaded it all up for a road trip to Mississippi. We were attending our first show since the March 2020 Shutdown and I think the entire FTH Team was excited to have the opportunity to take From the Heart Art somewhere!
Did you know that we partner with retailers across the US to offer our products in their shops, boutiques, pharmacies, flower shops, antique stores and even in a few farm stores? It is really an honor to have these business owners choose my artwork and the products we offer. It allows us to reach a broader audience with our message of Hope & Encouragement.
Reaching a Broader Audience with Our Message of Hope & Encouragement
We have a couple of online platforms that allow these retail partners to order from us, but one of our favorite ways is meeting them in person! We attend a couple of small Trade Shows that give an opportunity to set up a booth with beautiful displays to showcase the artwork and products that we make and offer. I know the store owners enjoy being able to walk through our booths and see the artwork, and meet the artist and makers in person. It is always a sweet treat for us to meet the store owner in person, to hear about their business, and to join forces to spread beautiful reminders of Truth. but this year it was very special.
Finding Connection Again After a Difficult Year
The pandemic has been hard on so many people, especially small business owners. Seeing the store owners this year gave us an opportunity to check on them and find out how they fared through the shutdown. These people are more than our partners, many of them have become friends! We care about them and want them to have successful businesses.
Setting Up the Displays
When we arrive at the show we are greeted with a 10x12 foot space with a black drape for the walls. We bring everything else with us! I’ve had people ask me if the Show provided the displays...no, we bring it ALL! There are SO many little details involved in packing and the checklist resides in my brain. I know, scary, right?! We do need a good typed up checklist, but it’s one of those things we haven’t gotten around to doing yet...but hopefully one day! We normally travel with a cargo trailer, which not only transports, it is also storage. We did something different for this trip and scaled it down enough to transport it all without the trailer. My husband didn’t go with us this time, he normally takes vacation time to be the driver, muscle man and fixer. He was unable to go this time, but was very impressed we were able to make it work without needing the trailer for transportation.
I Couldn't Do It Without My Behind-the-Scenes Dream Team
Grace and Faith were my dream team! They enjoy setting up, decorating and they love helping our customers! It took us all day to get the booth spaces set up and ready for the shop owners. The unloading and setting up goes quickly, but the displays take the longest to build. We like to make the displays beautiful to attract the buyers attention, but also practical to give them ideas on how to style our products in their own shop. We try to be really organized, labeling all the containers helps speed up the set up AND the take down.
We have one more Trade Show to attend this year. We will be in Biloxi, Mississippi, August 7-9 at the Convention Center. This show is also for registered wholesale buyers. It’s a great place to go to find unique products for your place of business.
Pam Coxwell | From the Heart Art