What happens after a trade show?

A lot of people ask me about our trade shows and how they work, and what happens once they're over. Here's a little behind the scenes for you.

Penny Lindop Designs setting up at Spring Fair Birmingham trade show

Before the show, there's a lot of work involved.  The chaos of the halls before the show opens is huge. I'm always amazed at the transformation from the last set up day to opening! I have a long thin space and it's not huge , but I'm still always so pleased if I have help especially if the help comes from either of my daughters as they both know what's involved. So this year, daughter Emma and her partner came to help. Fantastic. If you need to get a row of framed pictures on the wall, all evenly spaced, you can do it my way, which is by eye. Or you call on a mathematician as here:

Penny Lindop Designs setting up at Spring Fair Birmingham trade show

A mathematician's approach to hanging picturesI was a bit of a cheapskate when ordering lights for the show, but here is a part of the stand when finished...

Penny Lindop Designs at Spring Fair Birmingham trade show

A corner of the stand with notecards, greeting cards and prints[/caption] Once set up it's time for a well earned early night before the doors open to the retailers in the morning. Then follows 5 solid days of chatting, taking orders, networking; always standing, always smiling. Something happened at this show which I've not come across before - a retailer buys her cards by the metre. I had no idea how many cards were in a metre, but luckily I had a tape measure.

Penny Lindop Designs greeting cards at Spring Fair Birmingham trade show

Did you know you get 8 Penny Lindop Designs cards to a metre?![/caption] This was one of our best shows for a long time. I cannot explain why, but I have been humbled by so much affection. Now, back in the studio, we are knee deep in boxes and cards and wool; we're tripping over each other and the dogs (because they love to come and help with the "recycling"). We will be busy for many weeks, and desperate to get the orders out as soon as we can.  But there's only so much fluffing and packing our tiny team can do in a day. I don't know about the others, but I'm beginning to suffer from fluffitis - I'm guessing it's a mild form of arthritis. Meanwhile, I have been doodling some trees....

Penny Lindop Designs tree doodles

A few little  tree doodles