squeeeeee! The National Stationery Show is coming up soon! We are so excited! This is our all-time favorite trade show to attend, filled with awesome product and great inspiration, not to mention amazing artists from around the country. We can't wait! We'll spend three days in New York, walking aisles full of paper goods ... and then going to all the paper shops we can find in the city. We can't help it. Sachi did all the travel agent work and now Laura is just scouring the planner, the mailings, and instagram to see what vendors we will see. It's always a fun time of year because every day the mailman brings us postcards and announcements from vendors inviting us to see their booth. Some people go all out on the calligraphy and graphic design! Always fun to get real mail.
This time of year also marks the kick-off of the selling season, starting with Mother's Day and graduation pretty much all together in early May. Always makes for a challenging window as there's a lot to fit into a little space. I can't believe at my old job I used to be irritated by the prospect of having to fill two windows. I would love to have that much display space now! In the meantime, I'm making do with more frequent window-changes: starting with a floral Mother's Day window, transitioning to a more text-heavy Mother's Day window, and then moving on to one that also incorporates the Lion King which is coming across the street to the Overture Center. Somehow I will manage.
In other news, we are busy preparing for the busy summer tourist season. We've had a somewhat slow start to the year - we're blaming it on cold weather and election season uncertainty - but we are pleased with the assortment of goods we have that will be brand new this summer. Sachi's badger hugging Wisconsin image has been converted to an enamel pin and she has several note card designs in the works. We worked with a fabulous artist to create a Madison map, which comes on tote bags, note cards, and prints. I'm enjoying the somewhat messy, hand-drawn style that is so popular nowadays and we think this artist is a particularly good example.
I also spent a lot of time on Instagram getting distracted by #plannerlove and #midoritravelnotebooks. I do have an upcoming workshop at the library but I was mostly looking for my own inspiration. I had a notebook started for my Mexico travel journal but am going all out on washi tape, with plans to also add some handwriting and maybe doodling? stencils? playing around with paint pens/ or something. Right now I'm gluing down paper for background elements and adding in some of my photographs. I would kind of like to do something on top of that to help tie the elements together a bit more. We'll see how that goes.