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The industry as seen by top designers.

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How To Profit from Mixed Media

A sneak preview of a seminar on one of the industry's hottest trends.

Staff Report (June 200, 2010)

The theme of CHA's Summer Conference & Trade Show is "Craft Fusion: The Selling Power of Mixed-Media." Complementing that theme is a panel discussion, "Craft Fusion: Using Mixed Media To Grow Business." 

What exactly is Mixed Media, and, more importantly, how can retailers, manufacturers, and designers capitalize on this new trend to grow their businesses and increase profitability? The panelists will attempt to offer some answers

The moderator is veteran designer, author and television host Julie McGuffee.
Jo Pearson, the creative guru at Michaels and host of "here Creativity Happens."
Kathy Cano Murillo from iLovetoCreate, representing manufacturers.
Linda Augsburg, veteran editor of industry-related hard-copy magazines and now Editor at Favecrafts.
Kathie Stull, owner, KS Productions, Inc producer of numerous industry-related television series for PBS stations.
Julie Fei Fan Balzer, a mixed media artist.
Mike Hartnett, CLN's Publisher

Julie and Julie have just finished filming the new television series, Scrapbook Soup, which will air on PBS stations. The series promises to include numerous mixed-media projects. For a sneak peek, visit Life in the Craft Lane at www.juliemcguffee.blogspot.com.

What: "Craft Fusion: The Selling Power of Mixed-Media." (S105)
Monday, July 18, 3:30-4:30 pm.
: Free if you have a trade show badge.
For more information:
Visit www.chashow.org.

Mike Hartnett comments.

My main theme will be how specialty retailers are myopic and don't realize their customers, whether they're beaders, painters, knitters, or whatever, do more than just a single category and spend money in all sorts of places, money that could have been spent in their stores if they'd expanded their thinking and their inventory. To support that theme:

1. When Crafts was the largest consumer craft magazine, a survey of readers found that the average subscriber dabbled in five different types of crafts.

2. When counted cross stitch started to decline, the suggestion to specialty shop owners at a trade show panel discussion to expand their inventory to such things as needlepoint or plastic canvas was roundly rejected. Most, if not all, of those stores are out of business.

3. As I've reported in CLN, I have witnessed first hand the transformation of my wife Barbara from a life-long non-crafter into a hard-core enthusiast (jewelry-maker). Of course she has bought beads and other supplies from the traditional bead shops, chain store jewelry departments, e-commerce sites, and consumers shows. But she has bought an astonishing array of products from other types of stores. -- hardware, scrapbook, sewing, needlework, office supply, pet, cooking, discount, warehouse, and antique stores  She would have bought those products in a bead shop or a chain's jewelry department if she could have found them there.

4. About 20 years ago when scrapbooking was becoming a national trend, I wrote a commentary suggesting we use the word "memory" rather than "scrapbooking" because that opens up the category's products and sales to more than slapping a photo and embellishments on a page.



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