Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Home and Gift 2013 Trade Fair


I was invited to the Home And Gift trade fair in Harrogate by Artquirk, a greetings card company I am designing a range of cards for this Summer!
This was a really interesting (and fun!) experience for me, getting a glimpse at the commercial aspect to home-ware and gift design. It was also another great opportunity to network and gain contacts in the industry - which I took full advantage of - handing out business cards and talking to buyers and art directors when I could.
Everyone I spoke to was very friendly and helpful, and even if they weren't the right person to ask about freelance/ art licensing opportunities, they gave me direct contact details of the person I should approach with such enquiries, which is always very helpful!

I saw lots of inspiring stationary, card, home ware and jewellery design. 
The only downside to the day was that being a trade fair, nothing was available to purchase for a humble visitor/exhibiter like me! *sigh* At least it meant I didn't go crazy buying everything remotely cute/patterned/pig-related in sight!


I felt very V.I.P when I was presented this 'Exhibiter' badge!
Everyone else seemed to have to be scanned going through, but I
was allowed to waltz through each hall at my leisure ;) hehe


This is the Artquirk stand where I spent time chatting with my first illustration-commissioners and smiling sweetly at potential buyers ;)

Hopefully next year, in time for the Birmingham Spring Fair, my own designs will be displayed at their stand *exciting!*




The vast venue was filled with beautiful stalls, showcasing a plethora of beautiful home-ware, crafts, stationary, gift and greetings card design...There was too much to take in!



Lots of lovely gift-wrap and greetings cards in Hall H




This stall was intriguing: everything was made of various bits of cow,
from horn flasks, leather crafts, cow-skin rugs and even cutlery made of horn!



Such lovely patterns!

All in all another fun day of networking and being inspired!
Maybe one day I'll be my own little business showcasing crafts and things here, who knows?
For now, it's great that I'm working with a company who display their products at events like Home and Gift to help promote their company as well as the work of the artists designing for them.
I'm hoping this will be a small foot-in-the-door for me to gain further freelance opportunities one day! For now, as always, I have my fingers crossed for the future!


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