I can’t believe that the 2015 National Stationery Show has already come and gone! This was my 3rd year to exhibit at the show with the Stationery Academy. I shared the booth space with 3 other talented artists, Dororthy Collier of Dororthy Art, Stephanie Creekmur of Stephanie Creekmur, Liz Cooke of Lionheart Prints, and Stationery Academy President, Jennifer Faught. The show is only 4 days long but it takes months to plan for. I started working in late January on new products to launch and by mid April I was busy with a product photoshoot, creating a new wholesale catalog, to designing premailers for retailers and of course laying out my booth wall. It’s a lot of hard work, but it’s so fulfilling when you see it come together.
This year, I had 6 Best New Product Finalists! There were only 8 categories and I’m so grateful that Southern Fried made it in 6 of the 8. Below is one of my favorite new products, the Farm Fresh Kitchen Towel. This design along with 3 other towel designs were finalists in the Lifestyle Category. I hand illustrated all the kitchen towel designs.
There was never a shortage of things to do after the show each night. On Sunday night, Kari Joy Hodgen was incredibly gracious and hosted a small cocktail party for all the Stationery Academy alumnae who were in for the show. Kari Joy is a fellow Stationery Academy alumna and an incredible illustrator and down-to-earth gal. Follow her on Instagram at @karijoyhodgen, you won’t be disappointed. Throughout the night we laughed, ate some delicious food, drank some superb wine all the while sitting out under the New York summer sky. It was perfect.
Monday night, Stephanie Creekmur and I made our way to eat at the famous Shack Shake to indulge in their famous hamburgers. Afterwards, we took a wrong turn and ended up in Times Square. No worries, it was a happy accident.
A very special part about this year’s trip to NYC was that my mom flew in on Tuesday to meet me and experience the National Stationery Show and New York City for the first time ever! She had never been to New York and as she says, “It was the trip of a lifetime.”
The show ended Wednesday at 1pm. We quickly packed up our booth and were outta there and it was time to explore the city. Mom and I hopped on the subway and made our way to see Wall Street and the World Trade Center Memorial.
That night we dined at the Bryant Park Grill. The park was packed for a Rangers hockey viewing party. I think every Rangers fan on the island was there.
Before heading back to the hotel, we walked to Grand Central Station and grabbed a cupcake at Magnolia Bakery to celebrate my birthday. (Yes, that Wednesday was my 27th birthday.)
This was my 5th trip to New York, but I had never truly seen all of the city. So for the rest of the week mom and I did the usual tourists stops and few off-the-beaten-track spots. We visited the flower market. They had peonies for days.
We walked our legs off on 5th Avenue.
Visited Rockefeller Plaza…
and came back the next morning to see the Today Show and Meghan Trainor perform. Such a treat!
Friday was the most gorgeous day! We spent majority of the day in Central Park before making our way to the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Overall, my trip was fantastic! I made lots of great connections and I’m excited for the new retailers who will soon be carrying Southern Fried Design Barn. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Jennifer, Liz, Stephanie and Dorothy. These ladies are crazy talented. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for them.
I’ll soon be launching all our new products on the website. Follow me along on instagram @southernfriedtn. I’ll announce the launch date there.