Where to Find The Newest Knitting and Crafting Supplies

Apr 11, 2016   |   posted by Della Glein

If you are a knitting or craft store retailer, you often are looking for the newest knitting and crafting supplies to offer to your customers.  One of the main sources of finding new knitting supplies is by attending a trade show once or twice a year.  In the US there are two primary trade shows:  TNNA (The National Needle Arts) and CHA (Craft and Hobby Association).  In Europe, there is one primary show, the H+H (Handarbeit and Hobby) in Cologne, Germany.

If you are not a retail store owner, you may not be familiar with a trade show.  Trade shows are large events hosted by an association in a particular industry in which retail stores can “shop” for product to carry in their stores.  Vendors (e.g. manufacturers), like della Q, host a booth that displays their products for the shop owner to see and test.  If they like the vendor’s product they will place an order for delivery to their store.  In general, to attend and buy at a trade show, you must  be a retail store owner and place a minimum order that can be anywhere from several hundred dollars to several thousand per vendor.

The booths at TNNA and CHA are considered “pipe and drape” which means the walls of the booths are separated by curtains.  See the photos below of a the della Q booth at couple of the TNNA shows.  Depending upon the show size, I either ship a pallet of my tables, lighting and samples or do something smaller where I bring all my samples and lights in suitcases (you would be amazed at how I can maneuver three large suitcases through an airport and convention center)!

I just returned from the H+H show a couple of weeks ago.  These folks REALLY know how to host a show!  Granted, it is much more expensive to attend this kind of show, but if you are a knitting or craft retailer looking for the newest knitting and crafts supplies, you need to see this show to believe it.

H+H hosts 400 exhibitors from 43 countries.  The show is about six times the size of TNNA.  It covers four separate floors which makes finding your way back to your booth a bit challenging.  Thank goodness for their navigational app (yes!  for INSIDE the show).

Do you see that last photo?  It is a booth that has a restaurant/bar in it!

One of the main differences with this show is that it is “hard wall”  rather than “pipe and drape”.  Look at how different my booth is for H+H.

This show costs me more than twice as much to have a booth, but what a difference in presentation.  I also don’t really have to do anything to set up.  Before the show I work with the staff on the layout and lighting.  They build it.  I simply show up with my samples.

H+H also includes quite a number of special exhibits.  Check out this “butcher”.

Of course, TNNA also offers a fashion show, but the H+H fashion show makes you feel like you are at Fashion Week.

So, what do you think?  If you are a retail store owner, is H+H 2017 on your list?

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