Elmwood Park, NJ (PRWEB) February 01, 2014
The Craft & Hobby Association (CHA) is pleased to announce an increase in attendance at the annual CHA 2014 Conference & Trade Show held January 10 - 14, 2014 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California. The 2014 CHA MEGA Show drew 2994 buyers, a 4.28% increase from 2866 buyers in 2013; and a 4.11% increase in total attendance of which 23% was international attendees from 55 countries including Japan, Australia and the United Kingdom.
Adding to the positive momentum was the busy Show floor that featured a large and diverse selection of craft and creative products all exhibited under one roof. Exhibitor numbers were on par with last year, showing a halt in previously declining numbers.
The Conference portion of the Show was well attended with 32% of total attendees participating in education sessions. There were 116 total programs offered including seminars, workshops and events, of which 26 were sold out. Many new programs were introduced to the Conference Program line-up this year including: Lunch-n-Learn Boot Camp sessions, Hands-On Labs and Artisan Workshops. Seminars with a focus on technology and social media were attendee favorites.
Two new Education components that extended to the Show floor were introduced this year: a Makerspace that highlighted the Maker Movement with live demonstrations and hourly business and education seminars, as well as Education Theatres featuring hands-on workshops during Show floor hours.
New features on the Show floor included a fun and unique VIP Buyer Lounge and Membership Bar, and a Bead Pavilion, where bead and jewelry exhibitors displayed their wares in their own exclusive area.
“As a bead store owner, I naturally attend many bead-related wholesale and retail shows. The good thing about attending a general craft show such as CHA is that it gives me an opportunity to think outside the box. These days, you can't stay in business by focusing only on your own main product line(s). You need to look outside to see how other craft products can be incorporated into your business.” - Marg Yama
Each year, CHA recognizes select exhibitors for outstanding work in product innovation. The Hot 20 Awards are a popular annual feature of the Show: 20 of the most innovative crafting products of the year, exhibited at the Show, are selected by a jury of industry professionals and representatives from the media. This year, the top 3 were awarded to:
- First Place - Brother International Corporation ScanNCut machine: a revolutionary new home and hobby cutting machine with the convenience of a 300 DPI built-in scanner.
- Second Place - Craftwell eBrush: a portable airbrush system used by crafters, cake decorators and beauty enthusiasts alike for scrapbooking, makeup application and more.
- Third Place - Spellbinders Tool-n-One: a portable tool that performs multiple craft functions, including piercing, folding, paper removal, inking, distressing, curling, and more.
The list of all the Hot 20 products for 2014 can be viewed at this link: http://www.craftandhobby.org/2014hot20.
The CHA Exhibiting with Excellence awards were presented to companies whose dynamic displays and merchandising techniques enhance the overall atmosphere of the Show floor. The 2014 award winners are:
- New Exhibitor Award - Chameleon International
- Inline Award - Clear Bags
- Island/Peninsula Award – SpinRite
- Critics’ Choice Award: Lion Brand Yarn
This year, CHA introduced the first ever Hall of Fame inductees at the CHA Foundation Gala. Members of the CHA Hall of Fame are veterans of the industry honored for their extraordinary contributions to the Craft Industry, the Association or their company. The inaugural inductees are:
- Eric Dickenson, Michaels Stores, Inc
- Priscilla Hauser, Society of Decorative Painters
- Julie Stephani, Stephani Ink
The CHA Foundation Gala is a charity event to benefit the #CRE8TIME Movement, the CHA Foundation’s consumer outreach program that is designed to inspire creativity in everyone.
The annual Craft Industry Prestigious Service Awards were also presented during the Show and were awarded to:
- Gail Czech of The Creative Network, Inc. received The Meritorious Award which is the highest honor the Association can bestow and acknowledges an individual or group that has made a significant contribution to the Association and Industry.
- Georganne Bender and Rich Kizer of KIZER & BENDER Speaking! received the Industry Achievement Award, which is awarded to a CHA member (individual, group and/or company) that has made a significant contribution to the growth and vitality of the Craft and Hobby Industry as a whole.
- Lion Brand Yarn Co. received The CHA Special Recognition Award, which recognizes an individual or group for extraordinary contributions that positively showcase the Craft and Hobby Industry.
“We were so impressed by the Show and everyone who represented it. I had high expectations and it exceeded them completely. It was a hugely enjoyable and very successful trip…” – Cheryl Bevan-Gellor
“We introduced new programs and events at this year’s CHA Show and the results were both exciting and uplifting. Exhibitors and attendees alike voiced positive encouragement about the new additions to the Show. Now, we are looking forward to carrying out that excitement through the many new events and programs that are debuting in 2014.” – Andrej Suskavcevic – CAE, President and CEO, Craft & Hobby Association.
In 2015, the CHA 2015 MEGA Conference & Trade Show will return to Anaheim, California January 8-13 to celebrate the 74th edition of the annual Show.
ABOUT THE CRAFT & HOBBY ASSOCIATION
The Craft & Hobby Association (CHA) is an international nonprofit trade association consisting of thousands of member companies engaged in design, manufacture, distribution and retail sales of products worldwide in the craft and hobby industry. For more information about CHA, membership or its award-winning CHA Conferences and Trade Shows, visit http://www.craftandhobby.org.