Preparing For a Fashion Trade Show

trade show dress rehearsal
Jewelry during the “dress rehearsal”, before I wrap the boards and label everything

I figured that as I have become consumed with Magic and Pooltradeshow and it occurring next week, I might as well indulge myself and compose an entire Deep Thoughts post solely about the preparation. As I knew would happen, yesterday marked the one week mark until I headed to Vegas and the stress hit the ceiling. In order for everything besides my jewelry (which is compact and the one thing I can’t show without, I plan on carrying it on the plane with me) to arrive in time for the set up on Monday, I need to ship it all out by tomorrow at the absolute latest.

In addition to the show prep this week, I also have a bustling normal studio routine going on, complete with wholesale and website orders, emails and ahem, blogging which all still need to happen. I also have to prepare for the time I will be out of the studio while going to the show…so you can imagine I am a bit amped up right now. Adam actually left the house this morning just so he could hide from me and my twitchy snapping.

1. Signing up for a show that costs a huge amount of money and will bring on a ton of stress is best of done super fast before one can really think about it…that way by the time you freak out with the “what have I done?” moment, you have already committed to it and now just have to deal.

2. Even if you have planned and measured and methodically laid out how you want your booth, you will immediately doubt every decision once you reach the date when change can no longer be made.

3. Ditto for all products.

4. Order your marketing materials like business cards, postcards and catalogs with plenty of time for fixes. If you have small items, having the back wall wrapped and photos blown up of models in your wares will make light and easy ways to draw attention to your booth and showcase your products.

5. People telling you that it will go great and not to stress out should keep those opinions to themselves as when one is irrationally stressed out, rational thoughts are useless.

6. For every person you will be relying on to make something happen related to the show, you’re stress level will increase exponentially.

7. Two weeks before a trade show is not the time to give up candy, cookies, cupcakes and all things that bring instant happiness.

8. Lists will be crucial, plentiful and across multiple mediums…on phones, computers and paper…yet they will save your sanity.

9. It is incredibly helpful when dealing with a new adventure, to have friends who have been involved with it before to help with advice and tips. Even more helpful if you know both buyers and vendors to advise you. Write down their advice and keep it on your person, it will soothe you to be literally armed with knowledge. Speaking to someone who has been through a similar situation to you can be really beneficial.

10. Exercise and eating well to make it through this are no brainers but you need to remind yourself of this daily…hourly even.

Ok, the countdown continues…wish me luck!

One Comment

  • You are truly an inspiration to me! I follow you in Facebook. And have been reading some of your blog posts and they are so truly helpful. I am a jewelry designer (yes another one) lol! And have been contemplating what route I would like to go. I have been doing the jewelry officially for a year now after selling off my boutiques. I love to create and make jewelry. I was approached by a pool show rep at a New York City show I did. I really want to jump into it and do it but I am so nervous and don’t think I am ready yet! I pay close attention to your advice and love that you share your thoughts.in this business there are very few who share. And I truly respect that about you. You have been in the game for a min. So a person like me really pays attention. I would love to know about your thoughts about a new biz joking into the tradeshow route and would love to get your take. I have been thinking pool and Capsule. Until then I will be checking in to see how your doing! Safe travels and great success. Cheers!

    Reply

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