So many have have assumed over the years that the Cincinnati show must be the easiest weekend of the year for us – and seem surprised when I snort in response. Nothing could be farther from the truth – when we’re on the road, anything that isn’t in the booth is simply out of stock. When we’re this close to home, anything that isn’t in the booth is “I’ll pick it up at the store tonight and have it for you in the morning.” Such was the case during the Preview Party on Friday evening – I left the Sharonville Convention Center at 11:10 p.m. and finally hit my front door at 2:45 a.m. Made for an early wakeup call at 6:15 a.m. – thankfully, a building full of excited customers makes it easier to stay awake . . .
The Friday night “costume” theme was Crazy Hats – and yes, it was a rerun from last year. So are these pictures of my chapeau – you’ll find them in the blog post from last year’s show as well. Ted Cutts saw me and shouted that wearing the same getup as last year was not allowed – my response was “Connie didn’t change the theme – I didn’t change the hat.”
But Karen did – her headgear was quite different from last year. And after Friday evening, it spent Saturday atop the gridwall above her cash register.
I wasn’t the only one who pulled out last year’s hat – but Bill from Repeat Impressions did add more recyclables to his previous entry.
Speaking of Ted Cutts – it won’t be long before his son Trevor will be looking down upon him. We have watched a lot of kids grow up on this circuit. It was nice to see Ted looking so good – he parted with his appendix in mid-June after gutting out the misery through a weekend show (and a couple of trips to the emergency room) in Arlington, Texas. By the time the diagnosis was confirmed, the surgery wasn’t nearly as simple as it should have been – and Ted now has a nine-inch scar as a reminder.
It was fun to see so many vendors get into the act. I didn’t get far away from our booth – Our Daily Bread and Sweet and Sassy Stamps both shared the same aisle with us.
These were two of my favorite customer entries . . .
And then there is this sinister looking individual – who wears a hat at all shows . . .
On my way in the door on Saturday morning, I had to get one last image of our good friends Nicole and Lucie from Luni Stamps – this was their last show, as they are headed into retirement (or at least semi-retirement). We love them dearly, wish them well – and will miss them terribly.
I spent some time catching up with Pat and Paul from Northwoods Rubber Stamps – my stories were about Ryan’s wedding, and theirs were about their infant grandchildren. Both made sure to inform me that their grandson was named Maddox Paul . . .
Our booth rocked all day as usual. Faber-Castell sent their crack demo artist Rita Barakat in from Texas to show off their wares . . .
. . . it isn’t as easy to see in this picture as it was when I noticed it, but the crush of customers during the early part of Saturday pushed Rita’s demo table in at an angle from where it was originally positioned.
Always on alert for distinctive t-shirts . . . this was my favorite. Had to get a closeup to send to Ryan – and of course he loved it.