Here is a recap of our Surtex 2016 expeirence!
Saturday May 14, 2016
The sun was shining, the birds were chirping and it was another beautiful day in Vermont. After months of preparation, the time had finally come to leave for SURTEX. We had worked feverishly on our catalogs and panels and were so ready to share them with the world.
Syrena pulled into ALI Headquarters to find Russ with his hands full of delicious coffee for the trip… she knew right then it was going to be a good trip! Jack Appelman, our CEO, was gracious enough to drive, so we packed up his Suburban and began another ALI family trip! With Captain Jack at the helm, the “kids” had time to unwind before the big weekend, so Russ and Syrena popped in a movie and chilled out. Matt was Jack’s first mate, so he helped to navigate our journey.
About 4 hours later, we were in the heart of New York City. We pulled into the Javits Center and they permitted us ½ hour to set up our booth. It was all hands on deck, but 37 minutes later our booth was ready to go! We snapped a quick photo and headed out to get some dinner.
Sunday May 15, 2016
It was cloudy and chilly, but the energy of the Big Apple was still contagious. The ALI crew was up bright and early and in “show mode.” They got to the Javits Center, chugged a coffee and started the day. The day began with lots of productive meetings. The team met with their clients (and potential new clients) for the remainder of the show. If there was any down time, Matt and Jack would walk the show looking for common trends and themes. At 6:00pm when the show was over for the day, the ALI team hopped in a cab and went to meet a customer for dinner. We enjoyed a delicious meal with great company!
Monday May 16, 2016
The weather was warmer, the streets were busier and we knew it would be a big day at the show. We had back to back meetings scheduled so we got to the show and started our day. We were so excited when some of our artists dropped by the booth. We love getting to see their smiling faces! We enjoyed seeing people color on our adult coloring panel- it was a huge hit! Matt was able to go to see Dean Russo’s studio (there will be a separate blog about that amazing experience). The show came to an end and it was time for another business dinner. Once again, we had a great time and a fabulous meal- thank goodness for all of New York’s options.
Tuesday May 17, 2016
We were all so ready for the day because it was the last day of the show… it was time to head back to our quiet homes! We finished the show strong with lots of productive meetings with artists and clients. We packed up and started our journey back to Vermont. There were lots of discussions about trends, projects, fresh ideas and customer leads on the way home. Matt even started his follow up on the car ride! We stopped for a quick bite to eat and then back on the road. We got back to ALI Headquarters and everyone parted ways. We knew we had to get home and rest up for a full day of catch up and follow up on Wednesday.
We loved being able to see our current customers, artists and new clients at the show. It is very special to be able to finally see a face that goes with the email address we communicate with on a daily basis. After all of our discussions during and after the show, we noticed a lot reoccurring requests. Here are some of the things people are looking for: pop art, 2016 pantone colors, mixed patterns, patriotic art, folk art and wildlife. We had lots of inquiries for a variety of products; including, but not limited to: puzzles, fabric, greeting cards, tabletop and wall décor. Many manufacturers are interested in popping gold or reflective materials (i.e. foils) into their products, so bright colors are still very popular. We were so surprised that many “traditional” and “conservative” manufactures are starting to spread their wings and were asking about pop art and abstract art. People are craving the color and happiness that goes along with this look. Art Licensing has so much amazing work to present, we can fulfill everyone’s requests!