behind the scenes CHA winter 2012

First off, we are now back at home. Thank you for all the kind words and thoughtful notes of encouragement. Hoping to see Miss E back to her usual self soon…


(Photos above by Melissa Stinson) So many of you said yes, you’d love to see some “non-product” photos/post about CHA. Above you see Shimelle (who is simply put, the best!) with me at dinner, as well as some general CHA/hotel shots.

CHA is 6 1/2 miles of carpeted show floor walkways. Store owners, manufacturers, distributors, media, authors, buyers for on-line and chain stores, and so much more. We’ve covered a lot of the brands/favorites I have from the show and now it’s time for behind the scenes and “other” photos. Obviously this isn’t a “everyone May saw and everything she did” post. It would take days to write that! But here we go.

I figured the first thing I’d share is these photos by Melissa Stinson of me doing my thing…

clockwise from top left: me tweeting + taking pics at Jenni Bowlin booth,catching a quick picture of Tim Holtz doing a demo (which Melissa caught and I think is soooo cool),  sitting down to play with (swoon) French General goodies, and taking a photo (of Melissa taking a photo).

CHA, quite honestly, is exhausting.

The show is 10a-6p, but there are meetings before and after. Note taking. article writing. plans to make. Plus throwing on sweats isn’t an option so you have to allow time for dressing and whatnot. The floor is always insanely drying to skin, your throat will be raw from talking, you can never drink enough water.

Above you can see me chatting (with Lisa Dickinson) while Melissa is taking pics!

Multi-tasking was always happening for me. ALWAYS. Phone out, camera out, notepad out, eyes on full alert (ears too)… phew!

Seeing all the new product to come is very cool, and I had so many things in my mind about upcoming projects, things to watch for, etc. that my brain was whirling and processing nonstop. I will say for me the absolute coolest aspect to CHA is seeing all of these people I work with, talk to, or know of in the same room. I mean- if there was such a thing as a crafty zoo it would be CHA! Oh, there’s the owner of my favorite paper company sitting with one of my favorite card making designers having lunch, and at the next table sits three rock star scrapbookers and… you get my point. It’s kind of surreal to have so much creativity AND new product all in the same room!

Here are some candid photos from my camera….

At the top you see Shimelle talking to Noell & Izzy ( at the Amy Tangerine booth and I think I did something nerdy like yell “gotcha!” and snap this photo. Next to them? That’s Nancy Nally owner of eating her usual health food. I think I was telling her “gotcha” or some such thing. Love to surprise photograph the media! heh.

Next row? Melissa Stinson + myself at French General make & take. At the bottom is the very cool (and one hard working lady!) Christine of Scrap Time peeking at me through mesh at GCD and Melissa in action taking photos.

About Melissa… she’s really good at taking purdy pictures. She’s also an amazing blogger and designer. is her website – she’s just become a member of the Pink Paislee design team (I know, dream job- right?!) and I adore her now that we’ve met in person more than ever.

That’s one of my most favorite things about CHA! You get to meet people you “know” from on-line. I discovered that Melissa has great taste in food (we shared our dinners – that’s how similar our taste is!), and she likes to work as hard as I do! Oh speaking of food, would you like to see some of the awesome shots Melissa took of our dinners? I *LOVE* that at CHA nobody even blinks when you photograph your food. In fact people are more likely to make sure they’re not creating weird shadows for you or move any garbage or ugly stuff out of way of your shot!

Yummy good food… ok. So back to the show! Here are a few more people I got to see and spend time with as taken from my phone or camera…

I adore them ALL. adore. At the top that’s Lisa Dickinson and a self-pic with Melissa. Next up – I’m with Stacy Julian (that’s Tami Morrison and Heidi Swapp in background) at a breakfast meet-up, and then me at long last meeting Kristina Werner. Fact: I had to text message stalk her to figure out where she was. Girl was like me – all over the show floor! 3rd row: with Dina Wakley (long time artist crush of mine!), the adorable + tiny (and pregnant!) Jen McGuire, super fab Ali Edwards, and the very cheerful and glittery Kathy aka Crafty Chica in her glitter photo booth.

Now here are some people pics from Melissa (who rules at photography. RULES. She is amazing and fantastic. Also? If she’s reading this she is embarassed by now of all my praising. Which makes me smile.)

At top left that is me, meeting the owner of French General Kaari Meng. For reals. She was so amazing – hope to see her again! Also getting to meet up with some favorite ladies I’m blessed to call friends – Kelly Purkey, Amy Tan, and Margie Romney-Aslett.

Here are two more amazing insanely creative people (again, photos by Melissa)

Always cool to see Tim doing his demos and sharing his passion for creating with so many. My only regret is how busy he always is – no time for chatting!! I also happened to meet Anna the artist of some incredible canvases and layouts in the Ranger and Prima booths. INSANELY AMAZING. Honestly,  she blew my mind!

So with tired feet, a full to the max brain, and full-on exhaustion from 18hr days, I got on the plane back home. Depending on the person and what they were doing at CHA, the experience can be totally different in details but the things I just mentioned? (tired feet, full brain, maxed out/exhaustion) is universal.

Hope you liked all the photos – I need to print some for crafty use now! Thanks again to Melissa for taking pics + sharing so many with me.

Since they’re crafty + fantastic, I want to share links to the websites of the people mentioned above:

Ali Edwards
Amy Tan
Anna Dabrowska (aka Finnabair)
Christine Urias
Dina Wakley
Jennifer McGuire
Kaari Meng
Kathy Cano-Murillo
Kelly Purkey
Kristina Werner
Lisa Dickinson
Margie Romney-Aslett
Melissa Stinson
Nancy Nally
Noell Hyman
Stacy Julian
Tim Holtz

6 thoughts on “behind the scenes CHA winter 2012”

  1. Thanx so much for sharing the CHA Experience. It was great since I could not go myself. Looks like you had a blast! All the new goodies are amazing and my wish list gets longer and longer!

    I don’t know how you managed to remember it all. )

  2. Love it! Love seeing all the BTS stuff! Big question, where are those tops from? The green one with the embroidered (?) glowers and that khaki/tannish one? Love them, they look great on you!

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