Maiah and I traveled to H+H in Chicago last month to network and see what new products we could find for the fall stitching season. You may not know, but our industry hasn’t had a trade show since 2019. So after three years without a buying show, we were excited to see that H+H expanded to the US, from their regular European market. This meant that they brought along some new exiting European brands that we wouldn’t normally see at a trade show here in the US.
We landed early Wednesday AM and had a wonderful inventory planning session in the hotel lobby before heading over to the convention center. Ever wonder how we make buying decisions? We start by creating a spreadsheet of our current inventory by gauge. Within each gauge, we make sure to have a variety of machine washable and non washable yarns, some variation in fibre content, and a mix of machine dyed and hand dye options. We also look at the price per thousand yards of all of the yarns, to be sure to have a wide variety of options at all price points. We then look at our sales reports for the last six and twelve months, to determine what didn’t perform well and should be cut at the end of the summer. This makes room for new and exciting things for fall!
We hit the convention center with Tina Whitmore of Freia Yarns and placed an early order with her on her newest yarns – we are so excited for you to see them!
We then attended the State of the Industry panel discussion, which had several craft industry folks from around the world. It was interesting to hear how COVID played out in their countries and industries – as this show pulled together all soft crafts (sewing as well as knit and crochet).
We ran into Xandy Peters when walking back to the show floor! Stay tuned for a fall event with them…
The next day we hit the show floor and got a ton of ordering done! We got to meet the owner of Lovafur, who makes our lovely faux fur pom poms. We connected again with the lovely ladies of Mrs Moon. We reconnected with Katrinkles and Kelbourne Woolens and also got to meet up with Meredith of Woolkfolk. We picked up two new gorgeous imports from Europe that we can’t wait to show you. And we finally got to meet some folks that we’ve only communicated with via email – like Michael at Blue Sky Fibers! He’s been our point of contact for years but we hadn’t ever seen him in person.
The show as wonderful. It was so good to be back at a trade show again after so many years without one, and H+H really knows how to put on a solid show. Excited to see how much it grows in the coming years. And we can’t wait to start showing you what we have lined up for fall!