CHA, returning home by way of a portion of the 675-mile yard sale along Highway 127, and 170 pictures later, I am home! What a great experience this was! My DH does not like to travel, and I cannot recall us being away from home for an entire week during our 24-years of marriage; so this alone made this week away very special for me ~~ not to mention all that we experienced along the way.
So, to begin to break down of all that I saw, and share some of it with you is a difficult task, but here goes, with my best attempt. The above photo is of Luminarte Twinkling H20s seen at the Creative Imagination booth at CHA. This was one product that I knew I wanted to see 'in action," as I had heard of them, but truly wasn't sure about them. They are wonderful ~~ one of those "gotta have" items for me now! They are hard cake watercolor paints that have a beautiful glimmery, creamy effect. I will order a small kit sampling of them initially, and then determine what additional colors I have to have, ;).
Suze Weinberg at the Ranger booth. Suze was demonstrating Ranger's Melting Pot and Utee Products and, what I loved most, Collaging with Beeswax. She was so kind to give me the sample she completed for our demo (pictured below), and I will treasure it forever (and most likely, incorporate it into a piece for my keeping, (;). Also, please check out her blog (linked above) as she has done a wonderful job of recapping CHA!
Tim Holtz demonstrating his new Vagabond Die Cutting Machine by Sizzix . . . along with various other new "Tim" products. The Vagabond will cut ANYTHING ~~ paper, grungeboard, cardboard, METAL, fabric ~~ you name it! And the dies he released at the January CHA are to-die-for.
Oh, how I love anything "Tim-ish," but my eyes were glued to his WATCH (pictured below), lol. This terribly blurry picture does NOT do it justice; it was so cool and "steampunk-y!" I assumed it was a watch, but it may have been a bracelet ~~ he was moving around so much with his demo'ing, but I was totally mesmerized by this piece of jewelry, and would have loved to ask him about it...if not for the mob of people surrounding him, and in front of me.
So, I moved on, in absolutely awe of all the fun "artsy toys" surrounding me. My jaw must have been dropped during my stroll through the entire show! This first trip to CHA was absolutely overwhelming, and my first day there, I wanted to take it all in, see everything, and experience all there was to take in...so I left my camera in my bag, :(, as I zoomed from booth to booth...until Carl appeared to tell us there was a booth many aisle ahead that we HAD to see. It was the Graphic 45 booth ~~ many aisles ahead of where we were. I had heard of them, but never experienced their products. OMG, what eye candy! I took WAY too many pictures of their booth, and sample products, so I'll try to minimize it here:
So, ... I moved on. At this point, I realized there were "Make-And-Takes" going on at many of the boothes, but there was still SO much left to see! I decided I would spend my second day doing "Make-And-Takes" as the first day was drawing to a close, and my eyes caught a glimpse of the perfect place to begin my second day ~~ Viva Decor's booth, housing two awesome artists, Brenda Abdoyan and Lisa Pavelka!
So we retreated back to our "home on wheels" in our lonely spot within a gravel parking lot perhaps two blocks from the convention center...that happened to be in the direct path of every plane leaving the Chicago O'Hare Airport, and perhaps 2 miles from the airport, lol. I continuously thought of 9-11, as the planes seemed to be only inches from the us, and the buildings surrounding us. But what great memories that we can laugh about for years to come ~~ "what did you say?!?" We quickly learned to wait for the planes to move on before completing our shared thoughts, ;).
Then, there was Day 2 of CHA! I was immediately on a mission to reach one of the last rows of exhibits where Viva Decor was housed...a booth that held two AMAZING artists. First up, for me, was a two-hour wait to reach the Make-And-Take of Brenda Abdoyan, creator of Bajidoo Bangles. Wow, was it worth the wait! Here are two photos of what I created with Brenda...and I'm SO in love with this process that I bought a kit to make a second one at home, and I'm sure I will be ordering more kits from her in the near future!