Surtext show badge with mouse mat from Pink Light Design and postcard from Lemon Ribbon.

Tuesday I headed over to the last day of Surtex to do a walk round of the show and say hello to some lovely design friends old and new. This was my first time at Surtex and after diving into Module 1 of “The Art and Business of Surface Pattern Design” I jumped at the opportunity to attend this trade show to learn more about exhibiting surface pattern designs.

Aisles and aisles of exhibitors

Over 300 exhibitors were at the show ranging from Artists, designers, studios, agents and licensing firms selling and licensing art and design.

I didn’t quite know where to start so I literally walked up and down each aisle, before going back to various booths that I knew of or that caught my eye.

Trend theater in the center of the exhibit, right next to the cafe!

There was also a new trend theater showing 30 minute presentations from experts sharing their perspectives of what’s ahead in color, design, styles, attitudes and lifestyles. Presentations from Edelkoort, Inc., Trendease International, Milou Ket, Stylesight, Trend House, Inc., Carlin International, LA Colors from Amsterdam, Mudpie, and Jo-An Jenkin’s TrendPulse.

Me and Elizabeth.

It was so good to meet ABSPD course participant and fellow flyer Elizabeth Gonzalez  at her booth. Elizabeth had contacted Surtex and signed up at the last minute. She was so thrilled to be one of the designers with her own booth.


Great display from Tinsel Trading {in the National Stationery show part of the center}

Then I made my way around some of the other booths chatting and introducing myself. I chose designers/agents I knew of already or where their work really resonated with me. Below are the lovely people who were happy for me to take a photo of them and/or their booth and of course I always asked permission first. {Note: This is something to really keep in mind as some designs are not allowed to be photographed or some have a no photography policy to protect their work and the work of their designers.}

Thank you to the following for taking the time to say hello and spend some time chatting. 🙂

Promo handout from Paper & Cloth.

The ladies at Paper & Cloth were lovely and had a beautiful booth {but due to no-photography policy, I was unable to take a photo so you cant see their smiling faces}

Khristian A Howell (center)

Khristian was super friendly and said she knew my work when I introduced myself! Her booth was filled with color, samples and smiling faces – so approachable. {This was a quiet 10 minutes where I took the opportunity to say hi as Khristian’s Booth was busy busy busy!}. Khristian is also one of the wonderful expert contributors for “The Art and Business of Surface pattern Design course”!

Kate Knight

Kate is a designer from Edinburgh in Scotland so of course I had to say hello to a fellow Brit! It was lovely to have a chat with her about the show. I loved the way she had her work displayed and it really made an impact as you walked past.

Sarah Watts at her fabulous booth.

Sarah was another super friendly designer. Her booth was by far the most innovative with the display, so I had to stop by and say hello! She was so lovely and bubbly – a joy to chat with. She said the show had been great and gave me a book recommendation on pattern design which was so nice of her!

Beautiful displays of art inspired by nature

Linadona Botanica had a beautiful booth which drew you in with designs inspired by nature. I loved how the product photos were also placed as part of the display.

Lovely Mel at Lemon Ribbon

Mel at Lemon Ribbon was another lovely friendly face to chat to. Also a fellow Brit! I promised to chop this photo so the designs in the background weren’t so prominent as they had been sold. I said I’d stop by again at Printsource New York, when they exhibit there in August.

Mary Beth Freet

Then finally I had the opportunity to say hi to Mary Beth from Pink Light Design {their booth was super busy all the time too!}. I love Mary Beth, she is always so happy and put down her late lunch to chat to me! We met at Printsource in 2011 and I also interviewed her on the blog soon after. She was so interested in finding out about my new design work and said she would love to see some if I was interested in being represented!


So in conclusion, it was such a fabulous afternoon walking around the show, I also got to say hello to Tara Reed who was also one of the speakers for the conference program at Surtex. The other booth I wanted to go to was Lilla Rogers Studio, but as they were constantly busy, it felt inappropriate to stop by. I hope to catch them at Printsource in August. 🙂

Surtex is held once a year so I have put a goal on my list to be represented by an agent or have my own booth for 2013!

Big Dreams!