Saturday, August 18, 2012

Amor Amor - Their first ever trade show with Life Instyle

Welcome back to the Cheeky Blog. It's been a while hasn't it? I have been rather busy with Cheeky Pickle, getting ready to do my first print run and busily preparing for Christmas markets. View my market dates here

Don't forget the big Cheeky Pickle market night on Facebook, Sunday September 2nd at 8pm (Vic time) Not sure if I will manage another one before Christmas, so maybe start thinking about Christmas presents a little earlier this year :) Anyway, back to the blog...

are you thinking about doing a trade show next year?

Well if you are, I have some golden information for you. I have asked three, possibly four handmade businesses who have just completed their first ever trade show at kids Instyle which is part of Life Instyle and Reed Gift Fairs, to spill the beans and tell us all how it went. 

first up we have Amor Amor....


Amor Amor was founded by 3 spirited Colombian women about a year ago, Luisa, Viviana and Juliana, they all left their Colombian homeland and followed their dreams of building a new life in Australia.

They specialise in kids clothing and stationary with a big emphasis on hand drawn illustrations of Monsters. Their aim is to create an imaginary world for little people with stories behind each character. 

What made you choose this particular trade show and not Reed?

We are very familiar with Kids Instyle trade show as previous years we have visited shows as part of our full time jobs (aside of our clothing label we work full time in the retail industry), so this year we've decide to do things from the other side and take the risk and get our own business involved. 

When did you know you were ready to do your first trade show? 

I guess you always question yourself if it's the right time or not, especially when you are investing money, but we decided to take the risk and get out of our comfort zones (online selling and designer markets) at the Kids Instyle event.

Was the application process difficult? 

We were lucky to be invited from the show so it wasn't that hard to get in, we just needed some time to put information together and present everything in the best way possible.

Had you been thinking about doing a trade show for a long time before you jumped in? 

We are a very new business, we just turned 1, as we had a bit of an understanding of the event it was always on our minds to take the risk and take it to the next level. Many times we questioned ourselves, whether it was too early for us to participate but these are the kind of things that you just have try and see what happens.

How long did it take you to prepare for it and what sorts of things did you have to do? 

We start thinking about it about 2 months earlier (it would have been better if we have more time but we decided to do it right when they were closing submissions), we had to make sure we have enough stock, we had catalogues with our products, terms & conditions and off course a good way to display our label.

Had you visited before to get ideas? 

As we mentioned before we visited the show before but at that time we didn't have our business so we were not looking for ideas, but it would have been very handy to visit the show earlier and see everything as an inspirational guide to use with our own presentation.

How did you decide on what stock to take? 

Luckily we have already done a summer collection so we had the stock the wholesalers were looking for at the time.

How did you plan how your stand was going to look?

With our stand was a bit easier as everything we do from our product, displays and set up follows the concept of hand drawn illustrations, everything is a blank imaginary world of monsters with a splash of colour, so our display was exactly the same, big white backdrops with hand painted illustrations and 3D stand alone monsters (a bit time consuming to free hand paint, but worth doing to get the feel of the label out to the public), 
With our display we wanted to show the public our philosophy of the importance of getting back to those childhood tales. Every product has a monster associated that has it's own personality and story. Other items such as leggings, cushions kits and stationery where we like to inspire kids and parents can get involved and paint their own piece of artwork.

What markets had you done before to prepare for the show?

Sisters Market, North Melbourne, Style after night , Mathilda’s, The Finders Keepers in Melbourne & Brisbane (every market we do is a learning process)
Had you been featured in magazines e.t.c? As we are very new we are just starting to get ourselves noticed in mainstream media channels, after the Kids Instyle event we have had many requests with blogs and magazine who would like to work with us and promote our uniqueness. 

What advice would you give to others thinking about doing a trade show? 

If you want to take the next step and take it from a hobby to a serious business the trade shows are a great starting point, make sure you prepare with adequate stock levels so you can fulfil all the interest, be ready to get wholesalers to sign up on the day (no many will sign after the show), and create a database after the show so you can contact them when you have a new collection.

What would you do differently? 

Probably have more stock on hand for the show (just in case), and be better organised with taking orders.

What have you learned?

We think it's a great experience, the learnings you get from trade shows are priceless, also getting your brand out there is a real positive.

Has the show lived up to your expectations? 

We're really happy with how much we've learned from the show, for us it's a win-win experience, we learnt a lot, we got our name out there and we're getting talked about! It's great to hear such positive feedback after all the hard work we've put in.

Thanks so much ladies and we wish you all the very best for the future.

Next up we have Hollie from ZZ Totz who also did Kids Instyle and BabyButton who opted for Reed Gift Fair. Lot's to come, so don't forget to subscribe to be the first to read them!

Ali xx


  1. Great tips and lessons from your first trade show experience. There is definitely a learning curve involved with having booths at trade shows, but it is a fun way to get your name/brand/product our there. Great post!