• #SocialEngagement

    Check Your Calendar: National Tie-Dye Day

    National Tie-Dye Day is on April 30th. A celebration of color, improvisation, individuality, expression and the fabric arts, tie-dye is so much more than rainbow spirals (though that can be fun, too). Tie-dye was originally popular in the 70s, when counterculture communities utilized funky fashion to push back against mainstream expectations. Tie-dye can show up as starbursts, ombres, wild color combinations, expressive patterns, subtle pastels or a grungy acid wash. Encourage customers to revive a boring t-shirt, add splashes of color to home decor or customize personal accessories. 3 Ways To Celebrate Incorporate this day into your displays, promotions, demonstrations…

  • Art Pulse,  In Your Store

    A Focus on Craft

    You should be selling craft supplies. “But, we’re an art store…” “We don’t have the room to dedicate space.” “We don’t have the customer base.” “Crafting is so broad… How do you possibly carry everything someone needs?” I hear you, and I haven’t changed my mind. First, we need to define “craft.” Is it popsicle sticks and googly eyes? Glitter and Chenille Stems? Stickers and appliques? The short answer is yes, and so much more. Traditionally, “Craft” encompasses (and is not limited to): Fabric Design Tile Work Ceramics Furniture Making Metalsmithing and Jewelry Making Book making Stained glass Leatherwork Lacemaking…

  • Industry News

    Post-NAMTA Revelations & Reflections

    NAMTA 2019 has come and gone, with much to reflect on in the coming year. Exhibitors pour  time and effort into their booth designs, partners travel from all over the world to connect in person. Though it seems like it is all over in a just a few days, the impact is lasting, especially when specific strategies are applied in stores. If you were there you may have noticed a mass of curly hair behind a camera—that was me, the Art Dog reporter, experiencing NAMTA for the very first time. Between meeting vendor partners, connecting face to face with customers…

  • Vendor Voices

    Papercut Lampshade with Maria Marinoni

    Excel Blades is excited to share a new video made by artist and influencer Maria Marinoni!  There is nothing better than recreating a cozy “home-sweet-home” mood in the coldest and darkest of seasons. This papercut lampshade by Maria Marinoni is the perfect DIY deco idea to make a warm and relaxing atmosphere in your living room or bedroom. Whether you make it a gift for someone or just want to brighten up the space, this DIY project gets your imagination going!   Materials Excel Blades K1 Aluminum Knife Clear Cutting Mat White Card Paper Double-sided adhesive tape Pencil LED Tealight…

  • #SocialEngagement

    Check Your Calendar: National Craft Month

    Time to strategize for the next featured theme, National Craft Month. This month is a great time to inspire customers to craft, whether they are trying something for the first time or revisiting a well-loved hobby. Crafting is a broad term that encompasses kids, fashion, upcycling, home decor, gifts, framing, knitting, party decorations, decoupage, gilding, glitter, jewelry, quilling, scrapbooking—and this list is hardly extensive. Choose a craft that’s popular in your community or pick four, one for each week, to feature in tandem with various sales. You can also promote a class (either one that you offer or a locally…

  • In Your Store

    Valentine’s Day Make and Take

    Papercrafting Month has just come to a close; now that you’ve spent the last few weeks promoting paper, start making something with it! Use your social channels and e-mail list to promote a fun papercraft project and set up a free in-store activity. Tip: Keep it simple! Choosing a project that can be completed in less than 10-15 minutes using only a handful of materials cuts down on prep time and makes these activities more fun for customers and less stressful for your team. Geometric Paper Heart Wall Hanging Materials Surface to apply paper pieces (Take a tip from the…

  • In Your Store

    Early Spring Cleaning: On-Trend Storage Solutions

    Have you heard? Tidy is in! With the arrival of the new Netflix show “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo”, across the country viewers are partaking in the KonMari™ method of cleaning their spaces. Thrift stores have been inundated with discarded possessions looking for new homes, and IKEA, The Container Store and other large box stores are reaping the benefits of the sudden popularity of storage bins and organizational boxes. So what is the KonMari method, and how can you use it to serve your customers? “The KonMari Method™ encourages tidying by category – not by location – beginning with clothes, then…

  • Industry News

    DaVinci Artist Supply’s Weekend Washi Workshop

    This past December, DaVinci Artist Supply hosted a Washi Weekend Workshop and Art Exhibition. Part gallery opening, part workshop, the exhibition featured artwork produced with Ogawa Washi, paper made in Ogawa Japan. The show featured artists Rie Hasegawa, Sato Yamamoto, Keiko Miyamori, and Chiaki Morita. Workshop participants were encouraged to register beforehand for the opportunity to make their own traditional kozo paper with Chiaki Morita, a paper artist and teacher who has been making washi for nearly 20 years. The exhibition continued the next day, along with a scaled down “drop-in” workshop open to the public. The backstory to this…