Craft Focus - April/May 2023 (Issue 96)

CHSI Stitches 2024 takes place from 25th-26th February at The NEC, Birmingham, UK. For more information visit the website: To discuss exhibiting options in 2023, contact Steve Mitchell on +44 (0)1425 460 811 or email Twitter @CHSIstitches Instagram @CHSIstitches LinkedIn CHSI Stitches year, we wanted to invest further in our growing speaker programme and our renowned industry research which has fast become an annual barometer of the creative craft industry. We have been honoured to welcome this year’s speakers and know how useful businesses found their insights and lived experience. These insights were supported by a detailed analysis of the Craft Report from Linda Jones who gave exclusive, data-informed advice to our visitors.” Speakers included: entrepreneur and founder of a celebrated luxury fashion label, Barjis Chohan; Claire Harper, leading branding expert with Argos, Ocado, Sainsburys and Mamas & Papas; Safia Minney, award-winning social entrepreneur and founder of sustainable fashion brand, People Tree; and social media master, Andrew Davis. Conscious Crafting CHSI Stitches 2023 was based on conscious crafting, drilling down into specific decision-making factors that influence customer behaviour. The four identified decision-making drivers were: wellbeing, community, environment, and value for money. Linda Jones who led and delivered The Report said: “The key takeouts from this year’s Craft Report are the growing move to making more conscious crafting choices and the recognition that different tactics will be needed to attract and service this growing audience. Both can benefit and invigorate the industry, providing it responds to crafters changing profile and addresses their developing wellbeing, social, environmental and value priorities.” Latest products launches The show was packed with inspiring, innovative, and brand-new product lines for the year ahead. Regular exhibitor, Jo Humberstone, UK Sales Manager, King Cole said: “It’s important for us to be here as one of the main yarn brands; to be face to face with our customers and to meet new customers. It’s a great show with a great atmosphere. We want to see our high street retailers; they are our passion; we want to keep the high streets alive. We’re launching Linendale DK, a beautiful blend with linen and cotton, which just gets better and better with washing and wear. We have ten colours and eight designs - it’s been very well received.” Josie Dunne from Funky Needlework, who is launching a new quilting template said: “This is a massive event that’s been a real eye opener. I needed to gauge people’s response to my products face to face; they have been really well received and the enthusiasm and energy has been brilliant.” 42