Thursday, December 5, 2013

Thursday Thrill – Blossom in Balboa

Best Balboa Event Ever!!! #swing #dance #balboa #vintage

Back in October I put out a little announcement that I would be vending at a dance event located here in Raleigh over the Halloween weekend. Today I'm giving you a much belated recap of the event and my booth! Better late than never! *My apologies for the photo quality. The hotel had yellow like lighting that I didn't have time to figure out how to compensate for and took most of these very quickly.*

The Eastern Balboa Championships, or EBC for short, is a weekend long dance event for a vintage swing dance style called Balboa. This is my very very very VERY favorite dance, so you can imagine my excitement that this event is located in my town! I started dancing this type of dance a year and a half ago and last year's EBC was the very first balboa event I had ever attended. It was outrageously fun and easily secured this dance style as my most loved. The event is the creation of Chris and Holly (pictured with me above), an entirely driven and loved couple in the balboa and swing community. They have been organizing and running the event for the last 10 years, making EBC an internationally known and attended event with hundreds of amazing dancers coming from all over the world. 

To our great sadness, this was the last EBC ever! Chris and Holly have been busy busy busy for 10 years straight and it was in their best interest to bring to an end this all consuming event. This is why I was even more thrilled and honored that they let me be a vendor. It was a milestone event and I had the absolute pleasure of being a part of it! I personally know them both (they were the ones that taught me Balboa!) and I have taken lessons from them for the last year. They are the most wonderful, generous, and hilariously fun people and I am so glad to be able to call them friends.

Okay, so here is the major bummer for me: I was sick you guys! I was sick for a week before the event, sick during the event, and sick for the week after! BLARG!! Luckily, with the help of my amazing husband, I managed to set up my booth and make it through, but I didn't get to dance! I level tested the first morning with a fever and a week's worth of fatigue on my back, but I managed to get through the dance tests. But that was it! Couldn't take any classes and couldn't attend the nighttime dances (which are amazing by the way!). Alas! At least I was able to be at my booth during the day and meet all the wonderful attendees. 

ChatterBlossom Booth Sign

ChatterBlossom Booth Display

ChatterBlossom Vendor Display

This was a big event so I wanted to bring everything I had (my entire online shop stock plus nearly 100 more pieces). I decided to try and make the display a bit more uniform so the gazillions of tiny button jewelry didn't get overwhelming. Plus, I don't have the funds to deck out a display. I just wanted something that would seem inviting and interesting enough to stop and check out. 

Here is what I did for my booth:
- basic black jewelry holders for most of the items on the tables 
- cardstock paper tripod like holders with my business cards attached for a few pieces
- old frame with just a print out of my shop name for a sign (I hung a beautiful black lace necklace on it for a little something extra)
- shoeboxes covered with pillow cases to prop up pieces in the back and utilize height space
- a large frame from home (I wrapped a large vintage lace table cloth around mat board and secured it inside) that I used to hang necklaces on (saved a ton of table space!)
- a bamboo like screen to attach hair flower clips
- photo booklet of my blog that I got through IPhoto (but you could do one using Shutterfly, etc.) 

ChatterBlossom Booth Display

ChatterBlossom Necklace Display

ChatterBlossom Table Display

ChatterBlossom Table Display

ChatterBlossom Sign Display

When I wasn't at my booth, I was over at another of the vendor's, Raleigh Vintage! You've seen many a Sunday Snag featuring gorgeous items I've purchased from them. They are also one of my blog sponsors, so it was super fun to be able to vend, chat, and shop with them while I was there! Actually, I felt like I may have been over at their booth shopping more than selling at mine! Hahaha Andi and Isaac (the owners of Raleigh Vintage) would sneak over to my booth and buy something and then I would head over to theirs and do the same. They had so many great pieces that they brought along! I got more than a few items that I'm sure you will see in future Sunday Snags.

Raleigh Vintage Display

Vintage Clothing Display

Raleigh Vintage Clothing Booth

Raleigh Vintage Menswear Display

Raleigh Vintage Jewelry Display

Raleigh Vintage Packaging

I had so much fun (even though I was sick and couldn't dance)! I got to chat with so many great people, I had many ChatterBlossom pieces go to good homes, and I got to be a part of the last epic EBC. My favorite swing band, The Mint Julep Jazz Band, also played and I at least got to hear a bit from them before heading home to an early bedtime. Laura, the vocalist for the band and an avid swing dancer, also has a terrific blog, LindyShopper. She did a review of all the vendors (including Creations by Crawford, who is a dear friend but that I didn't have photos of for this post). Find it here

A HUGE thank you to Chris and Holly for organizing such a fabulous event and letting me be a part of it!!!! 

Vintage Balboa Dance Event! #balboa #swing #dance #vintage

Last Week's Thursday Thrill:

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  1. This sounds so much fun! I'm glad to hear that you had a great time. Happy Thursday darling!

  2. I’m just back from my holiday and wanted to call in to say hi. Thanks for this amazing post (and all the others) I don’t have time to read everything now, but I will be back! This looks like an amazing event. I'm sorry you were sick, but at least you managed to enjoy most of it. Ta ta for now, see you again soon. Barbara x

  3. Im very sorry you were sick but glad that you were still able to enjoy a bit

    retro rover

  4. Sorry you were sick for this great event but at least you were able to partake in some of the festivities. A very wonderful booth set up and so awesome you could sell there. Bittersweet as it is a last event for you with this swing dance company. I'm sure there will be other golden opportunities for you.

  5. Sorry to hear you were sick! But that show looks and sounds like a lot of fun! Your table looks beautiful too!


  6. Sounds like so much fun! What a shame you were sick, but I'm glad you still got to enjoy yourself :)

  7. What a bummer that you felt so terrible! You still managed to look lovely & to make your booth look snazzy...I love the way you displayed the necklaces on the old lace, very clever!

  8. Too bad you were sick. I know how difficult it can be to do a show when you're not feeling well. Glad you got through it and enjoyed it a bit still.


  9. Shame you were sick. But, you looked fantastic!! This looks like a really fun event!! x

  10. It really was so much fun! And Jamie isn't exaggerating...we really did go back and forth buying from each other. I FINALLY found the perfect ring for my collection of 40s brass jewelry. I'd been searching for years and then there it was in her ring collection. And Isaac is still wearing his uber-nerdy (in a good way) tie bar he got from ChatterBlossom. We were two happy customers! xoxo

    1. Hahaha! Yes, and I think I came away with 3 packages of goodies from you guys! Yay for shopping buddies! ;-)

  11. looks luck such a lovely event to be a part of and it sounds and looks like you had a great time manning your stall and also browsing other people's.

    little henry lee

  12. Your display looked fantastic, great photos! And you're in Raleigh? I just moved from there, now I'm in Winston-Salem.

    With Great Heart | Creative Services Studio

    1. Oh cool! Yes, I'm in Raleigh. Shame you just moved!