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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