January 2012

14 articles in January 2012

As discussed last week, we are now delving into more detailed info regarding budget – complete with a budget worksheet to help you in your Tradeshow endeavors. Last year I gave myself a budget of $10,000 for the show after talking to many previous exhibitors. It felt like a conservative number and average number to get going. In the end I came in at just under 10k. This year I’m going about things differently. I’m weighing in what pieces will be a long term investment vs. annual investment and then budgeting accordingly. I’m going to pull the main expenses from last week’s post and dive into suggested ways of setting your budget based off of these elements. Booth Fee This is, for me, the place to start with my budget. Whether you are sharing a booth or going with an 8×10 (first …

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Mayan Chocolate Cheesecake by Martha Moench

The combination of peppers, cinnamon and allspice reminds me of a chocolate truffle called the ‘Mayan’ made by a boutique shop that is now out of business. It was a truffle that you thought about as you ate because the flavors married so well; one whose taste you wanted to make last a long time. My attempt to re-create that taste experience resulted in this cheesecake. If you’re not sure about the spice combination, take them out (leaving the vanilla in) and make it the first time as a rich chocolate cheesecake. But in my opinion, if you want to knock it out of the park, spice up your life with the original recipe. The double whammy of chili peppers with their natural ability to stimulate nerve endings and release endorphins creating a natural high, perfect for Valentine’s Day. Mayan Chocolate Cheesecake …

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You may remember these that we showed back as a sneak peek in October. And then of course I was slow to getting around to blogging the full set of photos! Fifi is from Australia and a recent grad and contacted us in hopes that 1) we shipped internationally, and 2) We accepted designed files for press. Lucky for her, we do both and were super excited to print these cards for her. Letterpress printed on 220# Arturo as a 2/1 card, I love the softness of the blushy-pink pantone match paired with the sophisticated black ink/black edge paint. Sized at 2×3.5″ and printed as an initial set of 250 (our minimum opening order for a set of custom or client submitted files) you can get an estimate for yourself here - we are already booking the press for March and April!

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I love the subtlety of a matte metallic ink, it gives a perfect shimmer when caught in the right light but isn’t too blingy. While all things that glitter can be lovely, for an invitation suite, the subtle shimmer paired with a metallic envelope give a great gradation of texture and variation to a piece without having it be too matchy. I don’t even think blingy and matchy are words, my wordpress is wanting to autocorrect me.  Often when translating metallic color schemes over to letterpress you have to find a matte hue that you can mix with silver or gold ink. The other options is to order a coated metallic custom pantone can of ink, and accept that on an uncoated, highly absorbent cotton paper, you will loose most of the high-gloss. Moving on, all of the colors in this palette would …

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There is no easy way around a tradeshow and the best protection you can have is to prepare with a budget for the show. Otherwise, before you know it you’ll be throwing money left and right at anything and everything. In breaking down a tradeshow you have your major purchases, supporting purchases and minor purchases. The show you are exhibiting at will determine your focus and spending power for each area. By setting aside a total dollar amount and then breaking it down by importance and percentage you will be more confident in sticking to your budget and not feeling overwhelmed at the large amount of cash you are going to throw down. This post is going to outline a budget for attending the show. New product develemt and cost will be broken down in a second post that is more related …

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Hi guys and dolls! I am super excited to be unrolling Tradeshow Tuesday that will cover anything and everything you ever wanted to learn about exhibiting at a national tradeshow. National Starionery Show was on the top of my lists since starting Dingbat Press back in 2006. I knew if I wanted to make something out of my love for stationery then this was the place I needed to be. The thing about tradeshows? Until you do one, not only are you most likely terrified about the investment but more so by the aftermath. Will I make an ROI (return on investment)? Will my product be well received? Will I land accounts? Will I bankrupt my business? All of these questions are just the tipping point to making and jumping off the Tradeshow Cliff – in a free fall – with no …

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Well, it’s me again. Dingbat’s mama (the other Martha) writing about one of my favorite recipes. With February approaching I thought we’d kick off our Monday with a Valentine’s cookie. My favorite for the past few years (well, maybe five or six) is a chocolate shortbread cut into a 2-inch heart. It has a very rich taste, so two hearts brought together with pink strawberry frosting or chocolate ganache in the center is better in a smaller amount. This is a great do ahead recipe – the dough seems to meld into its true persona if left for a day or two in the fridge before baking. It can also be frozen, which is good to know ahead of time, especially on a day like today when it’s snowing so much outside that one naturally thinks of baking while listening to great …

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Not only have we gotten over 4 feet of snow in the last 3 days, but I’m finally turning the corner on what was a nasty head cold. Thank you hubby for braving the drifts in your truck to get me a zpac when all the roads were technically closed in the valley. I feel much better today, 12 hours into the meds. Now if only the plow would come! This photo on Flickr made my morning and so I thought I’d share a smudge of ink with you today, because next week is going to be awesome! Martha (my mama) is coming back to blog on Monday’s about all things delicious, followed by the launch of Tradeshow Tuesday. Have a fabulous weekend, I know I will once this cold is kicked!

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I was emailed yesterday regarding one of my NSS posts and a frustration I had regarding freight shipping. The email was from the freight company XpoSolutions who I shipped with for 2011. Jay, my account rep kindly pointed out that my invoice total was not $1100 as I had indicated in the blog post but a total of $906. The original bid was for $580+- a few dollars including lift gate services and insurance, but not fuel. That quote was for a 500 lb. shipment. While I was still dealing with sticker shock of the higher price I paid for shipping, I admit to being in the heat of the moment when writing about my freight shipping costs and mistakenly input an exaggerated number. My apologies go out to Jay for misrepresenting my numbers in my invoice as their customer service over …

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Tilted Sky is a business by couple Lindsey & Stephen who shoot some pretty awesome wedding filmography for your big day. Lindsey approached us with a seemingly challenging project in that she wanted  the look of a gradient/split-fountain in a very small print area. Easy for flat printing, challenging for letterpress printing. After working long and hard on her files and the concept she was going for, we finally decided to go with the solution to have the gradient sky printed via flat printing on our 110# paper, and then ran it through our presses for the final print run with a light silver ink for their business info. Above and below are two pre-press proofs that we pulled for Lindsey so she could compare the color of the gradient, the value of the line screen clouds (which were hard to photograph …

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