Ivy’s High Point Market Recap: April 2018


High Point Market does an excellent job providing designers with access to high quality product, educational programming, and parties that will connect you to designers from around the world. Team Ivy had the chance to attend HPMKT’s Spring 2018 Market and we met hundreds of designers who traveled near and far to experience this Market, the largest Market of its kind. Didn’t make it to High Point Market? Live through us and take a look at some of our highlights.

Learning from The Editor at Large at The Point

On Saturday morning, we kicked off High Point Market at the The Point on Commerce Ave., the new intimate and well-designed space featuring various round table discussions moderated by popular influencers. The Editor at Large crew, including Julia Noran, Dennis Scully , Melissa Studach, Billy Fisher, and Kaitlin Petersen, shared the hottest HPMKT news, designer collaborations to look out for, must-attend events, and local treasures to hit while at High Point Market (including breakfast at Biscuitville!). We also learned that when High Point Market first launched, attendance was 20% designers, 80% exhibitors. Now, that attendance statistic has jumped to 50% designers, 50% exhibitors!

Learning From Kimberley Seldon at The Point

Designer Kimberley Seldon, also Founder of Business of Design, hosted a round table at The Point to discuss the ins and outs of running a design firm. Kimberley emphasized some great tips including:

  • Don’t be scared to raise your rates. As a designer, you’re entitled to earn a living!
  • If you’re ready to make your first hire (but don’t know how to prioritize their time), put that new employee ON THE PHONE to sell client consultations.
  • If you make strong relationships with your vendors, you can trust them to get you out of a bind.

Kelli Ellis Party at Sunpan

Sunpan unveiled The Kelli Ellis Collection x Sunpan, a new exclusive furniture collection designed and curated by Kelli Ellis. We celebrated the debut alongside hundreds of designers and incredible live music.

Morning Mimosas at ZUO

On Sunday Morning, Ivy gathered at the new ZUO Hospitality Showroom to get an early morning buzz with mimosas and good designer company.

An Inspiring Panel at Abbyson

On Sunday afternoon, Ivy organized a special presentation for designers who were interested in learning more about how Ivy streamlines the day-to-day workflow for designers’ business operations. Following the Ivy demonstration, Abbyson shared details about their wonderful trade program.

Following the presentations, Abbyson opened the doors to their Design Center to host an inspiring panel. Ivy Designers Christina Samatas & Renee DiSanto of Park & Oak Design moderated a panel with the talented designer and author, Christopher Kennedy, Ivy Designers Barette & Christina of Widell + Boschetti, and Ivy Designer & Nashville star, Lori Paranjape of Mrs. Paranjape Design + Interiors, about the strategies they use to develop profitable business models for their firms. The panelists discussed how they hold themselves accountable for business goals, pain points they face when managing their own business and how they remedy these issues, talking to clients about mark-ups, and why they have evolved their business models over time. In this panel, we learned:

  • It’s important to remind yourself of why you got into the design business in the first place. These reminders will help you stay focused and target the right clients you want to acquire.
  • Get comfortable with talking about money. Once you get comfortable with that, financial conversations will be easier with your clients. If you’re weird about money, your potential clients will pick up on that and you won’t land the client.
  • Don’t be shy to reach out to people via Instagram! Instagram is one of the most valuable channels to making connections and acquiring new leads.
  • Acknowledge what your strengths and weaknesses are and delegate your weaknesses (i.e. renderings, social media, project management). The only way to scale your business is to learn how to delegate.
  • Don’t open one million trade accounts. Be loyal to the vendors you make relationships with.
  • We’re all human. But if you make a mistake once, do everything in your power not to make that mistake with your client again.
  • Consider additional revenue streams such as opening a brick & mortar shop, blog collaborations, and product licensing.
  • Don’t work without getting paid first.

Soraa x MyDomaine Panel at Madcap Cottage

My Domaine and Soraa hosted an intimate panel at the Madcap Cottage about the powerful impact of lighting on design, mood, and our health. Hosted by MyDomaine‘s editorial director, Sacha Strebe, the panel featured interior experts Heather Garrett, MA Allen, Jason Oliver Nixon, and John Loecke. Despite the rain, the location was a feast for the eyes, plus, there was a fun photo booth!

Dinner at Print Works Bistro at the Proximity Hotel

After a long day on your feet, it’s nice to sit back, relax, and re-hydrate. There’s no room for that at High Point Market! After a day of shopping for product and learning from panels, designers head to the Proximity Hotel to have boozy dinners at the Print Works Bistro. The food is amazing and the designer sightings are even better.

Learning From Consort Design at The Point

On Monday morning, the Consort Design team shared their social media tips, including:

  • Personify your client, write those details down, and post every image on your Instagram Feed and Story to target this specific client.
  • Share what you wear, what you eat, and what your lifestyle is comprised of on your Instagram. Your clients want to see you as an influencer. They want to hire you and then brag about you to their friends.
  • At the end of each week, review all of your Instagram posts and identify which posts had the most comments and likes. Eventually, you will see a trend. Once you figure this out, continue to post what works!

Learning About Expanding Your Design Firm with a Brick & Mortar

At Market Square, Jane Dagmi, Editor in Chief of Designers Today, moderated a panel with Barclay Butera, Christopher Kennedy, Bobbi Jo Engelby, Susan Jamieson, and Lori Paranjape to discuss the ins and outs of opening retail spaces which included: combining online and in-store marketing strategies; creating a unique customer experience; hidden costs; design collectives; finding the right location and more.

Henna Happy Hour at Jaipur

On Monday Night, Ivy hosted a henna happy hour at the beautiful Jaipur Living Showroom. Ivy Co-Founders, Alexandra Schinasi and Lee A. Rotenberg, greeted guests and who had the opportunity to mingle with Jaipur Living CEO, Asha Chaudhary, and get beautiful henna.

Morning Mimosas at Stark Studio Rugs

On Tuesday morning, we hosted an intimate get together at the Stark Studio Rugs Showroom High Point Market debut. Designers were introduced to Stark VP, Chad Stark, and had the opportunity to learn more about this new affordable line and wish Ivy Co-Founder, Lee A. Rotenberg, a very happy birthday! Stark gave away one free 3×5 rug to a lucky raffle winner!

What Ivy Members Learned at Market

We interviewed Ivy Members who had the chance to attend High Point Market. Check out their insights!

“High Point Market was so overwhelming and amazing. I was completely blown away by the curation and quality of Oly Studio. Their work was just absolutely stunning. Also, if you don’t know about it yet, look into Pandora de Balthazar’s European bed pillows. They are like absolute heaven.” – Ivy Designer Sara Malek Barney of BANDD DESIGN

Photo courtesy of Sara Malek Barney

“I loved Thibaut, they do custom anything! I was also inspired by Robert Junior. The CEO of the company walked me through their products and services and was so professional and passionate about his company!” – Ivy Designer Darla Powell of Darla Powell Interiors

Photo courtesy of Darla Powell

“The main thing I learned this Market is to dedicate time exclusively to visiting new vendors. A big shout out to Rachel Madden at Rachel Madden Interiors who was interested in product from Alder & Tweed and after checking them out online, I opened an account. They have great product with amazing price points…I also visited the John Richards Showroom and it turns out my area representative is someone I grew up with who I haven’t seen in years…what a showroom, the best I’ve ever visited at High Point. We loved everything. We were so excited to find a beautiful light fixture with a fan incorporated inside. Next market, we decided to have a list of vendors we have never visited and to dedicate a couple of days exploring them. We also found a great restaurant at The Proximity Hotel which we didn’t know existed.” – Ivy Designer Mary Gorman of Coco Interior Designs

Photo courtesy of Mary Gorman

“High Point Market was amazing. There were so many impressive vendors, it is hard to choose a couple. I live in Atlanta and have access to so much so this was my first trip to High Point. I was in search of a few new vendors, specifically vendors that have great looking beds, side tables and coffee tables, lighting and mirrors. My top three were Carvers GuildElegant Earth, and Modern History. Carvers Guild has the most beautiful mirrors that are hand sculpted. The price point is amazing. We had a lovely conversation with the owner and designer, Carol Canner. She has been designing mirrors for over 50 years. They will be used in our projects for sure. I’m an existing client at Elegant Earth and was so pleased to see many of their new products – always beautiful, classic and just pretty. The Modern History Showroom was beautiful and welcoming. I have an existing account with them but it was great to see and touch their product in person. Their price point is a great middle to high and I believe it’s of great quality which is important for me to pass along to my client. They are happy to work with designers which is key.

I learned so much this Market. I especially enjoyed meeting and listening to Alexa Hampton in Henredon‘s Showroom. She and a panel of four were talking about mentorship – how to mentor and be mentored. There was great insight and she was hysterical. My favorite event was the event Ivy hosted with the panel including Christopher Kennedy. I think the whole audience could have stayed there for hours. I was reaffirmed by so many things they said and was given so much new insight. My biggest take away from that is to stop using the word “mark up”. I am immediately changing my language to say “fair market value”. I loved meeting the Ivy Team. It made me love using Ivy even more. I told Ivy Co-Founder, Alexandra Schinasi, ‘Ivy has given me the opportunity to have my family life back. No more late hours working on billing, invoicing, etc. I truly love it.’

I was also inspired by High Point itself. There are so many charming old buildings and so much history – especially in the design industry. I was also inspired by some of the small vendors just getting started and by the abundance of creativity.” – Ivy Designer Sande Beck of Sande Beck Design

“I loved so much at High Point Market. My favorites were Piper Collection, Artesia outdoor (so fab!), HONOUR Collective, Selamat, Gabby, Windy O Connor, ZUO, TOV, Orent Express, ROWE, Modway, The BLUSH Label, CDI, Maison, Janus et Cie, DV Kap pillows, Europe 2 You, Gina Julian, and Cotton and Quill.” – Ivy Designer Wendy Fennell of Bohemian Bungalow Designs