CHA Winter 2014 | Trend Spotting

It’s that time of year again. The Craft and Hobby Association will be opening the winter mega show today in Anaheim, California.  All of the big craft and scrapbooking manufacturers will be showcasing their new collections for spring and summer 2014.

I am a very proud product junkie and I love looking through the new releases to check out the current color palettes, form impressions and scrutinize the trends. Whether you are a seasonal scrapper, love vintage and florals or clean graphics, there appears to be something for everyone in these new releases.

Before we get to it, a few general notes:

  • Chalkboard isn’t going anywhere. Expect to see chalkboard featured across many new lines throughout spring and summer.
  • Navy is still trending strong, but black seems to be the neutral of choice in bright color palettes this time around.
  • Kraft backgrounds have emerged in many lines across several manufacturers (even Doodlebug!). There are also several embellishment lines using kraft papers.
  • The “everyday” is a very prominent theme across many collections, telling us that the Project Life influence is still a force to be reckoned with.

I do not actually attend the show, so these are my thoughts pieced together from the sneak peeks that I have seen on manufacturer’s blogs.

1. Bokeh prints are trending

If you aren’t familiar with “bokeh” in photography,  it is a Japanese term to describe the out-of-focus areas of a photograph. Most people are familiar with this idea in Christmas tree photographs where the tree is blurry in the background and the lights come through as round balls. Designers have taken that out-of-focus idea and translated it into paper designs.

2. Color trends

So far, I haven’t seen a specific combination of colors showing up across the board (unless you count hot pink and turquoise, but this combination seems more like the rule now than a trend). But one thing I have noticed is that color palettes are going tonal — meaning that the pure colors are mixed with grey. And grey is showing up everywhere.

But there are a few bright exceptions. With the neon influence in fashion, it was only a matter of time before bright neons found their way into paper lines. That time has come.

3. There are more smaller options than ever

With very few exceptions, most of the manufacturers have introduced some sort of pocket page component into their collections (there is that Project Life influence again). In addition to all the card, there will be a plethora of masks, stencils, frames and acetate overlays all targeted at pocket page market.

4. Gold, gold, gold

Not only are collections including gold accents on the papers, but many gold embellishments are arriving as well. Doilies, rub-ons, alphabets, stickers, enamel dots, 3×4 cards, etc… Gold seems to be the darling metallic of the hour.

5. Enamel dots are morphing into shapes

Enamel dots continue to be super popular embellishments  as even more companies are introducing them into their lines this release. But some are taking it a step further and introducing new shapes. Arrows, chevron, hearts, geo tags and stars have all made the line-up.

So what products have caught your eye from the show? Do you have any favorites?

I have to say that while there are several lines I can’t wait to get my hands on (My Mind’s Eye Now and Then collection is impressive and gorgeous!) overall, I’m not that wow’ed by the collective releases. There doesn’t appear to be anything innovative, earth shattering or especially new out there. I will be interested to see what the show floor is buzzing about. Maybe I’ve missed it. Perhaps one of these manufacturers is keeping a secret. Guess we’ll just have to watch the show coverage to find out!

Thanks for stopping by today!


  1. Great post, enjoyed reading your thoughts on the new products and trends you’ve spotted!

  2. what a great summary! i see lots of things i want 🙂

  3. THis is fun to see pulled together–I am loving the bokeh and gold!

  4. Too funny! Looking at collections as a whole, I have been kind of disappointed with what I am seeing so far. But looking at how you presented it, looks more appealing!
    I love bokeh, gold and the colors I am seeing especially mixed with gray.
    And love, love the navies!
    This is a great post, Tammy, and will refer to it when I do my CHA picks post on Monday if that is ok?

  5. Good overview! I’m glad gold is still in 🙂

  6. what a great trend post, i am going to have to figure out how to add some gold to my things now, its so cool!

  7. I’m the opposite when it comes to being a product junkie, but I’m surprised still at how trends seep into my work! I love the gold! And I used to hate gold! I can’t figure out what’s wrong with me.

  8. I’m not one to pay much attention to the product lines per se, but this year I will be arriving in Anaheim on the final day of CHA for the Play! event. That night we’ll get to see some of the new stuff from several manufacturers, and I’m really excited about that. I guess Heidi Swapp in revealing a new product & we’ll get one of those at the event. Can’t wait!

    • Wow! I read about the Play event. Really cool event. Sounds like a lot of fun. Enjoy! Michelle t.

  9. Hi Tammy. Being sort of newbie and this is probably the first trade show I’m reading about, I admit Im seeing stars over all the new stuff. I’m dazzled by all the product blogs which I discovered recently. I really like the American Crafts DIY line, Crate Paper’s Boys Rule, and MME Milo line. I like the enameled shapes too. Oh I’m also crazy about Ali Edwards’ new stamps that just came out. Thanks for posting about the trends, always a fun read. Michelle t.

  10. Love the gold and enamel dot shapes the most!

  11. Thanks for sharing the postings. I am not sure about the gold but love the Bokeh prints. They look like watercolors.

  12. Enamel shapes! Oh man, love that! You know me, I’m never on the up and up. I do like to follow your posts about it though and pick up the new product when it hits Michaels or Joann’s, which doesn’t take nearly as long as it use to!

  13. This is a great review of the current trends, Tammy!

  14. Never completely got into the blackboard, but I do like the kraft and the bokeh, and I’ve keep picking up “enamel” dots. (Not using them much – but the clear glossiness is still irrestible.) I think it is funny that they are morphing into shapes, which are really just becoming the plastic stickers of 10 years ago. Everything old is new again.

  15. I can’t wait to hear your overall reaction to what you saw at CHA. It’s feels so spotty when I see new products across so many different web sites.



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