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beve! party inspiration and happenings 4 Articles

Lennox's First Birthday Party

baby eats her ombre pink strawberry birthday cake from washi tape decorated tray

Our little girl celebrated her first birthday this month and we had a sweet little gathering for her. I resisted my urge to do pink, orange and yellow (like her baby shower and nursery) and went for a simple, country feel with a bit of strawberry and watermelon inspiration. My sweet in laws were gracious enough to let us have it on their awesome 40x10 front porch, a perfect setting. (Looking for a lovely, historic home in Virginia? Theirs is for sale! Take a peek and score this sweet entertaining spot for yourself.)

We lucked out and had an absolutely GORGEOUS day - August days in Virginia are rarely this lovely. What a great present! I'll have a few posts on creating the party later and will just focus on the day of here.

Pink, red and green confetti dot invitations Oh what fun baby is one!

A fun confetti of pink and green party colors for Lennox's first birthday invitation. You may note that the "1" was pulled from the candle we used for Lennox's cake (see below). Next year I'll have to get invitations out earlier - August is a busy month for birthdays and some cousins had two other parties that day!

Washi tape decorated clothes pins on photo wall first birthday activity

We kept things pretty simple and sweet. I combined a few Pinterest ideas to create a display of photos from the past year, all washi-clothespinned on to pink and green yarn. Friends and family were asked to select their favorite photo and write a message to Lennox on the back of it. I have a special album for these and am contemplating making this an annual activity. The notes written by Lennox's "big" cousins were particularly sweet!

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National Stationery Show - Part III - Logistics & Lessons

All right, now for the nitty gritty of our 2014 National Stationery Show/Signature Mix Marketplace debut! See what we used for our booth, what our costs, how we kept costs down and some lessons we learned.


  • A 60 SF pipe & drape booth: $2700
  • 500W Electricity: $175
  • Flame Retardant Fabric for walls (new for 2014: Had to be purchased as FR, not just sprayed): $242
  • Grommets: $40
  • Paint, one quart:  $14
  • Five 150W Halogen Lights & Clamps (we bought adapter clamps someone suggested.. and then they didn't fit - we improvised!): $150
  • Multiple surge protectors and extension cords: $42
  • 64 SF beve blue foam tile floors (this cut it close. We used every tile!): $86



  DISPLAYS:  ~$75
  • Foam Board, ten 20x30 boards
  • Velcro - lots!!
  • Butcher Paper: on hand
  • White Duct Tape: on hand
  • Almost all goodies on the boards are beve products!
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National Stationery Show 2014 - Part II - The Show!

beve booth #1468 at the 2014 National Stationery Show

We're back and we're talking about beve's debut experience at the 2014 National Stationery Show. We were part of NSS, but exhibited in the new #fresh section of the show and were affiliated with Etsy Wholesale's NSS presence. For our pre-show preparations, check out our first blog post (ever!).

After driving into the New Jersey area at about 2 AM to stay with our family friends, we took the drive to Javits mid-morning on Saturday, hoping to finish setting up by early evening. As children under 14 aren't allowed during set up (or take down, which isn't as publicized), Lennox was babysat by our family friends while Grandba helped us set up. It was great having two other people to help set up. I handled the more delicate and detailed items while my husband, Chris, and his father assembled furniture and the lights, etc. I also dropped off our press kits and Best New Product competition displays. Set up surprises? Even though I'd called to verify the height limit, the car garage wouldn't let us in with the cargo carrier on top. We had to pay extra for a VIP spot (but our coupon helped cancel out the extra cost). A more pleasant surprise: Javits provides big, flat bed dollies (and pushers) for folks dropping off their own items (vs. shipping)! I was terrified we were going to get a $200 bill or something after they took our booth number down, but it was free! Go Chris for having the initiative to ask the folks at the door about it!

Here's what our booth looked like when we first started setting up

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National Stationery Show 2014 - Part I: Preparations

beve press kits beve NSS inspiration boards beve nss booth walls

Hi All! This is beve's first blog post and we wanted to write about our first trade show experience: the 2014 National Stationery Show. Yes, it's a little late, but we just got our brand new site and blog space up, so it is what it is. I hope this will be helpful for any first time exhibitors looking for some information about the show.

I first heard about trade shows from the super sweet Maryellen Kim of Handmade Happiness Boutique in Chester, Virginia in October of 2012. She suggested checking into NSS and in May of 2013, six months pregnant, I headed up to walk the show. I'm so glad I had this experience to pull from in preparation for exhibiting in 2014. The National Stationery Show has such a different vibe and look from so many industry shows, so this really helped me know how we had to present ourselves: design-forward, friendly and professional. Now, that's our kind of show! 

Pregnant Me at NSS 2013 Pregnant me at NSS 2013!

We heard about the brand new, juried #fresh section in October of 2013, applied and.. got in! So exciting! We started out with a hardwall booth, but switched to pipe and drape after after realizing we couldn't paint or drill into the walls (this was before they had the new, customizable option available). Initially I contemplated building hard walls, but having a background in fashion design, I decided to create tailored canvas walls. Not only would this be an affordable option, it made it so I could drive my entire booth up myself from Virginia. And by 'myself,' I mean with my awesome husband who took vacation time from his full-time job to come and work the show, my sweet father-in-law who embarked on his retirement by coming with us to babysit our (then) nine month old daughter, Lennox, whose first out of state experience was heading up to NSS, and me, beve owner and designer, Lauren Boggs Meslar. Yep, four people and a 60SF booth in one Subaru Outback. We rocked it!

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