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Craft Business News Briefs - December 2005

The latest crafting-community buzzword: Craftivism

What is "Craftivism"? Crafting for a cause. Whatever your skill level or your cause, there's a way to match your handiwork with someone who needs it. Donating a needed item you create yourself is a way to reach out, and an investment of time that can be done at your own convenience. Craftivism is offering a creative expression to a cause you believe in.
The Crafts Report is Seeking Submissions for "People to Watch in American Craft 2006"

Calling all Trend Setters, Innovators and Impact Makers. If you or someone you know is making a splash in the crafts field, let us know.

After a stellar turnout in 2005, The Crafts Report has decided to make the "People to Watch" issue an annual event. "People To Watch" is open to anyone working in the crafts industry who is truly making an impact on the business of selling crafts - artists, retailers, show promoters, organization directors, educators, consultants, etc. We're looking for people who are setting trends with their work; finding unique ways to sell; or are regarded as leaders in the crafts field. Nominate a colleague or nominate yourself - here's how:

Send us some work/gallery/show images, and tell us why the nominee should be considered one of the "People to Watch in American Craft 2006." Each entry must include a 500-word essay that highlights why that person should be chosen. Hint: Be forward-thinking about your submission. Tell us what you're doing now or what your future plans include. No need to re-hash past accomplishments ... we want to know what your future holds.

Please include contact information with your submission, as well as a SASE if you would like your photos returned. Individuals chosen will be contacted to supply images of themselves to be included in the article. Images can either be headshots or more candid photos of the individual at work. The deadline is Jan. 10, 2006. Mail your submission to: People to Watch The Crafts Report 100 Rogers Road Wilmington, DE 19801
The Craft & Hobby Association (CHA) Consumer Usage and Attitude Study

The study will be the subject of a formal detailed presentation on January 31 at the 2006 Craft and Hobby show in Las Vegas. The presentation will be by Larry Anderson, vice president of marketing sciences for Ipsos North America, a market research company.

The new CHA study tracks the craft industry at an all time high of over $30 billion for annual retail sales and confirms the fact that 75 percent of households across America contain at least one member who has crafted. This seminar will give attendees in-depth information on all the new research findings to date, as well as annual projections.Anderson will address each craft category in detail, name the most participated crafts, and assist in how to interpret the data findings. In addition, Sandy Ghezzi, vice president, marketing, member services and education, CHA, will speak to the membership on how to apply the data to everyday business situations and develop strategies.

"The fact that our industry now stands at over $30 billion is an exciting fact by itself. But, what is even more significant is the detailed information that our new CHA Usage and Attitude Study will reveal," says Steve Berger, CHA chief financial officer. "Plus, we will continue to track craft trends on a quarterly basis, including participation levels and consumer purchases. We strongly believe that this information will be of tremendous benefit to each segment of our membership."The event will take place on Tuesday, January 31, 2006 from 4:00 to 5:30 pm at the 65th Winter CHA Convention & Trade Show in Las Vegas. There is no cost for the seminar.The Winter CHA Show takes place January 30th through February 2nd at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, NV

The Society for Contemporary Craft has appointed Julie Farr as executive director, succeeding Janet McCall

Farr will take over in January, replacing McCall, who in July said she would leave the organization she has led since 1995. The Society for Contemporary Craft presents exhibition and programs that travel nationally and also operates an education center offering classes for adults, outreach programs, and artist residencies. Farr, whopreviously was executive director of the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Alliance, a membership organization, from 2002-2004, is currently the executive director of theInternational Society of Glass Beadmakers. Judy Cheteyan, SCC board president, said in a statement that the search committee reviewed more than 70 applications and unanimously selected Farr. "She brings to the organization a well-rounded background in non-profit and arts management, a strong network in thePittsburgh cultural community, business skills and an excellent knowledge of the national craft scene," Cheteyan said.

CHA Announces Board Nominees

The Nominating Committee of the Craft & Hobby Assn. announced the candidates for the Board of Directors to be elected at the next annual meeting during the trade show in Las Vegas early next year. The nominees: Dave Bolen (Jo-Ann's); Richard Brown (Sunrise Craft and Hobby); Bob Ferguson (Ferguson Merchandising); Herb Lantinga (Notions Marketing); and Ron Staffieri (Rag Shop). Pending election by the general membership, the candidates will serve on the board for a three-year term beginning January 2006. Bolen, Brown, Ferguson, and Lantinga currently serve on the Board and are now up for re-election.

Provo Craft Adds Dynamic Leader to its Senior Team

Provo Craft & Novelty Inc., a leading supplier of craft products, announcedthe appointment of Jim Thornton as company president. Thornton joins the company after serving as president of Tru Vue Inc. (McCook, Ill.), a leading supplier of glazing products to the custom picture framing and consumer electronics industries. In a related move, the company announced company veteran Eric Larsen has been named chief executive officer. Current CEO Robert Workman assumes the role of chairman, focusing on creative development

"We are making these moves now to accommodate our rapid growth and drive agility in the execution of our strategy," said Larsen. Larsen added, "We felt we needed someone with Jim's great experience and proven track record as we execute our strategic vision for the future. He is a great addition to our team." Workman also expressed his support of bringing a new leader into the organization. "Provo Craft is currently developing products that will revolutionize the craft industry. Now with Jim on board, we are confident that we can accelerate our plans to bring these exciting products to the marketplace." "I am very excited to join such an innovative and progressive company," remarked Thornton. He added, "With the addition of great new lines of products, combined with our already outstanding brand presence, we will continue to demonstrate our strong leadership position in the craft industry. I feel very fortunate to be part of the Provo Craft team."

AC Moore Arts & Crafts CEO to retire

Craft supplies retailer AC Moore Arts & Crafts Inc.anounced that Chief Executive Officer John Parker plans to retire by Dec. 31, 2006. Parker co-founded the company and has been CEO since its inception in 1984. The company said it has hired recruitment firm Korn/Ferry to find a replacement. "My timetable is flexible," Parker said. "The board and I want to assure a smooth transition, and I will remain fully engaged with the management team until my successor is on board and up-to-speed."


Jo-Ann Stores Splits Leadership Post

Fabric and crafts seller Jo-Ann Stores is separating the role of chairman from the newly created position of president and chief executive, a move that follows similar shifts at dozens of other public companies in the last couple of years. Alan Rosskamm, currently chairman, president and CEO, will serve as executive chairman of the company. Jo-Ann will start a nationwide search to fill the new position, which will report to Rosskamm and assume responsibility for day-to-day operations and execution of the company's strategy.Jo-Ann, based in Hudson, Ohio, said Rosskamm will continue to serve as president and CEO during the search process. "We have a great brand, the leading market position in sewing, and a large and growing share of the market for crafts," the company said in a press release. "As we continue to transform our business from traditional fabric stores to superstores offering a wide assortment of crafts and fabrics, it is clear that we must focus sharply on retail execution and operational excellence."

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