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10 Reasons to Attend Creativation!

Are you an artist or crafter looking to make money with your creations beyond vending at shows? You need to read this post about Creativation. It’s the new name for what used to be the Craft and Hobby Show – the international craft convention. It’s all about the creative arts industry put on by the Association For Creative Industries (AFCI).

I served as one of the influencers for this year’s event, and I had no idea what to expect because the name didn’t only change, so did the location. It’s now held here in my hometown of Phoenix! Here is an epic photo album of pictures from the conference.

I loved every minute and I can’t believe it was already a month ago that I attended. As of this moment, the 2018 event is underway. If you are an artist, crafter, illustrator, product designer, lifestyle or DIY blogger looking to up your game – you need to consider your involvement. Here is a run down of who can join and the conditions. And here are the benefits.

Here are my 10 reasons why you should attend the 2018 show!

1. Up your game with your art business – and YOU!

If you feel the need to redefine success when it comes to your creative skills, this is a great place to start. Invest in yourself to see a bigger vision with more opportunities than you currently have. Put away your paintbrushes and slide on that business hat.

[tweetthis]Artists are not meant to starve. We are here to work to make the world a more beautiful place.[/tweetthis]

Paintable, engraved wood plaques from AdornIt.

2. Learn business skills specific to creatives.

There are business classes taught all over the place, but it’s difficult to find them tailored to what we do. From blogging to branding, video production, photography, book publishing, time management, working with manufacturers, finances, social media and on and on and on…there are dozens of seminars to soak up.

Angie from TheCountryChicCottage.net. Photo by AFCI.

3. Learn the newest art techniques and emerging trends.

It’s good to have your own style and rock it. But at Creativation, you’ll learn new techniques to incorporate to spice things up. There are project classes, as well as process workshops. And usually, these are put on by the manufacturers, their best teachers and their newest products that are not even on store shelves yet.

Fairy house supplies by Plaid Crafts.


4. Have your mind blown by all the make-and-takes offered.

Once the expo floor opens, you’ll need to contain yourself and make a game plan. Start at one end of the show and work each row. The manufacturers have their new products out and offer you to “make and take” a sample. Do all of these! Ask questions, try everything they offer. If you are a blogger, you can even use each one as a tutorial if you take pictures at each step.

Phoenix Fridas shared a Frida paper doll craft.


5. Connect with the makers of your favorite products, books, and even some magazines.

Look at the label on your favorite craft supplies, then visit their website. Go visit them at their booth at Creativation! Show them what you’ve made with their products, they love to see! Better yet, take pictures there and tag them on social media! Granted, even if some companies don’t have a booth, they often have representives there or partner with another company in some fashion.

I designed jewelry pieces for the IceResin booth!


6. Connect with like-minded people. Make new friends!

If you’ve never been, this is a whole new industry, bursting with connections and supportive people. I love all the friends I’ve made here and rely on them constantly for advice and tips for situations big and small. not to mention, AFCI has a long list of benefits, webinars, and resources you can use all throughout the year.

I met Amber from Damask Love!


7. Get started with adding new revenue streams to your business.

I used to only do art and craft shows with my art until I discovered the crafts industry. Once I joined and became involved, I picked up work demoing products, blog campaigns, consulting, designing products, doing video and tv segments and more. If you’ve ever wanted to have your own product line, you’ll learn different ways to accomplish that at this conference.

I demoed my new stencil line in The Crafter’s Workshop Booth.


8. The after parties!

You think crafty people are all about paper and glue? Hello, SEQUIN is our middle name. Some gatherings are in the hotel lobby, others are planned and perfectly organized, some are top secret, invite only, some are all-night craftathons in hotel rooms. More memories = more pictures to use in DIY projects!

Our chauffeurs! Photo by AFCI


9. Discover Phoenix!

The weather is gorgeous and our downtown area is chock full of indie eateries, boutiques, galleries and magical southwestern sights. Here is an article I wrote for the AFCI blog about my favorite places in Phoenix! 

My gorgeous cornbread from Lolo’s Chicken and Waffles!


10. It’s a great way to set your creative year into motion!

January is the perfect time for this show for us creatives. It helps set a professional and personal destination for the year. See this heart? It represents your passion for your creativity! Feed it well!

Cupcake made by Candy Queen Bee Baker in the Satin Ice booth.

Bilingual book service for kids

15 Totally Loca Margarita Ideas!


3 thoughts on “10 Reasons to Attend Creativation!”

  1. This was a really great post and good info for sharing. I found though that just as I was feeling my blog numbers were strong and I could apply to be a member, they changed the rules and completely knocked me out of the race. I am a very small fish in this creating pond, but would like to be able to attend Creativation. I was there this year as the Social Media/Demo for the Emerald Creek Design Team but as my time ends with them, I can’t seem to find a way to attend next year. Do you have any tips for working on that? 🙂 appreciated the post and loved seeing your pics from the event, I’m pretty sure I saw you demoing too 🙂 But I was pretty overwhelmed for those 3 days!

  2. Hello Cathy. I am so interested in attending Creativation 2020 for the 1st time. This was a great blog article. I am a crafter that would love to visit just to see what new techniques are out there, what new products will be hitting the stores, etc….. Is the novice hobbyist allowed to attend? I just want to visit the expo floor is all. I attend major craft and scrapbooking expos quite often, but was not sure if Creativation was only for companies, bloggers, etc. Thank you!

    • Hi Tameka! You can visit Creativation.org and they have all the details there. It’s an industry show, but there is a place to see if you can qualify as a designer. Definitely check it out! Hope to see you next year there! 🙂


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