The Creative Expo at the RDS

Fifty craftspeople and artists are being supported by their local Enterprise Board at next week’s Showcase event in the RDS.
Artists, craftspeople and designers from eighteen County and City Enterprise Board areas are meeting international buyers at the balcony area at Showcase this year, representing a 45% increase over the 2010 figures.
The Creative Expo, which is organised by the Crafts Council of Ireland, is seen by industry experts as one of the most important trade events for Ireland’s craft sector and runs from Sunday, January 23rd to Wednesday, January 26th.
Many of the Enterprise Board-supported craftspeople along the balcony area of the Main Hall are first-time exhibitors and are expected to attract considerable attention from the 5,500 buyers in attendance.

Speaking in the run-up to Sunday’s official opening, Christine Charlton from the County and City Enterprise Boards said: “The balcony area of Showcase has a truly diverse range of products this year, ranging from slate products to flower jewellery to Irish language greeting cards to 3D postcards. We’re encouraging all visitors to Showcase to simply “look up” to discover new and unique products from fifty craftspeople along the balcony area.”

To help craftspeople make the most of the selling opportunity, the County and City Enterprise Boards are publishing a dedicated brochure for Showcase buyers, which will be distributed free of charge to visitors. The Enterprise Boards are also subsidising the costs of trade stands and many craftspeople will receive one-to-one coaching from experienced mentors.

Charlton added: “Many of the Enterprise Board-supported craftspeople will make valuable sales and contacts over the four days and it’s a crucial platform for them, helping to generate sales both nationally and internationally.”

In all, over 350 craftspeople will be taking part in Showcase, including fifty craftspeople supported by the Enterprise Boards on the balcony area. Buyers from seventeen countries are expected to attend and the event is promoted internationally by Enterprise Ireland. Further details are available by visiting www.showcaseireland.com

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