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Posts tagged “Carol Roth

2013 IT Convention Thoughts and Reflections

Now that the dust has settled…just a bit…and the bags have been unpacked (still waiting on boxes though), I am sitting back and reflecting with my cup of morning coffee.  What did I think of this year’s convention?  First and foremost, I think I need to say a huge “Thank You!” to the Newsum family and the staff at Integrity Toys for an incredible experience.  Integrity Toys is owned and run by the Percy Newsum but it looks like the entire family comes to help out at these conventions.  The family-owned and run business is a dying breed in our fast-paced eBay-buying, Amazon-downloading world of consumerism.  All of the designers are also present and mingling with people.  IT Marketing Director Alain Tremblay and Carol Roth who are often the voice and face of Integrity — especially during the company webinars — are ever-present emceeing the events and working the crowd.   I can’t even quantify how lovely it is to  interact with the people who actually help bring this wonderful product to our homes.  It is a connection that makes me feel good about buying the product and that is just not something you can buy in this world market.  It is carefully cultivated and, in my opinion, it is smart business.  You leave these conventions feeling like you are a very valued customer and an honored guest.  I have to give a shout out to table 22 here as well.  This lovely group of ladies and one gentleman hosted by the fabulous Hilda made my daughter and I feel like honored guests too.  A big “Thank you” from the bottom of my heart for making my daughter’s first IT convention super special and fun.  Words cannot express how wonderful you were to her {sniff, sniff} and that means more to this Mom than you know.

I also want to thank my readers..many of whom came up to me at convention and gave me a verbal and actual hug when they said  how much they enjoyed the blog, flickr photos and/or youtube videos.  I really appreciated and loved the comments from people as I posted and I will endeavor to be better about responding to blog comments in the future. 

My college degree is in business and finance so the evolution of this business is infinitely fascinating to me.   It is the Disney model of business: bring people in, give them a happy and fun experience and they will open their pocket books.  Give them an exceptional experience and that pocket book opens wider.  This event was extremely well organized.  This convention, in my opinion,  had one of the strongest convention collections I have seen.  There was something for just about everyone.  The looks were elegant, strong, edgy in places and sublimely vintage couture in others.  The accessories…jewelry, shoes etc…were excellent as well.  The shoes in particular were a big bonus because every exquisite pair was another choice of shoe the FR2 body foot could wear.  Collectors of the FR2 line have long lamented the need for more shoes for this body type.  Because there was an extra meal event this year, most conventioneers had the opportunity to purchase at least two centerpieces…some even had the chance to purchase three.  Three out of the four events had an absolutely beautiful gift doll given as a gift.  I realize that this year was special being the 10 year anniversary and this kind of swag is not de rigueur for conventions going forward but WOW was it nice to receive.  The quality of these gifts was really exceptional.  This was not your average convention, folks.  I think we all walked away with that feeling. My only negative comment and it is a minor one, was the discovery that the “Black Orchid” Vanessa’s dress is not easily removable.  This was a centerpiece doll for the final dinner and she was dressed in a Jason Wu runway design.  It works out great if you want to leave her in this dress…not so great for us redressers.  Hilda was able to snip a strap and fashion a fix for me.  The only way to remove the dress without snipping a strap is to take the doll’s head off.  I was just too chicken to do that with this doll (afraid I would mess up the amazing updo). 

So what was the total take away swag you might ask…well…. the doll haul from this event broke down like this.  **Note:  The list below does not include style lab dolls.  I don’t collect these dolls so  I did not attend the style lab.  Sorry 😦 **

The Doll Haul

$ – denotes you had to spend money above what you spent on convention package

25 possible Dolls, two outfits, one shoe pack

Convention collection –$    (dolls that you were able to purchase as an attendee)

October Issue Agnes
Paparazzi Darling Adèle
Bittersweet Eugenia
Breathless Véronique
Brazen Beauty Natalia
Bewitching Véronique
Star in the Making Poppy Parker

 

IT Direct Hard Metal Lilith
IT Direct Anja
IT Direct Tricks up her Sleeve Poppy
IT Direct Tulabelle
IT Shoe Pack

Centerpiece Dolls –$  (dolls you were able to purchase via lottery)

After Tonight Eugenia Perrin-Frost™
Elegant Evening Poppy Parker™
Bellissima Natalia Fatalé
Story Of My Life Victoire Roux™
Black Orchid Vanessa Perrin™

Workshop Dolls –$ (dolls purchased as part of workshop package)

Victorious Glamour Victoire Roux™
Poppy’s Makeup Makeover Poppy Parker™
Shining Star FR: Monogram™
W Cosmetics Hair Care Fashion Royalty®

 

Convention gifts  (dolls that were given as gifts)

Interlude FR: Monogram
Nightfall Agnes Von Weiss™
Especially For You Poppy Parker™
Dangerous To Know Kyori Sato™
Night at Ciro’s Victoire Roux™ ** outfit**
Completist FR: Monogram™ Accessory Pack **outfit**
Midnight Star Elise Jolie Convention Doll

Not a bad haul eh?  About this time, many collectors complain about the steep markup many of these dolls sell for in the secondary market (eBay or doll boards etc.)  Keep in mind that conventioneers paid around $425-450 a ticket to get in.  Many if not most also had hotel and airline/travel cost in addition to this.  There is also the issue of time spent standing in line to get into the sales room for extras and money spent shipping or incurring extra luggage fees getting all this loot home.  I think it is just downright silly to expect conventioneers to sell convention items for the convention purchase price.  The simple price of the centerpiece doll they purchased is not the total out of pocket cost for that doll.  If you think the markup is too high, don’t buy it.  Just sayin’

I also just have to add that when it came time to figure out how to get all of this loot home, Integrity was all over it.  What I could not fit in my luggage, I had to ship.  I flew out later in the afternoon Sunday so I went down to Integrity Toys’ shipping center around mid-morning.  I had three boxes to ship (Hey!…no judging!!) and I was in and out of that shipping room in 10 minutes.  A professional UPS store could not have done any better.  It was fantastic!!

“So which ones are your favorites Rebecca?” {said in a television interviewer voice}…..

…Well…that is a really tough question.  I would have to put Kyori high up on the list as well as the workshop and convention Elises.  I am also a huge fan of the new FR2 body but am NOT a fan of the funky stands they come with.  I am glad I have a large supply of stands from previous years.