Monday, 3 June 2013

Convention 2013 - Day 1

We had an early start on the Thursday morning as we had more swapping to do before the General Session started at 9.30am. My first General Session was awesome! It started with an opening address from Shelli Gardner (CEO and Co Founder of Stampin' Up!) welcoming us all, talking about the 25th Anniversary of Stampin' Up!, how it all began and how much it has grown in that time. She went on to talk about the theme of this years Convention.."Be the Difference". She was so lovely and gracious, I seriously could have listened to her talk all day...she is just amazing and totally inspirational.

For many years in the US, there has been a special stamp set produced each year and for each one sold Stampin' Up! donated $3 to the Ronald McDonald House Charities. During General Session, Shelli announced that this program would be extending to all of Stampin' Up!'s markets and also a Demonstrator volunteer program would be set up where demonstrators could volunteer to help out at the Ronald McDonald houses in their local area. The announcement also came with a couple of surprises... an all attendee giveaway being the Ronald McDonald House Charities stamp set (which will be available in the new catalogue) and also Ronald McDonald himself! As you can imagine everyone went crazy and in a room of almost 700 people (mostly women) that makes for a very loud yet very exciting atmosphere.

Once everyone had their stamp set and Make and Take pack we all settled down again to listen to Brian Pilling, a Demonstrator Training Manager at the Home Office in Utah. He told about some exciting products heading our way in the Holiday Catalogue which is due out in Australia on 1st September. There were definitely alot of ohhh 's and ahhh's in the room when we he pulled a few of them out and demonstrated them. Then he announced another all attendee giveaway which made the whole room erupt again.

Once the freebies were handed out and everyone had settled again Bonnie Thurber came out to demonstrate some of the new products and show the projects she had made with them. Shelli has said earlier that they would be showcasing 25 projects to celebrate the 25 years of Stampin' Up! so each person would be doing five. So Bonnie kicked it off with projects one through to five. I hadn't really heard of Bonnie before Convention but within 10 minutes of her starting I was laughing so hard...she was just hilarious! I really wish I could have just packed her into my suitcase and brought her home with me.

Once Bonnie had finished it was time for Ngaire Anderson (my great grandma in the Stampin' Up world) to demonstrate some Workshop WOW's and she chose to showcase the Dress Up framelits. This lady is super talented and her projects were just amazing! This one she had used the wrappers from Ferrero Rocher chocolates!

Shelli then came out again to close the first General Session and gave us an awesome surprise...a copy of the new Annual Catalogue and everyone went nuts again! Once we had our catalogue we sped off to Memento Mall to see what goodies they had there for us. For those who don't know Memento Mall sells exclusive Stampin' Up! branded merchandise and business tools which everyone just goes crazy for and this year was no exception. They had a limit of 1 per item to begin with so I gathered up everything that wanted and then lined up for about an hour to pay and exit. Here is a pic of some of my stash.

Once we were finally out of there, we went and grabbed some lunch and then headed off to the Product Playground to play with some new products. We also spent time completing our Service Project, cards made using the Ronald McDonald Charity stamp set which would be given to the Ronald McDonald houses to use as needed. I also signed up to be a volunteer and help out where I could with the local Ronald McDonald houses in Perth. I'm really so excited to have the opportunity to be able to help this amazing charity and can't wait to get started. 

The afternoon ended with another General Session where Amy Swartz, Vice President of Sales from the Home Office in Utah, talked about colour trends and the recent colour renovation. We then had some stamping from Donna Griffiths, some info from Emma Parkin-Wilson who is the Country Manager in New Zealand in regards to My Digital Studio, some more giveaways and then we wrapped up for the day. They advised us the limits had been lifted in Memento Mall so I rushed back there for a few more things only to be stuck in line for another hour. By the time we left Memento Mall it was 6.30pm and I was ready to go back to the apartment have some dinner and then head to bed. All in all it was a fabulous first day! Check back soon for my post about Day 2.

Marsha xx


  1. Thanks for sharing. I am heading off to Salt Lake City, Utah for the US Convention. Sounds like you had a wonderful time.


  2. Thank you for visiting Maureen! I had a fabulous time at my first Convention. Very envious of you going to Utah...I hope to get to the US convention one day :)