FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 15, 2019
Contact: Grace McNamara
International Window Coverings Expo Exceeds Expectations by Every Measure
Higher than expected attendances drove outstanding engagement between visitors, educators and vendors at this year’s event
Dealers, interior design professionals, fabricators and workrooms craving the latest designs, products and business trends in window coverings got that and much more at the 2019 International Window Coverings Expo, held in Nashville, TN, from March 8 to 10. The show had over 3,000 attendees, an increase from previous years. Attendees were treated to dozens of expo floor demonstrations and innovative new products—many focused on the importance of motorization and cordless solutions. The annual VISION Design & Workroom Competition Awards and the Window Coverings Manufacturers Association (WCMA) Product Innovation Awards showcased the best of the best in window coverings.
Seminars, many packed to standing room only, offered the information and tools critical to the success of the attendees. Nowhere else can window covering professionals, eager to grow their skills and businesses, find educational opportunities specific to this audience. A “lunch and learn” presentation by designer Lori Paranjape, whose work has appeared in People and on HGTV, and keynote by Genevieve Gorder, star of the Netflix series “Stay Here” and a regular contributor to the “Rachael Ray Show,” were peppered with social media tips and trends in home furnishings.
“We could not be more pleased with the outcome of this year’s show,” said Grace McNamara, show producer since 1997. “We had many first-time attendees and exhibitors, as well as those who come every year because it’s always a great investment for them. There is no other gathering exclusively for window fashion professionals available at this level, so people realize the value of the show. Everyone had a terrific time exploring Music City. Overall, this event was a huge success—our best show in 10 years.”
“Grateful… blessed… honored… These words don’t even begin to describe my emotions about my experience at the International Window Coverings Expo in Nashville,” said April Skye Balough with Creative Design Team in Belleair Bluffs, FL. Balough is the first-ever recipient of the Grace McNamara Scholarship, which provides airfare, lodging and full admission to the event. “When I received the email about the scholarship, I saw this as my opportunity for an educational experience of a lifetime. I’m now a Window Fashions Certified Professional and have a much deeper understanding of motorization and salesmanship.”
Friday at IWCE was largely focused on classes for window fashion professionals. Many of CEU’s classes took place all day Friday and Saturday and Sunday morning. Some of the most sought-after educators in the industry explored topics such as selling and installing motorized window treatments, business management and growth, digital marketing, sales techniques and the links between fashion and design.
“I look forward to teaching at IWCE every year,” said JoAnne Lenart-Weary with The JLW Company. “The seminars are packed with newbies and longtime industry veterans eager to learn and elevate their business and services. The level of interactivity, from sharing a laugh to asking tough but important questions, benefits everyone. As an instructor, it keeps me on my toes. I love how IWCE brings together workrooms, decorators, designers, stagers, installers, fabricators and more.”
The expo floor opened on Friday night with a gala “Nashville-style” reception and stayed open through Saturday and Sunday. Over 120 exhibitors were on hand to showcase the latest in draperies, printable textiles, cordless shades and screens, sheers, motorized treatments, outdoor products, trims and embellishments, software solutions and eco-friendly products.
Vendors raved about the quality of the show. “We’ve had a really good turnout,” said Jessica Bondell, senior product manager of fabrics for Texstyle, a division of Rollease Acmeda. “We’ve seen a lot of customers and we’ve seen some new faces. I feel like everybody’s been in good spirits, been enjoying themselves and been happy to stay and chat.”
“We just got back from the IWCE show and our new lead list is overflowing,” said Lynn Ranger, vice president of marketing for Alta Window Fashions. “It was so exciting to showcase the Alta Window Fashions brand, from our full line of quality products to our profit-enhancing programs for dealers. It was also a fantastic opportunity to meet with many of our current customers and thank them again for their business.”
The 2020 International Window Coverings Expo will take place in Charlotte, NC, from March 25 to 27.
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About the International Window Coverings Expo: The International Window Coverings Expo (IWCE) is produced by Grace McNamara, president and owner of AIM Communications LLC, which produces the show and publishes Window Fashion VISION, the premier trade magazine for the window covering industry. IWCE is the only trade show and conference targeted to interior design professionals specializing in window coverings in North America. Learn more at www.iwce-vision.com.
About Window Fashion VISION: Since 1986, Window Fashion VISION is the leading industry magazine for everyone involved in the design, development, production, sales and marketing of custom window fashions and home accessories. The bimonthly magazine publishes articles of interest to designers, workrooms, retailers, fabricators, manufacturers and anyone interested in custom home fashions. Learn more at www.wf-vision.com.