HOW’d they do that?!

[Tracy Smith] Mohawk Fine Papers is at the HOW Conference in Austin. It is so hot here that if you walk in sandals, you get blisters on the bottoms of your feet, from the heat of the sidewalk. While we were waiting for booth set-up time, we checked out Mellow Johnny’s, the hyper-hip bike shop owned by Lance Armstrong, and then we went kayaking to cool down.

Mohawk’s motto for the show is More is more – and more about that in a minute – after I describe our new double-sided exhibit booth. The black-background side shows actual chips {5 x 5} of all the shades Mohawk now offers, arranged chromatically – with the color names printed underneath. The other side showcases our Strathmore grades, and the background of course uses the thistle-inspired pattern Marian Bantjes created for us last year.

Speaking of backgrounds: Mohawk sponsored the opening reception last night, at which the background singers were also dancing girls. The band was grand, the snax were TexMex, the evening was great.

As for More is more: After we “got smart” last Winter and acquired thirteen Smart grades, Mohawk Fine Papers now represents the industry’s most iconic brands. And I personally could not have been more inspired than I was by the first presentation I attended at the conference, which was Michael Osborne speaking about his pro-bono design projects over the years, and how these led him to create Joey’s Corner, a 501(c)3 that provides strategic design services exclusively to non-profits.

Meanwhile, back at the booth: We gave out Baggu bags, which are reuseable shopping bags with a stash-pouch. Everyone deployed their bags on the spot and loaded them up with paper promos. The bags come in blue, citron, and orange {the new primaries?} and sport the url for We’d love to know what you think of the Paper Store, so the first 10 commenters will receive all three bags.

P.S. – Keep scrolling down to see the swan couple at the kayak dock that made me swoon. Stay tuned for more from Austin tomorrow!

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Comments (10)

  1. Posted by Patricia on 06.25.09 at 3:08 pm

    Elegant and subtle design. The practical side of me especially appreciated having the shipping calculator functioning before loading up the cart.

  2. Posted by petelbury on 06.25.09 at 7:50 pm

    Paper store’s nice, the flash graphics slow it down a bit, but within a few clicks I was able to find th right paper paper for my project. The printer/designer search is also a good idea, but few results around my area. Need to get on the list!

  3. Posted by kidchaos on 06.26.09 at 2:53 pm

    The design of the site is really wonderful, and I love seeing all of the examples of the projects. It was certainly easy enough to search, but I do wish the site was a bit more responsive when I click on things. Maybe I’m just impatient.

  4. Posted by JulesLA on 06.26.09 at 5:08 pm

    The site is fantastic and a welcome resource! Thank you! A couple of notes: a) it would be great to speed it up, b)I love all the methods you’ve given us to look up papers ie. specs, colors, products, etc; c) after pulling up colors (under palettes) it gives options of view options (or product?) or save to palette and I thought the first option would tell me what papers came in that color…but it doesn’t seem to. It would be helpful if it did; d) are there any of your papers coming out with a higher PCW content? I need a content much higher than 30% for most of my clients; and e) want to talk about some new colors?

  5. Posted by Little Sister on 06.26.09 at 6:06 pm

    More is MORE! The double-sided exhibit screen is brilliant…Mr. De Mille, it is ready for it’s close-up!

  6. Posted by Alicia Colina-Ashby on 06.27.09 at 7:36 pm

    What a helpful resource! Easy on the eyes and easy to use! Excellent!

  7. Posted by Rosita on 07.1.09 at 12:22 pm

    I really like it for the most part. Searches are simple and give you a lot of info. My criticism though is that it seems to be really slow. I thought that was just me but I see that there are some other comments about the speed too. Maybe you can do something about this?

  8. Posted by Hilary Davis on 07.8.09 at 1:42 pm

    Hi Rosita (and JulesLA + kidchaos + petelbury) – One of the challenges is that the menus search a database of over 12,000 items. We hope the benefits of having a much more diverse product offering at your disposal will outweigh the fact that it means slightly slower searches. That being said, we are constantly looking at ways to optimize the speed of the site. Thanks so much for the feedback!

  9. Posted by Hilary Davis on 07.8.09 at 1:42 pm

    Thanks, Alicia! We really appreciate you being part of our community. Keep the feedback coming.

  10. Posted by Hilary Davis on 07.8.09 at 1:56 pm

    To my long lost friend and former co-worker, JulesLA – regarding your note about being able to shop for an item after using the new Color Selector tool, if you check the checkbox next to the color chip, then click on “View Items” you’ll get a list of items available in that shade. And regarding your note about higher PCW than 30%, the answer is yes, we already have several papers made with 100% postconsumer waste content. Go to the Shop by Feature tab, use the pulldown menu below “Environmental Specs” to select 100%, hit “Find Paper” and you will find a list of items. And finally, regarding color – absolutely!! We’d love to hear your ideas and thoughts. Please, call me at the mill!

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