Melbourne Scrapbook and Papercraft Expo

If you’re into scrapbooking, cardmaking, and other paper crafts, check out the Melbourne Scrapbook & Papercraft Expo going on this weekend at the Royal Exhibition Building.

I went yesterday. I don’t scrapbook or make cards, but I like ATC, which often employs the same tools and techniques. There are some pros and cons to this expo. Let’s talk about the pros first.

Once inside the beautiful Royal Exhibition Building, you’re met with about 40 exhibitors selling papers, stamps, stencils, markers, embellishments, ribbons, tools, storage solutions, and more. It’s just awesome to see that much stuff in one place. There are beautiful new products such as the Art Deco collection from Papermania Urban Stamps and embellishments from Tim Holtz as well as bargain bins. There are one and two-hour classes, workshops, stage presentations, and displays. Plus many of the exhibitors are friendly and happy to show you a technique or how to use a product at their stand.

But as I mentioned, there are some negatives. General admission for adults is $15. I enjoyed the expo, but I’m not sure the cost is justified considering this is largely a shopping event. Admission into the Big Design Market in December was free. The classes are all extra ranging from $10 to $55. There are some bargains, but not many. Most of the exhibitors are selling at regular retail prices.

My best purchases were Tim Holtz Distress Inks for $5 each from Photo Continental. Most vendors were selling them for $7 or $8 and my local arts and crafts store sells them for $12 each so these were a good buy. I also snagged some Copic markers at $5 a pop from Bellbird Paper Arts, which is two bucks less than what I usually see them priced at, and a few rubber stamps for just a couple of dollars. I was happy.

A word of warning. The event has a slight post-apocalyptic feel to it. It’s as if the world has ended, there are only middle-aged women left, and these are the only arts and crafts supplies remaining in the world. I thought going on a Friday would help me avoid a huge crowd, but I was wrong. And I kept wondering, “Why aren’t these people at work?” I imagine it will be pretty packed this weekend.

Royal Exhibition Building

For more information about this event, please visit the Melbourne Scrapbook and Papercraft Expo website.

Do you plan on attending the Melbourne Scrapbook and Papercraft Expo or some other cool event this weekend? Also happening this weekend are Port Melbourne BikeFest and the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival, which runs through March 17.


4 responses

  • I heard about this and thought about going, but the entry fee put me off. Why should I pay $15 for the privilege of having vendors advertise their wares to me? I feel like the vendors should be charged appropriately for having space there so that customers don’t have to pay to get in. Since it is, as you say, a shopping event, I feel like I could just go to the craft store and go shopping for free if I wanted to. Or online. I was also put off by the high cost of the workshops. That, on top of the entry fee, was just too much for me. I really get sick of the rip-off culture in Australia sometimes! I’ve never been to any expo in America that charged an entry fee.

    • A couple of weeks ago, I ordered a few arts and crafts supplies from an American online retailer. Even with shipping, it was cheaper than what most local stores charge. It really is outrageous.

  • Wow! It looks like it would be easy to spend lots of money there – even though I don’t do scrap booking – it is all so attractive :-)

    • Oh yes. It’s a little dangerous. I saw a lot of things I liked and if I had the extra money and room to spare, I would have purchased much more.


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