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Skyline of Chicago with Words reading NeoCon 2022 Survival Guide

The NeoCon 2022 Survival Guide

NeoCon is one of the most important events in the commercial interiors industry. Since launching in 1969, it has brought together designers, architects, manufacturers, students, and end-users all under one roof. This year’s event is taking place June 13 – 15 at theMART in Chicago. Anyone who has been to NeoCon before knows this is a small industry and this show can feel a lot like a class reunion. You’ll likely be bumping into people from different jobs throughout your career. And hopefully, you’ll also be meeting lots of new people. If this is your first time attending, we put together this fun NeoCon 2022 Survival Guide for you to get the most out of the event while feeling and looking good.

Comfort is Key.

There is so much to see and so much inspiration. Get a good night’s sleep, load up on coffee, and plan your look for comfort. (Fashionable comfort, of course, this is a design show after all!) That being said, keep these three things in mind:

  • Wear comfortable shoes. You are going to be on your feet a lot, both standing and walking. You may also opt for stairs if the lines for the elevator are super long.
  • Pack a light and comfortable bag. A sore neck and shoulders from a heavy bag can be just as draining as sore feet. Carry a small bag packed with only what you need.
  • Think layers. In the past, the AC was always blasting inside theMART. If you’re prone to getting cold in these situations, bring a light sweater.

Pack light, but don’t forget the essentials.

Our mobile devices have replaced so many heavy things in our bags, leaving you room for essentials. Here’s what you need to remember to pack:

  • Business cards. Even though so much is digital, in a crowded and busy show, handing someone your card is still one of the most efficient ways to quickly share your info. Pro tip: keep your cards in an easy-to-access pocket so you’re not digging through your bag every time you want to give one out.
  • Water. You will definitely need to stay hydrated. There are water bottle filling stations located throughout the building if you’ve brought your own bottle.
  • Portable charger. Arrive fully charged and be ready to charge on the go if you start running low.  
  • A mask. Maybe? Best to throw one in your bag just in case. Situations can change quickly. For the most up to date information on safety guidelines for the event, visit theMART’s website.   

If you’re happily lightweight at the beginning of the show, try to stay that way! Many booths and showrooms give out free promotional items. Some are super cool and some are just more stuff you don’t really need. Before picking something up that will become future clutter, ask yourself if it’s worth carrying around the rest of your day. It’s easy to get overloaded fast with lots of stuff.

The most important tip: have fun.

There is a lot to see and do, but don’t forget to slow down and enjoy the event. Attend lectures and networking events and try to talk with people besides your coworkers.

We can’t wait to meet you in person to show how easy it is to use Design Pool to tap into the world of digital, on-demand printing.

We hope our NeoCon 2022 Survival Guide is useful. If you have any questions about how best to plan your time in Chicago, leave them in the comments. Don’t forget to stop by and say hi to us in Booth 7-3050! Kristen Dettoni and Kristin Crane will both be attending.

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Kristin Crane

Kristin Crane has designed jacquard designs for the home furnishing and residential jobber market for many years, with mills in the US and in China. She writes about pattern and design trends for Design Pool from her home in Providence, Rhode Island. When not writing about fabric, she can be found weaving on her Macomber loom, standing over a vat of indigo dye or hiking along the Rhode Island coast.


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