Sexpo UK 2015
Disclaimer - this is so not a professional write up like Cara Sutra's. (I've put a link to hers at the end to redeem myself.) That's not really how I do things, it's more the ramblings of a madwoman who happened to be at Sexpo UK 2015 slightly representing Peachy Keen and bumped into some people along the way and whose battery ran out - hence minimal photos.
For those of you who don't know, Sexpo is a sexual health and lifestyle exhibition. This the first year in London but it has success in Australia and America. If you ever went to Erotica, I did as a fresh faced 21 year old, it's a lot like that.
Peachy Keen did have a little think about exhibiting at Sexpo this year but we're so new we figured it was better to just go and get a feel for the place and exhibit next year. Plus I have zero experience of exhibiting and the cost feels like it would be phenomenal when we're still an ickle company.
Sexpo UK 2015 Brochure
Sexpo UK 2015 was held at the Kensington Olympia - I love this venue. It's a lot more bustling and easy to figure out, with better signage than the Birmingham NEC. It's a slight pickle to get to although it does have a train station on site basically. We actually drove and parked in the multi-storey car park which was relatively stress free actually.
I found the entrance and approached the security guard outside to ask him if it was alright that my ticket was on my phone. Without me saying anything he said, "Good Food show's round the corner love." Me: "Urr okay." Him: *Pointing* "First left" Me: brazen as anything "I'm actually here for Sexpo" and flouncing through. NEXT security guard, "You're here for the Good Food show aren't you, it's round the corner." Bloody hell, they weren't making it easy. Same thing was happening to the same sex couple on my left, 'must be friends, going to look at cooking utensils not lovers going to pick out sex toys'. *rolls eyes* To be fair though when I told the second guy I was going Sexpo not the Good Food Show he got so flustered and embarrassed that he'd assumed otherwise that he let me jump the queue. It's a very outdated attitude to be profiling some people and assuming that others don't look like people who would go to Sexpo. 'Chaps. In you come. Latex dog mask. In you come. Lady in normal clothes. Must be in wrong place.' I just look like me and I was in the right place.
When I eventually got in I was impressed with the organisation of it all; very slick, stalls numbered logically for easily confused people like me. It looked great! Reminded me very much of Erotica, god rest its soul. People were very engaging, sales people jumping out at you all over the place but not being pushy. That's what you expect when you go to events like this, you don't want people sitting behind their desk hoping you go to them. Well... I don't.
The Fantasy Box
The first people I spoke to were The Fantasy Box a subscription type model where you get sent a box to use on your 'date night'. There were 3 of these companies at Sexpo this year and I liked these guys' style the most. I have a special place in my heart for monthly sex toy subscription services as about 8 years ago, this was the first little seed to Peachy Keen. We thought it would be a great idea, which clearly it was but my goodness would it have been a lot more complicated and less personal than what we are doing now. What do you think - would any of you be interested in getting a monthly toy from Peachy Keen or do you prefer shopping as and when and making your own choices? Nevertheless these guys seemed nice and I got some free knickers - good luck to them.
Forming a plan of action with the layout
I then went to get a latte (Had to remortgage my house to buy it.. standard.) and to plan my attack. I always think I'll start in one corner and snake my way back and forth until I get to the diagonally opposite corner. Actually I look at one row 50 times and miss a load of stalls. This is basically what happened, I blame the couple on the table I was sat at who started having a whispered argument and me having to bury my head in the guide whilst totally eavesdropping.
Whilst sitting I was right by @PuppyPrideUK so watched their shenanigans for a bit and they made me smile. In fact everyone that was watching was smiling: either in a 'wow no one's going to believe this when I tell them' kind of way, or a 'they look happy and like they're having fun'. Mine was the second. I've been aware of Puppyplay for ages and while I don't fully understand it, I know that it doesn't make me feel weird or uneasy. Articles like this help to explain it What is Puppy Play and Why Is It so Popular? All I know is that if I had to be locked in a room with Puppy Pride or Pricasso I would be all over those Pups.
I then went to visit the lovely people at Hot Octopuss who showed me how their products work, going to start stocking them in the next few weeks - exciting stuff and like supporting a London based company.
The LuvSense London Stall with the LuvVu Mirror
Next I went to find those lovely people at LuvSenseLondon who we've been working with closely in recent months - we stock their brilliant LUVVU Mirror. I love these guys, they're hardworking, enthusiastic and so passionate about their product and the industry. Their stall was always busy with people very interested in their mirrors so it was almost impossible to speak to them! Again very happy to be working with a local company - who knew I was so London proud!? There was an amazing moment when people were walking down the aisle and bypassing Farrah Abraham to go and look up close at the mirrors haha! I couldn't quite cope with Farrah Abraham being there, it was a slight mind fuck for me. I was addicted to 16 and pregnant and teen mom and there she was sitting arms folded at a table while someone put their hand in her twerking butt.... not her actual butt obviously. As long as she's happy, but I don't know if she is... she certainly didn't look it.
I then had a wander, KinkCraft was busy as always. Chatted to the guys at MyStim as I know we need to sell more electro-stim products. Looked at some Liberator products in the flesh... or in the velor maybe that should be. Had a vibrator thrust in my hand... better than somewhere else. I enjoy it when that happens, especially if it's a poor quality item because they don't always see the industry band so I can barrage them with a load of questions until they retreat waving a white flag.
I had a nice chat with the people at LoveArc. I'd never met them before and then were lovely, very Peachy Keen, if I can say that without making myself sound like a wanker. As we know, I'm a sucker for a nice bit of bedroom equipment so their LoveArc really appealed to me. Keep your eyes peeled for developments and read their 10/10 review from The Big Gay Review here.
This was pretty much all my brain had capacity for, I did wander around all the stalls, I'm really sorry if I haven't mentioned you and I'm sorry I didn't catch up with everyone we chat to on social media, it all just gets a bit manic at these events doesn't it. I did watch a bit of the catwalk and let's end how we began... with the security guards. The staff at these events do make me laugh because they don't know quite where to look. I like to plonk myself next to a security guard and watch them. This one did an amazing job of looking but not looking like he was looking and smiling appreciatively but not leering and nodding along to the music as if that's what he was enjoying the most. Teehee - all in a day's work.
So anyway, my time at Sexpo UK 2015 was relatively brief - we hope to be more involved next year. All in all, it was a smoothly run operation and in my humble opinion a success! Well done to everyone involved.
To read a proper write up of Sexpo UK 2015 check out Cara's review.
Read more Sex Toy Talk here.