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Posts Tagged ‘Design Monday’

Classic Exhibits… By the Numbers

March 15th, 2016 4 COMMENTS



In business, as in life, we celebrate milestones. This morning after adding an article to Trade Show Tips, I decide to count them — 74 articles. It’s more than I thought, but 74 isn’t 740 or 7400 so the number didn’t freak me out.

Having started down this path, I decided to look at other numbers. For example, how many blog posts have we published in Trade Show Tales? WordPress makes finding that number easy — 704 posts (counting this one). Now I have to be honest with you — that did freak me out a bit. We publish 6-8 posts per month with the first one in 2009. So by the numbers, that’s about right. However, that doesn’t make 704 seem any less daunting. That’s a lot of words and images over the years. I’m not sure whether we should pat ourselves on the back or apologize to you (“Way to go team!” or “Sorry everyone”).

What Is This Anyway?

The First P5D Photo. What Is This Anyway?

So, you may be wondering how many photos are in Past 5 Days. P5D was launched on September 9, 2006 with this image. It’s an odd image for the first P5D, but we didn’t know what we were doing back then. According to Tony, our resident web guru, we’ve published 5840 photos. Most are linked to kits in Exhibit Design Search.

I’d be impressed, but I’m actually more exhausted thinking about how each photo had to be resized, saved for the web, and described. The upside is that P5D is the third most visited section of the Classic website, after the Classic and the EDS home pages (according to Google Analytics).

Which leads us to EDS. It’s a big number so let’s filter it a bit. Some kits are shown in multiple galleries. I’d estimate around 140. Our count won’t include inactive designs (we’ve killed probably 400+ kits over the years). We won’t count the Cases, Lighting, and Flooring (149 entries).

031116 MOD1430_aTotal = 1554. Let’s put that number in perspective. Some galleries have grown substantially the past two years, such as the Rental, eSmart, and Island Galleries (because of double-digit growth). During that same time, charging stations, tablet stands, and lightbox kits were added. Plus, the Quadro Floating Graphic System is new.

Twice a year, we delete slow selling kits, or give them a second chance by redesigning them. And then there’s Design Monday, which serves as constant design funnel for Exhibit Design Search.

I’ll spare you all the numbers for Design Monday except to say that back in December we hit the 560th week. DM, more than anything else in this list, makes my head hurt.

You are probably wondering if there’s a point to this blog post, other than reaching blog post 704? Whatever you think about Classic Exhibits, you have to give us credit for persistence, communication, and creativity. That alone should tell you who we are as a company and how much we value you as a Classic Distributor. Give us a break. We have a lot to share!

Is it really time to post another P5D? Sigh.

–Mel White


Based in Portland, Oregon, Classic Exhibits Inc. designs and manufacturers portable, modular, and custom-hybrid exhibit solutions. Classic Exhibits products are represented by an extensive distributor network in North America and in select International markets. For more information, contact us at 866-652-2100 or


560 Design Mondays… But Who’s Counting

December 18th, 2015 COMMENTS


Design Monday…. 560 Weeks

It’s been 10+ years, starting with April 18, 2005. This week represents the 560th weekly Design Monday with over 1300 individual designs. During that time, we’ve missed a week here and there — usually on a holiday — but only 3-4 at most.

It started at EXHIBITOR 2005. We had a binder full of designs in our booth, and Mike Swartout doing renderings for distributors on the show floor. Time and again, distributors would say to us, “Oh, I didn’t know you did [fill in the blank] — customization, modular exhibits, hybrids, counters, etc.” So we said, “How do we show distributors who we are, not who they think we are?” The decision was made to send new designs to the Classic Exhibits Network each week. We chose Sunday because we wanted the email to be one of the first things distributors saw Monday morning.

Over the years, the templates have changed, and Eco-systems Sustainable Exhibits was added to the mix about two years ago.

Frankly, our discipline has been impressive. Week in and week out, we’ve sent you 2-3 new designs at 12 noon PST (3 pm EST) each Sunday. Most Design Mondays tap into the skills of designers, project managers, graphic designer(s), Kevin Carty, our Production Manager, and me. Not every design is a winner, but we’ve done OK and it’s always been a wonderful place to experiment and get your feedback.

If this seems like we’re patting ourselves on the back — we are. And you too. Many of the designs showcase your design requests and your consultative work with customers. Some are presented “as is” in Design Monday. Others serve to push concepts even further. Not everyone gets built, but that’s OK as well.

We’d like to think Design Monday has accomplished three things:

1. It made us a design leader,

2. It’s been HUGELY instrumental to our consistent year-over-year growth, and

3. It has served to bind us all closer together, via the designs and the blog.

While you may not read/review DM each week, you always know we’re here to assist you on your next project.

Here’s to Design Monday 122115! Have a very Happy Holiday.

–Mel White


Based in Portland, Oregon, Classic Exhibits Inc. designs and manufacturers portable, modular, and custom-hybrid exhibit solutions. Classic Exhibits products are represented by an extensive distributor network in North America and in select International markets. For more information, contact us at 866-652-2100 or


Design Monday — Almost 6 Years (But Who’s Counting?!)

February 1st, 2011 COMMENTS
Design Monday by Classic Exhibits

Design Monday Gallery

When we launched Design Monday on April 18, 2005, our objective was simple (and perhaps a little naive): to transform the image of Classic Exhibits from a medium-sized systems manufacturer to a leader in innovative portable, modular, and hybrid displays. At the time, we were designing and building some of the industry’s most creative trade show solutions. However, as we joke about it now, the industry perception of Classic Exhibits was “five guys in a garage making folding panel and pop up displays.” We hadn’t been that company for many years, but we had done a lousy job of marketing our new designs and communicating the changes at Classic Exhibits.


Shortly after EXHIBITOR Show 2005, we decided to experiment with emailing two or three designs from our Design Library to our Distributor List. The email (via CoolerEmail) would show renderings with design details and prices. The designs generally fell into three categories:   Standard kits, modified kits, or more often, design requests from distributors for specific projects.

Consistency was the key. Once we started Design Monday, we knew we had to continue sending designs every week regardless of our schedule or other commitments. Our Design, Sales, Marketing, and Project Management teams all took ownership, which made the task easier, although no less time-consuming. We are proud to say that since 4/18/2005, we’ve only missed two weeks (when Christmas fell on a Weekend or Monday). During that time we have sent over 700 designs in five plus years.

Design Monday by Classic Exhibits

Design Monday

Design Monday has evolved over the years. We experimented with multiple templates and links to our website. There is a Design Monday Gallery on the Classic website as well as on our Distributors’ Exhibit Design Search sites. Design Monday was the inspiration for Exhibit Design Search when we needed an online tool to sort and filter the displays.

The repetition has allowed us to test new designs, launch new systems (Sacagawea, Perfect 10, Magellan, etc.), and promote services, such as our Rental Department. Classic Exhibits stays “top-of-mind” with our distributors since we’re in touch via email once a week.

If there is one oddity about Design Monday, it’s that we email it at noon PST on Sunday. Why? We want it to be one of first emails our distributors read Monday morning. Of course, we also benefit from those workaholic distributors who read and respond to Design Monday on Sunday. A distributor who lives on the East Coast once told us that his daughter always knows when it is 3 pm EST on Sunday. His phone chimes announcing an email, and she says, “Daddy, it’s Design Monday!”

Measurement and Results:

From a pure quantitative basis, Design Monday has been easy to measure. We use CoolerEmail. Cooler, like other email tracking programs such as Constant Contact, allows us to track usage by email address, by individual links, and by user. We know if someone has read Design Monday once, twice, or fifteen times. Over the past five years, our read rate has never fallen below 35 percent per week and typically hovers around 50 percent. In addition, our email database has grown 10X over that same period and our sales volume has increased 4X.

Anyone familiar with Classic Exhibits, as a distributor, supplier, or competitor, can attest to our transformation since 2005. Suffice to say, we are one of the leaders in portable, modular, and hybrid exhibit design and manufacturing. We’ll leave the praise of Classic to others, but we will acknowledge that it’s been a long time since anyone thought of us as “Five guys in a garage.”

To see Design Monday in Exhibit Design Search:

To see Design Monday on the Classic Home page, scroll to the Design Monday image on the left-hand menu:

Online Design Monday:

Currently, there are fewer than 700 designs in the Design Monday online database. As select designs have become standard kits, we have assigned them kit #’s and moved them into the appropriate product gallery. Keeping them in Design Monday would create duplicates and possible confusion with distributors and end-users.

–Mel White

FAQ — Design Monday Exhibits

November 17th, 2010 COMMENTS

Design Monday Exhibits

In Design Monday, you’ll see inlines and islands, portables and modulars, banner stands and hanging signs. Three new exciting designs each week from the best exhibit designers.

When it’s all about pushing the boundaries of creative design, everything is fair game. See what’s new every Monday.

Frequently Asked Questions . . .

1. What’s included in the Design Monday Gallery? There appears to be trade show displays of all sizes, shapes, and functions.

Design Monday is a very different gallery than the other galleries in Exhibit Design Search. Each Monday, we introduce two to three new exhibit designs. These can be islands, inlines, workstations, banner stands, or just about anything you would find in the other galleries.

Consider Design Monday our forum for launching new concepts. Many of these migrate to the other galleries and become kits, which is why you may see some duplication. If you want to see the newest trends, then Design Monday is the place to be.

2. Have these all been built?

By and large, yes . . . with some exceptions. Even if we haven’t built the display yet, no worries. We design them using standard components and engineer them to be structurally sound.

3. Are Design Monday designs more expensive?

Nope. We price them the same as standard kits.

Next, Counters and Pedestals FAQ.

Recent Updates, Price Lists, and Kit Sheets

June 20th, 2010 COMMENTS

Recent Updates, Price Lists, and News

Kevin is on his LIVESTRONG ride this weekend. As you read this, he’s either struggling to climb the final hill on his 100 mile ride (Sunday) or in bed with enough Motrin in his bloodstream to disorient an adult hippopotamus (Monday).

In his absence, we’ve collected two months of Recent Updates, Price Lists, and News about Classic Exhibits and ClassicMODUL into one convenient blog posting.


Sacagawea Portable Hybrid Displays

Sacagawea Price List

  1. New Perfect 10 Price List (price includes all graphics on 10′ and 20′ kits)
  2. New Perfect 10 Kit Sheets
  3. New Sacagawea Price List (price includes all graphics on 10′ and 20′ kits)
  4. New Sacagawea Kit Sheets
  5. ClassicMODUL Poster
  6. ClassicMODUL TSP Silicone Edge Graphics Profiles
  7. Silicone Edge Graphics FAQ


Wholesales prices for rental kits are now available online in Classic’s Distributor Section (See the Rental Gallery). If you do not have the username and password for the Distributor Section,  contact Jim Shelman, any Project Manager at Classic Exhibits, or send an email to

Exhibit Design Search by Classic Exhibits

Updated Exhibit Design Search -- Over 1500 Displays and Exhibits

Exhibit Design Search

Classic’s Exhibit Design Search continues to evolve with new kits, features, and downloads. Here are several recent (and upcoming) enhancements:

  • Electrical and Cord Management Checklist
  • Brumark Flooring Galleries (within the next two weeks)
  • New Kits from Eco-Systems Sustainable Exhibits
  • Product Videos on Select Kits
  • Assembly Summaries
  • Packaging Options for Workstations, Counters, and Pedestals
  • “See Photos” Links to Specific Kits in Past Five Days Photo Gallery
  • EDS “Search Specific Rotations” (see example on Classic’s EDS site) — Available on on all sites by mid-July
  • Accessories/Options Links
  • Quadro Pop Up Prices with and without Graphics
  • STILL ONLY $300 (there’s no better investment for your website)

Summer Specials

At the request of a distributor, we have priced two of our most popular Visionary Designs kits at a ridiculously low price this summer:  VK-1032 and VK-2044. You know them as the iPhone kits. We’re still scratching our heads why we agreed to this . . . but what’s done is done.

  • VK-1032 | Regular Price:  $13,000  | Summer Price:  $9999
  • VK-2044 | Regular Price: $26,000  | Summer Price:  $19,999

SEGUE Silicone Edge Graphics Kits

We continue to introduce SEGUE Hybrid Kits. The latest introductions are in Design Monday this week. SEGUE kits use Silicone Edge Graphics and TSP profiles from ClassicMODUL. What makes these kits unique? You may think that SEG is appropriate only for large square or rectangle walls. You are half right.

While SEG extrusions are perfect for creating large seamless walls showing minimal aluminum extrusion, you shouldn’t be limited by that. Classic Exhibits can bend many of these extrusions and combine them with our other portable modular systems. This gives you significantly more design opportunities for inlines, islands, and event displays. Don’t ask our competitors to bend their extrusions unless you want to see them squirm like Reid Sherwood at a San Francisco vegan potluck.

Segue DM-0659 Hybrid Display

SEGUE DM-0659 Hybrid

Here are a few examples of SEGUE designs:

For more SEGUE designs, simply enter “SEGUE” in Exhibit Design Search.

TS2 in Boston (July 13-15)

Just in case you’re still waiting for an invitation . . . YOU ARE INVITED to TS2 in Boston! Kevin Carty, Reid Sherwood, Jim Shelman, and Mel White will be there from Classic Exhibits \ ClassicMODUL. Eric Albery will be there as well from Eco-Systems Sustainable. We’ll be showing SEG extrusions, new Magellan and Sacagwea kits, Exhibit Design Search, Rental Options, and lots more in our 20 x 20 island. Stop by. We’d enjoy seeing you.

Give us a call if you would like to arrange an appointment in the booth or outside show hours.

You can find us at booth #315. Download your Free EXPO Pass compliments of Classic Exhibits and ClassicMODUL.

Eco-Systems Sustainable Exhibits

In case you didn’t see the press release earlier this month, Classic Exhibits is now a significant equity partner in Eco-Systems Sustainable Exhibits. We’ve been strategic partners for nearly three years, and it just made sense to take the relationship to the next logical step. No later than Q3 2010, Eco-systems production will move to the Portland facility.

To read the complete press release, click on the following link.

Eco-systems Sustainable Exhibits