Due to unusually high demand orders may be delayed
Due to unusually high demand orders may be delayed

Makers Central 2022 – what a ride!

The Makers Central show has always been a highlight in the maker and creator calender. Typically, packed to the rafters with some of the world’s geatest creative influencers. And Makers Central 2022 certainly didn’t disappoint! With a swift but manic build up preparing for the show, it was touch and go as to if we would ever get there. But get there we did and we couldn’t have wished for a more epic event.

Getting ready for Makers Central

For obvious reasons the 2020 and 2021 shows couldn’t go ahead. And as you know we’ve seen a lot of changes here during that time! So our plans for the show have had to change and evolve too. In fact, they didn’t stop changing right up to the point we left for Birmingham the day before the show!

We were bailed out of some print and display issues by some fabulous local companies. Prism Design and Print and Spatial TV in Northwich amongst them. And the fantastic Tiny Box Company and Warnhill Tools also came up trumps in getting us equipped and ready. Big thanks to all of you!

The show itself

Makers Central is a really big date in our diary. It’s full of just the kind of people who know, use and can get excited about Shadow Foam just as much as we do. So this year we took two exhibition stands at the show. One was our main product stand showcasing the toolbox inserts we make and allowing people to purchase product and learn more about the foam from us. The second became our Makers Central Studio. And this is where we conducted one to one chats with many of the makers, affiliates and influencers at the show. And what a hive of activity both stands proved to be.

The Makers

We already knew many of the makers and influencers who were going to be at the show. And a number of our Shadow Foam Affiliates were planning on being there too. But on top of that we also made lots of new friends from the maker influencer scene. In most cases we were super lucky to land interviews with them too.

Nick Zammeti, show organiser and also one of our Affiliates was incredible in not only managing to pull off such a great event, but finding time to speak to us too. Of our other affiliates, we were also buzzing to get to spend time with Ruth Amos who was there representing her Kids Invent Stuff channel. Additionally the great Jimson’s Stuff, Matt Estlea, JP Woodwork, Peach Tree Crafting, Deer River Craftsman, Country Wood Girl and the Blue Light Turner’s Workshop were all there and spent some time with us. To hear more from them keep an eye out on our YouTube channel and socials as lots of interviews and makes will be coming out soon.

Affiliate Mark from Peach Tree Crafting with his custom jerry can Dremmel case which he made alongside Jonathan at the show

All round genius and top bloke to boot, Colin Furze was there and chatted to us about his experiences using Shadow Foam and lots of other interesting stuff. As did other top names like Derek from Malden, Jimmy Diresta, Tim Sway, Giaco Whatever, Integza, Peter Brown, Matt Denton and James Bruton.

Legendary inventor Colin Furze talks Shadow Foam and all things creative with Jonathan at Makers Central 2022

The ones that got away!

As is typical at a busy show, we didn’t get to sit down with absolutely everyone we wanted to. However it was good to see old friends Brothers Make there alongside one of Jonathan’s favourites, Crimson Guitars, and other awesome creators like Bobby Duke Arts.

If you didn’t already know, Nick Zammeti’s son Charlie is also a maker and influencer in his own right now too! He made his debut outing at Makers Central 2022; check out his brilliant Charlie the Maker channel and watch out for the great chat we had with him. Other new friends that we met and got to know a little better at the show included the awesome Dan from Zebrano Wood Craft, Frank’s Shed, Switch and Lever, Highland Boxes, Average Joe’s Joinery, Crafts with Ellen and KK Make.

Insights

Through the interviews we held, we have gained some amazing insights into the world of makers and innovators. However large or small the influencers’ reach, it was interesting to learn how a lot faced the same challenges. Often too they offered variations of the same advice for new up-and-coming creators. But we also got some real golden snippits. Bona-fide tips and strategies to help any maker or content creator on their journey. We will be sharing more of those interviews and insights over coming weeks and months, so watch out for those.

What else we got up to at the show

We were excited to see our friends there from Make Gosport. We supported them a while back with some Shadow Foam for their awesome makerspace. They put some of it to great use in the shape of a tool wall challenge which was brilliant fun. And much to the delight of our YouTube manager Matt, we were neighbouring the stunning Robot Wars arena. Thanks to presenter Rob Taylor-Hastings, the boys were invited backstage into the robot inner sanctum. They got to spend time getting to know the house robots and were given a pit lane tour.

Shadow Foam production manager Mike taking up the Make Gosport tool wall challenge after hours at the NEC.

Makers Central 2023?

Oh yes, don’t mind if we do! But we want your help and feedback about what giveaway we create for our fellow makers and influencers at next year’s show. So 2019 was the famous “Poop Kit”, and 2022 as you’ve seen was our “Influencer Protection Kit” so as for 2023…? Hit us with your best suggestions!

Makers Central 2019 makers gift – the original Poop Kit
Were you lucky enough to bag one of our hallmark SHadow Foam gifts at the show?  Makers Central 2022 saw the arrival of the Influencer Protection kit in the shape of this Spud Gun.  A great British classic!
Makers Central 2022 Makers Gift – the classic spud gun Influencer Protecton Kit – with thanks to Raspberry Pi for sharing!

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