A few week ago (on the hottest day of the year) we invited media and bloggers to join us in our showroom for our Christmas Press Day. There was cake, there was a very cheesy playlist and there was lots of exciting new product. Join our Press Officer Emma as she takes us behind the scenes on the day.
I joined The Cambridge Satchel Company family just under a year ago, in October 2015. I work on the PR team as the Press Officer. My role is so varied and that’s what I love so much about it. One moment I will be briefing our two PR agencies, one based in the UK and the other in the US, if we have an upcoming event or product launching. Another moment, I will be speaking to the media, responding to photography and sample requests. One of my favourite things to work on is our press events which we run to launch our new products to journalists each season. I love putting the event together, everything from choosing how we will style it to what food we will serve everything and then hearing the press reactions to our new styles and colours. Monthly magazines work really far ahead (sometimes they write the magazine as far as four months before it hits the shops!) so we have to preview our collections a few months ahead of the product actually being available to buy. This means that we end up having to celebrate Christmas in July!
DIARY OF THE DAY:
July 2016, Covent Garden, London.
Picture the scene – it’s the hottest day of the year, with temperatures reaching over 30°, and we are celebrating Christmas!
On the week when we we were treated to our one and only heatwave of the summer in the UK, it took a three-(wo)man team just under ten hours to turn our London-based showroom into our very own CSC take on Christmas, including a fully-decorated Christmas tree, stockings hung above the fireplace and a personalised sack of festive treats for our Founder and CEO, Julie.
Given the sun was shining (for a change) our clever Creative team opted for a tinted window decoration depicting New Court’s Clock Tower of St John’s College in Cambridge with snowflakes all around. Tied with a screen showing a roaring fire you would have genuinely thought it was the middle of winter!
We showcased lots of exciting new styles and colours at the event, including a new texture for Christmas – Saffiano leather. It gives the leather a lovely premium feel with its cross-hatch finish. Journalists particularly loved the Gold Saffiano styles. Christmas, here we come!
Another huge hit with our journalist friends was our Midnight Blue and White star print. We usually only have printed leather for our collaborations , such as the iconic Vivienne Westwood squiggle print, so we were excited to unveil a new in-house print.
Here at The Cambridge Satchel Company we’re like one big family and what do you do when you invite your friends over to your family home? You bake! Our team made over 15 different sweet treats for the occasion, ranging from cherry bundt cake, chocolate brownies and Julie’s mum Freda even made her famous Welsh cakes! Our Global Communications Manager, Nicola, went to such great lengths that she woke up at 5am to ice her cupcakes, having failed to do so the previous evening because it was so hot that the icing wouldn’t set properly! Her hard paid off when journalists mistook her Great British Bake Off attempt for shop-bought!
For anyone who knows me you will know how much I love glitter, so when I first saw our exclusive Graphite Glitter and Multi Glitter styles I thought I must be dreaming. Both are the perfect party season bags. Now I just have to decide which I will be buying first, because obviously I need both!
You’ll know that at Christmas journalists help us shoppers out with Gift Guides often broken into categories such as “For Him”, “For Her” and “Stocking Fillers”. We were pleased that the journalists who attended found something for all the categories – we really do offer something for everyone. Our brand new range of small leather accessories fit perfectly into any “Stocking Fillers” category. The collection includes leather keyrings in shapes insoired by our Christmas collection including a heart, a star and a cloud. We’ve also added new embossing stamps, including a star, a moon, a heart, a cloud and a lightning bolt, the latter which should fit into their “For the Harry Potter Fanatics” category!
When I started working in PR almost five years ago, Twitter was the most-used social channel by media at events. A few years later Instagram was THE social channel, now Snapchat seems to be taking over. Throughout the day, we made sure to share snaps from the event with you (thanks for all your comments, we love hearing from you!). We even streamed live videos of Julie talking us through the new collection on Periscope. If you missed it you can check them out here.
So one star print, one Christmas tree, three stockings, three bottles of Elderflower cordial, ten hours of standing on our feet in very high heels, 15 baked treats, 15 Prosecco bottles, over 60 social posts, 120 photographs later and with over 150 days left until Christmas we called it a day!
Emma, Press Officer