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˅ Exhibition Overview ˅

press releases

Europe’s largest creativity exhibition delights visitors

Almost 700 exhibitors from 25 countries

Digital blogger scene at CREATIVA for the first time

Première of the CAKE DREAMS exhibition is well received


Special guest and cake decorating artist David MacCarfrae creating an XXL wedding cake at CAKE DREAMS.

Vegan Head Chef Björn Moschinski as a guest on the CAKE DREAMS stage where he is demonstrating how vegan baking is done to the audience.

“Is that really edible?”. Quite a few visitors must have asked themselves that question when viewing the many displayed creations and works of art produced by the participants of the cake competition.

Claudia Pfeil from Quilt & Co presenting the worldwide première of her ‘Scrapology’ show quilt and six far-travelled top-class show quilts, which have received several international awards, on the activity stage in Hall 4.

Beads were again very popular this year. Visitors found everything that a heart for beads desires in the topic world of PerlenExpo.

Diverse workshops at numerous exhibitor stands attracted many visitors like here at the stand of the NOCH company.

One of the speakers at this year’s CREATIVA StartUpDay 2018: Martin Christopher Welker from UPCYCLINGLIGHTS. He told participants of the Start-up Day how they can make art, career and family life compatible.

The ‘Laser Cat’ at the Handmade Market in Hall 7 showed visitors what can be cut with a laser. Materials, such as paper, cardboard, felt, MDF, plexiglass and many others, pose no problems and that is how the individual CREATIVA lettering was produced.

“Edible Fashion in the High Rococo Style”: Mandy Janus (left) from Görlitz and Victoria Konzack (right) from Lebusa.

Messe Dortmund GmbH managed to firmly book Enie van de Meiklokjes as one of the special guests at CAKE DREAMS 2019.

The winners of the DORTEX Design Award in 2018.

From 14 to 18 March 2018, 683 exhibitors from 25 countries presented their wide and diverse offer of creativity products and techniques at Europe’s largest exhibition for creative design. Despite bad weather conditions on Saturday and the BVB football match on Sunday, CREATIVA 2018 attracted more than 78,000 creativity fans and bloggers to the Dortmund Exhibition Centre with its wide product offer, special shows and numerous workshops. The new CAKE DREAMS exhibition, which took place for the first time at the weekend of CREATIVA, was well received. “With CAKE DREAMS, we have once again successfully improved the Europe-wide known and highly acclaimed CREATIVA offer,” summarised Sabine Loos, CEO of Westfalenhallen Dortmund GmbH.

The survey conducted by an independent exhibition market research institute showed: Besides many visitors from the neighbouring Benelux countries, guests also came from many other countries to CREATIVA, for example, from France, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. Every fourth visitor travelled 50 to 100 kilometres. 33 per cent even accepted a distance of more than 100 kilometres or even 300 kilometres. Besides the international visitors, there were visitors from all German states, particularly from North Rhine Westphalia. Conspicuous is the overrepresentation of females at the exhibition. About 94 per cent of creative visitors are women.

Getting ideas, discovering innovations and shopping for creativity products
Important reasons for a visit to CREATIVA included the desire for creative ideas and inspirations and the interest in innovations. The majority of visitors came with the firm intention of buying something at the exhibition. 95 per cent of the visitors also realised that intention. Each ‘creative mind’ spent on average 171 euros on products and materials from the exhibitors at CREATIVA. That resulted in sales totalling 12.7 million at the exhibition. 

Visitors were particularly interested in decorative and art and craft materials, fabrics and patchwork, yarns and wool, stamps, paper, scrapbooking, cards and decorative arts.

“The interest in creative design is unabated in 2018,” said Gerlinde Karg at CREATIVA’s press conference. The Managing Director and Chairman of the Hobby-Kreativ e.V. association is very pleased that there is also very positive feedback on last year’s sales from the offline retailers in the creativity sector.

Highlights of this year‘s exhibition were the LandGarten horticulture and rural lifestyle exhibition with its creative Easter inspirations, the Textile Handicraft Forum and the Handmade Market that especially reflect the desire for individual and high-quality products. The exhibition was given a rating of 1.9 based on the German grading system for its offer range.

Handicraft and design talents awarded for creativity
A special feature of CREATIVA is the presentation of awards to very creative talents. The DORTEX Design Award took place again this year. The competition is organised by the Dortmund-based DORTEX company, and the selection of the winners was done by an expert jury in co-operation with the exhibition organiser at CREATIVA.

In the run-up to the exhibition, 150 creative talents applied for the DORTEX Design Award with 303 projects and submitted 552 works of art in the six categories, i.e. ‘sewing & tailoring’, ‘costume design’, ‘knitting & crocheting’, ‘textile art’, ‘fashion design’, ‘innovative creations’, and the ‘Best Youngster’ special category. The finalists could show their designs to a competent audience in a fashion show on the activity stage in Hall 4 during the opening of CREATIVA 2018. The winners came, for example, from Hattingen, Leverkusen and Dusseldorf. (All winners at

A special feature this year: The candidates reached a nation-wide audience via the first-time live stream from CREATIVA by the broadcasting station. The presentation before an audience represents the first important step towards a professional future because the young designers not only receive the renowned ‘DORTEX Design Award Winner’ title but also prize money of 10,750 euros for the further equipping of their studio or creativity workshop.

The most beautiful edible dress award goes to the best couture creation
The third Queens’ Battle took place during this year’s CREATIVA. The 2018 motto of Germany’s only live competition in baking and cake decorating was ‘Edible Fashion in the High Rococo Style’.

Four teams of two persons worked on the life-sized edible works of art before the eyes of the visitors in Hall 4 on all CREATIVA exhibition days. The high-calibre jury from the cake decorating scene and fashion world, consisting of Jury Chairman Jens Oprzondek, Kristina Rado, Katharina Kraft and Sky Lange-Ford, selected the best couture creation with the greatest surprise effect, with many arguments, observations and expertise on Saturday evening and Sunday morning.  “Team D, consisting of Mandy Janus from Görlitz and Victoria Konzack from Lebusa, therefore won the competition. A team that faced many difficulties, did not give up and courageously implemented its ideas and believed in its vision during the entire live battle,” said cake designer Kristina Rado.

Designer and jury member Sky Lange-Ford emphasised again the outstanding performance of all participants who did not make the decision easy for the jury: “What a Battle! The live challenge at CREATIVA has again proven that the creation of edible fashion is a completely different challenge compared to a cake competition. The eight participants must bring along a great deal of courage, energy, perseverance and talent in order to stand their ground here.  All four sugar paste dress creations have their own charm and became perfect, edible dresses in the High Rococo style.”

StartUpDay was well received
Every tenth visit to CREATIVA 2018 is due to the own career or occupational training. Quite a few people dream about becoming self-employed with their own ideas or own products and being able to later live from such income. Plucking up the courage to take the first step towards self-employment and making your dream come true requires not only the idea but also good support. And that is exactly what the CREATIVA StartUpDay is about. The Germany-wide unique concept for persons interested in becoming self-employed in the creative sector offered a whole day of concentrated knowledge of experts from this sector for the third time. The topics ranged from design rights and copyrights, pricing and quotation pricing to online marketing and e-commerce. Experts from the creative sector talked about their start-up experience and presented successful concepts and networks. The well-attended lectures on the activity stage in Hall 4 and the fully booked workshops in Hall 3A show that there is a demand for such a day, which is also extensively used.

Stefan Niehues-Ellermann, who models figurines with great talent and has already worked for brands like Ferrero (surprise egg), Schleich S and the Coppenrath publishing house in Munster, is the inventor of BeeSputtY, a special plasticine with which he is currently conquering the US market. The speaker on the ‘Modelling – from a professional for a professional’ topic participated in the StartUpDay for the first time and sees the StartUpDay as being a sensible addition to the CREATIVA programme. “After my speech, there were many questions about product launch, legal conditions, costing and pricing etc. A start-up needs more than just a good idea. Previously, you had to teach yourself everything, read a lot or learn from the mistakes you made. The StartUpDay gives a good overview of everything that needs to be considered for self-employment within a day.”

CAKE DREAMS celebrates its successful première
A crowded hall and satisfied visitors – that is the feedback from the first CAKE DREAMS exhibition at the Dortmund Exhibition Centre at the weekend of CREATIVA. The idea of holding the international exhibition for creative baking as part of CREATIVA was given the rating ‘good’ Three quarters of the visitors liked the additional offer of CAKE DREAMS. That was also the impression of Agnes Linsen, winner of the ‘Das große Backen’ baking contest show on the Sat1 TV channel in 2016, and course instructor and owner of Cake4friends. She shared the necessary knowledge for working with sugar paste icing in her workshops at CREATIVA and created small unicorns and muffins with the workshop participants: “The visitors I met were really very satisfied and some left with full shopping bags.   Our workshops were also very well received. Many adults and children were interested in working with sugar paste icing. Some of them worked with it for the first time. I would be pleased if I managed to give some participants pleasure and fun and show how you can create fantastic works of art in a short time.”

Besides Agnes Linsen, other well-attended workshops included those by Gabriela Rüscher on wafer paper floristry, by Isabel Tamargo on 3D busts and by Roger Hassler on cake decoration using the airbrush technique. The visitors particularly enjoyed the stage programme of CAKE DREAMS. For example, the ‘Vegan Head Chef’ Björn Moschinski showed how vegan baking is done and the Cake Doctor answered many questions about cakes and baking. Social media stars like Kiki from Kiki’s Kitchen and Carrie from Carrie Dot demonstrated their skills and divulged tips and tricks about baking, modelling and decorating.

Bloggers conquer the exhibition halls – the special guest for 2019 has been selected
About 150 bloggers and social media stars like Sylvie Rasch, DIY Eule (DIY Owl) and Madeleine & Flo from ‘Das Backstübchen’(The Little Bakery)  and   Nicoles Zuckerwerk (Nicole’s Sugarcraft)  were at CREATIVA and CAKE DREAMS to report on the colourful diversity of products, workshops and special shows and to meet their fans face-to-face for a change.
Enie van de Meiklokjes will also convince herself of the diverse offer of the exhibitions in the coming year. Messe Dortmund GmbH managed to firmly book her as one of the special guests at CAKE DREAMS 2019.

A visit to CREATIVA 2019 already entered in the diary
80.1 per cent of the persons asked felt good at CREATIVA. The visit to the exhibition was therefore given the overall rating of ‘good’. It is therefore not surprising that almost 91 per cent intend to recommend CREATIVA to relatives, friends and acquaintances. The wide and diverse offer convinced 91 per cent of the visitors, who want to come again in 2019.
About 80 per cent of the exhibitors have already decided to participate in the next CREATIVA exhibition.

Europe’s largest exhibition will open its doors to visitors and exhibitors in 2019 on 13 – 17 March.

CREATIVA and CAKE DREAMS 2018 – Exhibitor and Partner Testimonials

Frances Evans, CEO, Member of the Board of Directors of Media Group Medweth, OZ publishing company:

"We are very satisfied with CREATIVA 2018.  Our workshops were very well attended, the Sabrina fashion show was well received by customers and we very much enjoyed the lively exchange of information with the Community. This exchange of information is a source for the development of new ideas for our business. The exhibition was very inspiring for us again this year!"

Sylvie Rasch, YouTuber, entrepreneur and creative author:
“Those who want to get to know their target group simply must be here at CREATIVA. Young and old are here. I could even welcome fans from Austria because they do not have anything similar to CREATIVA there. I was actually permanently busy with visitors on the stand.”

Antonio Morelli, Sales Representative at ‘Morelfil’ from Italy:
“The visitors here at CREATIVA are high-quality and very interested. Sales were good and we are very satisfied. We will definitely come again next year.

Dieter Schumacher, Managing Director at ‘Kunst & Kreativ’ Franchise (Art and Creativity Franchise):
“At CREATIVA, we use a representative area where the industry conducts practical market research. Here, several thousand people take part daily in eight workshops with continuously changing participants. Many courses to which we invite through social media are already fully booked before the exhibition starts. This year, it was even the first time ever that the manufacturer Royal Posthumus exhibited its products at an end user exhibition.”

Lisa Buttlar, Deputy Branch Manager of ‘Stoff & Stil’ (Fabric & Style):
“We have been in business since 2016 and our popularity increases from one exhibition to the next. Many customers even come to our shop in Dortmund whilst the exhibition is still going on. Our sales at CREATIVA are even higher than last year. After the exhibition in 2017, we decided to book a larger exhibition stand but we did not expect such a rush for our products. Our great advantage is that the Dortmund shop is close by: It allows us to replenish the empty shelves at the exhibition on a daily basis.”

Deborah Schneider from Made by Rosalie:
“It is great that the Handmade Market where we exhibit is in the middle of the action. It suits the exhibition concept very well and is well received. Our stand got more crowded each day.”

Saori Abe-Schröder , Owner of Twinkle Beads:
“CREATIVA is always an advertising opportunity for us. Many customers who come to our shop have specifically looked for it. Here at the exhibition, there are also many visitors who did not know us before but afterwards want to come to our shop. A superb opportunity to win new customers.

Jens Oprzondek from the Cake Company, Head of the  Cake Academy and “Cake Doctor” at the CAKE DREAMS exhibition:
“The combination of CREATIVA and CAKE DREAMS is a very good idea. CREATIVA already has a very large number of visitors and so many of them are creative people. They see here that their creativity can now be transferred from polymer material to the edible area. Some visitors told me that they have already been looking for that for years. The quality level of the artists at CAKE DREAMS is high and March is an ideal month for such an exhibition.”

Mouna Haddouch, Owner of Torty’s Shop:
“Sales at CAKE DREAMS are really fantastic. It’s like a ‘home game’ for us here because it is so close to Dortmund. It was clear to us that we had to exhibit here to increase customer awareness and reach and win new customers. We were represented in the cake area in the last few years, too. A flyer campaign showed last year that many exhibition visitors wanted to visit our Torty’s Shop in Dortmund afterwards. We are really very pleased about that.”
Thomas Heinzen, Managing Director of the Cake Company:
“The last few years at the exhibition have always been very successful for us. People come to our stand in order to touch and see the items and subsequently buy all sorts of accessories from us on the stand. The visitors have very well understood and accepted the concept that cake decorating and cake design are creative areas and expect it when they visit this exhibition.”

Patrizia Paganotti, Owner of Illimani Italia:
“The CAKE DREAMS exhibition is an ideal place to go to win new customers in Germany and to increase customer awareness. Sales were already very good on our first day here. We look forward to coming again next year.”

Basic Information on the Exhibition at a Glance

Messe Westfalenhallen Dortmund GmbH

Visitor Target Group:
People who do creative work in their leisure time or profession or who want to buy individually designed items.

Occupied Halls:
Halls 3A, 3B and Halls 4 to 8

CREATIVA Programme (Excerpts):
CREATIVA – DIY and Individuality at Europe’s Exhibition for Creative Design, Halls 4 - 8

DORTEX Design Award, Halls 4 and 7
Activity stages, Halls 4 and 8
Bastelzirkus (Art and Craft Circus), Hall 8
Handmade Market, Hall 7
fokus.kreatives.handwerk (Forum for Arts and Crafts), Hall 4
Regional KREATIV SEIN! (BE CREATIVE in your region), Hall 7
Queens’ Battle, Cake decorating & design, Hall 4

CREATIVA professional – Job, Career, Start-Ups in the Creative Sector, Halls 4 and 6
Activity stage of CREATIVA professional, Hall 6
StartUpDay – Expert Forum for Founders in the Creative Sector, Halls 4 and 3A
Textile Handicraft Forum, Hall 6
Playing, Learning & Experimenting – FamilyGames e.V., Hall 6

PerlenExpo – The Whole World of Bead Jewellery, Hall 5
Exhibition by SWAROVSKI Create your Style: ‘Wanderlust’
Designer Village
PerlenExpo Workshop Area powered by PADICO Jewellery 2 GO

LandGarten – Horticulture and Rural Lifestyle, Hall 5
Demonstrations of ‘Spring Flower Arrangement’ with Brigitte Heinrichs

Puppen & Bären – Salon for Doll and Teddy Lovers, Hall 7
Free-of-charge value estimates for your Barbie Dolls

CAKE DREAMS Programme (Excerpts):
Specials & Stage Programme
Special guest David MacCarfrae
Baking show with Björn Moschinski, Vegan Head Chef
Cake competition: Award ceremony and cake display
Cake Doctor: The baking and cake specialist

Artists and Workshops
Agnes Linsen, e.g. modelling a unicorn with sugar paste icing
Nico Stenger, ‘Der kleine ErdBär’ workshop
Isabel Tamargo, ‘Tito, the little goat’
Roger Hassler, cake decoration using the airbrush technique 
CakePop Queen Aga, Cake Pop creations and 3D cakes

CREATIVA is a climate-friendly event
Climate-damaging emissions are not only caused by air flights. It goes without saying that the holding of an exhibition also involves the consumption of electricity, fuel and materials. The CAKE DREAMS exhibition is setting an example because Messe Westfalenhallen Dortmund GmbH in its capacity as organiser supports energy projects of the ‘Klima-Kollekte’ Initiative, a carbon-offsetting fund. About 13 tonnes of CO2 are offset in developing and newly industrialised countries as a result and the sustainable development of the local population is promoted at the same time.



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