“Fresh Food – Delivered Fast” with Classic Fare Catering

Having trouble choosing what food to serve in your showroom during market?  Or do you have the perfect place in mind, but the timing and pricing just aren’t right?  Look no further than Classic Fare Catering, AmericasMart’s on-site catering service, lead by head chef Martin Smetana.  Chef Smetana and his team of talented individuals make Classic Fare the perfect go-to destination for all of your catering needs here at AmericasMart, offering delicious and fresh food choices, excellent service and great pricing.

Recently, Classic Fare has released its new menu, created specifically with Showrooms in mind.  The new menu features a wide variety of options, including decadent French pastries, house-smoked pulled BBQ pork shoulder and fresh waldorf bleu salad. These mouth-watering options are sure to impress your guests and leave them coming back for another delicious bite during the next Market!

Chef Smetana and his team at Classic Fare Catering were kind enough to share one of their unique recipes with us to pass along to our readers.  Below you will find the recipe for their Watermelon and Spinach Salad, along with their Peach Vinegarette which is used to dress this light, summer salad.  We highly recommend trying this at home!

Watermelon & Spinach Salad










On a plate, alternate watermelon sections and baby spinach, as shown.

Top with feta cheese and pecans, olive oil, and drizzle with balsamic glaze. Serve immediately.

Catering 2     Catering 1

Peach Vinaigrette:

Yield 5 servings




Pinch of SALT

For more information on Classic Fare Catering and our other dining options, visit our Food Services webpage.

For all other inquires and to book services, contact Milena Hernandez at 404-220-2258.

Boston International Logo Change & Launch Party at AmericasMart

As companies grow, it’s imperative for their corporate images to evolve as well. One component of that change includes corporate identity. Embarking on a journey to change existing marketing materials is more of a challenge than some anticipate. Read about one company’s experience with updating their logo.

By Christina Soave
Public Relations, Product & Marketing Coordinator for Boston International, Inc.

No doubt it’s a scary leap to rebrand an established business- will people still recognize us? Will our consumers and employees like this change? How can this be done without harming the equity of the company? Will the ever-growing to-do-list of re-branding be too overwhelming?

Many of these questions were on the minds of Boston International employees when our company, a leader in gift housewares decided to re-brand the company and unveil a new logo this year. This would mark the most dramatic change in the company’s visual identity since its inception in 1986. The decision to make this change was made when we felt like our current logo wasn’t communicating our new “modern” and “evolving” direction.

Our first step was to reach out to a professional with marketing communications experience. That’s where Peter Harris Creative out of Keene, New Hampshire dove in to get us started. The entire process took about 6-8 weeks starting with an initial survey distributed to BI’s key players. The survey was for Peter Harris Creative to get a feel for our primary customers and their relationship with us, our critique on the current logo, desires for the new one and essentially what was working for us and what was not.

BI - Logo 2The critique of the previous logo concluded that our company name does not say a lot about our company or its products. It was also cumbersome, coming in at a whopping 7 syllables, therefore the new direction would focus on the initials “BI”, our nickname. It should also capture our company’s contemporary and energetic spirit.BI - Logo

The toughest part came with the design process, sorting through the varying ideas and opinions regarding the new logo concepts at hand. To get management and staff on the same page seemed to be a struggle. Choosing colors was another challenging task and involved lots of research about what different colors mean and what these colors say about you as a company. This led us to blue, a calming color, and orange, reflecting excitement and enthusiasm to make a balance. Lastly, we had to make sure the logo would work well graphically with our products, catalog and brand as a whole.

We learned that branding is reciprocal and feedback will vary. Once the initial logo was definite and its meaning clear, we were ready to share it and its meaning to our audience. The new logo accentuates our initials “BI” and captures the artistic nature of the company through an exclusive hand-drawn font and watercolor effect. We are excited to be unveiling our new logo at the Atlanta International Gift and Home Furnishing Market this July 2015. To share in our enthusiasm, we will be holding a launch party on Friday night during the show and giving away fashion totes sporting the new logo. We feel it’s a symbol of the many exciting developments to come for “BI”, and we hope to share our passion for the gift industry. The details for the party and other show specials can be found below.

Boston International Logo Launch Party

Boston International Showroom #819

AmericasMart- Building 2, 8th floor

Friday July 10th– 6pm-8pm

BI Show Specials:

Orders $300-$799 with immediate shipping receive a 5% freight cap

Orders $800 and more with immediate shipping receive Net60 and a 5% freight cap

Celebrity Sightings from Children’s World


This gallery contains 11 photos.

With more than 700 children’s lines open for orders during Atlanta Apparel, there’s something for everyone – even the children of Hollywood. Take a look at some recent celebrity sightings. Find all the lines at Atlanta Apparel at AmericasMart Atlanta. Next … Continue reading

The Top 10 List: The B-52s

Legendary party band, The B-52’s, began its musical career in the mid-70’s following drinks at a Chinese restaurant in Athens, GA.  After spending the beginning of its career road tripping for multiple gigs, the band’s music soon became a list of chart-topping hits.  Although the lively band has been around for over 34 years, its unique tunes are still favorites around the world.

Fred Schneider, frontman and founding member of the B-52’s, will be paying a visit to Atlanta, GA this July during The Atlanta International Gift and Home Furnishings Market.  On Friday, July 10, AmericasMart will be hosting “An Evening of Fun with  Fred Schneider of the B-52’s and DJ Vicky” on the Portman Blvd Patio. This must-see event is brought to Market by Monster Coffee.  

With the event just three short weeks away, we thought you’d want to start preparing for Fred’s visit now, so we put together a list of The B-52’s top ten hits.  Each song ranked in as follows:

1. “Love Shack” from album Cosmic Thing, released in 1989

2. “Rock Lobster” from album The B-52’s, released in 1979

3. “Roam” from album Cosmic Thing, released in 1989

4. “Private Idaho” from album Wild Planet, released in 1980

5. “52 Girls” from album Time Capsule, released in 1998

6. “Devil In My Car” from album Nude On The Moon: The B-52’s Anthology, released in 2002

7. “Mesopotamia” from the album Party Mix, released in 1991

8. “Meet The Flintstones”

9. “Planet Claire” from the album The B-52’s, released in 1979

10. “Wig” from the album Bouncing Off The Satellites, released in 1986

The Atlanta International Gift and Home Furnishings Market will take place Tuesday, July 7 – Tuesday, July 14.

Match much?

It’s no secret that the matching separates trend has been steadily making its way to front and center.  So, prepare to fill your closet with multiple sets of this easy, yet incredibly stylish duo for the upcoming seasons.  To top it all off, there isn’t much that the matching separates trend doesn’t work for — they look effortlessly chic for lunch dates, casual walks, nights out, traveling, and even lounging.

Don’t doubt the stylist combo just yet… Legendary music artist and fashion icon, Taylor Swift, seems to agree with us.  She has been rocking the trend left and right and was even the topic of a recent Teen Vogue article talking about her love for all things matchy matchy. They mentioned her gorgeous, yet affordable white and powder blue matching set that she wore on a lunch date with her beau, Calvin Harris.

While keeping our eyes peeled at Atlanta Apparel last week for repeated trends across multiple showrooms and the fashion runway, the matching separates trend caught our eye.  The trend has picked up on a few shapes and sizes lately and we have a feeling you’re going to be a fan.  We’ve included a few of our picks for all week long.

For the work week:

Matchy 2    Matchy 1

This trend just made getting dressed for your nine to five a lot easier.  Not only can you wear these two pieces together, but you can mismatch them with other items in your closet to create a multitude of outfit choices.  These two options are appropriate for the office and still make a stylish statement.  We have to admit, they look pretty comfortable, too.  Throw on a pair of nude pumps or a comfy pair of flats and you’re good to go!

For the weekend:

Matchy 7    Matchy 6

Lets talk about comfort… These matching sets are perfect for lounging all weekend long.  Have some errands to run?  No biggie, just switch out the comfy sweats for your favorite pair of jeans.  These two styles by Bobeau work for any age and their excellent quality ensures that they will last.  Side note: the One-Button Fleece Wrap Cardigan on the right is one of Nordstrom’s best sellers!

For fun:

Matchy 5    Mathcy 3

There isn’t much more to say about these two sets, other than the fact that you need at least one of them in your closet this season!  The fringe detail and embellishments add the perfect touch without over doing it.  They are incredibly fashionable and can be worn during the day or for a night out.  We think T-Swift would approve of these, and who knows, we may see her rocking one on one of the latest fashion magazines.

Find styles like these and much more at Atlanta Apparel, taking place Thursday, August 6 – Monday, August 10.

Items in images 2, 3 and 4 – Reeves & Company Showroom in Building 3, Floor 9, E110B.

Items in images 1, 5 and 6 – UnCommon Fashion Showroom in Building 3, Floor 9, S119.

ICON HONORS 2015 Lifetime Achievement Honor Goes to Howard Henschel of The Norman Group

Howard Henschel -  The Norman Group, Inc - May 5, 2015 © Michael Mancuso

Howard Henschel – The Norman Group, Inc     May 5, 2015 © Michael Mancuso

The 2015 Lifetime Achievement Honor celebrates Henschel’s four decades of leadership in the gift industry and marks the longevity and growth of Norman’s Hallmark, founded 75 years ago with a single store in Trenton, New Jersey.

Under Henschel’s direction and vision, Norman’s Hallmark has grown to become one of the largest Hallmark Gold Crown retailers in the country with 46 stores located throughout the Philadelphia area and central New Jersey.

“Howard Henschel is the epitome of the American success story,” notes Portman.  “His achievements are grounded in the genius of private enterprise, which ICON HONORS has long championed.  Howard’s long and prolific career is but a precursor to what he will yet accomplish,” Portman adds.

At the 2015 Ceremonies, the home and gift industry’s best and brightest will be celebrated.  Guests will enjoy a cocktail reception, dinner and a live performance by legendary duo Hall & Oates in an unforgettable evening of inspiration in celebration of this year’s finalists and Honorees.

The ICON HONORS 2015 celebration is scheduled for Thursday, July 9 at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta.  Please visit www.ICONHONORS.com for details and to purchase tickets and tables.

Purchase tickets now!

Right On! Fashion is Steppin’ Out for Fall/Winter


Is it 1972 or 2015? This fall, it might be hard to tell from the viewpoint of the fashion world. As the fashion world once again looks back to move ahead, the time machine buyermoves past the neon colors and geometric angles of the 1980s to the free flowing styles of the 1970s. Check out looks from the June 2015 Atlanta Apparel Market.

There’s fringe, fringe and even more fringe but not the yarn and thread of the more boho looks. This is born of the abundance of leather and suede that’s filling showrooms and will soon be available at retail. Not just spotlighted in accessories – although boots and certainly bags have more than their share – this   season fringe is swinging from vests, pants, skirts and dresses.

Vintage Fringe McCall pattern              Love Riche

Maxis are everywhere offering a style that flatters almost any woman. Bold prints add vibrant interest to the fabrics that flow but don’t overwhelm.

Vintage Maxi                     Gracia

Diane von Furstenbeg said her wrap style dress would go from day to evening and flatter any figure. It did in the 1970s and still does in 2015.

Diane Von Furstenberg                     All for Color

No one says 1970s fashion like Cher. She wore a headband like no other, and they are back but suited to almost any hair style, not just ironed straight. With an endless array of embellishments, there are options for casual to dress looks. Felted hats are another must-have for the season, and the floppier the better, reminiscent of Faye Dunaway’s timeless look.

Cher Pink   faye dunaway Very_J

Denim hit its stride in the ’70s with both men and women opting for what was called the “before of after anything” jumpsuit. Today’s version is updated with improved fabrics and more flow. Platform shoes with chunky wooden heels took runways and discos by storm. The modern versions are slightly more practical with definite improvements in materials, construction and especially comfort without sacrificing style.

Vintage            Bed Stu

Taking a cue from the hipsters and hollywood divas of the ’70s, nothing says winter style like fur with a multitude of faux options ready to go in “real” and colored cuts.

Vintage Fur Vest                  TCEC

Farrah Fawcett, Bianca Jagger. Lauren Hutton or Diana Ross. No matter which style icon you’d choose to emulate, there are myriad options for contemporary looks inspired by the designers who made the 1970s a decade of bold choices and radical style. Find it all at Atlanta Apparel.