Explore, Discover and Buy in the Temps

Shop Temps for the Next Big Thing

AWH_PHOTO-8131-2To set their shops apart from competitors, successful buyers purchase not only top-selling merchandise, but also exclusive products that customers can’t easily find in other stores. To fulfill this shopping mission, the cleverest among them head straight to Temporaries at AmericasMart to peruse one of the most expansive such collections in the nation for both home, gift and apparel.

“Temps is where the next big trends emerge,” says Jo Ann Miller Marshall, executive vice president, AmericasMart Atlanta. “Experts from our team search the country – and the globe — to find exhibitors offering unique items.” The selections are culled from trips to about 75 different locations, including stops in Paris, Frankfurt, High Point, New York and Las Vegas. It involves a lot of research, talking and listening to manufacturers and artists, and many miles of “boots on the ground.” With deep experience in their category niches and a passion for what they do, these buyers have a knack for identifying what’s in vogue and a nose for the next big thing.

For example, the nationwide sensation Elf on the Shelf rose to popularity in the market’s Temps area. In fact, many of the permanent showrooms initially started as temporary exhibitors.

“Temporaries is an incubator for tomorrow’s permanent showroom space,” explains Marshall. “If you are just now discovering a line in showroom, five years ago you could have been ahead of the curve if you had discovered them in temps. This approach enables exhibitors to cultivate a buyer base and move up to showrooms.”

Style-driven collections
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Some temps areas feature juried collections, vetted for discerning buyers. For Gift & Home Markets, these include Boutique, Emerging Artists, Gardens LUXE, Gentleman’s Boutique, Gourmet LUXE, Handmade Design, Handmade Jewelry, HIGH DESIGN®, HIGH DESIGN® LUXE, Made in America, Modern Baby & Contemporary Kid, On Trend Gifts and Tabletop LUXE. During Apparel, there’s Premiere®, Young Contemporary, Ready-To-Wear, Shoe Studio, Fashion Accessories, Children’s World and more.

The January and July Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Markets feature more than 4,000 temporary booths in 33 product categories, each conveniently located near the related permanent showroom space. Each Apparel Market feature multiple floors of temps, with a broad range of price points and style designations.

“This arrangement makes it easy for buyers to locate products,” says Marshall. In addition, the AmericasMart App (americasmart.com/app) enhances the shopping experience, packed with information to help you navigate, gain the most from the show and enhance your efficiency.

“Temps at our Apparel Markets constantly break new ground. We have lines that end upAWH_PHOTO-4660-2 being named among Oprah’s favorites. And, our Emerging Designer Showcase provide the next great names in design an opportunity to meet top buyers,” says Marshall.

“One of the distinctive aspects of our major January and July shows is an equal focus on home and gift,” says Marshall. We want buyers to leave the Market with a feeling of excitement. Shopping temps gives you the opportunity to find that new line that no one else in your town has discovered.”

Shop Temporaries in all three buildings, organized by product collection, during the January and July Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market and in designated locations during the other Markets of the year. 

Raising a Glass

Here’s to increased barware and stemware sales

waterford-mixology-mad-men-editionThank Don Draper: The suave fictional character from Mad Men deserves credit for helping to fuel the current cocktail craze, which is boosting sales of barware and glassware across the country. Consumers are buying more specialized glassware than they have in decades. Learn to understand the finer points of barware and stemware to ensure you have the right selection for your store. Here are some starting points when you’re shopping AmericasMart:

  • Keep it simple. Don’t overwhelm with too many choices, particularly wine glasses. Most customers will only need a red wine glass and a white wine glass, and perhaps a champagne flute.
  • Partner with reps or manufacturers for employee education. Your staff should be knowledgeable about everything from the composition and manufacturing processes of the products, to the various shapes of glasses and stems.
  • Brush up on your beer knowledge. The craft beer movement shows no signs of slowing down, and you can increase your customer base – especially of men –by carrying an assortment of craft beer glasses. If you have a beer shop or a growler shop in your area, consider co-marketing with them to promote both of your businesses.
  • Offer brochures or other flyers that have facts, information and care instructions about the different materials used for your glassware, whether it’s glass, crystal, lead-free crystal, or acrylic/co-polyester.
  • Partner with a local restaurant or bar for a cocktail seminar. The mixologist or bartender can teach your customers how to make a cocktail, and you can promote glassware, serving pieces, and other entertaining items.

Waterford_London_Desktop_bar_BB_Italia“It seems everyone’s doing a spin on classic cocktails,” says Price Ketchiff, vice president of retail sales for the U.S. and Canada for Crystal of America. “The push from Mad Men has helped revive the speakeasy, and we’re seeing a lot of craft cocktails in the restaurant and bar scene. People are paying attention to that and replicating it at home.” Crystal of America is the parent company for Riedel, Spiegelau and Nachman.

Some of the most popular glassware shapes include double old fashioneds and highballs, as well as a revival of the coupe shape: a curvier version of a martini glass or champagne saucer.

Fortessa2“When you’re out at a restaurant or a bar, you see a lot more cocktail menus than ever before,” agrees Lara Aldrich, vice president for the consumer products division of Fortessa, parent company for Schott Zwiesel and D&V. Like Ketchiff, Aldrich sees the coup champagne glass as being a strong seller, and also sees growth in whisky glasses of all types, whether for neat pours, double old fashioneds or whisky based cocktails.

And speaking of Mad Men, Waterford scored the trendy show’s license for a barware line. The Mad Men collection helped Waterford expand the already hot barware business with designs inspired by the 1960s, says Rick Fencel, vice president of sales for independent accounts.

In terms of wine glasses, casualization just keeps going to a new level every year, translating into the growing popularity of stemless wine glasses. The other trend is in softer and curvier shapes, and more attention to detail.

spiegelau-beer-tasting-setAlong with cocktails, the craft beer movement is also gaining momentum, and with it, beer glasses that are specially shaped to complement different beer varieties. Spiegelau has several different beer glass shapes, including a recently introduced IPA glass, as well as glasses for stout, pilsner, lager, Belgian ale and hefeweissen (wheat beer). As with wine glasses, “The shape of the [beer] glass plays a role in the transfer of taste and aroma to your palate,” says Ketchiff. Rather than working with designers, Spiegelau develops glass shapes with sensory workshops; in the case of its IPA glass, the company held a workshop with Dogfish Head Brewery.

The Latest about Lead

Schott ZwieselMore and more manufacturers are making lead-free crystal and glass, on the heels of California’s Prop 65, which requires retailers in that state to post warnings to consumers about products with lead content. While manufacturers say that the lead content in crystal was never enough to endanger consumers, the legislation has encouraged them to find other ways to give strength and clarity to their glass formulations.

All crystal glassware has a metal component, so manufacturers seek alternatives that can lend similar properties. For M. Block, this means a new material called Kwarx, which has the clarity and look of lead crystal, but twice the strength of regular glass, and the durability to be washed in commercial dishwashers without clouding over time. Kwarx is used to make stemware including red wine balloons and tulips for white wines, says Don Brown, the recently retired vice president of the Block House division.

And Schott Zwiesel crystal is made of Triton Crystal, which contains titanium oxide in place of lead, for added strength and brilliance. Other manufacturers, similarly, have their own proprietary crystal formulations to take advantage of various minerals and ingredients that will give crystal the look, durability, and enduring clarity of lead crystal.

One word: Plastics

LeadingwareCasualization as another strong trend in barware – mason jars affixed to wine stems, for example – and with that comes acrylic, which is a strong seller for outdoor entertaining, poolside or picnics. LeadingWare Group offers a plastic material created by the Eastman company; Tritan Co-polyester. It is touted as being 90 percent as clear as crystal, unbreakable, dishwasher safe, and BPA-free. This material is being used to make elegant, high-end stemware and barware shapes that have the advantage of being virtually indestructible. It’s reusable (but also recyclable), which makes it a greener option than disposable plastic drinkware that’s often used at outdoor parties.

To educate consumers about this option, Judy Ko, CEO of Leadingware Group, encourages retailers to arrange for wine tastings so consumers can get used to sipping from this type of drinking vessel, and to realize that they are a far cry from cheap disposable stemware. “They can understand that these are ‘real’ wine glasses,” and that drinking from them doesn’t negatively affect the experience of enjoying a glass of wine.

 

For more information: Fortessa Tableware Solutions 800.296.7508, fortessa.com; M. Block/Block House – 800.621.8845, mblock.com; Leadingware714.965.1616, leadingware.us; Crystal of America888.4RIEDEL, riedelusa.net; Lenox800.223.4311, lenox.com; Waterford877.720.3485, waterford.com. 

 

Outside the Lines

The modern American backyard is better than ever

Intro section image A-2Between staycations and everyday hustle and bustle, people are savoring the time they get to spend at home. The idea of entertaining friends and enjoying family time extends from bigger kitchens to home theaters to outdoor rooms.

A broader array of products and materials that are more durable – and more stylish – in a wide range of price points, makes it possible for anyone to extend living space into the backyard and do more than just sit in a lawn chair or nap in a hammock.

Outdoor kitchens rival inside counterparts with built-in grills and side burners, refrigerators and large stone countertops. Dining areas can be casual or sophisticated, depending the style of the home and the homeowners. Start with some basic questions to help guide the best options to create the ideal outdoor living space.

  1. How will the space be used? Dining, playing, relaxing or something else. Determining your top priority drives the initial emphasis, especially if the project is done in phases.
  2. How much sun? This dictates the need for umbrellas, gazebos, sunshades, etc. Should they be portable or permanent structures?
  3. Do you have adequate power resources? All the weather proof lamps are fabulous, but you still need power. Same for most water features. But, there are always lots of solar powered options too.
  4. Do you need weatherproof or weather resistant? Learn how fabrics are constructed so you have realistic expectations. The same goes for other products. Withstanding 10 hours of sun and 100 degree temps or eight months of freezing ice and snow will do a number on almost any outdoor product.
  5. A family with small children will obviously have different priorities than empty nesters reviving a love of gardening. Finding the right furniture and accessories to suit their needs will bring smiles year around when they find they’d prefer spending their leisure time at home, in their own backyard.

tab section image A-2 A fire pit provides a comfortable place to dry off after a summer swim or stay warm and roast a few marshmallows in the fall.

 

intro section image B-2 A round dining set with a built-in Lazy Susan and a neutral umbrella provides an elegant, stylish outdoor eating area.

 

 

tab section image C-2Everyone can’t have a backyard pool, but anyone can create a cozy seating area with comfortable chairs.

 
Find all the outdoor living products you need for any season in The Gardens, Building 2, Floors 9 & 10, during Markets and weekdays between Markets. There’s always a helpful staff member ready to help you find the perfect pieces for your casual living project.

 

 

Photo credits: Kipp Burgoyne Photography

Interior Design: Michelle Troxell, Grace Thomas Designs

gracethomasdesigns.com

Editorial credit: Casual Living

A Horse of Course

The equestrian trend was going strong at The Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market with showrooms across the home furnishings collections showing horse-inspired items. Designers updated the trend by experimenting with size, materials and styling.

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Life-size leather horse statue at Bobo Intriguing Objects

Art Addiction

Over-sized horse photo print at Art Addiction

Zentique

Horse bust at Zentique

Barbara Cosgrove at Codarus

Wild Horses by Barbara Cosgrove at Codarus

Jamie Young

Large horse head busts at Jamie Young

Palecek

Driftwood horse head at Palecek

Equine elements like saddle leather, stirrups and reins were also spotted as decorative elements.

go home

Saddle Leather and Stirrups at Go Home

 

 

 

Rock Solid Home Accents

As consumers look to balance an aspiration for contemporary design and a yearning to Nate Ricketts Designmaintain organic roots, one of the primary emerging elements is crystal. True to form, pieces were spotted throughout the January 2015 Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market across the category spectrum.

While quality resin creations fulfill specific needs in the marketplace, the use of natural materials including agate, quartz and gemstones still prevails as the optimum choice. This Market, products extended beyond simple, yet stunning, basic accents pieces to a range of lighting and furniture pieces as well as creative interpretations in fabrics.

Times Two Design 2 Currey & Co Design LegacyKathryn McCoy

Because colorations range from subtle, iced whites to deep, luxuriant hues the pieces enhance almost any environment. Best used as statement pieces, placement is key to ensure the optimum play of light on the faceted surfaces.

From polished slices and slabs to spiky chunks, the depth of texture adds a sense of natural beauty to the space. Consider fireplace spaces as well use as basic decorative accents and lighting. Whatever the choice, myriad exhibitors at AmericasMart offer an array of options at multiple price points.

Global Views Emporium Home Kathryn McCoy lampsDesign Legacy pillows

On Display in January 2015

Karastan

Karastan

Lenny & Eva display at AmericasMart Atlanta

Lenny & Eva

One of the best aspects of personally attending The Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishing Market is simply looking around. There’s creativity everywhere! From the products to the showrooms, it’s a wonderland of ideas. Here’s a first peek at just a few of the innovative, creative, quirky, fun displays we’ve seen so far.

Demdaco

Demdaco

Peacock Park showroom display at AmericasMart Atlanta

Peacock Park

From re-envisioning packing materials and paper bags to transforming vintage safety deposit boxes to bringing the outdoors in, showroom designers used ingenuity and thought to create stunning windowscapes and floor displays.

Everyone is busy rushing to appointments, but take time to look around as you traverse the halls and aisles. Whether it’s a singing reindeer or a magic carpet, there’s no telling

Hester & Cook display at AmericasMart Atlanta

Hester & Cook

OneCoast

OneCoast

what you might see that will inspire you. We’d love to see your favorites – please share on our social media outlets: Facebook/AmericasMart Atlanta; Twitter and Instagram. And stay tuned for more of our favorite looks!

Demdaco display at AmericasMart Atlanta

Demdaco

Homart showroom display at AmericasMart Atlanta

Homart

Kalalou display at AmericasMart Atlanta

Kalalou

Interior Design Camp is coming to AmericasMart, January 10 – 11, 2015!

Kelli and Lori Design Camp Orange CountyWe are happy to announce Interior Design Camp will partner with AmericasMart Atlanta and hold its next camp during the Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market!  After hearing your feedback and repeated requests seeking a conference on the East Coast or in the Southeast, Design Camp delivered by bringing a two day Camp compliments of AmericasMart.  The Camp will be held in the Penthouse Theater at AmericasMart, January 10 – 11, 2015.

 We will once again start our Camp with a self-guided showroom tour, giving you the opportunity to view some of the leading companies in the home & gift industry.  Keeping you active on social media, there will be an Instagram scavenger hunt at each showroom which will enter you for a chance to win some amazing prizes!  The last day of Camp will feature four new presentations from some of the most respected professionals in the interior design industry.  You will walk away with all the skills, knowledge and resources to improve, grow and succeed in your business!

At Design Camp we are all about learning, connecting and of course designing but we like to have a little fun too.   Our welcome cocktail party, which commences after the showroom tour day, will give you the chance to network with other designers, meet us and win wonderful giveaways over some cocktails and hors d’oeuvres!  Breakfast is on us too!

Seating is limited so register today!  Visit www.designcamp.com for more details.  We look forward to seeing you at Design Camp Atlanta!