Quick Bites

The Fiesta Dinnerware Demonstration Kitchen will be teeming with mouthwatering aromas, flavorful bites and divine drinks from Atlanta’s top chefs and mixologists at January Market beginning tomorrow.

See what our roster of culinary experts have to say as we get up close and personal and make sure to add their events to your Market Plan.

Wednesday, January 11  |  Noon
Coastal Appetizers
Presented by Chef Amanda Egidio of Big Green Egg Culinary Center

Amanda Egidio


Chef Amanda Egidio

Favorite Atlanta restaurant/bar other than your own?
Houston’s, Venkman’s.

What dish/drink or three words best sums up Atlanta’s food scene?
Farm to table.

Top cooking tip?
Cook with love, enjoy the journey.

Favorite ingredient, food, dish or cocktail?


What’s your can’t-live-without-it cooking tool?
Pitt Mitts for my Big Green Egg.

What food trend/ingredient do you see on the horizon?
Grilling/wood fire authentic cooking.

Thursday, January 12  |  Noon
Cajun Creations & Cocktails
Presented by Chef Cooper Miller of Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall and Mixologist Stephanie Marville of Venkman’s

Cooper Miller


Chef Cooper Miller

Favorite Atlanta restaurant/bar other than your own?
Ticonderoga Club

What dish/drink or three words best sums up Atlanta’s food scene?
On the rise.

Top cooking tip?

Favorite ingredient, food, dish or cocktail?
Northern Chinese.

What’s your can’t-live-without-it cooking tool?
Japanese mandolin.

What food trend/ingredient do you see on the horizon?
Gourmet rotisserie.

Stephanie Marville


Mixologist Stephanie Marville

Favorite Atlanta restaurant/bar other than your own?
Umi, La Tavola, Varuni Napoli.

What dish/drink or three words best sums up Atlanta’s food scene?
Growth, energetic, comforting.

Top cooking/cocktail tip?

Favorite ingredient, food, dish or cocktail?
Amaro. It adds a unique depth of flavor to any cocktail but can also be enjoyed on its own.


What’s your can’t-live-without-it cooking/cocktail tool?
A GOOD wine key. It’s versatile and you’ll be surprised how often it comes in handy.

What food trend/ingredient do you see on the horizon?
Culinary techniques being implemented in prep for craft cocktails.

Saturday, January 14  |  Noon
Compliments of the Chef
Presented by Chef Jomo Morris and Chef Lasheeda Perry, Four Seasons Hotel Atlanta and Bar Margot

Jomo Morris


Chef Jomo Morris

Favorite Atlanta restaurant/bar other than your own?
Holeman and Finch Public House

What dish/drink or three words best sums up Atlanta’s food scene?
Eat what you crave.

Top cooking tip?
Taste your food.

Favorite ingredient, food, dish or cocktail?
Everything pork.

What’s your can’t-live-without-it cooking tool?
Gray Kunz spoon and Y shaped peeler.

What food trend/ingredient do you see on the horizon?

Lasheeda Perry

Girls Inc. of Alameda presents TASTE 2016

Chef Lasheeda Perry

Favorite Atlanta restaurant/bar other than your own?
Tuk Tuk

What dish/drink or three words best sums up Atlanta’s food scene?
Rustic, Southern and flavorful.

Top cooking tip?
Lemon is the salt of baking and pastry.

Favorite ingredient, food, dish or cocktail?

What’s your can’t-live-without-it cooking tool?
Offset spatula.

What food trend/ingredient do you see on the horizon?
Back to the basics.

Anything else you’d like to share?
I am new to Atlanta, but I am ready to explore and to join the group of amazing chefs here in Atlanta.

Saturday, January 14  |  4 p.m.
Tavern Fare With a Southern Flair
Presented by Chef Mark Nelson of HOBNOB and Chef Nick Anderson of Ormsby’s

Mark Nelson


Chef Mark Nelson

Favorite Atlanta restaurant/bar other than your own?

What dish/drink or three words best sums up Atlanta’s food scene?
Bourbon, craft beer, fresh ingredients.

Top cooking tip?
Don’t be afraid to season your food. Always add the seasoning at the end and taste before adding more. Most food is under seasoned.

Favorite ingredient, food, dish or cocktail?
My all-time favorite ingredient is octopus.

What’s your can’t-live-without-it cooking tool?
My small immersion blender.

What food trend/ingredient do you see on the horizon?
Asian buns are definitely a trend that chefs are playing with right now, doing non-Asian applications.

Anything else you’d like to share?
Chefs and kitchen staff work extremely hard in hot, fast paced environments. Show them some love when they get it right.

Nick Anderson


Chef Nick Anderson

Favorite Atlanta restaurant/bar other than your own?
Taiyo Ramen in Decatur

Top cooking tip?
Don’t over complicate it.

Favorite ingredient, food, dish or cocktail?
Salt and Thai basil.

What’s your can’t-live-without-it cooking tool?
My butcher’s steal.

What food trend/ingredient do you see on the horizon?
Well prepared, simple and easy food.

Hungry for more? Check out all of the tasty cooking events, as well as many workshops and parties happening during Market at AmericasMart.com/Events.

Chef demonstrations sponsored by Atlanta Magazine.

PANTONE Color of the Year 2017: Greenery

Today, PANTONE announced its Color of the Year for 2017: Greenery.

“A refreshing and revitalizing shade, Greenery is symbolic of new beginnings,” according to the global authority on color and provider of professional color standards for the design industries.

At AmericasMart, we’re also seeing Greenery – in home furnishings, home accents, gifts, tabletop and more.


Global Views

How can you use Greenery in your designs or store? Check out our trend report “Tropical Escape” in the January 2017 edition of the AmericasMart Magazine, arriving to your stores, homes and offices this month.

Get an inside glimpse into the selection of the PANTONE Color of the Year and learn more about key color trends for 2017 — where they are coming from, why they are happening and where they are headed in the future — from Laurie Pressman, vice president of the PANTONE Color Institute in a presentation “Home 2017: At a Crossroads for Color + Design” on Friday, January 13 at The Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market.

The History of Who Buys and Why

By Mercedes Gonzalez, owner Global Purchasing Companies

Mercedes GonzalezIt’s not just about trends
Besides knowing what is on-trend, fashion retailers need to understand consumer behavior. Knowing why people buy, what they buy, and how much they are willing to spend (known as consumer price resistance), means understanding where consumers’ values truly lie.

For example, during the financial crisis 2008, people were losing their homes and jobs, but designer shoes, which start at $800, never dipped in sales. Consumers gave up expenses like going out for lunch or taking taxis, but they were not giving up their shoes. They even started shopping at fast fashion retailers, like Zara, and pairing $100 dresses with designer shoes and bags. And guess what? That high-low chic worked and looked great.

But was high-low chic an iconic look of the new millennium? If we take a close look at the whole time period, we see that the common denominator was actually comfort. Every year there was a new crisis: Y2K, 9/11, SARS, the war in Iraq and Anthrax. You get the picture. In times of crisis, people look for comfort; in their clothing (bamboo fabrics), in their footwear (Crocs) and in food. People stopped going out as much and entertained at home. That became the new normal.

Seeing the future
As we examine fashion in this decade, consumers are becoming fatigued on many fronts. Fast fashion is slowly but steadily losing traction. People are tired of walking into a room where everyone is wearing almost the same thing. They are dissatisfied with poor craftsmanship and thinking more about social responsibility when making purchases. They are spending dollars on well-crafted and limited-production items that have an interesting design direction.

Another area of fatigue is the sad or guilt story. Consumers do value items that are ethically made, but there is concern for how genuine these claims are. Even Made-in-the-U.S.A. claims have come into question over items like watches that are assembled in the U.S. but contain parts made overseas.

Which brings me to consumer price resistance. As a rule, it doesn’t matter what things cost you to buy, it only matters what the consumer is willing to pay. There are many factors that go into that judgement, especially the story behind the product. Today’s consumer sees buzz words like “fair trade,” “eco friendly” and “sustainable,” and labels with the maker’s name and photo as the new normal and expects them to be value-adds that don’t correlate to an increase in price. Think about an organic tomato merchandised at Whole Foods in a wood cart with locally made, fresh mozzarella and a hand-painted sign of the farm’s name. You pay top dollar for it because of the story you perceive from the display. Now did you know that Walmart also carries organic tomatoes but at probably half the price?

My end-of-the-year predictions
Boutique retail businesses are thriving. U.S. consumers are not necessarily money-poor, but time-poor. They expect an expert to attend to them during the shopping experience and will pay for it. Investing in properly training your sales staff will be important.
It’s also an election year, and sales typically drop more than normal during the October before the vote. Plan fun, in-store events to help draw customers in, like a how-to workshop that shows them how a favorite summer dress can be layered up for use in winter. I also warn you not to post the slightest hint of anything political.

On the flip side, November should really be an excellent month. Remember, retail is a form of therapy. Consumers who feel relieved from the election will…guess what…go shopping to celebrate, and people who feel sad and depressed over the election, well, they’ll go shopping too. Plan your OTB accordingly.

One last note. Don’t guilt consumers into a purchase. Give them real reasons to buy as opposed to making them feel like they’re doing charity work. Extended store hours, local delivery service, exclusive or limited-edition items, gift wrapping, are just a few touches that bring real value to shopping at your store.

Hear Mercedes Gonzalez speak at August Atlanta Apparel. Visit AmericasMart.com to add her seminars to your Market Plan:
Thursday, August 4:
10:30 a.m. ǀ Capturing the Social Occasion Market
3:30 p.m. ǀ Retail Math

Friday, August 5:
10:30 a.m. ǀ Sweet 15 (Quinceañera)

Fall in Atlanta

AmericasMart re-envisions September Experience

Fall signals prime time for refreshing homes before the holidays and for selecting the perfect gifts for friends and family. Retailers can jump-start the holiday season by filling last-minute inventory, while designers can source all the elements for clients’ seasonal projects. It all depends on having the right products in place at the right time. That means shopping Atlanta in the fall.

AmericasMart’s Fall Home, Gift and Gourmet Market is evolving into an all-new buying experience scheduled for September 2016. The new Fall Design Week featuring Atlanta Gourmet & Gift offers more services and newly imagined events, all timed within the business week for the greater convenience of retailers and designers.

Fall Design WeekThe re-envisioned concept celebrates and showcases AmericasMart’s design-driven Open Year Round showrooms. The showrooms – located throughout Buildings 1 and 2 – represent leading lines in case goods and upholstery, accessories, casual furnishings, lighting, area rugs, gift, gourmet, housewares, tabletop, outdoor living, holiday, floral and more.

“AmericasMart’s Open-Year-Round showrooms provide design and retail inspiration throughout the year,” says Dave Savula, executive vice president of Leasing. “The new Fall Design Week lets us showcase these lines to retailers and designers in a more relaxed environment while offering some additional amenities and opportunities to network.”

AmericasMart’s continued growth in designer attendance is also a factor in the Market redesign. “Our Market center has more design-driven resources than ever before,” Savula says. “The new September event lets us showcase those resources like never before with a buying and educational opportunity that serves designers when it is best for their business.”

AWH_PHOTO-0338Designer-focused programming will include taste-maker presentations, continuing education courses, industry networking opportunities and celebrations. It is set to be the must-attend event for the Atlanta, Georgia and Southeastern design communities.

The popular Atlanta Gourmet exhibitors will be showcased in a series of targeted events designed to spotlight the flourishing local food and restaurant scene and the resurgence of the category with gift retailers, especially for the holiday season.

AmericasMart’s Fall Design Week featuring Atlanta Gourmet & Gift takes place Monday, September 19 through Friday, September 23, 2016. For more information, visit www.AmericasMart.com/September.

Retail Meets Design

By Christina O’Flaherty

Retail meets design in the most stylish manner during The Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market®.

With the launch of ANTIQUES in Building 1, Floor 2 and DÉCOR | Light & Lifestyles in Building 1, Floor 8 as well as HIGH DESIGN® in Building 2, Floor 1 and HD Home in Building 1, Floor 1 there are more design-driven resources available in our temporaries than ever before.

This elevated aesthetic highlights the intersection of retail and design, where interior design is influencing retail and merchandising in a major way. The new Retail Meets Design vignettes, curated by the Southeast’s top retailers and interior designers in Building 1, Floor 14, Vignette Gallery, 14-D-9, showcase how easy incorporating these influences can be. Furniture, décor, entertaining, outdoor and other lifestyle categories come together effortlessly with high design pieces and antiques alike.

Curious how you can work antiques into your store? We asked Toma Clark Haines, chief executive diva of The Antiques Diva® & Co., to share some of her top tips for incorporating antiques into a design.

Is there a different process for buying antiques vs. bulk merchandise orders?
Yes, absolutely. If you see it and it’s what you’re looking for, you should buy it. It’s not going to be there forever. The one-of-a-kind element makes it a radically different process. Also, the proportions are not always going to be what you’re looking for. For example, an 18th century chest of drawers was built for the dimensions of that era. You buy antiques because you love the patina, the quality, and the story. You make the room work with the piece, not the piece work for the room.

What is one key sourcing tip you can offer when it comes to antiques?
The antiques dealer is your friend. Get to know him or her. Even if they don’t have the specific item you’re looking for, they may have it in a warehouse or can source it for you. Developing relationships with dealers, particularly ones that match your specific vibe, is important.

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What are your top tips for navigating the new AmericasMart ANTIQUES collection on Floor 2?

  1. Walk the floor in both directions. The reason you do this is because your eyes will be attracted to one set of dealers going one way, and then on the reverse trip you will notice other vendors.
  1. Don’t be afraid to negotiate. Antiques dealers in general expect that negotiations will take place. The best way to get a bargain is to buy more than one thing and to simply say, “Is that your best price?” It’s polite and it pitches the question so that you’re not coming across as being pushy or aggressive.
  1. Ask questions. When you see a piece you want, get to know it. What type of wood is it? Where did you source it? You’re buying the story; this is not mass produced, so the details matter. Also, the more questions you ask, the more interested the vendor thinks you are and will most likely be more willing to work with you.

For answers to frequently asked questions about the new ANTIQUES collection, click here and to learn more about purchasing logistics, click here.

To get more tips from Toma, RSVP to Tyler Jones at tjones@americasmart.com to attend one of her guided tours of ANTIQUES in Building 1, Floor 2: Thursday, Friday, or Saturday during Market, starting at 1 p.m. Also, join us on Thursday, July 14 at 10 a.m. for Aged to Perfection: Why Antiques are Essential to Design Today, and How the Industry is Meeting Digital-Age Demand (0.1 CEU) in Building 1, Floor 15, Designer Workspace.

July16_NoPassport_FB July16_AgedPerfection_Facebook

The Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market®, July 12 – July 19
ANTIQUES: Thursday, July 14 – Sunday, July 17, 2016
Temporaries: Thursday, July 14 – Monday, July 18, 2016

July’s Hottest Ticket on Sale Now!

PrintThe ICON HONORS Honorees of 2016 revealed! The most anticipated and important night in the home and gift industry is almost here.

2_ICON16_Email_52616_r2_FOXThe evening includes cocktails, an elaborate buffet in the Egyptian Ballroom, the introduction of the ICON 2106 Honorees and a special private performance by singer songwriter Jackson Browne – all staged at Atlanta’s world-renowned Fox Theatre.

Hurry! ICON HONORS is always a sellout!