Celebrating Excellence


AWH_PHOTO-1914-2When the curtain goes up on ICON HONORS 2016, the most anticipated and important night in the home and gift industry will have a dramatically new look, feel and energy in a spectacular setting unlike any other in the event’s history.

ICON HONORS 2016 moves to Atlanta’s storied Fox Theatre, the opulent 1929 movie palace located on Peachtree Street in midtown. With its spacious Egyptian Ballroom, 80-foot stage, giant screen and stunning Moorish architecture, the Fox is a spectacular setting for the ICON HONORS celebration.

The Fox Theatre – Photo courtesy of ACVB

With a coterie of more than 60 Honorees named over its first six years—from every dimension of the home and gift industry—ICON HONORS 2016 will again recognize the highest levels of achievement from a diverse field of submissions and nominations. Entries are submitted across the categories of Innovation, Contribution, Branding and Achievement and are judged by a distinguished panel of highly qualified experts drawn from the world of design, manufacturing and product development.

Attendees will have the opportunity to network with industry colleagues while enjoying top entertainment in an unprecedented setting – the most exciting night in the industry.

Join us at the Fox Theatre, Thursday, July 14 for ICON HONORS 2016. Tickets are available online at www.iconhonors.com

Meet the Judges

Bonnie Mackay - photo by Braden Summers.

Bonnie Mackay – photo by Braden Summers.

Bonnie Mackay
BMackay Consulting
Bonnie Mackay, principal of BMackay Consulting, is a leading influencer in product development and global sourcing, retail innovation and brand consulting. Her innate sense for design and materials, and keen understanding of financial implications, enable her to create innovative, highly profitable products and business strategies for leading retailers and non-profit organizations. Mackay led merchandising and marketing for 13 years at MoMA, as Director of Creative, Merchandising and Marketing. Previously, she was Operating Vice President, Fashion Director at Bloomingdale’s. She has consulted for and collaborated with numerous brands including Friends of the High Line, MUJI, Alessi, Kartell, Vitra, Moleskine, NUNO, Design House Stockholm and the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. She’s a member of the management team of the innovative, socially responsible retail platform Able Made, and is on the LIM College Advisory Board.

Stan Topol

Stan Topol

Stan Topol
Stan Topol & Associates, Inc.
Raised in the South, interior designer Stan Topol spent the early summers of his career in New York assisting Billy Baldwin, who many consider to have been the dean of American Interior Design. He founded the award-winning design firm of Stan Topol & Associates, Inc. in the mid-1970s. In conjunction with his strong commitment to education, during the early years of his career he also headed the interior design program at the Art Institute of Atlanta and later was in charge of the curriculum for the entire institution. In Topol’s words, “having style does not mean one has to be stylish.”

Janee Ries

Janee Ries

Janee Ries
Janee Ries is an accomplished and multi-faceted merchant/marketer with in-depth experience in retail, specialty store, direct mail and e-commerce business sectors in both prestige and broad-base product categories. She is a skilled tastemaker with proven ability to create and/or build successful brands and sales initiatives while keenly understanding price/value and the bottom line. Ries’ career started at Macy’s before the world famous store had defined its housewares department, The Cellar & Marketplace. She spent the next 18 years working in the Macy’s retail environment across all parts of the Home Store. She went on to become Executive Vice President of Gump’s By Mail, Chief Merchandising Officer of The Museum Company, VP Home Ross Stores and started the Home/Luggage/Beauty business at ideeli, a “Flash Sale” e-Commerce company. Ries is an Ad-Hoc Adjunct Professor at The Fashion Institute of Technology in the Home Products Division.

Patti Carpenter

Patti Carpenter

Patti Carpenter
carpenter + company
Patti Carpenter is an award-winning Creative Director in globally sourced home accents, personal accessories and gifts, with extensive experience in product design and development, merchandising and color & trend forecasting. As a Micro-Enterprise specialist with U.S. presidential recognition for domestic and international expertise in artisan development, small producer and entrepreneur training, and economic development, she has been successful in international sourcing and creating innovative products for her eponymous home textiles brand, carpenter + company, sold internationally. Additionally, Carpenter has designed, sourced and created strong private label collections that add revenue and enhance the image of brands including Bloomingdales, Sferra, Neiman Marcus, Crate & Barrel, The Phillips Collection, ABC Carpet and Home, Donna Karan Urban Zen and Ralph Lauren. She has traveled and worked in fifty-four countries and has spoken and written on Color + Trend and Design around the globe.

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!


ICON HONORS 2016 Call for Entries

Your road to ICON HONORS recognition starts here.

Take your place alongside the best in the home and gift industry and enter to win on of the most celebrated and respected recognitions you can achieve. There are 16 categories of competition within the  main categories of INNOVATION, CONTRIBUTION, BRANDING and ACHIEVEMENT. Winning entries will be announced at the ICON HONORS celebration in July 2016 in conjunction with The Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market®.

Every ICON HONOR starts here, so enter now at ICONHONORS.com!

ICON HONORS 2015 Winners Revealed!

AWH_PHOTO-9454The sixth-annual ICON HONORS celebrated the best in global innovation as top achievers and superior achievements were recognized on the most anticipated and important night in the home and gift industry.

As a centerpiece of The Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market®, the July 9 event attracted a capacity audience of more than 1,000 to applaud the six ICON HONORS 2015 Honorees, which were selected in rigorous adjudication of a broad field of entries.

Here are the ICON HONORS 2015 Honorees:
The 2015 Innovation Honors
Product Innovations
Kuhn Rikon Switzerland

The 2015 Contribution Honors
Community Influence
Lamon Luther

The 2015 Branding Honors
Branding / Identity

The AmericasMart Medal of Excellence Honor
LEE Industries

The Lifetime Achievement Honor
Howard Henschel
The Norman Group

The Gift and Home Trade Association / Gift for Life Honor of Excellence
RM Innovation

An exclusive performance by legendary duo Hall & Oates added to the excitement of this momentous event.

ICON HONORS was founded and is staged by AmericasMart® Atlanta and is sponsored exclusively by the Gift & Home Trade Association (GHTA) and Progressive Business Media.  The ICON HONORS 2015 celebration took place Thursday, July 9 at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta.

Visit www.ICONHONORS.com for information about ICON HONORS.

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!

The Top 10 List: Hall & Oates

Hall and Oates 1Hall & Oates made history in the mid 70’s to the mid 80’s, from hit-songs to groundbreaking tunes that are still popular today.  They have sold more albums than any other musical duo in history and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2014.  In this day and age, popular musical artists and modern day civilians repeatedly “jam out” to Hall & Oates hits through their radios and iTunes library.  The iconic band is set to hit the stage at this year’s ICON HONORS, an event hosted by AmericasMart to honor outstanding members in the gift and home furnishings industry.  ICON Honors will take place in conjunction with The Atlanta International Gift and Home Furnishings Market® on Thursday, July 9.

Hall & Oates’ top ten hits have been showcased for decades, and we can’t help but wonder, which ones will be on their set list this July?  We’ll start with their list of top ten hits!

1.  “Say It Isn’t So,” released in 1981 from their album Rock and Soul Part 1, steals the number one spot.

2.  “Out Of Touch,” Hall & Oates’ last big hit, comes in at number two.

3.  The all-time favorite, “You Make My Dreams (Come True),” from album Voices, slips in as number three.

4.  “Sara Smile,” the groups first top ten hit released in 1976, takes number four.

5.  The second hit single from their album Private Eyes, “I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do),” comes in at number five.

6.  “Every Time You Go Away,” from Voices in 1980, takes number six.

7.  Coming in at number seven and released in 1982, from their album H2O, is “Maneater.”

8.  “Kiss On My List” was Hall & Oates’ second Billboard Hot 100 number-one single, released in 1980.

9.  “Rich Girl,” from the album Bigger Than Both Of Us, ranks in at number nine.

10.  Lastly, “Private Eyes,” released in 1981, is the last hit on Hall & Oates top ten list.

Image and Video Sources

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A Look into the Past…Urban Ava Boutique

Urban Ava BoutiqueUrban Ava Boutique was the recipient of the ICON HONORS 2013 Contribution Honor for Community Contribution and Influence.

Their fundraising events have grown tremendously year after year.  View this inspiring video to find out more.

The 2014 call for entries closes Friday.
Nominate your heroes or enter your best work NOW!