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Fall 2014




ing Swinto



inStore VOL. 01/NO. 01



Fall 2014

18 inSight DEPARTMENT 05 Hello! Opportunity knocks!

18 Shop Profile





07 By Hand

50 Trend Alert!

Gorgeous handmade goods from our shores and beyond

Rock the New Nautical look

Abby Kanak’s creative career has spanned decades and currently manifests as Pure Home Couture in Hamilton, Ont.

23 The Question Retailers tell us how they get their stores into gear for the holidays

49 Conquering Change

08 Bath & Body

11 Scents

Retail expert and business coach Barbara Crowhurst outlines how to harness our fear of change for the better

The latest in candles and home fragrance

52 The Last Word

Our favourite bath and body products

Come on a journey to India as we go behind the scenes with the ladies who run The Turquoise Palace

13 Round-up Our round-up of the prettiest purses on the market


36 Spring into Style

The hottest jewellery, fashions and accessories for spring


26 Swing Into Spring

Two fun and fresh decorating styles for spring


40 Cooperating with the Competition

inForm DEPARTMENT 14 News & Notes New lines, launches, industry goings-on and upcoming trade shows


32 A Barrel of Fun Have a hoot with a wheelbarrow-based display for spring By Leslie Groves

44 New Year, New You

Learn how to make your store more profitable in 2015 By Barbara Crowhurst

Why working with your competition can be a good thing By Claire Sykes

inStore. Fall 2014


inSpire. inForm



The Definitive Resource for Independent Lifestyle Retailers


Editor & Publisher Erica Kirkland Design & Layout JM Design

OUR READERS: 12,000+ BUYERS! InStore is Canada’s only magazine for retailers selling giftware, home décor, furniture, apparel, fashion accessories, jewellery, personal care, candles – and much more! The magazine is mailed four times a year to a guaranteed paid and unpaid circulation base of 12,000 Canadian stores. With no duplicates, no junk names and no fringe buyers, the magazine’s distribution provides suppliers with lasting exposure to 12,000 active and professional buyers.

Book your ad space today! ISSUE THEMES & MAIL DATES ISSUE

WINTER 2015 Mail Date JAN 9, 2015

SPRING 2015 Mail Date APR 3, 2015

SUMMER 2015 Mail Date JUL 17, 2015


Contributing Editors Barbara Crowhurst Leslie Groves

Advertising Inquiries Editorial Submissions Mailing Address 103 Niska Drive Waterdown, ON L0R 2H3 Contibutors Pamela Arora, Barbara Crowhurst, Will Fournier, Leslie Groves, John Reynolds, Tanya Sharma, Claire Sykes, Destiny Wentzel InStore is published four times a year for independent retailers in Canada selling giftware, home décor, fashion accessories and lifestyle items. The magazine is mailed to 12,000 stores including gift, home décor, hardware, pharmacy and florists.





inStore. Fall 2014

© 2014 Bennett Ink. The contents of this publication are the property of InStore and Bennett Ink. Reproduction or use of the contents in whole or in part, for any reason, is strictly prohibited without the written consent of the copyright owner. The publisher is not responsible for product claims made by the companies mentioned herein. Printed in Canada Publication mail #40841587. Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to: InStore Magazine, 103 Niska Drive, Waterdown ON L0R 2H3. Email

inSight Hello

Opportunity Knocks This past July I received an email while on summer vacation stating the magazine I’d edited for 15 years was closing. Surrounded by the beautiful Adirondack Mountains, my mouth was in my lap and opportunity was knocking at my door. After a bout of self-doubt swiftly erased by my significant other (also a magazine publisher), I began sussing out the details, analysing whether my passion for this project could be parlayed into a successful business. Returning from vacation, the resounding support I received during meetings with long-time friends and colleagues at the Toronto Gift Fair in early August was emphatic and uplifting, and has propelled me – and sustained me – in this three-month whirlwind to publish the very first issue of InStore, as has the support of my family. Devoted to Canada’s vibrant gift, home décor and lifestyle business-to-business communities, InStore celebrates the art and challenges of independent retailing. In each of our four annual issues, we’ll deliver the latest news, products, trends, business-boosting advice, insightful articles and display inspiration. My promise to you is that InStore will be an unbiased platform, a publication which welcomes the involvement of all manufacturers and distributors, regardless of affiliation with associations or trade shows. However, this is not my magazine; it’s your magazine, a publication for the entire industry to communicate viewpoints and ideas.

my fav... My favourite thing about this issue is our amazing advertising partners! (The glam clutch below is from one of our supporters – Pottery Lane Imports.) Without advertising support, we could not have produced, printed and mailed InStore to you. Their support of the magazine illustrates their belief in the future of independent retailing in Canada, and I encourage you to do business with them in turn!

in this issue Spring Styles To help sow the seeds of success for the approaching spring season, we’ve pulled together a feature on new products for your spring fashion and jewellery sections (page 36). In the world of jewellery trends, charm styles – like the

necklace below from Axicon World Imports – are still all the rage. Up front, we share some great new finds for your bath, body and fragrance departments in two What We Love stories. The luxurious Nesti Dante soaps from Upper Canada Soap smell divine, and when it

comes to selling personal care and candles, scent is the top-selling factor. For the skinny on selling scented goods, check out our Shop Profile on Hamilton, Ont., retailer Pure Home Couture (page 18). This charming shop on trendy Locke Street in the

Steel City has long been one of my favourite retail destinations. As a Hamilton-area resident, I wanted to pay tribute to a fellow Hamiltonian in the launch issue of the magazine. Next issue, we’ll profile a store from the east coast and the subsequent two issues will showcase retailers from the west coast and the prairies! inStore. Fall 2014


inStock What We’re Loving 1


by hand

Elevate your handmade gift selection with chic one-of-a-kind gifts which are crafted by hand, but far from homespun in nature

1/ Ann & Arayata handbags are hand-crafted from Canadian leather and hand-woven materials purchased from weavers in the Philippines. $60 retail, www. 2/ Remnants Design Studio’s custom-designed sewn goods are made to order from designer Susan Pass’s New Brunswick studio. $18 retail, 506-343-5313,


3/ Stunning candleholders from Danish company Superliving are handmade from pressed birch and distributed in Canada by Hus Lifestyle Products. $29.95 retail, 416-806-9287


4/ Moose heads from Springwater Woodcraft are made in Canada from solid pine. Cute eh?! $99 retail, 888-294-6297, 5/ Elegant and ethereal sculptures from Hoselton Studio Limited are hand-poured and finished from molten recycled aluminum. $115.50 retail, 905-355-3933,


6/ Fusing art with function, Susan Robertson’s pottery is food, microwave and dishwasher-safe. Mug, $26 retail; cheeseboard, $40 retail, 306-867-8011,



7/ Kikkerland’s handmade candleholders are designed to nestle together or stand on their own. David Youngson & Associates, $26.50 retail, 800-370-4857,

inStore. Fall 2014


bath & body

inStock What We’re Loving

From warm and fuzzy bunny slippers to straight-fromProvence soaps, our favourite new bath and body products ooze comfort


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1/ Rehydrate with modern glass water bottles from Abbott. 800-263-2955, 2/ Terrycloth toiletry bags from Lady Rosedale. $12 retail, Candym Enterprises, 800-263-3551, 3/ Exquisitely packaged and delightfully indulgent Nesti Dante Italian soaps. Distributed by Upper Canada Soap. 800-548-4097,



4/ Artisan soaps from Boudica are made with essential oils and naturally coloured, free from parabens and other nasty ingredients. 647-693-0041,


5/ Ultra comfy bunny slippers from Warm Buddy. $39.95 retail, 888-649-0649, 6/ Nature’s Essential Garden’s made-in-Canada line of personal care boasts a unique blend of ingredients and remedies including relaxing bath salts. 403-823-8664, 7/ Luxurious lotion from La Maison du Savon de Marseille is infused with Argan oil. Dolce & Gourmando, 866-915-8840, www



inStore. Fall 2014

8/ A huge bath mat from The Pine Centre. $50 retail, 800-691-2166,


inStore. Fall 2014


inStock What We’re Loving


From moody black soy to fresh lemon verbena, these new home fragrance introductions run the gamut from simple to sophisticated


1/ Hand-poured, cotton-wick candles from Country Home Candle’s new Country Home Life collection combine fragrance with artful sayings. 800-293-7548, 2/ Pressed and lacquered glass candleholders from Old Country Design are available in two heights and 17 trendy colours. 888-2122110,


3/ Apothecary-style jar candles from K. Hall Designs’ Barr Co. collection are made in small batches with pure soy and vegetable waxes. David Youngson & Associates, 800-370-4857,


4/ Lavish black soy wax Emporium Candles from MOD are hand-poured into elegant glass vessels. Lothantique, $60 retail, 877-425-7627,


5/ Available in a wide range of scents, fragrance oils from Kheops International retail for just $3.50. 888-944-2152, 6/ Heart & Home’s new fragrance line contains a range of candles and votives with carefully researched scents and a natural soy base. R.H. Davis & Co., 800-563-3557,

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7/ Madison Park’s natural soy candles are encased in glass and wrapped with beautiful papers. Paper E. Clips, $24.95 retail, 800-660-7068,

inStore. Fall 2014


indaba 1 800 746 3222


inStore. Fall 2014


pretty parcels


The Round-up

From carry-ons and totes to clutches and wallets, our round-up of the prettiest parcels on the market


1/ Studded carry-on bag from Pottery Lane Imports. $138 retail, 888-577-2448,


2/ Tuscany leather tote from Ashlin-BPG Marketing. $197 retail, 888-427-4546, 3/ H & Butler cross-body bag with built-in phone charger from David Youngson & Associates. $89 retail, 800-370-4857,


4/ Disco-weave clutch from Pottery Lane Imports. $30 retail, 888-577-2448,


5/ Soft, faux-leather tote from Hyone International. 905-604-9333, 6/ Cherith Harrison tote from Lifestyle Market. $22 retail, 647779-8206,


7/ Embroidered shoulder pouch from Indaba Trading. $37 retail, 800-746-3222, 8/ Moroccan-print wallet from Mlavi. $25 retail, 855-658-8446,



inStore. Fall 2014



Inside Track

News & Notes

News & Notes THE GOODS

Refresher Course VinEdge, a no-pump wine preservation system from Inter-Continental Mercantile, is easy to use and keeps wine fresh for 15 days. 800-361-0370, Canned Goods Handmade in Alberta, Happy Hippo Bath Company’s new Canning Collection is inspired by fresh fruit preserves. 403-887-7177,

NEWS IN BRIEF New East Coast Show The Atlantic Retail Fair, a collaboration between the Maritime Gift Show and Trader’s Forum, was held this past September. Commenting on the reason behind the change, Maritime Gift Show director John Luckhurst said, “Today’s retailers need to be diversified to survive and compete, and they need more than one show to do so. The fair will be an umbrella for all to join.” In recent years Trader’s Forum has expanded into Alberta and Quebec. Director Alex Nelyubin felt Atlantic Canada was the next logical step, saying, “We had heard great things about the Maritime market from buyers attending our shows.” The next Atlantic Retail Fair will be held February 8 to 11 in Halifax, N.S.

French Connection Retro-inspired metal housewares and storage solutions from DecorSense Imports are now available in French. 613-909-7295,

Grape Vine The angled slots in the slender steel Vine wine rack from Decorpro Home & Garden form perfect nooks for presenting and storing bottles. 866-252-2605,

Trendy Threads The new fall selection of European-imported linens from Chene Sasseville are made from pure cotton. 800 463-1237,


inStore. Fall 2014

Battening Up Board ‘n Batten has been busy securing exclusive new lines for the Canadian market: enamel ware from Crow Canyon Home, imaginative toys from Robotime, nightlights from Uniqia, unisex cologne from Fragrances of Ireland, a beverage aerator from Aermate and lockets and chains from My Journey Locket. 519-512-2435, Fasten Up! Fairy Fastener has partnered with Cross Border Sales Agency for representation in Canada. The company’s popular Bracelet Fairy was featured on a 2013 episode of Dragon’s Den in which the fairies landed a deal with Arlene Dickenson, resulting in records sales for the bracelet in advance of the launch of the Necklace Fairy.

Show Calendar

THE GOODS Made For Dipping Made from thick slices of Canadian Russet potatoes, Gourmet du Village’s new Chips for Dip are kettle cooked in small batches – the old-fashioned way, with a hint of sea salt added for extra flavour. Produced exclusively for the company on a family farm in New Brunswick, the chips pair perfectly with Gourmet du Village’s awardwinning creamy dip. Also new to Gourmet du Village is the Caron & Doucet collection of oils and waxes for kitchen accessories including Cast Iron Oil, Cutting Board Oil and BBQ Grill Oil. 800-668-2314,

Toronto Gift Fair January 25 – 29, 2015 Christmasworld, Paperworld, Creativeworld Jan. 30 – Feb. 3, 2015 Atlantic Craft Trade Show February 7 – 9, 2015 Atlantic Retail Fair February 8 – 11, 2015

Buns in the Oven Trudeau’s new line of bakeware is retro-inspired, delightfully playful and ultimately useable. Structure silicon baking pans feature a reinforced steel rim for easy handling and include muffin tins and loaf pans. Old-fashion flour sifters boast three levels of mesh for optimal sifting while new nine-inch spatulas are artfully adorned. A silicone pastry mat, adjustable pastry wheel and a mixing bowl set round out the collection. 800-878-3328,

Ambiente February 13 – 18, 2015 Alberta Gift Fair February 22 – 25, 2015 International Home & Housewares Show March 7 – 10, 2015 Vancouver Gift Expo March 15 – 16, 2015

Sock Talk Chic & Savvy recently secured the exclusive wholesale rights in Canada to a brand of socks targeted to the souvenir market - Wild Habitat. Made from bamboo and picturing wildlife, the socks can be customised with name drops for a minimum of 36 per size. 888-462-9131,

Quebec Gift Fair March 22 – 25, 2015

inStore. Fall 2014


inForm News & Notes

Inside Track NEWS IN BRIEF Artful Mugs Fine bone china coffee mugs covered with the artwork of Robert Bateman are new to McIntosh Trading, featuring four of the iconic Canadian artist’s bird studies. 888-977-1370, Salt Responsibly Summer Kitchen’s new Take Control Spice Programme empowers cooks to exercise control in the kitchen by allowing them to customize the salt levels in their marinades. The program includes four different seasoning packages which include a spice rub and an unrefined sea salt. 416-621-8641, What’s Your Number? Interior designer Ashley Botten and graphic designer Nina Jones have partnered up on a new company called Toofifteen. Made entirely of Tyvek – a sustainable material which looks and feels like paper – the products in the collection are organizational in nature and thoroughly durable, recyclable and non-toxic in design and construction.



Fasten your


necklace like magic


inStore. Fall 2014

Perfectly Plush Aurora World’s newly released spring catalogue boasts more than 200 new skus. Distributed in Canada by Nearly Famous, the popular plush line is expanding three of its bestselling lines: Lopsie Wopsie, YooHoo & Friends and Pom Pom Chick. 888-918-5023, Top of Table Designed by a group of young designers, the Dea Gourmet line of tabletop, new to Canitra Agents, is modern and fresh. The launch coincides with the company’s new website and the hiring of new sales representatives: David Thibault in British Columbia and Alberta; Alexandra Mathurin in Vancouver Island; Richard Waters in the Toronto area and Dianne Brunelle in Quebec. 888-221-7809,




Fasten your

bracelet like magic

inStore. Fall 2014


inSight Shop Profile

old world

APOTHECARY Soaring ceilings, worn wooden floors and incredible scents

At Pure Home Couture in Hamilton, Ont., shoppers are drawn to the antique tables piled high with perfume, soap, lotions and candles


inStore. Fall 2014

Pure Home Couture From fashion darling to fragrance doyenne, Abby Kanak’s creative career is currently manifested as a retail store


s she sweeps through the aisles of her loft-like Hamilton, Ont., shop, the soft-spoken, gracious owner of Pure Home Couture, Abby Kanak, exudes a genuine enthusiasm for the products she presents in her stately store. Principally a haven, and destination, for customers seeking the finest fragranced goods, Pure Home’s shelves also showcase a selection of jewellery, giftware and sweet baby goods. Cushioned among an energetic mix of shops, antique dealers and cafes, Pure Home beckons visitors to its secondfloor location with a variety of exterior signage and an artfully displayed small landing. Climbing the stairs, visitors are engulfed in a glorious sensory experience – soaring ceilings, worn wooden floors, incredible scent bouquets. Accentuated by the twinkling lights of crystal chandeliers, the 3000-square-foot Parisian-like space is imbued with the grandeur of faded elegance, the beauty of imperfection and a relaxed style. Aisle after aisle of French armoires, rustic harvest tables and vintage sideboards

resplendent with perfumes, soaps, lotions, candles and home fragrances, each and every one hand-selected by Abby. When Pure Home Couture opened its doors in a smaller location in 2002, they stocked a diversity of home décor and gifts, but over the years Abby gravitated to small luxuries, little purchases that make you feel great like the latest nail polish from Butter. “Most of our products are consumables, so customers return over and over again for their favourite soap, perfume or candle,” says Abby. Anchor lines include Pyrrha, Sid Dickens, Lampe Berger, Lothantique, Rance, Butter London, Tocca, Lollia, Aqua Colonia and Shelley Kyle Parfums. Whether sourced from one of the many blogs she reads or from her Instagram feed, Abby is always looking for celebrated brands with cult-like status. And it’s obvious she meticulously researches the companies; falling in love with the backstory is a prerequisite to her purchasing the line. Taking up a significant portion of the space is Abby’s own line of personal care inStore. Fall 2014


and fragrance, created in her home studio under the brand Pure Home Couture Apothecary. Started two years ago, the line includes 30 fragrances with Vintage Peony, Sea Salt, Blood Orange and Egyptian Musk among the bestsellers. Making sure the entire presentation comes together flawlessly is Abby’s long-time business partner and husband Steven McDuffee. Efficient, detailoriented and blessed with a brilliant business mind, Steve ensures the reorders are called in, the bills paid and the product restocked. It’s a successful partnership which dates back to the days when Abby was a celebrated fashion designer. As a child, Abby spent Friday nights checking out the new Vogue patterns, spending the entire weekend sewing up new creations. After studying fashion design at Sheridan College, Abby and Steve got married in 1985 and moved the very next day to Vancouver to pursue her life-long dream of being a couture fashion designer. 20

inStore. Fall 2014

With five years of experience under her belt, designing athletic wear and blouses for a variety of labels, the couple launched Salon Abby Kanak. With celebrities like Kirstie Alley donning the dresses and Sarah McLachlan singing their praises, the couple were media darlings, featured in fashion magazines from coast to coast. It was the late eighties, when shoulder pads were big and ruffled collars ruled the runways. Her label was picked up by Holt Renfrew and Saks, she was one of Erica Ehm’s first interviews on Much Music and then it all came to a sudden, dramatic, cataclysmic halt. Just 10 days after the birth of their first child, their precious baby girl Pallas suffered a life-altering cerebral hemorrhage. The after effects, endless seizures – up to 200 a day, required the complete and utter attention and devotion of her parents. In the early stages of being realised, Abby’s dream was abruptly shelved. “There was just no way I could be both a fashion

designer and Pallas’s mom,” she recalls. “Running the business wasn’t a priority at that time.” For a decade, the couple devoted themselves to raising their younger son Quinn and caring for Pallas, moving back to Hamilton when their daughter was two to be surrounded by their families and long-time friends. The pair have never been out of the house together for longer than five hours, preferring to personally give Pallas the fulltime care she requires. At home Abby found an outlet for her creativity by painting furniture, surrounding herself with beautiful home décor, and by the time Pallas was 10 her condition had stabilized to the point that Steve and Abby found themselves contemplating a new creative challenge. “After so many difficult years, we decided to turn all of our pain and passion into something life-affirming,” says Abby. And, so, Pure Home Couture was born.

inSight The Interview

Abby Kanak Abby Kanak tells us about her favourite places, spaces and stuff! Q: What’s your favourite time of day? A: The morning Q: How do you prefer to communicate? A: Texting Q: How do you get to work? A: I drive Q: What’s your favourite restaurant? A: Angelina’s in Paris Q: What is your mobile phone of choice? A: iPhone Q: What’s your favourite trade show? A: NYNow Q: What business person do you most admire? A: Anna Wintour Q: What is your favourite city? A: Paris inStore. Fall 2014


Discover Design, the premier design destination at the 2015 International Home + Housewares Show, features over 100 design and trend leaders from around the world. Find tableware, cutlery, kitchen and home collections from suppliers who make design their priority.

Be inspired, discover new...Discover Design. to attend: to exhibit:

7-10 march 2015 • chicago, usa

inSight The Question


fourth-quarter sales Operation Glitter Breakdown “Our season starts with an event we call Operation Glitter Breakdown. Assistant managers and managers spend a day or two at the head office and we focus on the lines we’re bringing in for the fourth quarter. It’s all about getting our employees excited about the stuff that will be hitting the shelves. The national sales managers for the product lines we’re focusing on come in and do the product knowledge. We find having the information come from a third party is a lot more motivating for our employees. We even develop games to help us all remember the product details. We do three themes and tie both seasonal décor and gift items into each theme. Our windows are merchandised around the theme and are over the top. Our stores are located in malls, so we have about seven seconds to grab somebody’s attention and our merchandiser spends a lot of time planning and preparing the holiday windows. This year we have a “Buy It Yourself” theme which is a spin-off for all those consumers that wish they had the time or talent to do it themselves, but don’t!” Shashi Behl Owner, Twisted Goods & Joy Drop Calgary, Alta.

Grand Unveiling “The first Thursday of November is when we hold our annual Christmas open house. To prepare the store, we close for a full day and flip the entire space. We’re literally chin-high in glitter, sparkle and ornaments. It’s a little chaotic and scary as we’re trying to fit everything into a store that’s already full, but our amazing staff know just what to do and we get it all done. The two days following the switchover we’re open, but finessing – and doing a lot of vacuuming to get rid of the excess glitter. Once the store is Christmas-fied, we unveil the new holiday windows and invite all Bradshaws lovers inside for their first taste of Christmas. When they walk into the store, it’s like they’re walking into a different world. Various trees are set up and drenched in ornaments. Our vendors come out and do tastings and samplings. We show off the products we’re really excited about and suggest stocking stuffers. Customers come every year with their mothers or their sisters – it’s become a tradition.”

How other stores kick-start the fourth-quarter selling season

Carrie Wreford Co-owner, Bradshaws Stratford, Ont.

“We’re chin-high in glitter, sparkle and ornaments as we Christmasfy the store.” inStore. Fall 2014


As a successful retailer, you are always looking for unique products and a diverse mix of new ideas to help set you apart from your competitors. Look no further than our three CanGift Fairs, conveniently located across the country. Each fair offers you inspiring trends and a vast selection of product to help brand your store into a unique retail environment.










Produced by:


FOLLOW US ON SOCIAL MEDIA visit for details.

Branching Out inStore. Fall 2014


Swing into


Two hot home decorating trends to rock your spring sales!


inStore. Fall 2014

Bowls, red stool and white paper decorations, Abbott, 800-263-2955,; Grey and blue throws, Aztec patterned and pom-pom rimmed cushions, Bovi Home, 800-361-6695,; Wire basket, Kikkerland through David Youngson & Associates, 800-370-4857,; Rectangular throw pillows, H.B. Promotion, 866-971-4553,; Boxes, Midwest-CBK, 800-394-4225,

AZTEK Tribal patterns are back with a vengeance! The look is equal parts Moroccan market and modern, geometric chic, making it adaptable to contemporary, eclectic and traditional interiors.

Styling by Leslie Groves Photography by Destiny Wentzel

inStore. Fall 2014


Bold new shade.

Bright new shine.

Cookware | Bakeware | Tableware | Accessories

country home candle handcrafted in canada since 1991 Extra Large Highly Fragranced Melter Cubes are Now Available in our Top Selling Fragrances. Hidden inside each package is a Canadian Made Inspirational Ring!

For more information Call or Email 1 800 293 7548


inStore. Fall 2014

Denim Rules

From deep, dark indigo to faded and frilly, denim rules the roost this spring. Look for barely there paisley prints and ombre patterns.

Lamp shade, Abbott, 800-263-2955,; Cushions, throws and rugs, Bovi Home, 800-361-6695,; Wire baskets, The Turquoise Palace,

inStore. Fall 2014


Barrels of

Wheel in spring with a delightful garden-inspired display


inStore. Fall 2014


Crate Expectations Use simple crates to create levels. Bring them to life with branches, moss and greenery.

Proper Attire

Uniformity among your props helps focus the customer’s attention on the merchandise rather than the backdrop. To recreate this freshly-planted spring display, gather your gardening tools from the shed, use simple crates to create levels and add depth with layers of moss. Next, add products of your choice. Here the monochromatic colour scheme is simple and elegant, a natural complement to the rustic garden implements.

Stone planters, Abbott, 800-263-2955,; Burlap pillows, throws, cast iron keys and rugs, Bovi Home, 800-361-6695,; Mushroom pillows, log cushions and metal planters, Indaba Trading, 800-746-3222,

Styling by Leslie Groves Photography by Destiny Wentzel inStore. Fall 2014



inStore. Fall 2014

Perfect Pillows In home dĂŠcor displays, layer pillows of varying colours, sizes and patterns so each can be easily seen up close and from a distance.

Floor Models

When displaying products on the floor, increase the perceived value of the items by using vessels to hold them. Nobody wants to shop off the floor!

Building a display from the ground up, with product placed on the floor, helps identify a feature display. Connect each level to unite all the pieces. Here, the trailing greenery links the log pillows to the wheelbarrow.

Connection Points inStore. Fall 2014


SPRINGint Sow the seeds of your success with these fun and fashionable finds



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inStore. Fall 2014



1/ Panama fedora with rope trim from San Diego Hat Co. $32 retail, David Youngson & Associates, 800-370-4857, 2/ Wooden glasses. $169 retail, Mistura, 855-602-5400, 3/ Lambskin necklace. Fixation, 450-332-9924,


4/ Fashion necklace. Artizan, 877-278-4926, 5/ Necklace. Axicon World Imports, 800-465-5587,


6/ Scarf, $64 retail, Canfloyd, 800-263-3551, 7/ Fashion earrings. Canfloyd, 800-263-3551,


8/ Cotton necklace. $18 retail, Suzie Blue, 613-716-5515, 9/ Funky fashion socks. $9 retail, Chic & Savvy, 888-462-9131, 10/ Turkish cotton gloves, made in France. $36 retail, Chic & Savvy, 888-462-9131,


11/ Handmade and fair-trade bracelets. $15 retail, Tresart Cache, 514-912-4225,

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inStore. Fall 2014





12/ Sock It To Me knee-highs. $14.50 retail, David Youngson & Associates, 800-370-4857, 13/ Handcrafted necklace from Meiresthai Design. Story Showroom, 416-768-4012, 14/ Cotton dress with embroidered vest. $99 retail, Baba Imports, 647-389-4503, 15 & 16/ Magnifying glass necklaces. $26 to $50 retail, Chelsea Pewter Jewellery & Gifts, 800-663-9175, 17/ Wool wrap jacket. $99 retail, Baba Imports, 647-389-4503, 18/ Dress from Cokluch. Story Showroom, 416-768-4012, 19/ Kettle brim hat with ribbon from San Diego Hat Co. $32 retail, David Youngson & Associates, 800-370-4857, 20/ Rhodium-plated brass bangles. $13 retail each, Pottery Lane Imports, 888-577-2448, 21/ Made-in-Canada pants. Artizan, 877-278-4926,


inStore. Fall 2014


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inStore. Fall 2014




inStore. Fall 2014

When competing companies work together for the mutual benefit of increased profits, it’s a good thing

with the Competition I

t’s a dog-eat-dog world out there. Everyone is fighting for survival. Rivalry is normally the name of the game, but coopetition – the marriage of competition and cooperation – is making headway. Co-opetition involves hand selecting competitors with the goal of expanding existing markets and exploiting new ones. Like a school of minnows forming a giant mass in the face of an oncoming shark, coopetition results in strength from numbers. “You look to each other to make a bigger pie, instead of battling over the pieces,” explains international sales and marketing expert Bob Phibbs.


Marketing: When you combine promotional efforts and expenses with other stores, it increases exposure to your company while cutting costs. Some ways you can work with your competition includes to share mailing lists, advertise together in order to afford larger, more prominent placements, send joint press releases and publish a group newsletter. Purchasing: Buying bigger quantities together means greater discounts for you. “Critical mass and clout go a long way when competing against the larger retailers for purchases, or if you’re at

the mercy of suppliers who could take you or leave you,” says retail consultant Wally Bock. (Limit purchases to those products that none of you specialize in.) Referrals: It’s impossible for one company to provide every product that all the customers in their area want. When people come in asking to see the imported, hand-painted dishware that you don’t sell, you’ve lost their business for that item. But you won’t lose those customers if you point them toward a store that specializes in handpainted dishware. They’ll think of your store the next time they’re in the market for the products you specialize in. Meanwhile, your competitor will be happy to return the favour.


Successful store owners must be willing to take reasonable risks now and then By Claire Sykes

“Coopetition works best among stores that sell similar products, but also have their specialties,” says Phibbs. You know who you need to fiercely compete against and who you can afford to cooperate with. In talking with other store owners about coopetition, you may encounter disinterest, apathy and scepticism, which is understandable. “Most business owners don’t even consider it,” says Bock. “We have this win-lose attitude about business.” inStore. Fall 2014


COURTING THE COMPETITION Before you approach another store with the idea of coopetition, properly equip yourself Adopt the right attitude. Instead of military or sports lingo, think gardening. Like flora and fauna, businesses must cooperate in a shared environment to survive Define your specialties. Know what sets you apart from one another

“It’s like showing your poker hand,” says Eugene H. Fram, professor of marketing at the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York. “Your competition gets to know your operation in more detail, which conceivably they could use to their benefit. You’re taking a risk on something about which you can’t predict the outcome.” But successful store owners must be willing to take reasonable risks now and then. “Limit your group to about three other companies,” says Phibbs. “That way you’re more apt to arrive at a unified vision.” Call up your competitors and offer to take each of them to lunch so you can discuss the possibility of working with them, cooperatively. “Have patience,” says Bock. “Coopetition isn’t something you can sell 42

inStore. Fall 2014

in one call or visit. It may take a dozen meetings over the course of a year or two before it gets rolling.” Meanwhile, communicate often by phone and email to keep the exchange going, and to ensure that everyone is aware of and understands each other’s concerns, intentions and actions. Once you’re all clear about your roles, protect yourselves with a legal agreement. Regularly revisit your coopetition goals, both long and short-term, and make the necessary changes to encourage your success. In the end, coopetition may or may not be for you. Whether the concept is compatible with your business or not, you can learn a lot about your store – and your competition –in the process. And that’s always a valuable thing. No matter what name you give to it.

Choose wisely. Consider stores with different specialties within a 10-mile radius to ensure your cooperating with businesses within your market area Clarify your purpose. Know why and where you want to venture into a relationship of coopetition, and what your long-term goals are Embrace integrity. Your partners in coopetition should be responsible, credible and trustworthy—just like you Involve all levels. Let everyone at your store know that you are exploring the concept of coopetition, so they can take part and help maintain continuity

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inStore. Fall 2014


New Year


inStore. Fall 2014

New You! Resolve to make better business decisions and get your financial house in order


he New Year is the perfect time to “right size” your business, putting practices into place which help to identify your money makers, meet sales goals and manage expenses. Below is a step-by-step guide to a great year:


Sales targets provide the basis for all financial planning. Independent stores average $80 to $150 sales per square foot. So, for example, a 1500-square-foot store with sales per square foot of $100 would budget for annual sales of $150,000. To achieve that, they would need inventory valued at $37,500 wholesale, and to turn that inventory twice with a double markup (i.e. $1 wholesale equals $2 retail). Sales targets should be based on sales history alongside any positive or negative changes you plan to make to your business, such as adding a new department or category, as well as insight into your area’s economic climate. Once your annual sales goal is set, transpose it into monthly sales targets. These monthly targets should be based on historical data. For instance, November and December may constitute 40 per cent of your annual sales, strong-selling months 10 per cent and slow-selling months around three per cent. Plan for three scenarios: realistic, pessimistic and optimistic. A realistic plan is 15 per cent over last year’s actuals, a pessimistic plan 15 per cent less and an optimistic plan an additional 15 per cent above the realistic scenario.


Review last year’s marketing initiatives, making a list of the activities you conducted by month. Record the details, such as how the activity was executed, and whether the sales target for that month was met (assuming you had one!) Now, make a list of activities that are worth doing again and assign them to a month. Marketing activities create awareness and awareness equals increased traffic and increased sales, so aim for two to three events/promotions a month. These could include seminars, demonstrations, new product launches, customer appreciation days, sales and local events. In addition to staging these activities, they must also be advertised. Getting the message out should take many forms, as a combination of mediums will result in more awareness and traffic. Mediums include monthly newsletters, emails, social media, radio and television advertisements and print advertisements. The strongest medium is your database. Directly targeting your customers via emails, phone calls or direct-mail pieces is a very effective and low-cost way to deliver your message.

Get the message out about your marketing events. Your strongest medium is a customer database. By Barbara Crowhurst

inStore. Fall 2014


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inStore. Fall 2014

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Create a working marketing budget to cover the costs associated with these events. Most marketing budgets range from five to seven per cent of your sales target. STEP 3: REVIEW CATEGORIES

Too often store owners buy too much stuff, have too many categories, fail to track sales by category and hold onto products that aren’t selling. The result is a store that is overcrowded and a cash flow that slows to a trickle. In 2015, commit to clearing out non-performing categories and commit more money, energy and floor space to winning categories. Next, determine your buying budget. A system I like to use is called “Open to Thrive”. The system assumes a mark-up of between two and two and a half. To determine your buying budget multiply your total projected sales by 55 per cent. This formula allows for five per cent of projected sales as positive cash flow.

Rock the New Year like a super star 1. Set sales targets for the year and each month 2. Review the marketing initiatives that worked last year, add those to this year’s plan and plan for two to three events per month 3. Commit to clearing out slow-selling categories and focus on money makers 4. Review fixed and variable expenses to ensure costs are in line with sales projections


Make a list of your fixed and variable operating costs. (Fixed costs include reoccurring costs such as rent, utilities, property taxes, insurance and wages. Variable costs include advertising and promotion, freight, postage, bank and credit card charges, supplies, travel, bad debt and miscellaneous expenses). Are you spending more money on fixed and variable operating costs than is healthy? Multiply your sales target by 40 per cent to arrive at your ideal operating budget. Are you spending money you don’t have? Whether you’ve been in business for 10 years or are just starting out, sometimes going back to square one is necessary to correct bad habits. Here’s to a great 2015.

FAST FACT: Independent stores average per square foot sales of $80 to $150

inStore. Fall 2014



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inStore. Fall 2014

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inSight Barbara Crowhurst

Conquering the Fear of Change


onquering or embracing change isn’t easy, but if we don’t our businesses won’t move forward. In the words of Nick Whalen, owner of Pharma Save Sharbot Lake Pharmacy, “Complacency is like death nails,” and by that he means the nails they use to hammer coffins shut. “Most retailers simply don’t recognize the need for change or they know they need to change, but aren’t motivated to do so,” says Whalen. This unwillingness or reluctance to change often means we’re faced with making last-minute, expensive and scary changes just to keep pace. Operating in a constant state of proactivity, on the other hand, ensures you’re always on top of your game.

To succeed you need to be faster, smarter and better than your competition. Diane Petryna, the owner of Take a Hike in Thunderbay, Ont., embraced change when she decided to move her store. “Relocating my business to a better location definitely took money, energy and courage, but it also gave me a chance to begin a happy new chapter in my life,” she says. “Although there are many times I wish I could detach from technology, I love how e-mails, e-newsletters and e-blasts are delivering results. I access my POS system from anywhere in the world through the Internet, meaning I’m no longer tied to the back office.

COMPLACENCY IS DEATH If we avoid change it soon catches up with us. Better to be ahead of the curve, than swallowed by the undercurrent.

“To succeed you need to be faster, smarter and better than your competition. As long as I’m among the 20 per cent of retailers who’re embracing change, I’m going to be okay. It’s the other 80 per cent who need to be worried.”   John McAteer, the president of Geared to Win Sports, is up against a number of retail heavyweights in the sporting goods arena. To stay on top of his game, he monitors innovative products. “I regularly follow (a popular crowd-funding site) for innovative products.” he says. “I fund the products which I think will have broad appeal and commercial viability, and then I make every effort to become one of their retail partners.” His latest funding effort is an unbreakable hockey stick from Canada’s Colt Hockey. “My support of this product resulted in my store being one of a select few to carry the stick in Canada,” says McAteer. “Having this incredibly unique and innovative product increases engagement with current customers and drives new customers to my store.” The world around us changes constantly, whether or not you choose to change with it. If you want to be truly productive, approach change with a flexible attitude. Learn to harness the power of change. The success of your business depends on it. Barbara Crowhurst is a business coach and store designer who works with clients around the world. www. inStore. Fall 2014



the new nautical


Trend Alert

Awash in sophisticated shades of rich navy and warm coral, nautical decorating has taken on a Tory Burch-esque air. Absent of whimsical details (anchors and whales), seaside style is implied through the use of nautical materials like rope and stately shells.




1/ Abbott’s beautiful new Regatta collection of rope and mango-wood cloches. 800-263-2955, 2/ With mango-wood bases and rope details, Abbott’s Regatta hurricanes can be used to hold candles or a favourite shell collection. 800-263-2955,



3/ Faux bois coral reef pots designed by Georgia artist Richard Taylor for Napa Home & Garden are available in three sizes. 416-576-1641,


4/ Wicker lantern, perfect for cottages or coastal-themed homes, available in two colours and two sizes from Abbott. 800-263-2955,


5/ The stunning Meridien cushion from Bovi Home reminds us of an exquisite Tory Burch dress. 800-361-6695,


6/ The glamourous and exquisite Key Largo collection from Napa Home & Garden features stunning shells on stands. 416-576-1641, 7/ We’re swooning over Bovi Home’s new Sailor’s Knot cushion. The gorgeous coral cotton with the delicate embroidery has understated elegance all wrapped up! 800-361-6695,

7 50

inStore. Fall 2014

8/ Perfectly suited to a boudoir or lounge, feather-filled Sauvignon cushions from Bovi Home have a linen-like appearance and are trimmed with jute. 800-361-6695,

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Our diversity. Your success. At our three leading international trade fairs you’ll find an unrivalled spectrum of festive decorations, paper, office supplies and stationery as well as hobby, craft and artist supplies for creating your ideal product assortment. Make the most of these synergies to determine your optimal product mix, to discover essential trend forecasts and inspirations and to forge valuable contacts. Just one ticket for three trade fairs – and the promise of success: Tel. 905-824-5017

inStore. Fall 2014


inSight The Last Word

Roads Less Travelled


ome is where the heart

is,” and “Your home is your palace” are adages that continue to circulate because our homes are what really matter - the people in them, the memories made and the artifacts that take up prime real estate. “Most of us want to have an emotional connection to the products we purchase for others and ourselves. That desire for emotional gratification is almost always fulfilled when a product has a story to tell. In a consumer-driven world, where instant gratification rules, we think it’s refreshing to find beautiful products made by proud artisans using rare craft techniques and simple tools, pouring passion into each and every product they make. On one of our many buying trips to India, we were in a tiny northern village. Dusty roads as the backdrop and the summer heat clinging to our clothes, we were watching a family of artisans bring to life our Moroccan lantern collection. To our dismay, there was a lot of wasted sheet metal because of the unusual shape of the lanterns. We chatted with the artisans about the waste and one young boy, Ramesh, says, “I have an idea! Will you leave it with me and come back tomorrow?” We looked at each other and shrugged. It wasn’t the first time an artisan had heard our design ideas and then pursued his own creative direction. Somehow we knew that leaving the metal scraps in this young man’s hands would be a smart thing to do.


inStore. Fall 2014

Tanya Sharma (left) and Pamela Arora (right) are the principals behind The Turquoise Palace, a Canadian-based wholesaler of unique home treasures sourced from skilled Indian artisans.

When we returned to the village the next day, Ramesh proudly held up a stunning serving tray which he had made by cutting the metal scraps into uniform strips and welding them together. Happily shocked and

thrilled by Ramesh’s creativity and craftsmanship, the metal tray is now one of the most-prized products in our line-up. The act was simple, the result was beautiful, but it’s the story that makes it special.

InStore Fall 2014: The Launch Issue!  
InStore Fall 2014: The Launch Issue!  

InStore magazine is Canada's definitive resource for independent retailers selling giftware, home decor, fashion accessories and lifestyle i...