G&T 1COVER 9_10 08
THE #1 CHOICE OF INDUSTRY RETAILERS
DÉCOR TRENDS p. 19
HOME SCENTS p. 22
ENTERTAINING IN STYLE p. 16
on the HOME FRONT www.gifts-and-tablewares.com THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE OF GIFTS, TABLETOP, STATIONERY, HOUSEWARES AND DECORATIVE ACCESSORIES. Canada Post Publication Mail Agreement #40069240 A Business Information Group Publication.
G&T 1COVER 9_10 08
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Buyer Hotline: (866) 721-4403 • Exhibitor Information: (888) 823-7469 Reader Service Card Number 11
G&T 1COVER 9_10 08
LET IT SELL! LET IT SELL! LET IT SELL! It’s not too late to enjoy additional holiday sales! Offer your customers the perfect gift option this Christmas with festive, high-quality music from Somerset Entertainment. With an attractive and compact new countertop display, we make it easy for your customers to give the gift of music.
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Reader Service Card Number 12
3880 Gifts & Tablewares 0908 1
8/13/08 3:29:06 PM
p 04 Contents
The Canadian Business Magazine of Gifts, Tabletop, Stationery, Housewares & Decorative Accessories.
THE #1 CHOICE OF INDUSTRY RETAILERS
See p. 20
13 CREATING COMMUNITY
Should you be adding social media to your store’s marketing blend? 16 HERE’S TO THE HOLIDAYS!
Products to help your customers entertain in style 19 ON THE HOME FRONT
A review of the latest home décor trends and products 22 HOME SCENTS
Are you getting your share of the sizable home fragrance products pie? 26 SELLING TO THE BETTER WORLD CONSUMER
How to successfully sell fair trade, eco-friendly and organic products 30 FASHION-ATION
What’s happening in the jewelry and fashion accessories categories
36 SITE SEEING 38 ADVERTISER INDEX
On the Cover:
Home for the Holidays! Check out the latest trends (page 19), the growth in home fragrance products (page 22) and some of our favorite products for entertaining in style (page 16).
See p. 16
4 GIFTS & TABLEWARES
p 04 Contents
Green is Life
IHR - Lifestyle collection, tissue napkins and table decoration -
now available from Danica
Early booking discount and extended payment terms available now till January. For more information contact: 1.888.6DANICA or www.danicaimports.com
„Green is Life” is the ﬁrst collection of designers table decoration worldwide printed on recycled tissue. „Green is Life” has just the same stunning designs, the same precise print and the same voluminous and soft touch and feel that IHR tissue products are famous for. Reader Service Card Number 13
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O P E N I N G
N O T E S
Gifts Tablewares AND
To Blog or Not to Blog
ocial media marketing is now widely touted as one of the most efficient, effective ways to connect with consumers. Facebook, MySpace, Fotolog, Friendster, YouTube, Flickr, Yahoo Answers, Linkedin, Jigsaw — are some of the existing sites that provide opportunities to spread a store’s marketing message and build its profile. Retailers can also send enewsletters, blog, have a photo sharing section on their store’s web site, and more. But, as Matt Shilton points out in his article “Creating Community,” which begins on page 13, the Internet is a big, confusing place for people who have never used it for anything more than email and general research. But, he writes, Web 2.0 applications do provide small businesses with the opportunity to reach consumers in a relatively cost-effective way. Why should you consider social media marketing? That’s the question. To begin with, the Internet has become a part of everyday life for people of all ages. But, people under 30 have grown up with it; it’s an integral part of their lives. Facebook, Twitter, MSN Messenger, text messaging — using these applications comes as naturally as breathing to the vast majority of young people — your future customers. Additionally, new research from The NPD Group reveals that social networking sites are increasingly being adopted by baby boomers, who visit the sites for information rather than the social interactivity. Web 2.0 components also let you reach out and have a conversation with online shoppers, another group of consumers that you may have an interest in. However, before you get tangled up in the social media marketing Web, you have to really consider whether you have the time. Here at G&T, I do a weekly newsletter, daily online news, videos and a blog. And, I have to admit that it all takes up a pretty good chunk of my time. But, I’m not coping with the workload and stresses of being an independent retailer. That said, there are retailers who are successfully using Web 2.0 components to communicate with their customers. For example, Sigrid Wolm, owner of From the Kitchen to the Table in Orangeville, Ontario, sends out a great enewsletter. And as Matt reports, Grassroots Environmental Store, a Toronto eco-retailer, is in the process of creating an online forum that they hope will “create a green discussion hub,” which will deal with aspects of the store’s involvement with environmental groups and issues. If you decide to add social media to your store’s marketing blend, be creative and relevant. It’s not about “buy, buy, buy” as Matt’s article points out. It’s about entering into a conversation with your customers. Have a great fourth quarter!
THE #1 CHOICE OF INDUSTRY RETAILERS
V O LU M E 33, No. 5
(416) 510-6827 email@example.com ART DIRECTOR CONTRIBUTORS
DANA MURRAY DAVID CARR DONNA GEARY
(416) 510-5190 firstname.lastname@example.org MANAGER ELIZABETH CALLAGHAN DATA SERVICES (416) 442-5600, EXT. 3538 email@example.com CIRCULATION BEATA OLECHNOWICZ MANAGER (416) 442-5600 EXT. 3543 FAX: (416) 510-6875 firstname.lastname@example.org PUBLISHER BRENDA BISHOP (416) 510-6826 VICE-PRESIDENT ALEX PAPANOU PRESIDENT BRUCE CREIGHTON Gifts and Tablewares is published 6 times a year for retailers of gifts, tablewares and home furnishing accessories. Its objective is to help retailers merchandise and display their products more effectively to increase sales to their customers and run their businesses more profitably. The contents of this magazine are protected by copyright and may be used only for personal noncommercial purposes. All other rights are reserved and commercial use is prohibited. To make use of any of this material you must first obtain the permission of the owner of the copyright. For further information please contact Lori Smith at (416) 510-6827. The editors have made every reasonable effort to provide accurate and authoritative information, but they assume no liability for the accuracy or completeness of text, or its fitness for any particular purpose. Gifts and Tablewares is a division of BIG Magazines LP, a leading Canadian information company.
YEARLY SUBSCRIPTION RATES:
Canada (GST #890939689): One year subscription - $44.95 + $2.25 GST + Applicable Taxes Per Year; Two year subscription - $70.95 + $3.55 GST + Applicable Taxes for 2 Years; Single Copy Price - $8.00 + $0.40 GST + Applicable Taxes. U.S. Subscriptions: One year - $50.95US per year; Single Copy Price - $8.00US Foreign Subscriptions: $55.95US per year; Single Copy Price - $8.00US Annual Directory: Canada - Single Copy price $29.95 + $1.50 GST (Ontario residents add $2.34 PST); US and Foreign - $29.95 US Gifts and Tablewares, USPS 016-086 is published 6 times a year by Business Information Group. US Office of Publication: 2424 Niagara Falls Blvd., Niagara Falls, NY 14304. Periodicals postage paid at Niagara Falls, NY. US Postmaster: Send address changes to Gifts and Tablewares, PO Box 1118, Niagara Falls, NY 14304. Postmaster: please forward forms 29B and 67B to 12 Concorde Place, Suite 800, Toronto, ON, M3C 4J2. Printed in Canada. Publications Mail Agreement No. 40069240. Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to Circulation Department, Gifts and Tablewares, 12 Concorde Place, Suite 800, Toronto, Ont., M3C 4J2. From time to time we make our subscription list available to select companies and organizations whose product or service may interest you. If you do not wish your contact information to be made available, please contact us via one of the following methods: Phone: 1800-668-2374, Fax: 416-442-2191, E-Mail: email@example.com, Mail to: Privacy Officer, Business Information Group, 12 Concorde Place, Suite 800, Toronto, Ont, M3C 4J2. Gifts and Tablewares is indexed in the Canadian Index by Micromedia Limited. Indexing is also available online and on CD ROM through Canadian Business and Current Affairs.
HEAD OFFICE: 12 Concorde Place, Suite 800, Toronto, Ont. M3C 4J2. Phone 1-800-268-7742. FAX: (416) 510-5134. Internet: http://www.gifts-and-tablewares.com ISSN# 07009380
~ Lori Smith, Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
6 G I F T S & TA B L E WA R E S
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Reader Service Card Number 14
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the mix NEWSVIEWSTRENDSPEOPLEIDEASPRODUCTS A Shorter CGTA Show?
Letters to the Editor
“Wow” One of my employees brought me a copy of your magazine [July/August 2008] this morning. I took time out of my day to read many of the articles, and then photocopied them for other people on our team. I especially like “Appealing to Target Markets,” “Marie Claire Releases New Study,” and “Pantone’s 2009 Color Forecast.” So thanks for the good info. I know I will be putting much of this information to use in the next few weeks. Congratulations on a good job. ~ Colleen Simmons, Enersol Solar Products
Consumers can add an elegant, customized touch to their invitations and letters with Ganz’s monogram stamps and sealing wax. 1.800.263.2311
“As an exhibitor that has been showing at the gift show since its inception, we totally agree that changes should be made. The attendance at all shows worldwide has decreased dramatically and it is now time to address the situation. “The market does not warrant a five-day show. Our proposal is a four-day show, Sunday to Wednesday, from 9 am to 6 pm, without extended hours.” ~ Nicole Rivkin, Amram’s Distributing Ltd., Brampton, Ontario “Regarding making the show shorter: Personally I need all of the days to get around, although I do often leave on the Thursday. If you shorten it to three days I will probably just do an American show instead. I do the Mode [Accessories] show first, so I cannot start on Sunday. If you do shorten the show, it would be helpful if it was open later in the evenings. The Mode show goes till 8:00 p.m. and I work until 8:00 p.m.” ~ Margaret “Thanks for your comments in regards to the length of the CGTA show. The CGTA has provided the tools ( buyers guide, online help, more or less structured halls for designated gifting or products) and now is the time for the buyers to use these tools to their advantage, getting what they want and need in the most efficient and timely manner, therefore saving in the long run. Buyers can view as many new vendors and products as their time permits but really, does it take 5 days! “Are we not trying to save energy?! By reducing the show by a day or two we save in labor and electricity. Don’t get me wrong, I am there to ser-
vice my old customers and to get new customers. However, with the show getting bigger and the number of attendees getting smaller, we all have to save where we can. Most of my customers said the show was getting too big and too long. They were in and out within a one-to-three-day buying period. This is not a holiday, this is a job. “Also, as an exhibitor who shows at the Alberta Gift show, we have back-to-back fall shows. I know in a perfect world we would all have double booths and samples like the larger exhibitors. However, just as small business is the backbone of our country, smaller exhibitors [are the backbone of shows], and most of us simply can’t afford to have double booths, samples and staff. In addition, I’ve heard of people working till 2 a.m. on the Sunday morning of the first day of the Alberta Gift Show. Not only do we pay a premium to get our product there, we get all the stress along with it. So as a member of the CGTA, you have our vote to reduce the length of the CGTA spring and fall shows. Thank you for allowing us to comment.” ~ Dennis & Debra Durrer, Owners, Artables Canada Letters to the Editor and comments on news articles and blog entries are welcome. Please send them to email@example.com
Canadian Small and Independent Businesses Take on Credit Card Companies TORONTO, ON — Retail Council of Canada (RCC) and a coalition of like-minded associations have launched “www.StopStickingItToUs.com,” a national campaign against big credit card companies and the banks that issue their cards that have been imposing “skyrocketing” credit card fees on all Canadians. “Big credit card companies and their banks are taking advantage of local retailers, businesses
8 G I F T S & TA B L E WA R E S
and all Canadians by exploiting loopholes that keep the true cost of skyrocketing fees from the average consumer,” says Diane J. Brisebois, president and CEO of Retail Council of Canada. According to the RCC, “interchange fees” represent an enormous cost for average Canadians and any organization that accepts payment by credit card (merchants, charities, schools, restaurants, etc.). Nearly $2 of every
$100 Canadians spend using credit cards goes directly to the credit card companies and their issuing banks. Canada, says the RCC, is one of the few industrialized countries that doesn’t regulate these fees, which is why they are among the highest in the world and continuing to escalate. For more information visit www.Stop StickingItToUs.com, or contact the RCC at 1.888.373.8245.
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Eating In The NPD Group, a leading market research company, reports that in the U.S. weekday lunches carried from home reached a new high point in 2007, with adults, 18 and older, carrying some 8.5 billion brown bag lunches last year. One result of this increased incidence of eating in is the proliferation of great lunch bags such as Tote du Jour™, Linea Marketing’s new line of insulated lunch bags. Shown: Manhattan. 1.888.315.4632
Shown here celebrating Swissmar’s 25th anniversary are (l-r) Daniel Oehy, Swissmar president; Carol Steele, Bob Ingram and Jerry Cayne from Cayne’s Super Houseware Store; and Nancy Whitmore, Swissmar’s marketing manager.
Swissmar Celebrates 25th Anniversary Housewares supplier Swissmar Imports celebrated its 25th anniversary with a cocktail party for retailers and friends of the company, which was held Sunday, August 10th at the Westin Bristol Hotel. The company’s guests were entertained by Swiss horn players, and enjoyed great food as well as the evening’s signature drink, the Swisstini.
(l-r) Sylvia Miller from Swissmar; Sigrid Wolm, From the Kitchen to the Table, Orangeville, Ont.; and Phyllis Kraemar from The Keeping Room Kitchen Store in Dundas, Ont., enjoy the evening.
DMG Cancels 2009 Toronto International Gift Fair DMG World Media has canceled the Spring 2009 edition of the Toronto International Gift Fair. In a letter posted on the show’s website, Anita Schachter, dmg’s vice-president of Canadian Gift Shows, explains that the decision reflects changes in the giftware industry. “To succeed, markets need to be relevant to you, our valued customers and we do not feel we can produce a market that will meet your needs and expectations given the current market conditions,” she says. However, Schachter points out that as gas prices and travel costs continue to rise, retailers will be searching for cost-effective alternatives to travelling to Toronto. dmg world media, she says, will be focusing its energies on the Alberta, Montreal, and Vancouver gift shows. For more information visit www.canadiangiftshows.com or call dmg’s Buyer Hotline at 1.866.721.4403.
Reader Service Card Number 15
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T H E
M I X
News Briefs Giftcraft, Ltd. will soon be debuting a wide range of original products featuring Betty Boop™, one of the world’s most familiar icons. The Betty Boop™ Collection will ship to retailers in the fourth quarter of 2008. For more information contact Giftcraft at 1.800.387.1777. Creed Canada has finalized the acquisition of the jewellery division of M. Evenchick Jewellery Ltd. Established over 87 years ago, M. Evenchick is best recognized as a leader in pearl and wedding jewellery. Creed Canada looks forward to building upon the strengths of M. Evenchick Jewellery Ltd. and its newly acquired trade names, M. Evenchick, Rachel, Moon Mist, Evco, and Debutant. For more information contact Creed Canada at 514.694.7904.
Danica staff, families and friends gathered recently to celebrate the successful 30-year partnership of the company’s owners, Rodney Benson (left) and Jeremy Braude. At a party/BBQ, which was held at a local park, Benson and Braude were each presented with a picture that was taken 30 years ago as they started out their new partnership.
Beginning Spring 2009, the Tourist, Resort & Imprinted Products Show™ (TRIPS) will shift to a new time frame and location, to run in conjunction with the Vancouver Gift Show and By Hand Vancouver, Canada’s Artisan Gift Show. The next edition of the annual show will take place March 1-3, at the BC Place Stadium, Vancouver, BC. TRIPS is produced by GLM®, a dmg world media business. For more information contact dmg world media at 1.888.823.7469. George Little Management, LLC (GLM®) has announced that the winter 2009 edition of the New York International Gift Fair® (NYIGF®) will run Sunday, January 25, through Thursday, January 29, 2009, at New York City’s Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, and Passenger Ship Terminal Piers 90, 92 and 94. This one-time shift, from NYIGF’s traditional Saturday-Thursday staggered opening/closing date pattern, will occur due to venue availability. These opening and closing dates apply to all nine of the fair’s divisions. For more information visit www.nyigf.com. The Wizard Gift Corporation has been appointed the Canadian distributor for The Zrike Company Inc.. Wizard will specialize in gift shops, kitchen, gourmet and specialty retailers. Zrike’s collection of quality tabletop products includes goods by artists such as Tracy Porter and Lynn Chase, as well as licenses including Kellogg’s and Campbell’s Soup. For more information call Wizard Gift at 1.800.267.4981. Inter-Continental Mercantile (ICM) has acquired the distribution rights of Europe’s Rona Glassware Corp. The company will debut the line at the upcoming CGTA and Alberta gift shows and begin shipping after the shows. 1.800.361.0370. Enesco, LLC has acquired the worldwide assets of GUND, the 110year-old plush manufacturer. N.C Cameron & Sons, Limited, as part of the Enesco family, is pleased to join in welcoming Gund to the Enesco portfolio of brands. However, while Gund has become part of the Enesco family, in Canada, Candym Enterprises remains the distributor for Gund products. For more information contact Candym at 1.800.263.3551. Trudeau has successfully defended its intellectual property rights for its award-winning Trulever corkscrew in four separate cases in Europe and one case in Canada. The company started the procedures in 2003 and after numerous legal rulings it has been vindicated in all the cases that it pursued. For more information contact Trudeau at 1.800.878.3328
Reader Service Card Number 16
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Consumer lifestyle product choices are greater than ever, offering retailers exciting new opportunities for increased sales. But to profit from those opportunities, they need to preview everything new from around the world. It’s a big world, making that a formidable task.
Fortunately, there is one retail buying event where new ideas become reality; where retailers can browse and buy tomorrow’s hot-sellers in every category, from all the world has to offer. Where they can see real product – hold it, inspect its quality and see its true colours and detail.
Best of all, it’s all in one place. That place is, of course, the Spring 2009 CGTA Gift Show, the largest retail trade event of its kind in North America.
To ensure your shopping/buying experience is both efficient and profitable, the show is organized into seven product groupings. But it’s much more than a show; it’s also where successful retailers discover all the resources and support they need to improve every aspect of their operations. Don’t miss it – register today!
Sunday, January 25 to Thursday, January 29, 2009 EXTENDED SHOW HOURS: Until 7pm Monday & Tuesday International Centre Toronto Congress Centre (South and NEW North Building) Owned and Operated by the Canadian Gift and Tableware Association
Reader Service Card Number 17
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News Briefs Landscape Ontario is working to create the first nationwide post-consumer horticultural plastics recycling program in the world and is currently investigating funding for the program. Those interested in learning more about the program, may observe and talk to those involved at the association’s trade show, Garden Expo, from October 21 – 22 at the Toronto Congress Centre. Landscape Ontario is the largest landscape trade association in Canada, with over 2,000 members. For more information visit www.gardenexpo.ca. Abbott has launched an exclusive new designer collection called Versa. It features three distinct design stories: Fluid, Purist and Earth. The collection’s special features include: premium packaging, branded hang tags, and premium gold gift bags. For more information contact Abbott at 1.800.263.2955. Scantrade International Limited has been appointed the exclusive Canadian distributor of Cape Craftsmen and Cypress Home Products. In addition, the company has been appointed the exclusive Canadian Distributor of Tozai Home, a division of Two’s Company. Cape Craftsmen offers accent furniture as well as canvas wall art, mirrors, lanterns and clocks. Cypress Home manufactures gourmet tabletop accessories. Tozai Home from Two’s Company is a modern take on East meets West. For more information call Scantrade at 1.800.361.3659.
"THINK GREEN" The Alternative to Plastic Home of Stainless Steel Water Bottles 5 sizes 30 assorted colours sport tops available
Now in stock!
Jacques Dubuc, president of Trudeau Canada, has announced the appointment of Rhonda Symons as Divisional Manager for the BCT Group in Canada. Symons has worked with companies such as Mikasa and, most recently, Belfor. Based in Toronto, Ontario, she can be reached at 647.224.8044; email: firstname.lastname@example.org…. Scott McBurnie has returned to Samaco Trading as its vice-president Rhonda Symons of sales. He will be overseeing the sales operations for Samaco Trading Limited, Canfloyd Trading Limited and Northdale Trading Limited. With over 25 years industry experience, McBurnie’s last position was as General Manager of Mikasa Canada. Previous to his role at Mikasa, Scott held various positions with Samaco Trading and has 20 years experience within the organization…. Sales agency Shante ’Laine Marketing and representative Steve Swinimer will now be representing Springwater Woodcraft’s line of Early Canadian pine furniture throughout Atlantic Canada. Swinimer can be reached at 902-7652662 or by e-mail at email@example.com…. Susan J. Duke and Gary Takahashi have joined the Wizard Gift sales team. Duke will represent the company in Hamilton/Niagara. She can be reached at 905.824.4791; cell-905.466.5655; email - firstname.lastname@example.org. Takahashi will represent Wizard in Alberta. He can be reached at 403.341.3094; cell - 403.350.9288…. Steve Curtis, National Sales Manager for Trudeau, has announced the appointment of Geneva Bellini as a sales representative for Ottawa, Ottawa Valley and Eastern Ontario. Based in Ottawa, she can be reached at 613.834. 9019; email: email@example.com…. Don Schacter + Associates Geneva Bellini announces the appointments of the following sales reps: Evelyne and George Winkler, Quebec; Penny Grey, GTA; Brian and Janna Lowe, GTA; Heather Marvell, Southwestern Ontario; Jerry Polsky, Alberta; and Rosa and Marty Linder, British Columbia….InterContinental Mercantile has announced that Jerry Polsky and Tammie Banting have joined its sales team, and will be representing both ICM and Georges Valere Co. in Alberta, East Kootenays of BC, NWT and Yukon….The Canadian Gift and Tableware Association (CGTA) reported on its website that its president, Bob Love, will be leaving in early January 2009. The CGTA notes that Love “has been a valued member of the CGTA team since 2004” and that they “wish him well in his future endeavors.”
on the move Reader Service Card Number 18
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Should social media be part of your store’s marketing blend?
BY MATT SHILTON
Creating Community P People are subject to endless advertising messages everyday. Television, radio, billboards, the Internet, emails, magazines, and newspapers are just some of the mediums used to bombard the masses with marketing messages. In fact, advertising is so prevalent in our culture that many people have developed an innate immunity to it. It’s become a backdrop to modern life. How many times have
you walked down a street and not looked at the ad painted on a passing bus, or the billboard above the building across the street? How many times have you ignored the flyer being handed out on the corner? Getting through to consumers has never been more challenging, particularly for small businesses. These companies don’t have the money to invest in television commercials,
radio ads, newspaper and magazine ads or giant billboards in high-density urban areas. And even if they did, says Shannon Stairhime, managing editor of the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA), it wouldn’t exactly do the job. “People are tired of being interrupted. They are sick of being told half-truths and they work very hard to find ways to avoid adSEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2008
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SMM PRIMER Blog - (n.) Short for Web log, a blog is a Web page that serves as a publicly accessible personal journal for an individual. (v.) To author a Web log. Dynamic Content - Web site or blog content that changes frequently and engages the reader. Dynamic content can include animations, video or audio. Keywords - Descriptive words that summarize the contents of a piece of media for the purpose of making it easy to find in a search of the words. Website designers use keywords in the background of the site so that when someone types that word into a search engine the website can be found. This process is known as search engine optimization. MicroBlogging - A form of blogging that allows users to compose brief text updates and publish them. These messages can be submitted and received by a variety of means and devices, including text messaging, instant messaging, email, mobile device, MP3 or the web. Think Twitter. Social Media - The tool set (including blogs) which people can use to publish content to the web. This can include audio, video, photos, text, files, etc. Social Networking Site - Abbreviated as SNS, a social networking site is the phrase used to describe any Web site that enables users to create public profiles within that Web site and form relationships with other users of the same Web Site. Facebook and MySpace are two of the most well-known social networking sites. Web 2.0 - The term given to describe a second generation of the World Wide Web that is focused on the ability for people to collaborate and share information online. Blogs, wikis, and Web services are all seen as components of Web 2.0. Source: Glossary of Social Media Terms, Richard Kastelein, www.expathos.com
1 4 G I F T S & TA B L E WA R E S
vertising because it’s annoying,” says Stairhime. “People are becoming extremely leery of advertising. There’s a backlash going on. They don’t want to hear a marketing message. If they hear a message from their friend, they are much more likely to trust it.” Thanks to the technology, hearing from friends has never been easier. “It’s always been the case that word-of-mouth advertising is the very best form because it’s trusted source to trusted source. It’s kind of nifty with some of the new technologies now,” says Judith Andrew, vice-president of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, referring to how the Internet can become a small retailer’s best friend if used properly. “You’ve got a marriage of an old, trusted technique and a very positive, new technology that is terrific for promoting your business.” Andrew goes on to say that since wordof-mouth marketing is not coming directly from a corporate idea, aiming to present a picture perfect vision of a product, it is far more effective. People are far more likely to buy into a product or service when they hear how great it is from somebody who doesn’t have a vested interest in the business. So the point has been made: Word of mouth is the latest — but also oldest — marketing tool that can set your business up for success. But the Internet is a big, confusing place to someone who has never used it for anything more than email and general research. So where do you start? “Providing a forum where people can have instantaneous contact, where they can make a post and everyone in their network can see it, facilitates it [word of mouth] in such a way that you are able to have a wider audience,” says Stairhime. “It just doesn’t happen the same way offline.” Dr. Maurice A. Ramirez, an Orlandobased professional speaker and specialist in online social networking, says that applying a basic business plan to the way you communicate with your customers, industry, community, clients and competition online is a must in order to use the Internet to successfully build the reputation of your business. “You have to have a set of goals for what you are going to do. They have to be consistent with the business’s overall goals,” says Ramirez, explaining that those goals need to be achievable within the realm of social media marketing. “Once you have the goals, you need to prioritize them.” At this point, you have to decide how much time you are going to devote to each of these goals online. Ramirez refers to this as budgeting and setting boundaries for yourself. When marketing a business online,
you have the potential to take your image and your reputation to places you have never been before. Ramirez stresses the importance of making sure that your own personal social networking pages are as profession and up-to-date as your business’s social networking pages. “If you are using Twitter or any of the other micro-blogging sites, every entry you have should be consistent with the image you want people to have of you. It needs to be a calculated, deliberate marketing message. I treat them like micro press releases,” says Ramirez. “If I have a really good idea, I’ll put it out there as a ‘Hey, I just thought of this. What do you think?’ type of message. That does two things for me. It records my idea, and if the idea resonates with somebody in my network, it results in a new conversation that leads to new work.” Using micro-blogging sites like Twitter and Facebook, you can connect with people. Attracting likeminded people is usually relatively simple, but catching the attention of people who don’t know about your business or store but might be interested in it is more challenging. Your blog entries need to contain keywords that will spark interest and force people to want more of what you are talking about. Once you have made a connection online, it comes back around to doing something in person. “Sooner or later you have to turn this relationship into something real in the real world. More often than not, business in 2008 is still done after some kind of a meeting. At some point, my real world flesh touches your real world flesh,” says Ramirez. Ramirez says that the best way to do this is to hold events. He refers to Linked-in Orlando, which meets every six weeks. The meeting is built up to be a “rock star” event. Attendees get an e-vite about four weeks before telling them to set the date aside. Each week leading up to the event, emails are sent out to attendees telling them things to do such as printing more business cards, be prepared to network and mingle, and so on. The entire event is orchestrated online, but happens in person, and in the end, people have met other people, socialized, networked and made more business contacts. Back in Toronto, Grassroots Environmental Store has been doing some similar online mingling. Grassroots, a green retailer focused on eco-friendly products, has been around for about 15 years. Today, 10 to 15 percent of its sales come from its online store, which has been in operation for about three years. Until recently, the store has relied on media coverage for promotion but lately they
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3 steps TO SMM
1 2 3
Create a business plan for your online marketing.
Know your limitations: Budget, time, etc.
have been developing more in regards to social networking groups. Soon, the store plans to have an online forum that will be open to the public. The forum will provide people with a place to ask questions about products, and see information about events that the store is putting on. â€œCreating the forum online really gives us an opportunity to grow that online community and open it up to people who shop by way of the Internet,â€? says Amanda Montgomery, the storeâ€™s product buyer. â€œWhat we are really hoping for is to create a green discussion hub online that has to do with not just Grassroots as a retailer but also aspects of our business from our involvement with environmental groups to different environmental issues.â€? Mark Evans is a Toronto-based techblogger with some advice for the small business just breaking ground online. He says that blogs are the obvious and logical route that a company can take because they are a way that you can actually have a conversation with your customers. With a blog, you can write all kinds of things. You can use it as a marketing tool, a communications tool, as well as a way of getting feedback. People can give it a quick read and respond to a post in minutes. To Evans, itâ€™s a basic starting point
Commit and persevere: One blog or e-newsletter wonâ€™t do anything.
for many companies. â€œIf a blog is done properly, it actually becomes a pretty effective marketing tool for customers who like your brand and what youâ€™re doing,â€? says Evans. â€œAnd in turn, you use them as viral marketing agents for the blog.â€? However, there are other not necessarily opposing, but different views to the idea of starting a blog and using social networking sites to advertise your business. Mitch Joel, president of Twist Image, a Montreal-based digital marketing company, advises against starting a blog or advertising on a social networking site, saying that people do not want to buy from a social network. He says that the businesses that are winning and getting people excited are the ones that arenâ€™t just sitting there saying â€œbuy from us, buy from us.â€? They are the companies that are doing things of value. Joel uses an example of a florist who sets up a generic ad on Facebook or MySpace promoting cheap flowers versus a florist who creates a Facebook page where users can give different flowers, view their friends flowers and personalize their online collection. Which do you think is going to generate more buzz? he asks. The latter, of course. Joel says business owners should hold
off on starting a blog. â€œDonâ€™t start a blog right away. Go and understand your industry and who is blogging in it. Go see what they are saying, how they are connecting, what the conversation looks like. Once you can identify that, and you know who is saying what, I recommend to start commenting on the bigger blogs that are in the niche that you serve,â€? he says. â€œThis way you are adding value without having your own property that you have to maintain and go through. Once you start adding comments and people are excited about what you are doing, then start a blog.â€? The key at that point, says Joel, is to stay unique. Creative seems to be the way to go online. Creating a community that your customers can interact in can only benefit your business. Whether you like it or not, says Shannon Stairhime, your customers are talking about you. Why not give them something positive and unique to talk about, and even provide them with an easily accessible arena to have these discussions in. The Internet is clearly the most effective place to get viral and word-of-mouth marketing campaigns started. And the best part is that it may not cost you all that much. â–
handpainted ^^^LHJOHUVYPNPUHSJVT 4HKL PU *HUHKH Reader Service Card Number 19
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P R O D U C T
S H O W C A S E
Products Here’s TO THE to help your HOLIDAYS! customers entertain in style.
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP RIGHT:
tags are also available. 613.240.8217
Chocolate Fondue from Menu is made from high quality porcelain. The chocolate is heated by a tea light contained in the lower part of the burner. An elongated plate provides room to hold food for dipping. Browne & Co., 1.866.306.3672
These placemats from Giftcraft feature the whimsical, iconic art of Romero Britto. The theme of the set is love and bringing happiness to others. 1.877.387.1777.
That’s Mine drink tags are available for both stemware and beer bottles. The company makes all the tags and stocks a large list of general name tags. Custom
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What’s a party without music? Somerset Entertainment’s Fall 2008 introductions include Cocktail Lounge, With a Twist, Champagne Big Band Memories and Tis the Season to be Jazzy. 1.800.565.3862
Feuer & Glas’ Soul Food Dream Dishes from Around the World is a collection of “boxes,” each of which contains an explanation of the origin of the featured dish, a shopping list, the needed spices, and a recipe. Carsim
Trading, 1.800.671.3635. Deck the halls with this holiday design from WallTalk’s Signature Series. Available in black, pewter or gold. 1.800.390.4577
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Business Information Group, Contact: Melinda Marasigan Phone: 416 442 5600 ext 3548, Toll Free: 1-866-543-7888 800 – 12 Concorde Place, Toronto, Ontario M3C 4J2 Reader Service Card Number 20
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Now available from David Shaw Tableware, Bottega Del Vino Crystal is a winedriven line of break-resistant, lead-free crystal. 416.736.0492.
Ganz's Scented Hot Pads release holiday fragrances when hot dishes or mugs are placed on them. The pads are 4" in diameter and are available in four scents. 1.800.263.2311
AnDea Chocolate’s new nuts have no added oils, no cholesterol and no trans-fats.
Mum’s Creations’ new Olive Dipper features the company’s signature design of a coiled handle topped with a glass bead. 1.866.833.1193
ANDEA INTRODUCES HEALTHY NUTS AND DELECTABLE CHOCOLATE Thanks to AnDea Chocolate the holidays don’t have to be fattening! The company’s 2008 introductions include a range of all-natural, water-roasted nuts that have no added oils, no trans-fats and no cholesterol. Rick Janssen, the company’s co-owner, explains that the special kettle roasting technique used on the nuts — peanuts, cashews, almonds, etc. — actually results in a crispier end product than traditional roasting. “Nuts are available in the fourth quarter at just about any store,” he says. “But this is such a unique product that the small stores that are our main business focus will be able to sell it, especially to health-conscious consumers. So I’m really happy about that.” The company has also added a selection of delectable chocolate products to its line-up. One highlight is the new dark chocolate drinking chocolate. “It’s basically dark chocolate ground up into fine particles that blend really easily,” says Janssen. They’ve also added a couple of gift tubes: Café Crunch, which is chocolate-covered, coffee-flavored cookies; and chocolate covered Brownie Bites. And for kids, they’re introducing chocolate-covered jujubes. “They’re very simple but kids just love them,” says Janssen. For more information contact AnDea Chocolate & Supplies at 905.304.3311.
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Gourmet du Village’s porcelain dip warmer holds approximately one cup of dip. It comes with Hot Parmesan & Artichoke Dip Mix.
MAKING IT EASY AT GOURMET DU VILLAGE Mike Tott, president of Gourmet du Village, says that for holiday entertaining, consumers are looking for specialty foods that make it easy for them to prepare and serve something special to their families and guests. Over the past few years, he says, Gourmet du Village has had some real successes satisfying that demand. “Our Dip Chiller, which we introduced in 2004, was the first very obvious success. It’s a simple, attractive tableware item that made it easy to serve our range of dip mixes, keeping them cool and fresh.” In 2007, the company successfully introduced a brie baker — an attractive bowl and lid — that came with all the ingredients (minus the cheese) and simple instructions for making and serving this holiday entertaining classic. “In 2008, the ‘make it easy to prepare and serve something special’ trend continues with ‘hot dips’,” says Tott. “They’re a bit more work to prepare but worth the effort when you receive the compliments from your family or guests. To complete the presentation we introduced a Hot Dip Server, and the electric version just won a CGTA Top 10 Product Award.” For more information contact Gourmet du Village at 1.800.668.2314.
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T R A C K I N G
New for fall 2008, Buckstone’s unique, hand-crafted masks are imported from Indonesia, where they are produced by a fair trade company. 1.877.752.2791.
Laila’s offers a collection of exclusive images by artist Monika Wright. The company has enhanced the images with a suspension frame. 1.800.263.6176
This iron candleholder bowl is from Giftcraft’s Rustic Cottage series, which also includes pottery bottle vases, openwork metal designs and decorative wall candleholders. 1.800.387.1777
HGTV personalities Cheryl Torrenueva and Kelly Deck share their thoughts on what’s new on the home décor front. Plus, a look at some of the new accessories and trends spotted at the fall gift shows.
CHERYL TORRENUEVA Designer, Colin & Justin’s Home Heist, HGTV “We’re shifting into high gear with design elements that represent the ‘exotic future’. Experimentation is key: mixing adventurous colors like vibrant blues, purples and greens with black and white. Visually graphic patterns with Asian architectural influences will take center stage. Eco-chic woods and metallic finishes will be the backdrop with a lighter and more textural approach. Think Art Nouveau, high glamour, stylized forms — enough to make any space feel sexy!” SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2008
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Danica’s Chateau color story features sophisticated, muted tones like ivory, slate, silver, sand and endive. The cushions shown are: Eclipse, a wool felt cushion with a circular appliqué design, and Casablanca, a laser-cut, black and ivory design. 1.888.6DANICA
Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH/Petra Welzel
Ganz’s wall votive holders are available in styles for three, four or five votives. The simple glass holders hold standard size votives. 1.800.263.2311
Trendtracking @ Decorate Life Decorate Life, Messe Frankfurt’s new combined fair, presented the latest in home décor. Here are just a few of the trends tracked by the show’s organizer. • SIMPLE ELEGANCE – Shapes are clean and simple. White, black and silver are the dominant colors. They are accented by a cool blue, with a tinge of violet. • NATURE is a role model for artistic design – Many pieces featured “abstract cell struc- Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH/Petra Welzel ture” finishes. Mussels, snails and corals are made into lamps. Cones, remolded in white porcelain, are making a comeback as decorative items. Sand-blasted timbers expose their interior grains. Glassware is upgraded with sgraffito decoration. • GLASS is the most important material for the coming season. It was used for lampshades, decorative pendants and receptacles in a variety of shapes. • WORD PLAY – Meaningful words, quotations and self-composed texts were seen on everything from accessories, frames and lamps to useful, everyday items. • XXL – In outdoor furnishings and accessories, XXL is big. The design of the accessories and decorative objects is organic and linear. • QUALITY – After the opulence and luxury of recent years, “simplify your life” is the name of the game. However, a desire for simplicity does not mean sacrificing top quality. On the contrary, the new motto for many consumers is “Good things don’t come cheap.”
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Decorate Life was held July 4-8, 2008 in Frankfurt, Germany. The combined fair included Tendence Autumn + Winter, Collectione Preview Spring + Summer, Outdoor Living and The Design Annual. For more information visit www.decorate-life.messefrankfurt.com.
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Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH/Petra Welzel
KELLY DECK Host, Take It Outside, HGTV “This fall I think we’ll see a more sultry color palette making its way into the home. Hues of plum, mustard and bronze are sure to show-up in textiles, wall papers and upholstery. Gold accents and retro light fixtures offer a sophisticated complement to this seductive palette.”
All Things Asian’s “Samoa” vase is handcrafted from a single piece of mango wood. Its design was inspired by the waterfalls, volcanoes, rainforests and beaches of the South Pacific island. 1.877.877.7405
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M A R K E T
Bridgewater’s Jar Candles have a new shape that not only enhances décor but also provides a clear burn every time. The company’s natural soy blend wax is formulated for maximum fragrance and long burn times. 1.877.843.2743
U P D A T E
Home fragrance products can give your store the sweet smell of success. BY LORI SMITH
Home fragrance sales in 2007 through all U.S. retail channels reached approximately $5.1 billion, reports Packaged Facts in its 2008 analysis of the market, “Home Fragrance Products in the U.S.: Air Fresheners, Candles and Specialty Products.” And, says the consumer market research specialist, nearly half of these products were sold through specialty and gift stores. If you accept the common wisdom that the Canadian market is approximately 10 percent of the US market, home fragrance sales in Canada were somewhere around $510 million in 2007, with specialty and gift stores getting nearly half of that sizeable home scents pie. Members of the gift industry have always known that scent sells. But consumer demand has come a long way from the potpourri boom of the late 1980s. The Packaged Facts report explains that between 2003 and 2007 the home fragrance market experienced a compound annual growth rate of 6.9 percent. This growth is attributed to S.C. Johnson’s entry into the candle and diffuser categories and Procter & Gamble’s introduction of Febreze in both Packaged Facts’ report and
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a 2007 report by Kline and Company on the home fragrance market. And while there’s no doubt that these products have driven sales in the mass market, and their extensive marketing campaigns have raised consumer awareness of scenting the home, there are other factors that have contributed to the increase. For example, demographic and cultural changes have had an impact on the category. Packaged Facts and Kline & Co. both point out that “eliminating and controlling odors remains a primary need among consumers.” Factors contributing to this need include the increase in pet ownership; the fact that the majority of women work outside the home and have decreased time for cleaning; the growth in homes with larger living spaces and multiple bathrooms; and an increased awareness of in-home air quality. That the
products are available in a variety of forms, price points and retail outlets has made them accessible and affordable luxuries — a category Faith Popcorn dubbed “small indulgences” more than a decade ago. Immigration and global travel have also led to an expansion of our olfactory repertoire (green tea, jasmine, etc.). And the wellness and spa movements have introduced consumers to the therapeutic uses of scent. However, the connection between smell, pleasure and memory lies at the heart of why home fragrances sell — any time. According to the Sense of Smell Institute (SOSI), the research and education di-
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Cleans the air like nothing else. Fragrances like nothing else. Sells like nothing else. 1 800 305 4428 www.lampeberger.ca
ÂŠ 2008 Lampe Berger USA, Inc.
top patented catalytic burner wick f ra g ra n c e stopper
Live in air you love â„˘
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New from Lampe Berger, Exceptional Dreams is presented in a modern-shaped bottle, the form and color of which provide a unique decorative object. The fragrance is diffused through an openwork shade on the cap. Available in eight scents: Diego, Ella, Horis, Sacha, Solal, Sylla, Tara and Yptus. 1.800.305.4428
vision of The Fragrance Foundation, humans can distinguish more than 10,000 different odor molecules. SOSI’s website explains that we use this sense for a “multitude of activities from enjoying the aroma of freshly brewed coffee to deciding whom not to sit next to on the bus.” So on a physiological level, the reason scent sells is very simple: Our olfactory sense is connected to the part of our brain related to emotions and memories. When we encounter a scent that evokes a pleasant reaction in our brain, we want it. And, who wouldn’t want their home bathroom to evoke the memory of a spa? Why shouldn’t a kitchen be filled with the comforting smell of vanilla or apple, even if no-one’s been baking? Why shouldn’t the family room smell like fresh,
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spring rain rather than the inside of a hockey bag? Today’s home fragrance products allow consumers to create a comfortable, soothing olfactory ambiance throughout their homes. And gift and specialty store retailers play a key role in helping consumers achieve that goal. At the recent Canadian Gift & Tableware Association (CGTA) Fall Gift Show exhibitors offered buyers a wide array of home fragrance products. This array included candles, reed diffusers (a product Packaged Facts and Kline identify as having made a real impact on the market), room sprays, incense, fragrance warmers, essential oils, cleaning products, linen sprays and more. Key selling features of these products included the use of natural, eco-friendly in-
gredients such as soy in candles; striking packaging and containers; and pure scents. These are products that look as good as they smell, and this decorative element makes them perfect for gift-giving as well as for self-purchase. However, the array of home fragrance products is surpassed in size by the variety of scents now available. The list includes apple, grapefruit, mocha, strudel, lavender, wisteria, green tea, vanilla, patchouli, eucalyptus, peony, freesia, sandalwood, jasmine, rosemary, mint, sage, ginger, melon, rose and much more. These scents are used alone or in intricate blends that showcase a variety of notes. Today, there’s literally a home scent for everyone. Which ones do your customers want? ■
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S T A Y I N G
C O M P E T I T I V E
SELLING TO THE
better world consumer Product selection, staff training and understanding your customers’ buying motivations are the keys to successfully selling green, fair trade and organic products.
This year’s edition of the International Home + Housewares Show featured several seminars on green consumers and the eco-scene in general. One particular seminar featured a panel of consumers: Shelley, a stay-at-home mom with two kids from Bentonville, Arkansas; Amber, a mother of two living in Orange Country, California; Cheryl, a homemaker based in Seattle, Washington; and Karen, a mom with three kids and part-time job, who lives in a suburb outside of Chicago, Illinois. Questioned about environmentallyfriendly products, the women all professed an interest not only in the products but in doing more for the environment in general, for the planet’s health and for the good of the present and future health of their families. However, all four expressed a dislike for the unexplained science and acronyms being used to describe green products, and a frank skepticism about the purported “green-ness” of products. “How is it green?” asked Karen. “Just calling something green isn’t enough. Is it true or is it just a marketing tool?” Today, environmentally-friendly, organic and fair trade products are on the buying radars of an increasing number of consumers. But skepticism is pervasive. In a survey of the “green-ness” of the industry sent out to our readers this March, 66 percent of respondents said that they not only encountered skepticism from consumers about
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BY LORI SMITH
green products but were themselves skeptical about the eco bona fides of some of the products being offered at gift shows. “Unfortunately, they [consumers] have great reason to be skeptical because many products touted as ‘green’ are still very damaging to the environment,” says Liz Crocker, who along with Ann Caverzan, owns the P’lovers Environmental Store, which has locations in Halifax and Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia, and four franchises in Moncton, New
Brunswick, and Stratford, Port Perry and Bayfield, Ontario. “For example, there were a number of suppliers at the [January] CGTA show who touted their products as ‘green’ but they didn’t meet our standards. We know the field deeply and even for us the selection process is complicated in terms of differentiating fact from fiction. For the uninformed consumer or retailer, it would be easy to buy the ‘line’ and later find out that the choice was harmful.”
Imported exclusively by Lace Goods Company, this duvet is made with 100 percent bamboo ticking of 250 thread count. The filling is also 100 percent bamboo. 905.851.7038
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Clearly, rule number one of selling better world products is to really know what you’re selling. Michael Kalmanovitch, owner of Earth’s General Store, an environmental general store in Edmonton, Alberta, has been selling eco-friendly goods for 17 years. He says that it’s essential to vet the products. “I don’t just ask what’s the price and availability. I ask, what it’s made of? Where is it made? How is it made? I ask all those kinds of things because I want to be able to answer those questions when my customers ask,” he explains. At P’lovers they take the same inquisitive approach to selecting products. “We take into consideration things like the pollution costs of shipping products great distances, factory working conditions, support for environmental restoration, etc.,” says Crocker. “I think our customers appreciate our knowledge and our ability and transparency in sharing this information.” A second key to selling to today’s better world consumer is making sure that your staff knows the products as well as you do. Rob Grand, owner of Grassroots Environmental Store, which has two locations in Toronto, explains that his staff is “very fluent in both product knowledge and environmental issues.” In turn, the store’s salespeople take the time to make sure that customers are as educated and as aware of products and issues as possible. Customer service and education are two of the elements that Grand says significantly differentiate his business from the mass retailers like Wal-Mart and Loblaw’s that have entered the market. Grand also says that it’s important that retailers commit to selling the products. “It’s fine if you just want to throw a few green products on your shelves but be prepared for the savvy consumer to approach you and say, ‘You know you have all those green products on your shelf but I look over and you don’t recycle,… or you’re driving to work in your SUV.’ You’ve got to be able to walk the talk if you want to get into green products.” But, as always, the number one key to successfully selling green, fair trade and organic products is to know your customers and to really understand what motivates their buying decisions. And, in the world of gift and specialty stores, that means knowing what women want when it comes to better world products.
Juniper Imports’ exclusive new EcoMode line of jewelry is made in the Philippines by a workshop that has fair trade practices such as hourly wages, illness and maternity benefits, and a clean, safe working environment. Each piece is made using recycled glass from wine and pop bottles. Higher-end pieces also feature freshwater pearls and semi-precious stones. The line can be viewed on Juniper’s web site and will be officially launched at the spring shows. 1.866.796.7912
In an IHA seminar titled “In the Green: Connecting with Environmentally Conscious Consumers,” Jennifer Ganshirt, managing partner of Frank About Women, shared the results of her company’s survey of more than 1,000 consumers aged 18 and over. The survey, which explored green attitudes and shopping behaviors, revealed eight fundamental truths. The first of which, explained Ganshirt, is that women fuel the green movement. They are more open and motivated by green messaging than men. They are more likely to switch to a green product, pay more for a green product, and feel that buying and supporting green products is the leading way that they can contribute to the green movement. The second fundamental truth, said Ganshirt, is that a woman’s motivation to buy green is both personal and global. “We learned that 52 percent of women say that they will buy a green product if it benefits the health of their family. Thirty-seven percent will pay more for it,” she explained. “So if you can orient yourself to a clear health benefit, you’re more likely to get a willingness to engage. We also learned that there’s a real upside if your can develop and support clear environmental claims. Thirty-nine percent are willing to switch brands if there’s a real benefit to the environment.” However, Ganshirt said that the reality is that most women refuse to sacrifice ease and convenience for green products. The survey revealed that 47 percent of women want the brands they know and trust to provide them with green alternatives. It also revealed that “at the end of the day, a woman’s wallet has the most impact on her green behavior.” And, said Ganshirt, until green
products are comparable prices to traditional options the majority of women are going to stay light green at best. “But when women feel like they’re getting comparable products with green benefits, 69 percent are willing to buy.” Ganshirt advised finding ways to add value to green products. Traditionally, value has been seen as the ratio of price to quality, she said. “But there’s often a third criteria and health is the critical third ingredient in women’s value equation for green products.” She also pointed out that as more and more green products enter the marketplace, green alone is not necessarily going to be the differentiating point. The survey also found that women are now open to seeing green products in a lot of categories. According to Ganshirt, there’s nothing most women buy now that they wouldn’t be open to seeing in a greener version. This is good news for gift, décor and specialty retailers, who now have a consumer group ready to learn about and buy green furniture, décor items, personal care prod➤ ucts and more. SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2008
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The Green - Retail - Scene n late March we surveyed our readers on different aspects of the green scene. In response to the question of whether they’ve experienced skepticism about green products from customers or themselves, 66 percent answered “Yes” and 33.9 percent said “No.” Here are a few of the comments from respondents:
“I research the company/product myself and do not rely solely on their marketing materials.” “I try to make informed decisions. Often I trust the smaller companies more because it isn’t their latest sales gimmick; it’s how they live their lives.”
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“It is still hogwash…but great advertising. It is like the new world religion here.” “Not skepticism…but one does have to read the fine print. There will always be people who push the limits in the name of business.” “Prior to purchasing products for our store we must do our homework. I too am a customer and skeptical about some manufacturer claims. If they can’t make a solid argument to me, I won’t carry it. Our key environmental products are real alternatives to customers using chemicals in their homes.” “We have been in business since 1974 and our customers trust in what we say. If we say it’s ecofriendly, it is. We are honest about the fact that not all of our products are eco-friendly, and they can choose which direction they want to go in.” “The laws on what can be ‘green’ or ‘eco-friendly’ are extremely lax.” “You can’t pretend to sell something as ‘eco-friendly’ when it’s being manufactured in China.”
comments Reader Service Card Number 29
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Retailers can also capitalize on the fact that the relationship — the idea that we’re all in this together — is very important to women. Ganshirt said that women see buying green products as something they do in concert with the company that produces the product, the store that sells the product and the other women who purchase the product. It’s the feeling that “we’re all doing what we can to make a difference.” However, the last fundamental truth that the survey revealed was that not all women share the same orientation or purchase drivers when it comes to buying green or incorporating green in their everyday lives. “We learned that there are basically four types of ‘greenies’,” Ganshirt explained. “Eco-evangelists, home health administrators, convenience first customers, and eco-cynics.” Eco-evangelists compromise eight percent of consumers. She is a traditional treehugger type, whose motto is “Green is part of
Buckstone’s 100 percent cotton, eco-friendly bag supports Balinese artisans. 1.877.752.2791
my life,” said Ganshirt. Home Health Administrators make up 24 percent and her motto is “A healthy family equals a healthy home equals a healthy planet.” These women are a real sweet spot, she said, “because they tend to be more affluent. They are actively buying and incorporating green products into their homes.” The Convenience First Customer makes up 39 percent of consumers. Her motto is “Make it simple.” She is not going to incorporate a new shopping ritual into her life, explained Ganshirt. “Her sweet spot is those trusted brands that she’s already formed a relationship with and who are now offering her green products at a comparable price and quality.” Finally, the Eco-Cynics, a fairly sizable group conceded Ganshirt, are the “you haven’t sold me yet” group. If you convince this woman that you’re not greenwashing and that you haven’t traded quality for green you might get her.” ■
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T R A C K I N G
FASHION-ation Jewelry and fashion accessories continue to be strong sellers in the gift market. Here we track some of the trends guiding the categories. BY LORI SMITH
New from Artistic Jewellery, this necklace set features strands of cord combined with a shiny copper drop. 1.800.589.9047
In the Buyer’s Guide for the Canadian Gift & Tableware Association’s latest show, there are 79 companies listed as selling fashion accessories and 131 exhibitors listed in the jewelry category. Even if one considers the overlap in the two lists, it’s still safe to say that nearly 10 percent of the show’s exhibitors offer fashion accessories and jewelry. In addition, for the first time in its history, the show offered a section — Life’s Luxuries — dedicated to the categories. Meanwhile Mode Accessories, which runs concurrent to the CGTA show at the Doubletree International Plaza Hotel, featured some 220 exhibitors offering more than 600 lines of accessories and jewelry.
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These numbers leave no doubt that these two categories have become big business in the gift industry. And, the good news is that in challenging economic times fashion accessories and jewelry can hold their own. In “High Styles for Low Times,” an article on how fashion and luxury firms will ride out the recession that was published on slate.com, writer Lesley M.M. Blume reported that “accessories will be everywhere.” In Berkeley Designs’ collection of pashmina scarves features a wide range of colors and designs. Distributed in Canada by Wizard Gift Corp., 1.800.267.4981.
the Mrs. Exeter column in the gigantic September 2008 edition of Vogue, a young fashionista is advised that accessories play a key role in surviving “our turbulent economic times in style.” The fall fashion preview editions of Vogue, Fashion, Elle and InStyle together presented more than 2,000 pages of ads and editorial extolling what’s new and in for the season. And, the fact that accessories
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Distributed in Canada by Lotus Jewellery Ltd Toll Free Phone: 1-877-593-0922 Toll Free Fax: 1-800-593-0923 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.lotusjewel.com Reader Service Card Number 31
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will be playing a major role in fashion this fall and winter was a common theme. There are several factors that contribute to the success of the categories, even in down economies. There’s the fact that accessories and costume jewelry often fall into the category of small indulgence. A woman might not be able to afford a new suit or dress but she can afford a new necklace or earrings or bracelet to dress up clothing from last season. In addition, in Blume’s article, Pam Danzinger, president of Unity Marketing, points that fine jewelry has greater perceived inherent value and Sally Singer, Vogue’s fashion news and features director, explains, “Jewelry can upgrade any outfit, and jewelry purchase values don’t change as quickly as clothes, especially gold.” And, there’s also — and always — the basic human need for adornment and thus our fascination with accessories. What’s “in” for fall 2008? In Vogue, Horacio Salinas writes about the season’s accessories in “Objets d’Art.” He points to “intriguing new shapes, saturated colors and lustrous metals” as key elements in the show accessories are putting on this season. Other trends and design directions singled out in the magazine are: faux estate costume jewelry; bold geometrics (rectangles, right angles, three dimensional pieces); matte hardware, studs and spikes; and polished looks (think Jackie ‘O’ in the 1950s) versus neo-bohemian (think hippies). The accessories section in Elle’s September 2008 issue touts faux gems and pearls; strong structural pieces; African New from Bejewel by Trudy Gallagher, Hipster combines sterling silver and 14kt gold. 506.458.2685
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Larus Inc.’s Talisman collection of titanium jewelry for men includes bracelets, pendants, rings and cuff links. 1.866.654.2672.
tribal designs; totes; and pieces with masculine details. Some of InStyle’s (September 2008) picks for must-have accessories are slim belts with graphic hardware and dramatic, thick bangle bracelets. And Canada’s own Fashion magazine announced in its August 2008 edition that the new “it” bag is a statement necklace. To learn more about the trends guiding the categories here in Canada, we turned to some of our industry’s leading suppliers. To begin, Nancy Casserly, president of Juniper Imports, points out that many people no longer own just a few pieces of expensive jew-
ADORNING MEN There’s no doubt that more men are buying and wearing fashion accessories and jewelry than ever before. In November 2007, Unity Marketing reported that sales of fine jewelry to men virtually doubled from 2004 to 2006 to reach $6 billion. “Jewelry designed for men used to be a step-child in the jewelry business, as compared to women’s jewelry,” says Pam Danzinger, president of Unity Marketing. “But in 2006 the men’s jewelry market reached a 10 percent share of the market, so jewelry marketers and retailers can’t ignore it any longer.” She points out that many men are abandoning business casual for more formal business attire, and they are interested in accenting their wardrobes not only with a fine watch, but gold rings and cufflinks, as well. However, fashion accessories at a variety of price points are also popular. Walk down any street and you’ll see any number of teenage boys and twentyand thirty-something men sporting decidedly masculine rings, pendants on chains, bracelets, earrings, and more. At the recent CGTA show, I spoke to Lawrence Shatilla, president of Montreal-based Larus Inc. He reported that his company’s Talisman collection, a line of titanium jewelry for men, has been selling very well. Talisman features a selection of bracelets, pendants, cuff links and rings. Made from light, strong titanium, the pieces are often accented with black and would as easily complement jeans as a suit. Fashion accessories and jewelry are gift and self-gift categories. With the holidays approaching, have you thought to include some fashion accessories for guys in your store’s product mix?
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La Scala sterling silver, rhodium-plated whale tail pendant on an 18-inch sterling chain and matching earrings are part of Creed Canada’s nautical-themed collection, which features inlayed mother-of-pearl in a variety of colors and designs. 1.877.694.7904
elry that they wear all of the time. “Today’s woman wants jewelry that sets off the clothing and vice-versa,” she says. “This fall the color to have is plummy purple and more vibrant colors in the spectrum. Bold pieces that standout or make a statement are what people are shopping for. Also, pieces that use natural components or earth-friendly, natural or recycled pieces are in hot demand.” Designer Trudy Gallagher, the owner of Bejewel by Trudy Gallagher, says that in her business the green phenomena is also continuing. “Customers are loving tumbled natural gemstones, coral, pearls and texture. Themes that are perceived as being ‘environmental’ or ‘organic’ are rising swiftly in popularity,” she explains. As examples she cites “leaves, flowers, branches, vines and coral…whether represented through carved gemstones or suggested in form or design in metal.” Jonathan Allison of Creed Canada says that they are also seeing a movement towards nature themes and organic materials. “Consumers are seeking to express their individuality through a mix of natural stones and organic designs,” he explains. “Relatively new materials including mother-of-pearl and
New from Juniper Imports, the EcoMode line of jewelry is made using recycled glass from wine and pop bottles. Necklaces range from glass shapes with cotton cords, to higher-end pieces that use the glass with freshwater pearls and semi-precious stones. 1.866.796.7912
Reader Service Card Number 32
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Wall Flower by Maggi B features a rich red print. The collection includes weekend totes, travel accessories, baby gear and the gym tote shown here. Ganz, 1.800.263.2311
S.T.A.M.P.S. is a collection of graphic, interchangeable watch faces. Designed to be collected, the watch faces have a special 3MScotch adhesive on their backs that allows them to be stuck, and restuck, to complementary bracelets, bands and chains. Shown: Love Flower on yellow band. Available from Carsim Trading, 1.800.671.3635.
“Inspired byNature” is the design ethos of Sharon Dickinson, the first jeweler to be featured in Lotus Jewellery’s new “Artisan” series of designer jewelry. Dickinson fuses natural forms and textures with contemporary designs. Lotus will be adding a new artisan to the collection every year. 1.877.593.0922
larimar, which vary slightly from item to item when set in soft organic shapes, make a perfect fit for this clientele.” These new materials, mother-of-pearl and larimar, which is blue gemstone found in the Dominican Republic, are the basis for two of Creed’s new collections. John Mills of Lotus Jewellery notes that there are a lot more textures being used. “You can acid etch a piece. You can make it look like it has a rough finish or a matte finish or an antiqued finish,” he says. “And it tends to be more earthy. I’m noticing that there’s a lot less bling around.” He also points out that the trend to different metal colorings is very big. “A bracelet will have three or four different tones of color in it so there’s a lot of variety in that one piece.” In addition, he says that many consumers are looking for pieces that have a high perceived value, which comes not only from a piece’s design but also from elements such as who designed the piece and whether it has “a story” behind it. Fulfilling that demand was the impetus for the company’s new Artisan line, which debuted at the CGTA Gift Show. According to Jonathan Allison, circles continue to be a big design element. “Look for designs inspired by the retro looks of
Buckstone’s selection of fashion accessories and jewelry includes these fully-beaded, “circle” coin purses. 1.877.752.2791
3 4 G I F T S & TA B L E WA R E S
the 1960s — think British Invasion and West End geometrics,” he says. “And medallions — the bigger the better — are also a popular look, reminiscent of the love-fest ’70s.” Sandra Scarfo, buyer for Artistic Jewellery, also recommends looking out for updated retro symbols. “Don’t hesitate when you see the peace sign again. You’ll love its new flare screaming ‘bling bling’ with shiny crystals on basic cords,” she says. “Color, color, color” is another trend Scarfo’s spotted. “This spring is fun and sassy combining a rainbow of bright multi-colors including yellows, oranges and blues. Turquoise is hot in its traditional native styling and in its new stylish trends.” Another trend noted by Trudy Gallagher reflects a renewed interest in spiritual and mystical symbols. “I’m seeing a curious subgroup beginning to take shape,” she says. “Many customers are looking for charms, amulets and talismans. These items are not necessarily ‘traditional’ tokens but rather interpretations or artistic representations.” New symbols for our challenging times, perhaps. ■
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YOUR SOURCE FOR GOLD, SILVER, AND FASHION JEWELLERY
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GOLF BALL FINDER EYEGLASSES www.GolfBallFinders.com PGA award-winning Canadian invention that saves golfers money, lowers their score, and speeds up the game. Voted as the year’s “Top Golf Gift”. Golfer’s LOVE them, especially men! 1-800-823-6133.
ANDEA CHOCOLATE & SUPPLIES
ALL OCCASIONS GIFTWARE PACKAGING www.AllOccasionsGiftware.com Your source for colourful Chinese take out boxes available in paperboard and frosted plastic. Clear plastic boxes available in standard sizes and custommade sizes are possible.
www.andeachocolate.com We are Suppliers and Manufacturers of all types of Chocolate and Hard Candy Products. We also offer a wide variety of packaging for all types of Chocolate and Candy. Visit our web site for more product details.
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BARNETT GLOBAL IMPORTS INC.
www.gourmetduvillage.com Your one-stop-shop for gourmet foods, gourmet gifts and matching tableware & accessories. Visit our extensive website to view our entire collection of over 400 gourmet products, tableware, recipes, serving suggestions and monthly updates. Proudly Canadian.
www.barnettglobal.com Importer and distributor of a trendy Reading Glass line. The collection features modern styles and patterns including multi-coloured swirls, rainbow designs, pastels and unique prints. Visit our website or call 1-866-780-0337 for further information.
ALL THINGS ASIAN CORP. www.allthingsasian.ca See our unique assortment of eco-friendly products including: exotic MangoAccents™ line of vases, candleholders & plates, handmade from mangowood; striking EcoSaa™ collection of albums, giftbags, giftcards & tags, handmade from tree bark; & exquisitely crafted TreeSkin™ journals, handmade with coffee filtered paper. Order online or call 1-877-877-7405.
HARROGATE HOUSE CREED CANADA www.creedcanada.com YOUR SOURCE FOR WHOLESALE FASHION jewellery, gifts, and accessories. Shop online with a leading distributor for Italian Murano Glass, Sterling silver, Nina Ricci, D'Orlan, La Scala, Crystal World collectibles and more. Shop Online or call 1-514-694-7904
ALLSORTS PREMIUM PACKAGING INC. www.allsortswrap.com Specializing in poly bags, basket bags and basket wrap for Candy Makers, Basketeers and Florists. Stock or custom. Print a pricelist from our homepage. Tel...888-565-9727
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http://www.harrogate-house.com Your source for unique, elegant, quality gift & home décor products. Quick delivery & exceptional service is our priority. View our collections online — exquisite products await you!
JUNIPER IMPORTS GARDEN & FLORIST EXPO www.gardenexpo.ca Canada’s fall buying show for the retail green and floral industries is held annually at the Toronto Congress Centre. Plan to participate – October 21-22, 2008. Call 1-800-265-5656 x353.
www.juniperimports.com Look us up online for a full web catalogue and ordering system. We carry a full line of Culture Mix jewellery, high quality fashion jewellery & accessories, and capiz giftware. Order online, or call us at 1-866-796-7912 .
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NATURE’S EXPRESSION KULIN www.kulin.com Complete aromatherapy programs including Scents Alive candles, oils, incense, potpourri and accessories. Also, representing Camden Passage: vintage-inspired furniture, home, and garden accents.
www.naturesexpression.com Nature’s one-stop shop! Elemental-themed wishpots, gongs, burners, candles, windchimes. Magnetic, shell, gemstone jewelry. Crystals, minerals, fossils. Totem, Wish, Kanji, Inspiration stones. Stonebowls, Salt and rock Lamps and Candleholders. 1-800-723-6403
MARITIME GIFT SHOW
OLD TIME CONFECTIONS
www.maritimegiftshow.ca Warm Maritime hospitality awaits retailers at the Maritime Gift Show. As well as all your favourite giftware suppliers the Show will host many new exhibitors including local Craft wholesalers. Dont miss our future shows: February 7–10, 2009 and September 12-15, 2009.
www.oldtimeconfections.com Old Time Confections is a company dedicated to importing Old Fashioned Candy of Yesteryear. Specializing in Retro "Hard to get" Imported Candy. Customers say: "Wow I remember those...I haven't seen them in years." We have it all.
TOUCH THE SKY INC. www.touchtheskyinc.com Home & garden decor from Woodstock Chimes, Toland, Good Directions, Conant & Plant Nannies. Toys & Games from Orb Factory, Woodstock, W.J. Fantasy, T.J. Whitney, Tedco, Channelcraft & Felttales. We update our site regularly!
WARM BUDDY www.warmbuddy.com We create excellent feel good products to warm and comfort body and soul. Aromatherapy heat wraps, baby products, spa luxuries and the original warm up plush animals. Made in Canada. 1-888-6490649
WIZARD GIFT PORTUGAL IMPORTS MAYHEW’S WHOLESALE www.mayhews.com Search & Shop at Mayhews.com! Nature's Image® flowers, plants, trees, Christmas; Berdestone® frost-proof fibreglass home & garden. Multi-WINNERS Best Large Booth Alta Gift Show. Christmas dating program. Incorporated 1985.
www.portugalimports.ca Importers specializing in hand painted and hand crafted products from Portugal. Selection includes Portuguese Good Luck roosters, giftware, garden (planters, vases, etc.), glass, tabletop, stoneware, artwork (original reproductions), wine accessories, housewares and a complete line of religious including: crucifixes, books, statues, rosaries, Communion and Baptism gifts.
www.wizardgift.com Leader in ECO-FRIENDLY Products! Talk to Wizard First! Stainless Steel Waterbottles, Universal Cleaners, Green Beaver Personal Care, NurturePure Glass Baby Bottles, Biodegradable Wash Cloths, Timolino Barware, Coffee & Tea, Men's Gifts, Garden Decor, Wine Accessories, Lodge, Baby, Breast Cancer, Kristine Flat Wallets, Kitchen, BBQ, and Christmas. CGTA Toronto Gift Show, NEW Congress Ctre., North Bldg., Hall 10 #10423.
To book your
CLASSIFIED, SITE SEEING OR DISPLAY
NATURE’S ARTIFACTS INC. www.natures-artifacts.com Introducing New & Exciting Ready to Retail Gifts & Jewellery under The Brand Rock Shop™. Himalayan Salt lamps, Selenite lamps & Candleholders, Neti Pot, Soap Stone oil diffusers, Engraved Semi Precious Stones, Brazilian lamps & Candle holders. Gourmet Himalayan Salt Shakers mixes with Herbs. All lamps are CSA Tested in printed boxes. Mother Nature's one stop shopping!
SAKSCO-GOURMET BASKET SUPPLIES www.saksco.com One Source For All Your Gift Basket Needs. Canada’s leading supplier with over 1,200 exclusive and brand name gourmet food components, readymade baskets, containers, baby & bath products.
ADVERTISEMENT call Brenda Bishop at 416.510.6826 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Out-of-Town Customers call: Canada: 1.800.268.7742 ext. 6826 US: 1.800.387.0273 ext. 6826
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David Carr & Associates Retail Consultants and Trainers
Advertisers in this Issue Please check the names of these companies that you would like to receive information from and fax page back to 416.510.6875
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All Things Asian. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 AmericasMart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 AnDea Chocolate & Supplies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Artistic Jewellery. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 Bejewel by Trudy Gallagher . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Bridgewater Candles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Buckstone Inc.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Canadian Gift & Tableware Association (CGTA) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Creed Canada . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Danica Imports Ltd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 DeR Coffee & Tea . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 DMG World Media. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . IFC Eachanoriginal Design Company . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 Event Marketing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 Ganz . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . OBC Glengarry Products Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 Gourmet du Village . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Juniper Imports Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Lace Goods Co. div. of Northcott Silk. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Laila’s Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 Lampe Berger Canada. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 Lotus Jewellery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 Multipost Retail Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Old Time Confections . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Somerset Entertainment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Wizard Gift Corporation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Wizard Gift Corporation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
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CLASSIFIED SITE SEEING OR DISPLAY ADVERTISEMENT call Brenda Bishop at 416.510.6826 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Out-of-Town Customers call: Canada: 1.800.268.7742, ext. 6826 US: 1.800.387.0273, ext. 6826
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