Designers, Retailers Respond to New Venues
By Carole Sloan -- Home Textiles Today, 8/21/2006 12:00:00 AM
New York — —
New York — Home textiles exhibitors at the New York International Gift Fair at the Javits Convention Center and at Piers 92 and 94 reported good business activity here last week both from retailers and interior designers. The new venue for the New York Home Textiles Show at the Metropolitan Pavilion, however, produced mixed opinions.
At the Javits and the Piers, the main venues, exhibitors generally were pleased with the results. For first-time exhibitor Realetto, “We were constantly busy, but it was kind of mixed as to who we saw. There were a lot of designers, and some retailers,” according to Debra Cockrum, vp, sales.
At Sferra, Mary Shields, design and development, noted that they were busy on an on-going basis. And for Peacock Alley, “This was our biggest writing market — across all regions,” exclaimed Dale Cooper, vp, national sales manager.
At Textillery, “We had a good show, with new customers as well as people who used to buy from us, and went off-shore, and now are back,” John Rose, president, reported. “The problem out there is not the consumer [in accepting new design and quality] but the retailer.”
“It was a really good show,” reported Jim Tommins, vp, Kennebunk Home, “and it was encouraging to see the range of customers, although most were from the mid-Atlantic and Eastern seaboard states.” But he added, “The combination of all the number of shows will have to dilute the impact of some of them.”
For Claire Delaney, designer for Fino Lino, “It was phenomenal. Traffic was very good and we were right with color — green.”
And Amia Fenkner, who is responsible for marketing in the family business, said, “It was a good show. We saw our normal customers and added some new accounts.”
At Living Space Creations, the marketers of Baby Mo (mohair products from South African baby goats), company rep Bernice Drobnic noted, “We had a good week for introducing our line and good response.”
Lynn Courtade, whose rep company represented Home Source International at the Piers, “saw a lot of designers, and Home Source did well since they spent a lot of time and dollars on designer packets of information. And bamboo [as a fiber] is creating a lot of interest.”
Meanwhile at the Metropolitan Pavilion, “Traffic that was very slow Sunday through Tuesday, and somewhat better on Wednesday, the last day,” said Katherine Lum, manager for Twinkle, a bedding and rug design house. “Overall, it was a little disappointing and we all felt it,” she added.
But at Magnolia Linens, “We did quite well, and met some retailers who had not seen our collection,” said Arjum Hamed, a principal of Magnolia Linens. “Overall,” she added, “there were not enough people, people couldn't get to us easily from the Javits, and many people at the Javits didn't know we existed. It wasn't well organized.”
Similarly, “It was a slow start for home textiles exhibitors” at 7 W New York, said Toni Valle, manager of a multi-line showroom that included Fino Lino, Down Town and Katha Diddel. “But overall it went well.”
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