Gift Shop Plus

Gift Shop Plus Fall 2021

magazine for retailers at gift shops and specialty stores

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GIFTSHOPMAG.COM 83 them joy, are multi-purpose and offer functional living," said Katie McEachern, art department supervisor, Willow Street Designs by dei — a gift, home and seasonal manufacturer in Yarmouthport, Massachusetts. Cabana 19 has seen an upswing in demand for coastal. "Customers yearn to surround themselves in feel-good gifts and accessories from the beach. They're loving anything made locally that exudes good vibes and are happy to be out shopping and decorating again," said Kristen Winters, owner, Cabana 19 — a shop in Red Bank, New Jersey. NEW FOR 2022 An array of home items are launching. Top-selling items offer practicality. Shatterproof bamboo serve ware and stemless acrylic glasses are moving off shelves. The Town of One Thousand Lakes B Y D E B B I E E I S E L E Managing Editor Vintage Mercantile is located in historic downtown Antioch, Illinois. Throughout this brick-and-mortar, vintage industrial style reigns. Its three employees work together with Debora Winkler, owner, to create a merchandise offering that is as unique as the store's 100-year old building. "We work with over 100 artisans from around the U.S. to bring unique and hand-made gifts to our town. Since the building we are in is over 100 years old, I decided to use vintage pieces as a vintage NYC postal sorting piece as a display for local honey, a nuts and bolts metal piece displays magnets and stickers, an old claw foot tub displays all the hand-made soaps, a large wooden work bench displays all our bar items, etc.," Winkler shared. Antioch is known as "the town of one thousand lakes" and this was a source of inspiration for Winkler. "I offer custom handmade items with the lakes on them," she said. "I have designed pillows, bottle openers, coasters, and keychains. I also love our little charming town, so I design many items that have our town's name on it. People love it!" Vintage Mercantile's best-sellers include hand- poured candles that feature dried pressed flowers, whiskey and bourbon candles as well as pet bandanas. But, its most requested item in inventory is the insulated tumbler that reads: "The Real Housewives of Antioch." Winkler does not attend any in-person trade shows, instead she sources product from Faire, Abound or Tundra. "We have also partnered with Naples Soap Company after I vacationed in Naples and loved the products; I knew I had to bring it to Illinois," she detailed. Winkler shared a few tips: "Don't follow the norm... think outside the box…use unconventional items to display and to sell." She also suggested frequently rotating displays to showcase new offerings. "People have seen it all, so they want unique and fun items. Change the displays and get new products... keep your customers interested," she explained. Lake Life Print Braided Placemat. Design Imports. Circle 257. Quilled Beach House Greeting Card. Quilling Card. Circle 256. M any people yearn for the sense of serenity they experience after a day spent lake- or beach-side. Coastal areas and relaxing lake destinations have always been top spots for getaways — and during the pandemic, many found solitude and ample breathing space in America's rural regions. With more of a return to normalcy in recent months, there's also been an uptick in entertaining, both indoors and out. "Homeowners yearn to be close to nature. The pandemic has reacquainted us with the outdoors. Outdoor living rooms have become popular spots for gathering," said Jennifer Livingston, senior designer, DEMDACO—a gift manufacturer in Leawood, Kansas. Consumers continue to update and improve their indoor and outdoor spaces. "The home has become a sanctuary. People are surrounding themselves with items that bring

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