Wednesday, 19 August 2009

8th August 2009
With several of the main trade fairs around the corner, we have been busy promoting the new trade collections. Two of my favourite trade magazines are Gift and Craft Focus where you come across unique and often small companies who have those 'must have' unusual products. I do hate to see companies copying their competitors (or websites as we are finding!) , so us as consumers are left with an overload of the same thing. Entrepeneurs make it by their own signature and style, and not by following others footsteps
What is lovely in the gift industry at the moment, is that retailers are pulling the stops more than ever before because the consumer wants that something different. Luckily we have very fresh ideas and a keen eye so we're always kept on our toes, with a fair price in mind. We were delighted when Craft Focus featured us as a new company to watch in their Industry News section, and gave us such a lovely write up.

10th August 2009
I always think the summer time is a quieter time for us for courses with so many people on holidays. To my surprise I added a one off date in August to find it virtually booked up within a fortnight!
It's all go with new collections arriving, photo shoots, a good stream of orders and even the odd client coming in from Hong Kong for a private gift wrapping course. It's an exciting time with preparation underways for the forthcoming events and a very full diary for the rest of the year. I'm even sourcing ribbons for next Spring and fell in love with this romantic embroidered ribbon which we have online for £1.50 per metre. After the current wedding season I somehow don't think we will be left with much for Valentines Day!

11th August 2009
One of my favourite reads (not that I ever get any spare time!) is Woman and Home Magazine.
Our courses have been featured in the latest issue and the phone has been red hot with enquiries from North Yorkshire to South Wales. We've also been frantic helping magazines with their Christmas shoots, liasing with good old Marks and Spencer who always come up trumps with their wrapping range (they I believe are one of the best on the High Street for Gift Wrap)
We're now even working with an interior magazine for their January shoot. When it's been a hot and muggy day I can't get my head around snowdrops and new year diets!
And back to Woman and Home magazine...dosen't Joanna Lumley look fabulous on the cover?
I will enjoy the read on the train this week to another course.

19th August 2009
I love a good challenge and was recently asked by Crafts Beautiful Magazine to create a feature on how to use those roll ends and remnants of ribbon. Those of you who have been on a Gift Wrapping Training Day will have plenty of ribbon ideas! So for a couple of days I talked, breathed and dreamt of thrifty and inexpensive ribbon ideas...from how to get a matching handag to adding trim to jeans.
The online feature shares the top 10 ribbon tips (please click on the link). Being brought up on a diet of Blue Peter and sticky back plastic, I really enjoyed looking through their online craft ten out of ten to Crafts Beautiful and that's definately being saved to my favourites.