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Instagram: The New Runway

instagramrunwayWe recently partnered with Gifts and Dec to host a round table discussion with 12 amazing retailers to talk about where they look to learn about new products and trends. We learned that good reps are important but that “Instagram is the new runway.” Retailers no longer wait for fashion reports or trade shows. They see what their customers want through their Instagram feeds! Fads have become so short that they can start and end before you ever see the customer.

One retailer explained, “Instagram, is set up for my business. So, I can stand at the booth, take my notes in my phone, go back  later through my pictures, and then directly, with a button, click and say which vendors to follow up with.”

With the changing economy, gift retailers are also focusing their efforts on enhancing the customer experience by finding ways to make shopping fun and enjoyable. Promoting the message of “supporting local” among customers is important for gift retailers. Many of the retailers stated that their customer base will pay higher prices at their store because they want to ensure their business continues to thrive.

But the user experience starts long before they walk into your business. With 52% of consumers researching purchases online before shopping, the retail experience starts with your website and social sites. Instagram, is easy and can quickly communicate to a shopper that you carry products that relate to their lifestyle. So, if you aren’t already on Instagram, go check it out and see why it’s being called the “new runway.”

Where do you learn about new fashion, accessory and gift trends? Leave us a comment and let us know! And, don’t forget to follow us on Instagram!

2018 Outdoor Trends

outdoorlivinggraphicfinalIf there ever was a year to give outdoor living spaces a fresh look, 2018 is it! With the economy on the upswing, consumers are feeling confident, and are already showing signs of spending more on entertaining at home, both indoors and out. Come next spring, if economic predictions are right, this spending will continue, and outdoor spaces are expected to become a priority for consumers.

The trend is to extend interior spaces outside with a smoothcustomdecorspring transition, not a jolt into another color palette. That being said, the minimalistic, Scandinavian, natural fiber look is expected to hang on as an expression of consumers feeling more carefree and unconcerned, as is the much loved, and still very-much-in-demand farmhouse decor with its tone on tone and soft hues of greys and taupes. However, with the excitement of brighter days ahead, consumers will be inclined to add reds, blues, and greens for pops of color, and as underlying symbols of celebration.

 

Millennials, with their penchant for travel and interest in other cultures, more than any other consumer group, will be on the hunt for global inspiration for their outdoor textiles and decorative items. So, artisan items from, outdoorbohospaceor appearing to be from, other cultures will be flooding store shelves. Also, this group prefers hand-crafted items with stories or causes behind them. They will combine multi-colored fabrics and richly patterned textiles with clusters of pottery, plants and decorative items to recreate the feel of a favorite faraway destination.

Coastal decor is always big in outdoor spaces but, it will be enhanced in 2018 with more elaborate patterns and some handmade appeal with textiles and fabrics having a water-colored effect.

Regaltrio

Consumers are expected to be more interested in decorative garden lights and statement-making statuary, like those above from Regal Art & Gift, placed around their outdoor living spaces and seasonal outdoor decor from Custom Decor. It’s going to be quite a year for the industry with all of these fun and unexpected design elements!

October Apparel Market Trend

MaryFrancesEmbroidered

Be on the look out at the October Apparel Market for intricate embroidery and floral patterns! Both are big on fall 2017 apparel and handbags and will remain so through spring 2018. The runway shows for spring 2018 spotlighted embroidery and floral designs running the gamut from dainty and subtle to colorful and attention grabbing.

Embroidered Shirt

At our Total Accessories showroom, there are lovely apparel items and handbags from Mary Frances, Coco + Carmen, Steve Madden and more. Come take a look during market, we’ll be happy to show you our beautiful embroidered and floral patterned items. Or, call our showroom for assistance at 404-523-4418. Leave us a comment and let us know what you think about this trend.

 

Spring Handbag Trends 2017

Spring handbag styles are so much fun this season. You’ll see some of the fabulous fringe you saw in the fall but other than that, the styles are fresh and exciting. Here are some of the top handbag trends for spring 2017.

 

The Tiny Bag

A bag doesn’t have to be big to make a statement! Tiny handbags are hugely popular this season and though you can sondrarobertsminifit maybe some lip gloss and some change in these bags, they are in demand. Sondra Roberts has some irresistible Thumbelina bags this season. So does Coco + Carmen, of course!

 

 

The Cinch Bag

These less formal drawstring bags are perfect for carefree summer days and cococarmencinchgetaways. They typically have wide openings so you can throw in a swimsuit and a towel and be on your way. These bags are popping up in florals and metallics and other fun prints and trendy patterns. Coco + Carmen has a variety from which to choose.

 

The Floral Print Bag

sondrarobertsfloralFeminine and  pretty, these bags can add a little color to a basic wardrobe. A floral clutch can pair nicely with a dress or jeans this season.  You must see the Sondra Roberts florals as well as the richly embellished florals of Mary Frances bags –two distinctive floral looks for spring 2017!

 

Bag Add-Ons

Like I said, this is a fun season! Charms, scarves, and other cute add-cococarmencharmsons are on trend this spring. Tassels and furry pom poms, bold flowers and fruit and so many other fun and colorful (and fabulously frivolous) add-ons are available from Coco + Carmen.

Check out all these great styles and more at Sondra Roberts, Mary Frances, and Coco + Carmen.

 

Create Mood with Candles

candlegroupsthelinkcompanies

Fall is here and it’s time to break out the cozy throws and stock up on candles! Sure, candles can fill a room with light and fragrance, but, this fall, candles are decorating essentials!

The best way to create mood with candles is to group them. Use quality flameless or wax candles of the same color in various heights and widths and place them together on a heat resistant tray, or on candle holders. The candle holders don’t necessarily need to match. Enjoy playing with the arrangement until it’s aesthetically pleasing. Decorators suggest white or cream colored candles because you can easily add decorative seasonal elements around them for a specific holiday. Grouped arrangements instantly add warmth to a room and a tray of candles can be placed on a table or counter in any room, bathrooms included. Here are several other creative ways to decorate with candles:

candlesonmantlecollage

Cluster candles on a mantle. A mantle is the perfect place for candles. As the focal point of a room, using candles in the right way can easily set the mood and create ambience. Place them on rustic candle holders for more of a cozy look or put candles in glass hurricanes for sheen and elegance. 

 

Arrange candles in a tablescape. Create tablescapes for holidays by adding seasonal elements, or dress up a table for an elegant dinner party. It’s so easy to create different looks with candles depending on the season and the occasion.
falltablescapecollage
Group candles in an unused fireplace or on the hearth. When a fireplace is unused or non-working, fill itfireplacecandlescollage with candles of different heights and light up a room with candlelight!

Ask your rep about our great candle selections from Virginia Gift Brands and Candle Impressions. For more candle decorating inspiration, check out our Pinterest board!

 

 

 

Images from Pottery Barn, MontanaRosePainter.tumblr.com, ehomecoverage.com, cottagemarket.com, hometipsforwomen.com, and picklee.com.