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Here is a selection of features from Gift Focus magazine.
Sara Davies gives us tips on how to make your business stand out amongst the rest. She says: In the business world, first impressions count and standing out in the right way can really pay off. There are so many ways to present your business in the best way so it can shine brighter than the rest...
Father's Day is one of the prime gifting events throughout the year, with the product choices continuing to expand...
Forget the socks this Father's Day and instead send your love with a fabulous "Man Candle" or "Mandle". With over 40 fragrances in its range, Pintail Candles has a great range of masculine and gender-neutral scents and styling to suit every dad, daddy, father and pa. A popular choice for men is the Driftwood fragrance which comes in many different candle sizes to suit every pocket. This is an invigorating clean, fresh fragrance, combining notes of massoia wood, vetiver and oak moss intertwined with refreshing citrus hints of bergamot and lemon.
The Beeswax Company was launched due to Founder Fran Beer noticing a gap in the market for sustainable alternatives to cling film. The venture was a success from the start, with collaborations forged between the likes of the National Trust and Cath Kidston. When did you start up and why? I founded The Beeswax Wrap Co. in 2017 in a bid to live more sustainably and plastic-free, starting within my home. Sadly, I found little to no alternatives to cling film on the market. So, blending my love of crafting and the planet, a journey to create a product that was planet-friendly, useful and beautiful began – and The Beeswax Wrap Co. was born!
Capitalise on the trend for products made in Britain with these gorgeous offerings. The Queen's Platinum Jubilee collection celebrates 70 years since HRH Queen Elizabeth the Second's coronation. The intricately hand-drawn design was inspired by the magnificent dress worn by The Queen during her Coronation in 1952 featuring embroidered flowers from across the Commonwealth including the Tudor rose (England), thistle (Scotland), leek (Wales), shamrock (Ireland), wattle (Australia), maple leaf (Canada), fern (New Zealand), protea (South Africa), lotus flowers (India and Ceylon) and wheat, cotton, and jute (Pakistan).
With a strong range of products on offer, Lesser & Pavey prides itself on its customer contact and bringing creativity and innovation to the marketplace... When did you start up and why? Lesser & Pavey was established in 1971, becoming a leading UK trade supplier of giftware and homewares. We recognised an opportunity at a time when the established importers lacked innovation and new products at value for money prices. Today the company prides itself on exceptional quality with on trend products at great value for money prices and our brand 'The Leonardo Collection' is renowned worldwide.
Groovy UK has a wide product offering that is steeped in quality design. Despite finding the pandemic challenging, the company is excited to try new ideas. Here Monique Scott, Managing Director and Owner tells us more...
When did you start up and why? Groovy UK was launched in 1991. I always had a love for design and items with unusual features – art college taught me to create and work from concept to finished product. I opened gift shops but still couldn't find the things I wanted from many suppliers, so I found out about manufacturing in China and started to make my own products. Due to the size of the MOQ's I needed to sell the extra stock, so I set up a wholesale/distribution company.
E-commerce experts Optiseller spotlights five new online trends that will affect all online sellers in 2022...
In the past two years, we have seen e-commerce change and grow to meet the demands of the new COVID-19 world. As we continue into 2022, it is vital for all online sellers to look ahead and plan for what is to come. According to e-commerce experts Optiseller, there are five new e-commerce trends that will affect all online sellers this year. Optiseller experts say it doesn't matter what platform or marketplace you sell on, these trends can and will affect every aspect of selling online in the year ahead.
Having overcome challenges as a start-up, D & J Glassware is now a mainstay of the gift industry, having built up a loyal customer base over the past twenty years. Here, co-founder Jocelyne talks to Gift Focus about the brand...
When did you start up and why? We started D & J Glassware in 2002. David had worked for many years in a senior sales role for blue chip companies, latterly in the horticultural industry. Jocelyne is a chartered accountant with experience of both large multi-national and small family-owned companies. However, we both had an entrepreneurial leaning: David's starting at a very early age hiring out fountain pens to his classmates!
FSB's National Vice-Chair Martin McTague looks at how the UK government must offer support to small businesses in order to help their fight against climate change. We often talk about small businesses and the self-employed being central to their local communities, embedded in their villages, towns and cities, supporting local groups and volunteering. But most have a much wider view of the world too, with increasing awareness of global climate issues and keen to play their part in becoming more sustainable. The consequences of not acting on climate change are well documented, and it's up to every part of society to meet this challenge – small businesses included.
The Canned Wine Co. was launched as a way to innovate sustainably in the wine industry – and despite the pandemic throwing up some problems, Founder Abi Chell is enjoying early success. When did you start up and why? Canned Wine Co. started in 2019 with the aim to make exciting wines more accessible, sustainable and convenient for all wine drinkers. We wanted to provide exceptional quality wine in the smaller format and, given the sustainability credentials of cans over glass bottles, this had to be the way to go.
Lawrence Savage, UK Marketing Manager at ExaClair gives us the lowdown of what to expect from the company in 2022. How was 2021 for ExaClair? Although there have been many obstacles during the past year, we've seen steady progress since the lockdown periods. Both the pandemic and Brexit have given us opportunities to review and enhance our operations as a whole. The business has become much more dynamic in relation to order processing and we developed a greater flexibility in our distribution logistics, which has helped us to accommodate the increasingly varied customer delivery requirements.
Gift Focus and Attire Accessories Editor Louise Prance looks at how even small businesses can play their part in the fight against climate change... At the time of writing, the Cop26 climate change conference has recently wrapped up, and the messages are ringing loud and clear – there is no longer any time to wait to take action. And action is needed from every angle – manufacturers, retailers, consumer, NGOs, and governments. Every element of society has a part to play in keeping the Earth's temperature below 1.5C if we want to protect and preserve our planet for future generations.
The Puppet Company has a range of toys for both children and adults alike – and there are some surprise hits within the product offering...
When did you start up and why? The Puppet Company originally started in 1999 and began life as 'The Table Top Theatre Company,' designing and selling puppet theatres before expanding the business into the wonderful world of puppets through building on our backgrounds as teachers. From beginning the business on our kitchen table, we are now the largest manufacturer of puppets in Europe and are very proud to still be a family business.
With 2022 upon us, it's time to start thinking ahead and getting ready for a new year full of exciting trends! The Gift Focus team caught up with designers, CEOs and leading industry experts to quiz them and find out their predictions for the must-buy items for retail in the coming year...
The designers over at Puckator said, ""First and foremost, the high street is still currently in the throes of a retro resurgence, with all things 'classic' and 'old school' being very much in vogue. With that in mind what could be more retro than Pac-Man? The iconic yellow gaming character who loves to chase those pesky ghosts has an everlasting appeal thanks to the bold colour palette and instantly recognisable symbols.
In retail, if you say peak season, it means Christmas. No other season comes to mind as strong as Christmas. Yes, Christmas is our biggest season but what else is out there? What other seasons could be beneficial to our business? Christmas will always be the top but there is nothing quite like the excitement of discovering a new peak that we can tap into. Opportunity is everywhere, you just need to know how to look for it, and once you've found it, nurturing it to become one of your best-selling seasons. Natasha Necati, Executive Director of Crafty Arts discusses how to make the most out of the seasonal calendar for optimum retail success!
The World of Peter Rabbit brand refresh is being launched ahead of the classic character's 120th birthday campaign in 2022. The progressive brand identity has been rolled out across social channels and digital platforms, and will appear on publishing and licensed product packaging from autumn this year in the UK. The global launch will begin in parallel with the 120th birthday celebrations next year. The World of Peter Rabbit is managed by the Owned Brands Team within Penguin Random House Children's who are responsible for initiating and managing the brand refresh.
August 2021 sees Rex London celebrate its 40th anniversary. With humble beginnings on a market stall in Portobello Road in 1981, the giftware company has since gone on to become a hugely successful, international online retailer and wholesaler, creating Gifts of Random Kindness at affordable prices.
The company began with items that it had simply stumbled upon on their travels around the world. Before long these were on the shelves of high street institutions like Habitat and The Body Shop.
For the next two decades, Rex London continued to discover and deliver these Gifts of Random Kindness, until the company decided it was time not only to choose products it liked but also to design them. From floral patterns to adorable animals, Rex has loved creating colourful and playful prints that stand out and bring joy.
Setting up a new business is no easy feat, it takes planning, time and dedication. Once you have made a bit of a name for yourself, have started to build up some brand awareness and a customer base, as well as a comfortable number of sales every month, it's only a matter of time before you start thinking about the next step. In this article, Sara Davies discusses business strategies that will help grow your confidence and grow your business.
Any buyer will know that the process of purchasing holds more than meets the eye. Equally, any salesperson will know that your pitch should be perfectly tailored to your audience. But what about when that audience is from overseas? The cultural differences in US and UK retail buying are more numerous than you might think. So, what can we learn from purchasing across the pond? Retail expert, Tim Bush, shared his expert insights into the mind of a US buyer at Spring Fair @Home. Discover his top tips for taking your brand across the pond.
Show organiser Hale Events has announced that the 2021 edition of Giving & Living, which usually takes place in Exeter, will be an online event running from 10th-12th May, 2021. This is when the physical event was due to take place until ongoing lockdown restrictions meant it was no longer viable. The digital event will offer a superb product sourcing opportunity to both local retailers and those from further afield who might not have had the chance to sample the delights of this wonderful regional show in previous years. The British economy is like a coiled spring on tenterhooks waiting to unwind and there is an excellent chance that the South West region – the traditional home base of Giving & Living – is set for a bumper tourist season. The exhibition will feature a large and varied selection of retail-ready suppliers presenting a wide variety of lovely new products, many of which are locally produced in the South West or made by hand in other parts of the UK.