Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Final day...going home!

When the suitcases are packed and the bathroom is emptied out, it really seems like the end is in sight.

Picture two high maintenance women, three oversized suitcases, several assorted rolling carts, and a new assortment of cash and carry jewelry and scarves that have been added to the weight load. The bell captain paled a bit at the sight!

With an earlier than usual start, we headed out for our final day, edited list in hand. One building, three floors and about 20 showrooms to hit, we picked up our pace a bit.

We did some major shopping for my assignment for the Bucks County Designer House ( watch for more details) and placed orders for new accessories for my store. It's pretty bare since the holiday merchandise has been taken down.

I ordered these wall mounted ceramic birds...two sizes. Very cool!

We saw this impact merchandising and took note ( in a good way!) ...

...and this one (it's a fish, by the way) we noted in a bad way!

I purchased a showroom sample from a favorite vendor to use in my designer room...a small linen chair, and had to carry it out and down 10 floors to the street side level of the Merchandise Mart. Linda went to our hotel to get the car and I managed the chair. Naturally, I was needing Sneelock! On the way to the elevator, I passed this display of hanging vintage inspired lids and couldn't help but smile. How many years has that been a Susan trademark?! I was happy to see it.

Even happier to see the car come around the corner, load the chair and head out of town.

It's been another successful market. Soon the new orders will be flooding in the back door and Anne and I will be pulling the night shift again. For now, another day of travel to get home doesn't sound too bad.

Thanks, Linda, for another entertaining and supportive week. I couldn't do it without you.

Location:Charlotte, NC

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Atlanta Market Day 7....really?

We found some great new resources today! With Christmas behind us, we could concentrate on finding some fun new offerings to bring in and our design vision was working overtime!

No elevator traffic was a joy, but we traded that for lack of food vendors. Hmmmm.  Tomorrow is the last day. We work a full day and drive back to Charlotte after we finish. Generally, we return too late to post a report, so this will be my last peek at what is to come!

Some of our favorite vendors were sporting the brights that we saw in the fashion trends!

Several styles of dining chairs. (Note the chrome yellow one in the background!)

Pure Style.

Even the kitchen can be in sync!

One of our last stops was a great new resource we found early in the week. We finally found time to retrace our steps to place the order. These are paper note cards and napkins and note pads made from the archives of drawings from a fashion designer. The files were recently found by the daughter of the artist and this is what has been offered by this discovery! Of course, Linda was enthralled and we purchased some note cards to share. Not sure these will even make it into the store!

I couldn't help but think of my sister, Denise. She studied fashion design and costumes with great passion. How cute these would look as framed art for her studio! As yet, they are not offering the images for framing. I made the suggestion, of course!

We ordered these printed table runners to be sold by the bolt of by the yard. Kraft paper with black print. So cute.Note the collection of vintage meat covers they used for props! Be still my heart.

This is a pad shaped like a wedding cake. It comes with the butter knife! Brides, this one's for you.

Both Linda and I have a weakness for tea towels and these really took our breath. They are unusual in size and style! BIG! We ordered several sizes and designs. I suppose you can share the joy. These are great!

I convinced Linda to pose in this chef's apron. After we made a count for what she and I wanted and several gifts that came immediately to mind, we placed the order!  

One more market day and we're headed home. As for me, I just want to take a day off, sit back and kick my shoes off.


Monday, January 14, 2013

Atlanta Market Day 6

The sixth day of market has some advantages;
1.  Less elevator traffic
2.  More sales help
3.  More tables in the lunch cafes
4.  No bumping elbows in the showrooms
5.  Passed the mid week slump
6.  Christmas plans completed and placed neatly in a folder to be filed away until orders begin flooding the stockroom
7. Spring retail ordering begins!
8.  Breakfast at The Corner Bakery has no lines

There are of course, some disadvantages as well;

1.  Not a comfy shoe left in the closet
2.  One too many showroom treats has made our pants fit a little tighter
3.  Rolling cart is permanently out of shape
4.  Room service selections have been exhausted
5.  Hotel room beginning to look like a dorm room needing attention
6.  No umbrellas in the rolling cart for the rain
7.  Phone plan media minutes are overdrawn

The Market slows remarkably after the weekend and that is good for navigating and finding help. Only the die-hards remain and frankly, the creative thinking is taxed. At this stage of the game, we feel a pang of panic, realizing how much there is left to do with two days left to work. We re-work our punch list of "must sees" and add several new ones, listing the vendors by importance. Oh, and there's the new emails from the home office with new requests from interior clients to fit in the hunt.

I guess you could say we're nearing the end of the hunt. 

Take a look at a few of the photos I recorded today. The new Ipad is saving a good bit of time and we're getting to be inseparable. My new aps are working great!

Way cute felted wool pins!

We bought some happy bright stories to chase away the winter blues!

How cute is this jewelry display?! Even this taxidermy deer loves coral!

I loved these paper banners...sold by the yard.

I tracked down this favorite and reordered one for me and one for the store.  
We've really got our last two days planned and will need maximum energy. Linda's shoes worked great today! Thank heavens for a darling witty friend who shares my shoe size, has good taste, and is a financial wizard as well. Now that's a package.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Atlanta Market Day 5

Day 5...both Linda and I were unusually worn today.  From the beginning of the day , we were lacking our usual energy and spirit. Nevertheless, we walked the market from 9:00am to 6:00pm. We took a little break from Christmas shopping. *sigh*

Here are a few of the things we noted for custom clients, the Bucks County Designer House 2013, and Black-eyed Susan retail as well.

Darling accent lamp with one of my favorite passementerie trims!

Great organic looking desk

 Possible bibliothec for Bucks County Designer House assignment

Apothecary bureau , another possibility for Designer House

Fabulously stylish accent table

Great TV console possibility (note wire accents lower doors)

Striking drum chandelier; good use of matt gold

Custom selection for one of my interior requests
I'd love to know which ones you like!

Tomorrow, we're hoping for our normal energy to return. 
p.s. I'm stealing a pair of Linda's shoes which might help...

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Atlanta Market Day 4... Pick a color, any color!

Day four completed, we are nearing the nearing the end of the planning stages. Our color stories have been decided and now the order writing will take center stage for the next few days. We always keep the color decisions a bit of a secret until we are ready to reveal them the week of setup each October.

I think you'll be happy with our 2013 designs and we feel excited to anticipate the craziest week of the year once again. One of our last stops of the day was a vendor we always look forward to placing an order with, Whitehurst. Ornaments from mini to extra large, any color, any finish. *sigh*

 You'll have to guess at which colors we ordered for our 2013 stories, but I promise them to be stylish and "oh, so Susan". 

And a little fyi, after a day of wearing flats, I returned to the room a full 10 + hours on my feet without a moment of aching feet. Tomorrow...back to my high heeled boots.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Atlanta Market Day 3

I just have one thing to say about the new jewelry trends...

IT'S ALL ABOUT COLOR!  And to be exact, coral and turquoise! I've got plenty of it on order, so if you want to be singing the spring color pallet, you'd better hurry in!

This is what we found, booth after booth;

 Color, color, color. Bright, beautiful color!
These are a few of the items I ordered! Wow. It's going to be a fun spring and summer!
 Here's Linda modeling one of the cute enamel selections. Move over,'s all about Bucks County local shopping!

About 6:30pm, I had to resort to walking in my stocking feet. Luckily, I had a long skirt on and it went largely unnoticed! By the way, that's our haul from the cash and carry...the stuff we didn't have shipped!

 (Closeup of Susan's shoes after 9 hours of shopping...)

Here is the photo of Linda and I from the first day. It was floating around "in the cloud" until yesterday!

 So, we've had a quick room service salad, organized the purchase orders, sorted the jewelry purchases, detailed a new list for tommorrows stops and reviewed our needs for the next few days. It's time to turn in and refresh for another day. Stay tuned for more style reports.


Thursday, January 10, 2013

Market day two

Whew! Another successful day of sourcing and order writing. These first few days are all about finding our themes and colors for next years Holiday offerings and designs. It's a lot of work and thought. we scour vendor after vendor, make our notes and review each night until we have our final plan.

While we aren't too far into the game, I'll share a few things with you!

We ordered these stylish tree skirts! I can already think of several Black-eyed Susan fans who will want one.

And how about this glamorous tablecloth for wedding cake tables? ( How long is it before my grand daughters get married?!) Actually, Linda and I are doing a wedding this spring in Salt Lake City and this will be the perfect thing. Look for Pinterest documentation on this one. Wow!

You can look for these for my 2013 organic tree! Following our lead from 2102, there is an abundance of organic themes introducing burlap, lace and rhinestone bling. So cool. Don't worry,we ordered our share.

Lastly, we found a great example of "glitter gone wrong"...what are your thoughts?!

Linda and I hit the cash and carry tomorrow morning,bright and early. I'll alert you of the latest trends and maybe even "what not to wear"!

......for now,I need to give some planning time to what shoes to wear tomorrow.


Wednesday, January 9, 2013

2013 winter Atlanta Market...yes,2013

Linda and I arrived last night, checked into our room and settled in for a long week's work. After driving the four hours from Charlotte, unpacking two high maintenance gal's wardrobes,hair tools and makeup needs,we sat down to do some organizing and review the budgets and sales from the 2012 holiday season .

About 11:45 it was lights out,hoping for a good nights sleep . In the dark of our room, we both heard a riotous noise coming from the lobby, most disturbing at this time of night! After a few phone calls, we were told that there was a large group in house (around 1100) who seemed to be enjoying loud partying in the bar for the last several nights. This was certainly not condusive to our sleep plan!

A few hours later, we finally fell asleep, a few hours short of a good nights sleep for say one on the market floors. Unfortunately, we had to change rooms this morning in anticipation of another nights interrupted sleep by the described party goers. Take a look at the amount of effort this was...

Having done this, we got a rather late start on our days work. I'm happy to report that we made progress designing next years color I stories. We covered two full floors today. Here are a few of our finds...good and bad!

This fabulous container had a beautiful fresh succulent in it. Wow.

...some pretty fabulous colors...

We won't be buying anything from this collection!

Sorry,no photo of your favorite buyers today...I'm having a learning curve trying to use my new iPad for blogging! There is a cute photo somewhere out there "in the cloud" of us.



Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Here we go again!

it's hard to believe it is time to buy Christmas for 2013, but here we are doing just that! The 2012 remaining finds have not even made it into the storage bins and we set out tomorrow on our first day seeking the best ideas for next years offerings!

I'll keep you posted on the best (and sometimes worst) offerings from the Market. Tune-in for my annual ride! Tomorrow is day one. I'm really hoping to be inspired.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:Atlanta Market