Monthly Archives: August 2012

Spotted some wheely great crates in Barcelona!

Following on from the 101 uses for an apple crate blog we posted a number of months ago now, I’m still mesmerised by the creativity of some store owners and merchandising geniuses. Retail display, visual merchandising and window dressing, doesn’t have to be confined to what’s immediately available ‘fresh out the box’ on the market, although it has to be said a decent supplier keeps their ear to the ground for trends and stuff you actually need! Still, a bit of self-customising is all good too. When you have access to great vintage retail display props at trade prices, and it’s coupled with a decent imagination – the world is your oyster. Last week I was on holiday in Barcelona, and couldn’t help snapping a few interesting visual merchandising ideas as I went. I’ve put them up on Pinterest too so you can send them to all and sundry. Check these out:

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5 simple ways to attract visitors to your exhibition stand

An increasing number of artisan food and drink producers, and even some specialist retailers are choosing to exhibit their product at trade shows. When it comes to powerful visual merchandising and retail display, your exhibition stand is no different. You want an attractive but versatile solution? One that’s easy to set up and doesn’t cost a fortune? Sounds simple enough. It’s certainly true that budgets can be tight when it comes to exhibition costs at trade shows, and there is always a need to justify the expense. Many custom built stands don’t come cheap, still, well designed exhibition stands can be hugely rewarding for you in the long run. It’s vital that you ensure a steady stream of interested visitors and leave with a black book full to brimming of potential orders and contacts; and your name on everybody’s lips! That’s the idea anyway. With many retail display, visual merchandising props and signage options on the market, here are a few simple steps you can take that won’t cost the earth and will ensure you’re well prepared in advance.

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Will there be an Olympic legacy for small British businesses?

Danny Boyle’s Olympic image of Britain will certainly lure the tourists back to ‘blighty’. What an amazing, if not flamboyantly costly, advertisement for our country? And the corresponding sentiment backed up by the British people has a created a tremendous wave of publicity for this ‘green and pleasant land’.  According to social media and retail news, many retailers across the country have not experienced the upturn in footfall that was hoped for (footfall in West End shops last week was down 4.5 per cent) but there can be no doubt that London 2012 has been the best possible endorsement for Great Britain, better than anyone could have imagined.

So is now the time for British independent retailers to bask in the afterglow and keep the Union Flag flying high; for days, months, and dare I say years to come?

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Passage from India: pitfalls of container shipping from Kolkata

The desire for printed jute shopping bags or reusable bags for life continues in popularity with many retailers, if given the choice, preferring to offer an ethical alternative to plastic. We are often asked why lead times on jute bags can be so long, and how a shipping container from India can take longer to get here to Britain than one from China? They’re good questions. I recently returned from India where I met with our partners and I learned about some of the pitfalls involved in shipping containers. The actual shipping of our eco friendly bags is just one part of the whole process. But it’s frequently the most frustrating one, and to a large extent, one that’s completely out of our control.  To explain why, you need to understand a bit more about the region that Jute is grown in and where jute bags come from. This is our passage from India.

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