Exhibitors Turn Heads at the Atlanta Gift Show

Opal & Twig

The Atlanta Fall Gift and Home Furnishings Market, which ran from July 10 to 17, was tuned toward exhibitor and attendee success. “The July market boasted nearly 70 new and expanded permanent showrooms, including sister collections Folkmanis Inc. and Safari Ltd., that showcase children’s gifts in a new showroom in Building 2, Floor 7,” says Chelsea Peabody, Strategic Relations and Media Relations Manager at AmericasMart Atlanta. “Market highlights included well-attended and entertaining presentations made by many HGTV stars…” and the show was capped off with the ICON Honors, which pay homage to success in the home and gift industries.

AmericasMart also recognized outstanding exhibitors with its Visual Display Awards. Zutano Inc., which specializes in newborn, baby, and toddler clothing and accessories, went home with kudos for the Best Visual Display in the AmericasMart Children’s World collection. What can show attendees and exhibitors expect from the “largest permanent wholesale marketplace”? They can expect to find interesting companies like Opal & Twig, Wristy Buddy, Butt-Ons, and What a Dish!, all of which made a splash at the July show.

Opal & Twig Sparks Imagination

Opal & Twig
“[The show]…was an excellent learning opportunity for us…We spent several days enjoying conversations with a trove of enthusiastic buyers from all over the country and sales reps from across the Southeast. Their responses to our product line were, on the whole, tremendously positive,” says Melissa Boyack, co-founder of Opal & Twig. The company capitalizes on the never-ending engine of childhood: imagination. With a background story of a twin sister and brother running through the entire product line, fans of magic and fantasy can trace adventures through places like Australia, Africa, and Ireland.

Specializing in decorative collectibles for ages 8 and up, Opal & Twig gives a big nod to the Harry Potter crowd with its fantasy-inspired line. A smile-getting item is the Miracle Listening Serum, which is an “Attention Enhancer.” A crabby friend might turn that frown upside down with Opal & Twig’s Goblin Snot. Other imaginative items include Troll Sweat, Blackbeard’s Brine, and Mermaid Tears. All of the products are produced in the U.S. and non-toxic.

Opal & Twig brings imagination to life: www.OpalAndTwig.com

Babies Drool over Wristy Buddy

Wristy Buddy
“We had a positive experience at the Atlanta Mart. Our company was received very well. We added 37 new stores to our list of retailers and had some re-orders,” explains Sarah Goodman of Wristy Buddy. “We will definitely exhibit at the show again.”

Wristy Buddy is scoring points with puzzled parents with teething tots: when most babies start teething, they are still too small to successfully manipulate objects well. That makes for some frustrating times for parents and babies, since little ones want to chomp and drool on anything nearby. However, the Wristy Buddy (called the “ultimate teething wristband”), which is constructed of non-toxic materials, slides easily on the baby’s wrist for teething time.

Wristy Buddy currently comes in three friendly styles (a lion, a cow, and an owl) with a rubbery teething piece attached. The designs allow for baby to comfortably chew on the Buddy, since excess saliva is wicked away from baby’s skin via the toy’s absorbent material. (Fortunately, the teether is machine-washable, cold and gentle cycle only.)

Demand for the Wristy Buddy has led to an expansion in the company’s line of cute characters. Help babies with tough teething times: www.WristyBuddy.com

Butt-Ons are Spot-on Style

The Atlanta show had “a nice atmosphere,” enthuses Shelly Steele, Sales Representative at Butt-Ons. “The people were great.” That’s because Butt-Ons patches are part of the ever-widening circle of fun, useful products targeted towards making life easier for others. Butt-Ons are a unique take on personal expression. The company creates customizable, reusable patches that reflect more than just a sturdy style. Since they are designed to be used again and again, they can go from jean pockets to school lockers to notebooks to jackets –– just about anywhere.

Butt-Ons not only keep school slogans or fun graphics on everyone’s minds, but can also be personalized with a photo. Butt-Ons customizable patches make unique pre-school or camp identifiers, a great alternative to children getting a sticky paper name tag (which usually gets lost or mutilated by busy fingers). Families that want to make birthdays extra special can skip the usual gift bags and go with a cute photo patch.

Texting tweens would appreciate the Text Faces Set, six emoticons going from red-hot anger to a cheeky winker. Holiday sets for Christmas, Valentine’s Day, and Halloween are also available.

Sturdy and customizable, Butt-Ons are serviceable style: www.mybutt-ons.com

What A Dish! Serves up Memories

What a Dish!
Nothing says “I care about you” like a customized treasure –– and who better to provide those than the industry veterans at What a Dish! “We did write orders and obtained an import contact for a 40-store chain,” modestly notes Lou Rigali, General Manager at What A Dish! The company creates personalized keepsakes, a perennial winner that appeals to many age groups.

Each piece from What A Dish! is hand painted and proudly made in the U.S.A. Best-sellers include the customized frames and tiles, but the company also creates fun giclée wall art, dishes, sets, and adorable boxes (perfect for that lost tooth, lock of hair, or even a special treat hidden inside). Decorations include charming teddy bears, turtles, stars, flowers, and a friendly cast of holiday pals like Santa Frog, a gingerbread man, and a penguin.

What a Dish! ceramics play well in a variety of gift-giving scenarios. Birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, and baptisms are commonly commemorated with a personalized memento, but modern families also look to remember other special times like baby’s first word, the day a child receives her black belt in martial arts, or when junior lands his first job.

Help customers remember their treasured times with gifts from What a Dish! www.whatadish.com

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