Two New England companies have joined to offer a hands-on, two-day drapery clinic teaching the basics of professional window treatment fabrication. The clinic is taught by Pamela Damour, a seminar leader to the trade and a contributing writer to Draperies & Window Coverings magazine, and sponsored by Stitches Unlimited, Northampton, MA, and Anns' Fabrics Sewing Machines, Canton, MA,
Attendees will learn how to choose the right fabrics, calculate yardage, match pattern repeats, draft patterns, measure, install and more. The clinic will walk students through the entire process from conception to design, fabrication and installation and is designed for anyone interested in starting a home decorating business or someone wanting more professional results in his or her business.
For more information contact Stitches Unlimited at (413) 584-3974, or Ann's Fabrics Sewing Machines at (781) 828-7606.
Vertilux National Meeting Looks Ahead Sales managers, sales representatives and customer service personnel for Vertilux Ltd., Miami, FL, came from Florida, Texas and Wisconsin to discuss strategies of growth in the United States as well as the new products to be introduced when the company held its successful national sales convention at the Marriot Hotel, Miami, FL.
Upcoming advertising campaigns and an analysis of the high-quality and special features of the products the company currently distributes also were highlighted.
Speakers at the event included Art Weinstein, a marketing professor in the Business and Entrepreunership Department of Nova Southeastern University (NSE) and an expert in the defining and segmenting of markets. Weinstein gave a fact-filled and informative presentation on the "Orientation of the Market and Customer Value." Other featured speakers were Jose Manuel Belsol, vice president of finance, who spoke on the "Analysis of the Industry and Competitors"; Luis Blanco, art director, who presented the new advertising strategies for the Vertilux Collection as well as the introduction of the newest sample books and point-of-purchase materials; and Jesus Blanco, Internet analyst, who explained how to get the most out of the features offered through the company's comprehensive World Wide Web site. Presentations also were made on products and service by various team members. Willie Gomez, vice president of Hamilton Bank, gave an inspirational presentation on the value of great customer service.
Seven Day Shutters Relocates
Seven Day Shutters, Inc. has a new address and telephone and fax numbers. The company has relocated to: 125 Douglas St., Gravenhurst, Ontario, Canada, P1P 1A4; (705) 687-8711, fax (705) 687-0993.
Web Sites Offer Tips and Quizes
Wesco Fabrics Inc., Denver, CO, has launched a site on the World Wide Web: www.wescofabrics.com. The site features photographs of fabrics showing the latest trends and styles and a section called Designer Tips. The site also includes pages on Wesco's showrooms and fabrication services.
Through the Web site designers can e-mail requests for special information, while consumers can request the name of their nearest retail dealers.
The Village Wallpaper Store is becoming the most popular section of the Web site offered by Village, New York, NY, at www.villagehome.com, according to Sue Chadwick, director of marketing technology at F. Schumacher & Co. The Village Wallpaper Store lets visitors see all available Village patterns, and its Store Locator will help them find the nearest retail store, view a map of the area and even provide driving directions.
Other sections include Showcase of Homes and Dr. Decor. In the latter section consumers can take a quiz to determine their decorating styles.
Home Fashions Retailer Awards Announced
Three national retailers and one Chicago, IL, specialty linen store have received 1998 Retailer of the Year Awards, an annual recognition sponsored by the New York Home Textiles Show® and the Home Fashion Products Association (HFPA). This year's honorees are:
• Arrelle Fine Linens, owned by Robert and Lisa Rosenberg, opened in the River-North district of Chicago in 1989. The store specializes in a collection of couture linens and European textiles for the bed, bath and table.
• Eddie Bauer is recognized for its fashion-forward, focused strides with Eddie Bauer Home, a distinctive collection of home furnishings including natural wood and upholstered furniture, tableware, decor and linens.
• Kmart is honored for the continued successful development of its private label program for home textiles including the 1997 launch of the Martha Stewart Everyday line of bed and bath fashions.
• Well known for its lifestyle merchandising, Pottery Barn is recognized as one of the nation's leading specialty chain retailers of home furnishings and decorative accessories.
Hometextil Boosts Latin American Participation
Hometextil Americas, held May 15 to 17, 1998, at the Miami Beach Convention Center, Miami Beach, FL, attracted 3,000 attendees, according to show producer Messe Frankfurt, Inc., Atlanta, GA. Attendees included buyers from 40 countries who came to view products displayed by exhibitors representing 23 countries. Textiles, fabrics, decorative trimmings, area rugs, wallpaper and accessories were exhibited at this year's show.
One of Messe Frankfurt's goals was to attract more Latin American buyers to the show. While it reports participation from many countries increased, it also notes significant participation by buyer groups from Argentina, Brazil, Columbia, Venezuela and Mexico.
Special events at this year's Hometextil Americas included on-site model hotel rooms created by designers and sponsored by Trevira, a fabric and trimming display called Garden of Eden, and a fashion show entitled "A Perfect Day in Paradise" hosted by designer Carleton Varney.
MRM Updates Dealers at Annual Show
MRM Marketing Network, Inc., Burnsville, MN, was host for more than 300 of its dealers and employees during Showcase '98, MRM's annual conference and trade show. The event was held February 6 to 8, 1998, at the Doubletree Grand Hotel, Bloomington, MN.
Showcase '98 offered an agenda of new product introductions, advertising updates, business management information, training opportunities and networking with business colleagues. More than 45 MRM vendors set up displays at the show's exhibit area.
MRM, Inc. is a franchiser/buying group featuring interior home decorating products including floor coverings, cabinetry, bath products, window treatments and wallpaper.
GlobalShop Examines Trends in Retail Design
More than 14,000 retail design executives and brand marketers attended GlobalShop '98-a combination of The Store Fixturing Show, sponsored by the National Association of Store Fixture Manufacturers (NASFM); The Visual Merchandising Show[TM], sponsored by the National Association of Display Industries Inc.; and the Retail Operations & Construction Expo. This year, the Point-of-Purchase Advertising Institute (POPAI) Marketplace was co-located with GlobalShop at the McCormick Place, Chicago, IL.
Speakers at this year's show included top retail experts and business visionaries: Tony Mancini, vice president of retail store development, Walt Disney Attractions Inc.; Faith Popcorn, chairperson of BrainReserve Inc. and author of The Popcorn Report and Clicking; Joe Weishar, founder of New Vision Studios and author of Design for Effective Selling Space; and Nicholas Negroponte, author of Being Digital and senior columnist for Wired magazine.
A popular exhibit was the Vendor Shop Store III, which featured cutting-edge retail designs highlighting the store-within-a-store trend in merchandise display.
GlobalShop is produced by Shore-Varrone, Inc.
Hunter Douglas Embraces High-tech Media
With the release of a CD-ROM for its dealers, a consumer-based site on the World Wide Web, and a presence in three home-related software decorating programs, the Marketing Technology Division of Hunter Douglas Window Fashions, Upper Saddle River, NJ, has more than just brought the window coverings firm into the computer age, it has taken leaps and bounds in making full use of today's high-tech media.
"Consumers can visualize better than dealers can verbalize," said John Kay, Hunter Douglas vice president, as he introduced the full line of high-tech products in May. This technology can "create the kind of interactive environment that helps consumers and dealers make the right choices," he said.
The Hunter Douglas Web site (www.hunterdouglas.com) features its entire line of window fashions. By clicking onto the home page's hypertext links, consumers can find out all about the company's products, specifications and safety features.
The CD-ROM, titled "Window Fashion Designer," is the industry's first-ever such tool for dealers and designers. Although developed in coordination with Designer's Vision software from Autodesk, it also will run independently. Features include the capability of browsing through the company's catalogue of products with a detailed search option for color, window types, light control, etc., and photographic visualization allowing the dealer to place selected treatments in a library of nearly 100 room settings to help consumers visualize window treatments.
Hunter Douglas has partnered with Autodesk to be featured in two of its kitchen and bath design programs. The programs, Picture This Home! Kitchen and Picture This Home! Bath, help consumers choose window treatments for those areas of their homes. The program allows users to design any room in the house, mixing and matching thousands of appliances, fabrics, floor and wall coverings and furnishings.
Hunter Douglas products also are featured in 3D Home Interiors, a CD-ROM co-developed by ModaCAD, Inc. and Brøderbund Software, Inc. With this program, the full complement of Hunter Douglas products can be rendered into a floor plan.