Vendors Promote Newness at NY International Gift Fair

James Mammarella, January 30, 2006

New York — Home textiles exhibitors headed to this week's New York International Gift Fair expressed optimism that plenty of high-end specialty store retailers and buyers representing upscale catalogs would be in attendance, with ample open-to-buy and open minds toward product introductions and new colorways.

For first-time exhibitor Colombier-Hacot, the excitement was palpable. “Our decision is the result of listening to our network of sales reps,” said Valerie Delannes-Molka, U.S. manager for the French manufacturer, showing the Anne de Solene collection in 100% Egyptian cotton percale and sateen bedding with coordinated bath towels.

The two featured lines are Primavera and Amour; retail prices range from $36 for embroidered terry hand towels to $145 for sateen queen sheets.

Peking Handicraft has seen intense interest in its licensed line by artist D.L. Rhein since last July's introduction; gift division manager Derrick Lo said the line is rolling out into hooked rugs, needlepoint pillows, linens, tabletop and guest towels. Price points range from towels at $5 to 3-by-5 rugs at $149.99.

The concurrent Las Vegas market is no concern to his company, said Lo: “We're showing there, too!”

Most vendors told HTT that the Las Vegas show is too new to have much effect on their business this week in New York; they expect to see their usual buyers and more.

Color is the watchword at Sethi & Sethi, specializing in fine linens made in India. “We are emphasizing French blue, café crème and copper,” said Anupma Sethi, president, “and we are introducing a peacock design in dec pillows, as well as metallic leather.”

“We have also created trapunto effects with hand-guided machines, such as a medallion design on our blanket covers and tabletop,” she said.

Sethi & Sethi, also known for hand embroideries in 100% silk or cotton, produces for retail price ranges of $50 to $200 in dec pillows, $150 to $300 in table runners and $700 to $1,000 in duvets.

From Anichini, yarn-dyed matelasse under the Tibet name will coordinate with the existing Persia line of sheeting. And to coordinate with the Peacock sheeting program Anichini is showing pillows, quilts and curtain panels in shot taffeta embroidered with peacock motifs.

Alan Jesseman, creative director, Anichini, said retail prices for this Italian resource range from $160 for a 12”-x-16” pillow to a king quilt at $1,941.

Susan Firestone, principal, SiwThaiSilk, was primed for her company's third showing at the Gift Fair, introducing three lines of rectangular bolster pillows, several throw models in new colorways, and new wall hangings. All the company's goods are 100% silk, designed and hand-woven in Thailand.

“Our throws will be in several ranges of colors: hots like pinks, oranges and greens; neutrals like deep slate blue, mocha and a stripe group; and natural dyes in soft colors like cream, pink and blue,” said Firestone.

SiwThaiSilk's retail prices range from $75 to $130 for pillows and $185 to $250 for throws. For the wall hangings, in response to requests the company has begun to offer wood hangers separately; they are modeled after old weaving combs from Thai village artisans.

Nurseryworks planned to celebrate its second showing at Gift Fair with a first-time-ever debut of two new product lines: twin bedding for sizes above baby beds, and a new line of rugs.

Co-founder Tracy Fleming said botanical-inspired bedding is another first, a departure from the Nurseryworks more simple, modern looks. Price points range from $500 to $2,500 in rugs; six-piece bedding sets retail at $330.

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