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Market Hits & Misses

Arlee Home Fashions

Lisa Battaglia, Director of product development

HITS "This market our biggest hits were in our faux silk window category, which included: Emerson, a dupioni solid faux silk in an array of colors; Capri, a dupioni faux silk with a delicate floral embroidery; and Flora, a woven jacquard silk-look in a botanical pattern."

MISS "Our Hamilton textured sheer panel."

Avanti Linens/Tweel Home Furnishings

Jeff Kaufman, President and coo

HITS "Our new Premier collection of Egyptian cotton embellished towels on 16 pound-per-dozen Egyptian blanks and made in six colors and 26 styles; our new kitchen textiles line, shown for the first time as the combined Avanti/Tweel company; the Harmony bath accessory group; and the Bradford Paisley bath accessory group."

MISSES "The Fontainebleau embellished towel collection and Calypso, a bath accessory collection."

Brentwood Originals

Loren Sweet, President

HITS "We brought out an extensive line of contemporary jacquard fabrications, and they were a great success in all categories — soft window, pillows and chair pads.

"In solid colored looks, we had a strong response to Avalon, made in a transitional chenille-suede fabric, and to our micro-fiber ribbed cord fabric in pillows and window. Also strong in window coverings was the Eyelash pattern."

MISSES "Embroidered Spirals dec pillows were a miss ... even though we fell in love with the colors and thought they were outstanding, the customers have seen the look before. It was a day late and a dollar short.

"Another miss was our Capetown soft window, an almost solid colored jacquard chenille with a subtle pattern."

Brumlow Home

Patrick Moyer, President

HITS "Our new Colortech accent rug collection was a major hit for us. This product allows for up to six colors to be tufted in each rug, and ... more intricate design work.

"Extremely well-received were several new textured bases, which allow for a third dimension to the pattern and texture [in printed rugs]. And our Invista Comforel-branded bath rugs were a big hit."

MISS "We brought a new line of luxury outdoor rugs to market, and although the designs and constructions were well-received the price points were simply too high."

Caldeira USA

Carolyn Winderbaum, Product development manager

HITS "In our decorative pillow category hits included the Rain Forest and Retro Chic collections, both made of Belgian velvet fabrics produced in the United Kingdom. We also had great reaction to a group of metallic velvet stripes from China.

"In the window category the best reaction we had was to a group of linen and silk pieced panels. The throw category hit was a chunky boucle knit from our Modern Traditions collection, which comes in six colors."

MISS "A group of contemporary chenille patterns from the Modern Traditions collection shown in decorative pillows, window and throws. The designs seemed to be a little too contemporary."

Commonwealth Home Fashions

Barry Goodman, Vp national accounts

HITS "Our Rhapsody satin lined voile was a hit with the buyers. In the Thermalogic line, the Shangri-La jacquard was a favorite, and they really liked the kids panels, too. In Couture Commonwealth, the new Aztek and Mayan panels were received very well."

MISSES "The toile Thermalogic panel was a miss; people were not looking for it. In Couture Commonwealth, Greek Key was a miss — not sure why — probably we had a nicer selection in our grommets."

Creative Home Ideas — A YMF Co.

Yaron Shemesh, Executive vp

HITS "More than 60% of our new accent rug designs in loop and cut-and-loop constructions have been placed. New shapes in accent rugs were also introduced and well received. Probably our most popular rug offering was our new frieze yarn construction. And our new super-tightly tufted accent rugs that use olefin and cotton/olefin blends were both big hits."

MISSES "Our 5-by-7 utility rugs were misses, and our oversized solid colored bath sets, which are being redone as regular-sized three-piece bath sets."

Elrene Home Fashions

Bryan Siegel, Chairman and ceo

HITS "The Eco-home collection really hit the mark. Even in these difficult economic times, retailers and consumers are not giving up on the drive to be eco-conscious."

"Grommets on window panels were also a hit in the soft window category. Grommets continue to do well and build excitement with different fabrications.

"In table linens: Seville, a textured fabric tablecloth offered in many colors ... the fabric, from traditional to contemporary to casual, offered a universal appeal."

MISSES "The Flock Velvet on a linen-like base. A table linen miss was Winchester Satin Stripe, a solid color fabric tablecloth. The traditional stripes seem to be outshined by the more fashionable regal stripes and seasonal damasks."

Faribault

Brian Ashley, Vp, national sales manager

HITS "Pod, the new Tencel thermal blanket that offered something new in thermal; Thermaweave, the new Holofiber product that sends a well-being message."

MISS "A wool area rug."

Home Source

Keith Sorgeloos, Ceo

HIT "The new Portico collection that blended organic with a good hand, great design and good prices."

MISS "Our blanket intros, we made better product and didn't get credit for it in this category."

John Ritzenthaler Co.

Elissa Vogt, Vp marketing

HITS "Our 100% Recycled Cotton kitchen collection and our Bamboo kitchen collection."

MISS "The Signs of Spring print collection was a miss."

Loftex

Gretchen Dale, Coo

HITS "The Natori towel collection was certainly a hit overall but especially the all-white presentation of Modern Geometry and the Signature Solid.

"Loftex Beach was strong, especially the UJV light sensitive towels and the two-sided velour."

MISS "High Five was too heavy and bulky; the 24-pack box of light weight hand towels."

Maples Rugs

Arnie Stevens, Vp

HITS "Textured prints were outstanding. The geometric patterns were very well received. These feature multi-colored patterns that fit into current trends."

MISSES "There were a few whimsical prints that did not go over as well as expected. However, some of these were done to show Maples' print capabilities."

Mohawk Home

Jeffrey Seagle, Director of marketing and product merchandising

HITS "Our new luxurious Heavy Metals shag collection was a hit. The printed Textured Bases collection brought excitement back to this category.

"In the woven rug category, the Heritage and Linden collections both were big winners.

"Perhaps no other area gained as much attention as our newly introduced Color Me Mats' for kids."

MISSES "This market was about value and innovation. The imported rubber and coir constructions of mats positioned for higher retails failed to gain traction among buyers."

Natco Home Products

Jim Thompson, Vp sales and marketing

HITS "Our new Value collection from our factory in the USA [Maine] called Interlude was a hit. It is woven in heavy heat-set polypropylene, and it features a new color palette.

"Another hit was our value-priced [accent rug] sets in printed nylon as well as BCF polypropylene. And re-ground rubber doormats from our new division, Multi Industries, were another hit."

MISS "Our shags. We brought some shags to market, but with huge number of shags already in market, the playing filed is a bit overcrowded."

Newport/Layton Home Fashions

Belinda Ballash, Vp

HITS "We have always done well with our great room' larger decorative pillow looks, and this season we added more Southwest patterns, which did well. Flagstone and Lumberjack were among the best patterns. In the dressier category we did well with Nobel, a pleated pillow, and Lorenzi, an embroidered pattern."

MISSES "Two rug-like looks — Carthage and Penzance. They are rug-type designs on pillow covers."

Peking Handicraft

Mark Grand, President

HITS "Bedding — Flea Market quilts, embroidered bedspreads including Harper, an embroidered quilt coverlet.

"In window, Amaris, a heavily embroidered panel; and the energy-efficient collection."

MISSES "Emelita in bedding, and one other in lower price point prints. In window: Darya, a basic look panel and sheer."

Raymond Waites Designs/Next Creations

Michael Vidra, President

HITS "Millbrook, a floral embroidered bed with pintuck borders; Bradford, a gorgeous all-over paisley in gold/blue/beige; a silk embroidered panel design — also in cotton; a printed paisley."

MISSES "Two big losers — Cannes, a leaf design in silver and brown; and Lucinda, a linen/cotton."

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