828 seeks success in island styles

Area rug supplier 828 International Trading Company has signed the first licensing deal in its 10-year history, selecting Cabana Joe, the property built on designs of Joe O'Brien.

The line will launch in April during furniture market in High Point, NC.

828's Cabana Joe rugs will be imported from China and made of 100 percent hand-hooked wool. The collection will consist of 8 to 12 designs, most of which will coordinate with products by other Cabana Joe licensees — for example, lighting made by Pacific Coast Lighting and furniture by Laneventure.

O'Brien, based in both Maui and Los Angeles, is a designer known for his work with celebrity clients. His designs are a blend of island influences from the past and present. The Maui Collection, which 828 will include in its launch, features tropical and nautical "relaxed-elegance" looks.

"We think that the tropical lifestyle he represents has gotten popular, and he made an exceptionally good offer, so we thought it was a good partnership for us," said 828 ceo John Shepherd.

According to Shepherd, another benefit is that the Cabana Joe line is expected to increase product placement for 828 at retail channels the supplier has not worked with in the past, particularly furniture dealers and home accessory shops.

A 5' x 8' is set to retail for $399.

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