Greeting card retailers’ whoops of joy as they prepare for July 7 awards night
Jubilation is the order of the day as the 2022 Retas finalists reveal their delight at discovering they are in the running for an Oscar for the greeting card retail world, following the announcement a few days ago.
“Excited doesn’t begin to explain how we’re feeling!” Katrina Raill, owner of Etcetera in Hitchin, told PG Buzz. “We’re so proud and delighted to have reached the finals of The Retas 2022 and are looking forward to dusting off our frocks for the awards. Greetings cards are a very important part of our business and I love choosing them.”
After the announcement on Sunday, 22 May, of all the finalists in the 19 categories, The Retas 2022 winners will be revealed at a wonderful afternoon event featuring a Mary Poppins-esque theme on Thursday, 7 July, in the Ballroom of the Grosvenor House Hotel, opposite Hyde Park in London.
At Southbourne Cards, in Bournemouth, when owner Deborah Tingay got the email, she immediately put up a Facebook post where the heart-warming comments from customers brought a lump to her throat.
Deborah added: “What an adrenaline rush! My ladies are so happy and we’ll be celebrating with a well-deserved evening of cocktails and fine dining – just hope that Southbourne is ready for us!”
And Mary Singleton-Jones, owner of St Albans’ Panda Cards, was so happy she couldn’t help breaking into a dance – and videoing it (watch below)! She said: “I couldn’t stop smiling and leaping around my living room for ages, I’m overwhelmed to be chosen as one of The Retas 2022 finalists.”
“And preparations are in full swing for Panda’s 45th year in business celebrations, on Wednesday 1 June between 1pm and 3pm there will be Champagne and cupcakes to be enjoyed.”
Austin & Co owner Sean Austin commented: “We have been rewarded with not one, but two nominations in this year’s Retas – we’re hoping to replicate our 2021 win for the Best Greeting Card Retailer (Wales & Midlands), and we’re also in with a shout to win the award for the initiative of the year with our Thinking Of You At Christmas campaign.
“Above all, a big thank you to all of our customers who have kept us on our toes this year and have made sure there’s no slacking in what we do to bring a quality offer to Malvern.
“Winning the award in 2021 was one of the highlights of my career. I have totally embraced the win and have relished the time shouting loud and proud. What winning has also meant is that I’ve not rested on my laurels, but have pushed myself and the shop even further.
“Winning the award means you have to prove you’re the best and gaining these two nominations is a great reward and recognition for the effort.”
Sunny Somerset was a good spot for Mooch Gifts & Home owner Jon May to be relaxing in Cilla, his campervan, when he picked up the finalists email about his Bewdley and Stourport-On-Severn stores, and he said: “Having just come back to earth following our Greats award win, the news of being shortlisted for a Reta has sent us back into orbit, here’s hoping two will be our lucky number as well as Eurovision star Sam Ryder’s!”
For Paperchase, buyers Carlo Marinelli and Tori Heath-Smith said: “Fantastic and very welcome news to hear that we’ve been nominated for a Reta! After a difficult few years, we’re delighted to have been recognised. It validates all of the hard work that has gone into revamping our offer. We can’t wait for the ceremony itself so we can celebrate with our friends and colleagues in the industry”
“Oh my goodness I am so, so happy,” crowed Caroline Boydell, of Hugs & Kisses in Tettenhall. “To be nominated again this year is absolutely wonderful, this is a huge honour for us.
“We had an amazing time at The Retas last year, a really fabulous event and it was great to catch up with so many lovely friends from the industry. I’m away on holiday at the moment and this has made my day!”
The team at The Card Centre in Felixstowe is delighted by its nomination, as are customers like Angela Madden, who took the time to email PG Buzz: “My family has been shopping there for decades and we always get a warm welcome and good service when searching for that extra special card.
“They stock an amazing range of cards for all tastes and prices are good too. Visiting is like going to a mini art gallery where there is always something new and interesting to catch the eye. I wish them every success for the future and hope you have a wonderful awards ceremony in July.”
As a 2021 Retas Best Newcomer winner Tiffany Leach, from Kingfisher Cards of Sidmouth, already knows the ropes but she was still over the moon at the news: “Wow! Oh my, I don’t know what to say, I’m so blown away, not only nominated but now being a finalist is just absolutely fantastic.
“I’m so very proud of our team and it’s so lovely to be recognised for all our hard work – very excited to be at PG Live soon to spend our winner’s golden ticket and now a finalist one too, woohoo!
“I couldn’t decide which photo to send as they all express my ecstatic joy, shock and pride of being a finalist – if a little deranged haha!”
Tickets and tables to The Retas 2022 can be bought online via www.max-tickets.net or by contacting The Retas’ awards organiser, Clare Hollick of Createvents on 01183 340085 or by emailing her on email@example.com.
The Retas 2022 already has a strong roster of sponsors, all of whom are committed to rewarding retail expertise, with more to follow. These currently include Abacus Cards, The Art File, Belly Button Designs, Carte Blanche Greetings, Cath Tate Cards, Danilo, Glick, Hallmark, Ohh Deer, Ling Design, Museums & Galleries, Nigel Quiney Publications, Paperlink, Pigment Productions, Progressive Greetings Live, Second Nature, Sensations, UK Greetings, and Woodmansterne Publications.
Top: All set to party – some of the happy Retas 2022 finalists