Just as retailers have unfurled their full Christmas fare onto their shop shelves ready for the festive celebrations, the November publication of Progressive Greetings decks its pages with a plethora of greeting card industry news, events and views, as well as fresh product launches.
It was an evening of glitz and glamour, of joy and lots of laughter at The Henries greeting card awards event last month, and not just for the worthy award winners but for all the 700 attendees who joined the uplifting vibe of the gathering.
Comedian and television star, Tom Allen, went down a storm as this year’s Henries’ host.
Providing a crescendo to the awards’ ceremony, Simon Elvin, the inspirational managing director of Simon Elvin, was presented with a special GCA Outstanding Contribution Award in recognition of his extraordinary achievements, passion and commitment to the sector.
And while we are in awards’ mode, discover who are the finalists of this year’s The Calies 2019 calendar awards, scrutinised and chosen by the Judging Panel of retailers and industry experts, such as Calendar Club, Waterstones, John Lewis and House of Cards, from well over 450 calendars, diaries and Advents from 40 different publishers that were entered (click pages 20-21) and News (click page 19).
All The Calies 2019 winners will be announced at an awards event, which will take place on Tuesday 19 November at Stationers’ Hall in the City of London.
Another ‘date to remember’ was the GCA’s centenary AGM and Conference which took place on October 17 and is covered in all its glory in PG. Amanda Fergusson, ceo of the GCA, welcomed well over 160 members of the greeting card community – publishers, retailers, trade suppliers and affiliates to the Centenary celebration at London’s Central Hall Westminster.
At the conference, in her last address as president of the GCA, Ceri Stirland, channel and customer director of UKG, shared her delight that “the majority of retailers and publishers have made a stance and decided to ‘Go Naked’. My estimation is that by January 2020 the amount of cello-bagging on everyday cards will have reduced from 64% to 32% of the volume, a reduction of 438 tonnes – which is significant – a big thank you to everyone.”
Taking on the GCA presidential mantle from Ceri, Rachel Hare, creative director of Belly Button Designs, gave an uplifting speech to the audience about the publisher’s (nearly) 25 year history, believing that the environmental issue will continue to be dominant and that “It is important we continue to have dialogue and work with retailers and brokers together to allow change,” stressed Rachel.
Taking questions from the floor, a panel for a dedicated environmental discussion at the GCA Conference included Adam Osborne, Woodmansterne’s director of operations and IT, Sainsbury’s buyer Carly Pearson, Waterstones’ senior buyer Hazel Walker, House of Cards’ co-owner Miles Robinson and The Art File’s md Ged Mace.
And Olly Tress, owner of the lifestyle retail group Oliver Bonas, confessed at the start of his quirky, honest and insightful keynote speech at the event, “I love greeting cards, I absolutely adore them.”
The Medici Gallery in London’s South Kensington is an extraordinary independent card retailer that has been a neighbour to some of the world’s greatest institutions of art, design, natural history and science since 1938.
“We’ve got a kind of anomaly here really”, states Tim Reynolds, manager of the Retas-award winning shop. “We’ve done very well in the last decade, not just because we’ve worked hard and made the shop work with the stock and the window displays, but as the museums have really upped their game.”
To discover more about this historic independent shop and how Transport for London’s plans are threatening its future (click to pages 30-31).
With the happy event of David Robertson of Scottish retailer JP Pozzi having just married his beloved Nicola, the indie champ spotlights the parallels between marriage and running your own business (click to pages 22-23).
And, of course, November’s PG also includes new product pages Innovations (click to pages 77-79); wise words from regular columnist card Jeremy Corner, md of publisher Blue Eyed-Sun who discusses ‘naked’ cards (click to pages 80-81).
All this snuggling within the covers of a lovely glossy magazine, that we’re sure you would enjoy holding in your hands and flicking through with a cuppa in hand or in the bath, in bed or on the loo! To get your mitts in your very own copy of this wondrous publication each and every month, click here.
However, if you can’t wait, click here to read the whole PG November 2019 edition online