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Who slayed the dragons?

Retail buyers reveal which of the 72 publishers stood out at GCA’s DSD event

 

The recent GCA Dragon Speed Dating event had the retail buyer Dragons firing on all cylinders, inspired by the pitches from the 72 publishers who made the most of the opportunity of these fast-paced face-to-face sales blasts.

Above: The Dragons of 2024. Back row (left-right) Liz Killick, Calladoodles; Miles Robinson, House of Cards; David Colman, Only Place For Pictures; Kaye Thurgood, Sincerely Yours; Andrea Pinder, Presentation; Shannon Fisher, Postmark; Kerry Nicholls, John Lewis; Jason Billings-Cray, John Lewis; Charlotte Green, Cardfactory; Laura Clarke, Scribbler; Vicky Joshi, Cardfactory; Tim Reynolds, Medici Gallery; Anita Thorpe, Diverse; and Sean Austin, Austin & Co. Front row (left-right) Priya Aurora-Crowe, Lark; Sarah Laker, Stationery Supplies; Sally Matson, Red Card; Shar Gothier, Sainsbury’s; and Nilou Noorbaksh, Jumping Bean.
Above: The Dragons of 2024. Back row (left-right) Liz Killick, Calladoodles; Miles Robinson, House of Cards; David Colman, Only Place For Pictures; Kaye Thurgood, Sincerely Yours; Andrea Pinder, Presentation; Shannon Fisher, Postmark; Kerry Nicholls, John Lewis; Jason Billings-Cray, John Lewis; Charlotte Green, Cardfactory; Laura Clarke, Scribbler; Vicky Joshi, Cardfactory; Tim Reynolds, Medici Gallery; Anita Thorpe, Diverse; and Sean Austin, Austin & Co. Front row (left-right) Priya Aurora-Crowe, Lark; Sarah Laker, Stationery Supplies; Sally Matson, Red Card; Shar Gothier, Sainsbury’s; and Nilou Noorbaksh, Jumping Bean.

After the dragons had time to consider their thoughts on who they met on the day along with having had the chance to check out all the card sample in the goodie bags supplied, PG Buzz caught up with some to discover which publishers had slayed them. First off are the musings from Scribbler, Presentation and Medici Gallery

Above: left-right Ricicle Cards’ David Rice-Nicholls catching up with Scribbler’s Tori Heath-Smith and Laura Clarke and Stormy Knight’s Sarah Jackson
Above: left-right Ricicle Cards’ David Rice-Nicholls catching up with Scribbler’s Tori Heath-Smith and Laura Clarke and Stormy Knight’s Sarah Jackson

Tori Heath-Smith, buying manager of Scribbler

Dragon flying: “It was a pleasure to attend the Dragons event and be reminded just how much talent there is in the industry. The event is so valuable for a retailer to be able to meet so many new publishers in one place.

“It’s also a chance to catch up with some of the fantastic designers we already work with, including Lil Wabbit who we met at last year’s event and now stock! And Stormy Knight, Ricicle Cards, Raspberry Blossom and Oh Squirrel.”

Above: Some of the cards from Feel Good Supplies that Tori liked
Above: Some of the cards from Feel Good Supplies that Tori liked

Den delights: “There was so much talent this year, but a few who stood out to us include Feel Good Supplies, Stoats & Weasels and Lucky Ink.

“We will most definitely be placing orders as a result of the event and are already in conversation with a few and excited to get their new designs online and in store.”

Above: Andrea Pinder (left) with Ink & Ivy’s Mike Read and Kate Lawley
Above: Andrea Pinder (left) with Ink & Ivy’s Mike Read and Kate Lawley

Andrea Pinder, owner of Presentation, Barrowford

Dragon flying: “The event was full of excitement and enthusiasm from all who participated. Being a Dragon is such an honour as it’s the best feeling ever is when you know you’ve made a difference on advice given to a publisher.”

Above: A KDee Designs card with a wooden element
Above: A KDee Designs card with a wooden element

Den delights: “The greeting card industry is blessed with so many talented publishers that it’s very difficult to say who stood out from this event, but among my publisher highlights from the Dragons event were Cheeky Legends by Arrthi, which got the bottoms up from me! I also liked KDee Designs for its beautiful wooden icons; Ink & Ivy’s Wallypops pop-up animal stickable, frameable cards; Quirk’s Treating Cards with sweet treats; and Paper Mirchi’s fabulous cotton paper luxury cards and tree-free gift packaging.

“This is just a smidgen of delights I saw on the day and were in my goodie bag and I’ve already made contact with some of the aforementioned and will certainly be placing orders.”

Above: Tim Reynolds felt honoured to be a Dragon
Above: Tim Reynolds felt honoured to be a Dragon

Tim Reynolds, manager of Medici Gallery, Kensington

Dragon flying: “I saw it as a great honour to be asked to be a Dragon, as it gave me a great opportunity to meet up with some lovely fellow retailers as well as some wonderful publishers.”

Above: The detailing from Libra Fine Arts impressed Tim
Above: The detailing from Libra Fine Arts impressed Tim

Den delights: “Of the many publishers who caught my eye, both on the day and from the card samples in my goodie bag, I was so impressed by Paper Mirchi, the handprinted cards and wrap are stunning. I spotted the wrap in The Henries finals last year so it was lovely to meet Rani Moochhala, the company’s founder, face to face.

Sarah-Jane Edwards of SJE London is also clearly very talented, Oh Squirrel’s cards were very impressive and I really liked the incredible detail on Libra Fine Arts’ cards, as well as the colourful approach from Lil Wabbit. I’ll definitely be placing orders with several of these.”

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