Spring 2015
Rustic Meets Refined: Light Up Your Sales with Eco-chic Seasonal Decor By Poornima Apte

Thematic trends for home décor often make their way into multiple gift categories.

What are the overarching trends you should keep your eye on as you look to fall and the all-important Christmas season buying? Here’s a rundown of the top trends as shared by industry experts.

Light on

If there’s a single must-stock this season, it’s décor elements with lights. Advances in LED lighting have revolutionized vendor offerings, whether customers are looking for large lighted Santas and pumpkins for their yards or smaller-scale spot solutions. “Lighted décor has been trending also but has gained a lot of momentum in the last season with new LED options and innovative ways to integrate into non- traditional formats,” said Ingrid Liss, senior creative director, Silvestri! by DEMDACO at Leawood, Kansas. What are some of these non-traditional formats for delivery? DEMDACO’s Life Is Bright is a “dramatic new collection of natural galvanized tin wall art that has pierced typography showcasing popular sayings and quips. When a light string is placed inside the words light up and twinkle and glow,” Liss said.

“Flash and spot decorating also gains momentum as millennials and empty nesters have smaller living spaces and active lifestyles,” Liss pointed out. “Simpler solutions which are fun and festive but easy and fast to display remain key considerations in this trend.”

Midwest-CBK has also seen a sharp uptick in this trend. “Our customers are creating stunning displays using items from our Holiday Shine, Wonderlights, Mini Shimmer and Lights in the Night night light collections,” said Shelli Lissick, Midwest-CBK’s spokesperson.“Some of the most popular items are the lighted star and tree scenes which make wonderful mantel and door décor. The natural white washed laser cut wood combined with warm white LED lighting creates an inviting look for the holiday and the winter season.”

The lighting trend is evident in Halloween and fall décor too. “We have seen great interest in marquee lighting featuring strong singular graphics such as a witch’s hat, ghost and words such as BOO,” Lissick explained. “Our collection of Wonderlights and Mini Shimmers remain strong sellers and illuminate the night. These items are perfect for decorating at parties indoors or decorating and welcoming trick-or-treaters at the front door.”

How to better sell these items in your store? “The key to sell-through success with lighted items is showing the item lit in the store display,” Lissick pointed out. “The bright twinkling lights grab the consumer’s attention and entice them to purchase.”

Au naturel

Nature is the model and major trendsetter for the upcoming crop of seasonal décor, reported trendspotters at the Christmasworld trade show in Frankfurt, Germany. Accordingly, pine cones and acorns are worked into delicate garlands or bound into stately wreaths — just as they come, or sprayed in white, copper, silver, gold or even black. Toadstools, both large and small, are a favorite motif. Natural materials such as pieces of wood are not only bound into festive wreaths, they decorate vases and tealight holders or are worked into little Christmas trees, stars and hearts of all shapes and sizes.

“We see the eco-chic natural trend in seasonal décor as natural materials like driftwood, slate, glass and stone are mixed with more elegant and traditional materials and techniques,” Lissick said. “This is where rustic meets the refined. Gorgeous blown glass, antiqued glitter, beadwork and embroidered fabrics often mix with burlap, raw linen and cotton batting to create a magical mix of materials that is captivating when mixed with natural and simple objects and materials reflecting the simplicity of nature.” The same is reflected in fall décor too, Liss pointed out. Fall looks have a bit less whimsy and “are more about ‘bountiful harvest’ feel with natural materials, rustic chic décor, focus on fruits and vegetables (think whole foods and organic trend), etc.”

Heavy metal

Color me copper. The metallic color trend seems to be one to keep an eye on as it shows up in a variety of places from candles, ribbons, wreaths, vases and baubles. Halloween gets a special touch with copper pumpkins. It can also be used with gold, silver, black, and red to create an atmospheric mood.

As for other color schemes, “the use of metallics, tone-on-tone and natural color stories” are trending, said Kathy Phillips, owner and founder of Primitives by Kathy in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

Forever appeal

No matter what the trend of the year might be, it’s important to offer customers some timeless choices as well. “More and more, customers are seeking trend for a great value, which in our world of designing products, equals creating high-style pieces with unexpected versatility,” said Laura Johnson, founding designer/CEO of Coton Colors in Tallahassee, Florida. The company creates serving pieces and other items that can be customized with many interchangeable pieces for a unique look that fits the season or occasion.

David Tutera, wedding and entertaining expert at DavidTutera.com agrees. “You want to also give your shoppers the options for longevity beyond January 1st. It simply means that if you’ve got product that has a crystal, ice or winter look, for example, you’re selling something that has far more value to it and can be sold beyond just the holiday season,” he said.

“The key is to think about how to sell product for a longer period of time and beyond the holidays,” Tutera said. “Think about how to make the product appeal to your consumer who can build off of it from year to year, creating a collection that will always continue to need something more to add to it in the future — which ultimately results in raising sales and loyal clientele that keep coming back to you.”

Poornima Apte

Poornima Apte is an award-winning experienced freelance writer and editor. Learn more at wordcumulus.com.

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