You are receiving this newsletter because you registered at GiftsWholesale.Com, AccessoriesWholesale.Com, DecorWholesale.Com, ToysWholesale.Com or ApparelWholesale.Biz. To be removed from our mailing list, click the link at the bottom of this newsletter.
If you cannot see the newsletter below, click here to see the web version.
October, 2010

GiftsWholesale.Com is not responsible for changes in show information or typographical errors. OmegaNet and GiftsWholesale.Com are not directly associated with any trade show.

November 2010
1-2, Dallas
2-4, Atlanta
11-12, Los Angeles
12-14, Dallas

For a full list of Trade Shows, go to GiftsWholesale.Com

24/7 Access
to nearly

If you've forgotten your GiftsWholesale.Com login and password, Click Here. If you need to update your registration and contact information Click Here

OmegaNet Portals:
TheShoppePlace.Com (Retail)

In this Special "Made In USA" issue:

Still Making Things in the Good Ol' USA

The USA doesn't make ANYTHING anymore," said the TV pundit.

True or False?

It is true that manufacturing of all types of hard goods has been leaving United States shores for decades. Labor costs in the USA have been the main factor. It has often been cheaper to get products made overseas and shipped to the USA than to make the products here. Last year however, international shipping companies raised their rates substantially, squeezing importers (see June's Gift and Home Retailer News)

In the Gift and Home industry, it is well known that much of the product is made overseas. What is not always well known is that many manufacturers still make things in the USA.

Why should we care about whether products are Made In USA?

1. Jobs. At the end of 2007, unemployment was about 4.8%. But the unemployment rate in the USA has since doubled to 9.6%, where it has been, more or less, for a year and a half (source). Obviously, buying products made locally is good for the local economy.

2. Quality. When we had our first Made in USA issue two years ago, it was at the height of the scare about lead-painted toys from China. Made in USA products are often of better quality than those made in less developed countries. This is due to several factors.

Federal laws governing everything from materials to product safety to factory working conditions have necessarily affected the general quality of products made here. Complying with those laws may be frustrating, complicated and expensive, but the net effect has been increased efficiencies and innovation, as well as safety and quality.

3. "Green" Concerns. Over the past 40 years are so, the USA has greatly cleaned up its act where industrial pollution is concerned. Most former Communist and third world countries lag well behind the developed countries in reducing pollution.

"Made in America has never been more important for our economy and jobs," says W. Jay Smith, vice president of ales - gift division for MugWorld/ThermoServ. MugWorld is known for commercial grade ceramic mugs and coasters with a patented coating to permanently preserve the image. The company has over 120000 colorful images from the country's top artists.

ThermoServ is known for quality Double Wall Acrylic drinkware. ThermoServ has been a leader in the design, manufacturing and marketing of insulated plastic drink ware since 1952 and their 200,000 sq ft manufacturing facility in Dallas provides over 15,000,000 drinking vessels annually. ThermoServ is an approved vendor to Starbucks, Coca Cola, John Deere and McDonalds. Their acrylic and ceramic products are all 100% Made in America, BPA free and available at competitive prices.

The "Fine Whines" brand from Under Stella's Umbrella, LLC is manufactured as much as possible in the US. All paper products are made in North America and the #1 volume item in the line, beverage napkins, is made in New York.

The company has teamed with one of the few remaining cut-and-sew operations in the State of Georgia to produce their aprons, ball caps, bar towels and night shirts. In January Stella's is adding many more US products to its existing lines and introducing “Plant Booties”, a completely US made line of products. Another new line under the umbrella will be “It's A Southern Thing”, naturally manufactured in the Southern US.

Carson Home Accents' Specialties division has been designing and manufacturing custom Statesmetal products at their factory in Freeport, Pennsylvania for over forty years.  The Statesmetal line is solely made in the USA by skilled craftsmen using the sand casting process that has been in place since its creation.

Statesmetal emulates a pewter finish, but is actually cast into a sand mold using molten aluminum.  The Specialties product line of plates, tankards, mugs, wind chimes, putting cups, or ornaments can be custom-designed using any logo, seal, or design. 

Aspen Bay Candles started hand pouring its candles in 1990 in the small southern town of Starkville, Mississippi. Some of the very same highly-skilled candle makers have been pouring since the company’s early days. Several diverse candle collections make up the product mix that Aspen Bay proudly carries. Many of Aspen Bay’s candles are hand poured into mouth blown glass jars made just for Aspen Bay using recycled glass water bottles.

These fragrant pieces of art are topped with lids made of recycled steel. Blends of essential oils and natural fragrances are combined with custom mixed waxes of soy and other sustainably produced products. This special wax formulation absorbs more fragrance oil than any other candle wax available.

Fiddler’s Elbow is a family owned and operated business in upstate New York since 1973. Offering unique decorative gifts featuring original licensed art faithfully reproduced using modern silk-screen techniques. Products include; handmade doorstops, kitchen towels, doormats, canvas totes and more.

Other OmegaNet Inc. clients that manufacture and/or assemble at least some of their products in the United States include Applelicious, Brownlow Gift, Channel Craft, Coast Lamp Manufacturing, Crown Mulling Spices, Designs By Beverly, Gently Spoken, The Grandparent Gift Company, Greenhill Music, The Greeting Place, Havelka, Headdress, Heart Gifts by Theresa, Jeane's Things, Northridge Gardens, , Philospots, The Professionals, Robicheaux's Candy, Sassy's, Scentennials, Servants' Heart, Shade Tree Greetings, Shelley Kyle, Stephers Inc., Suzy's Zoo, Talkin' Trash and Three Kings Gifts.

These and many other US manufacturers show that it's still possible to maintain quality and create jobs, even in a difficult economy.

Featured Vendors in GiftsWholesale.Com
indicates a CAMEO EZ© web site.

Aspen Bay Candles: Located northeast of Jackson, Mississippi, Starkville has a population of just over 21,000 and is the home of Aspen Bay Candles, which has been hand pouring candles since 1990. Using a clean burning soy wax blend, Aspen Bay produces a premium candle with quality you can see and experience with our wonderful fragrances contained in hand-blown recycled glass. Because it matters to us, we consciously support our local and regional vendors whenever possible for our packaging and product needs. “We believe buying American-made quality is truly worth it and our customers reinforce this mentality by supporting Aspen Bay,” says Tom Reed, owner of Aspen Bay Candles.

Badash Crystal: Our 24% hand-cut lead crystal is produced in the finest factories in Europe by the same artisans that manufacture for Mikasa, Waterford, Lenox, and Sasaki. Every piece is individually and safely gift boxed. We offer superb quality and value for all your gift giving and/or personal pleasure.

Brownlow Gifts: Brownlow produces a full line of inspirational gifts for every occasion. You will find useful and attractive home decor gifts for the kitchen, bedrooms, study and all other rooms in the house. Brownlow is well known for gourmet products, journals, gifted paper items, photo albums, photo frames, decorative sentiment plaques, a variety of stationery, many different ceramic gifts as well as a large assortment of inspirational gift books. Most products are in coordinating themes that retailers can purchase in eye-catching countertop display collections. CAMEO EZ© member stores can now log into a site one time and place orders from several manufacturers. This is a newly introduced site, so check back often to see more lines. One Login – Multiple Shopping Carts – Easy Checkout. - For companies wanting to liquidate discontinued items, possibly through a third party, OmegaNet offers new closeout services. Get special deals!

Don Mark Mi Pet Dancing Speaker - “THE HIT OF THE PARTY” These adorable Puppies and Kittens have a built-in speaker that plays music from your iPod / MP3 player or most any other music source. Our soft synthetic fur pets will dance to your music or press the left paw and just use the Mi Pet in speaker mode only. The arms are posable and the dance feature will automatically turn off after an hour or so to conserve battery life. Comes with one audio connection cable and uses 3 “AA” batteries (not included) plus features a 4.5v DC power jack for use without batteries (Adapter plug not included). MiPets come in four breeds and are beautifully gift boxed. Each pet measures approximately 12” tall.

Elegant Baby recognizes that today’s babies are stylish, and is committed to providing baby gifts featuring the very best design, quality, craftsmanship and tradition anywhere.

Europa Home decor including glass, candleholders and candles for garden, lodge, awards, gourmet food, sale items and more.

Fiddler's Elbow Our Fiddler’s Elbow doorstops look so real, your cat will do a double take the first time you bring one home. These soft sculptures are handprinted with organic pigments on 100% cotton, cut, sewn and stuffed in our factory in Middle Falls, New York. We offer a variety of cat and dog designs created in collaboration with some of the world’s top animal artists. These unique gifts can hold a door open, function as an accent pillow or catch a passerby’s attention left sitting in a window looking out. Unique gifts made in USA for the past 37 years.

Gina B. Designs is an award-winning greeting card, gift and stationery products company featuring exceptional art and design. With an array of styles, variety of products and outstanding customer service, Gina B. Designs has “something for everyone.”  All products are proudly made in the U.S.A.

The Heeney Company is a wholesale manufacturer and importer of floral and Christmas products. The company distributes, imports and or manufactures floral and Christmas arrangements, silk flowers, foliages and plants, dried materials, ribbons, candles and decorative accessories.

Hook Line Greetings offers the world's first patent-pending "Gift-in-Greet" Fishing Lure Cards. The company's unique and clever greeting cards contain an authentic hand-tied fishing lure as the "gift" that can be taken out for immediate fun and enjoyment. Just "release" the fishing lure from the card, tie on a line and go fish!

Highland Graphics: A leader in functional gift with decorative items for gift giving and kitchen. From our top selling Absorbastone coasters, to our decorative bamboo cutting boards, everything we manufacture is made in the USA. Our high quality plus competitive pricing lets our customers make higher margins. We feature licensed art, official collegiate products and have a full range of custom capabilities with low minimums.

Jeane's Things: A leader in personalized Christmas ornaments and magnets, we can offer any name or saying at no extra charge. All ornaments are $.65 - $1.15! Our products are designed by experienced artists in the U.S. We pride ourselves on being very customer friendly. We are now also offering FREE FREIGHT!

Natural Life: Fashionable and fun treasures to share or keep! Whether you’re shopping for friends, family, baby or yourself, Natural Life has the perfect gift for you.

Puzzle Pen The Puzzle Pen is the only erasable, retractable and refillable pen on the market. This product is a great, new break-thru for puzzlers. If your store has customers that play Crossword, Sudoku, KenKen, Kakuro, Magic Square, Acrostic, or any other word or number puzzle, this unique new Puzzle Pen will be a great hit in your store.

Saltbox is a Manhattan-based design studio known for its signature creations in canvas. Regularly featured in magazines such as Oprah, Self, People and Brides, the Saltbox collection is renowned for its alluring prints and colors and is well-loved for its sturdy construction and heavy weight, water resistant canvas.

Shade Tree Greetings' "Actual Pictures" are recognized as one of the best-selling greeting card lines in the industry. Nostalgic photographs and clever, funny verses make these cards a success. Go to our website to browse over 300 styles. GREAT introductory programs and free fixtures.

snoozies!® are not socks and they're not slippers - sort of a crossover between the two and that's why we call them "foot coverings"! snoozies!® are made with a brushed fleece exterior in colorful & fun printed patterns and then lined with a soft Sherpa fleece inside.

Spring Street is proud to offer the finest assortment of personal, home, and office accessories. Our extensive product lines are all theme oriented, from baby to bride and beyond. All of our gift items are hand epoxy enameled and adorned with faux jewel encrusted motifs. Many of our designs are inspired from the famed Soho district of New York City where the very real Spring Street is located.

Sunbelt Marketing Group, Inc. Licensed functional and decorative giftware for the home and tailored for the men's market, i.e. (clocks, signs, coat/key racks, salt and pepper shakers, bottle openers, shelves, picture frames, games key chains and more). Licenses include Coca-Cola, General Motors, Pepsi-Cola, Farmall Tractors, Shelby and the Shelby Ford Mustang and Dodge. Product mediums include wood, polyresin, and glass and mixed mediums.

Sunset Vista Designs Inc.: offers you extra margin opportunities, and sells thru at retail. They offer innovative designs, in proven products, with space saving merchandising solutions, and attractive package deals that all add value to the quality products we offer. Many say this is the “best ever” line of innovative gift, garden, and home décor.

Talkin' Trash Gifts: Harmless Nonsense for Every Occasion. Bring Smiles, Laughter and Sales to your location. Brightly Colored and Artfully Embellished Bar and Guest Towels. Clever Wine Bags, Hilarious and Functional Totes and Cosmetic bags. Humorous Baby Onsies. Fine Quality Gifts that are Priced to sell. The perfect pick-up gift for every occasion. Order yours today and let the fun begin.

Tripar International Inc.: Tripar International is your source for both displays and decorative accessories. Our extensive product line includes a wide assortment of easels, risers, ornament stands, plate racks, mirrors, jewelry displays, and unique display pieces. We are also an excellent source for wine accessories, wall décor, inspirational signs, and cookbook stands. We offer quality with style, low minimums and fast shipping.

Wellspring brings art and organization to everyday life with products in fashion, organization, and home. Check out quick ship items for the holidays that retail under $10- Flip Notes, great lightweight pill boxes and compacts, Auto Notes, lens cleaners and more! Also beautiful curios, scarves, wristlets, and pillows. All great gifts to ship now.

It’s No Longer Good Enough to be Good Enough

Dear friends,

Have you asked yourself lately: What sets your business apart?
• Is it your uncanny merchandise mix that’s always full of surprises?
• Is it the unique way you show appreciation for your customers, even when they don’t buy a thing?
• Are your displays so enticing they inspire customers to touch them, smell them, smile at them, want to bring it all home with them?
• Or is it your can’t resist special events that are fun, imaginative and talk-of-the-town?

What is it that sets your business apart from the independently-owned shop down the street or the chain store at the mall? What sets you apart from department stores, catalogs, online shops and the big box stores? Be honest now.

A dear friend and an expert on branding recently reminded me, “It’s no longer good enough to be good enough.”

Keeping the competitive edge and building customer loyalty has a whole new meaning today. It probably means you’re doing more, with fewer profits and working longer hours. When I call on customers to chat, I’m surprised (and delighted) to find so many owners and managers back working the sales floor. Although you may not want to hear it, no one loves on customers more authentically and pours their heart into winning customers’ loyalty more than the individual who created the business in the first place. Plus, you see dust and fingerprints on the window like no other, and you make judgment calls and tough decisions because you realize that one policy doesn’t always fit every situation. More than ever, your business needs your vision, experience and tender touch.

I’m not saying that wearing all the hats that set your business apart is easy. It’s not. Running a store isn’t for lazy people or for sissies. But it can be so fun and rewarding! You are soon approaching the most magical time of the year. As the holiday season approaches, savor the moments you love: whether it’s spending hours decorating a Christmas tree one ornament, one light at a time; planning your jaw-dropping holiday open house; or designing your signature holiday gift wrap. There’s a reason your customers name your store as a favorite place to shop. You are the heart and soul behind your business. And it shows!

May your holiday season be filled with prosperity and of course, peas!


~ Cheryl Karpen is president of Gently Spoken. A retailer and a manufacturer, Cheryl is best known for authoring the Eat Your Peas Collection, a series of 21 gift books that begin with a promise. Visit Cheryl at and

Quick Industry News


Dallas Floral & Gift Center Renamed International Trade Plaza

DALLAS – October 18, 2010Dallas Market Center, the world’s most complete wholesale marketplace, today announced that the International Floral & Gift Center, the original building on its campus, will be renamed the International Trade Plaza. The change better reflects the expanding product and projects taking place in the building including the January 2011 relocation and expansion of the Outdoor Living shared showroom.

“The renaming of the building to International Trade Plaza better communicates the wide appeal to customers,” said Cindy Morris, COO, Dallas Market Center. “From holiday, floral and gift products to garden, patio and outdoor – the new names reflects the growing range of categories that will be showcased.”

In 1957, the building was opened as the Homefurnishings Mart and was the first building on the Dallas Market Center campus. Then, in 1999 it was re-opened as the International Floral Design Center


WHITE PLAINS, NY, October 15, 2010… First phase implementation of a three-year strategic reorganization of the New York International Gift Fair® (NYIGF®) continues at the winter 2011 edition with expansions in new divisions and continued refinement of existing categories. A full slate of value-added activities such as seminars, special events, displays and promotions are additional highlights of the winter 2011 market, which runs January 29 through February 3, at New York City’s Jacob K. Javits Convention Center and Passenger Ship Terminal Piers 92 and 94.

“NYIGF continues to evolve with an increased emphasis on fashion-focused resources such as artisanal, design-focused, on-trend and eco-friendly products,” said Dorothy Belshaw, NYIGF director and GLM senior vice president. “Technology will play an increasingly important role at NYIGF, with provision of enhanced online search for pre-planning and mobile applications for onsite navigation.”



Starkville, MS, September 15, 2010 -- Celebrating the fragrances of the holidays, Aspen Bay Candles has released the new Seasons Collection. Consisting of four fragrances, the collection celebrates the holidays with its luminous colored jars and gold tins. The new fragrances include Juniper Twig, Currant, Spice and Frost.

Aspen Bay Candles fragrances combine exotic essential oils and natural fragrance oils. Artistically designed blends are incorporated into the special custom mix of American soy and other sustainably produced food-grade natural waxes.  The glass containers are hand-blown from recycled bottles, with recycled metal lids. The Seasons Collection is available in the best-selling 20oz jars or travel tins.

Gina B Designs Money CardsNew Greeting Cards Announced

PLYMOUTH, MN: Gina B. Designs, Inc. introduces 30 new Greeting Cards this month.  The cards feature colorful art with simple, sincere messages for all occasions. Free Display Fixtures available. Suggested retail: $2.25-$2.50.