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February, 2013

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

Feb. 2012
21-26 Denver

Mar. 2012
15-18 Kansas City
16-18 Portland
17-20 Boston
18-21 New York
24-27 Montreal

Apr. 2012
6-8 Miami
6-8 Portland
10-11 Albuquerque
11-15 Atlanta
16-19 New York
20-25 High Point

May 2012
5-6 Dallas
15-16 Long Beach, CA
19-22 New York
31-June 3 Kansas City

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Toys v. Nemo: Toys Win at Toy Fair 2013

Toni Ivey and Sarah Masri in Pocket People Booth The winter storm dubbed "Nemo" that dumped a mountain of snow on the Northeast earlier this month threatened the annual Toy Fair in New York City, but almost 10,000 buyers from 5,000 retail outlets attended anyway and registered an increase in attendance over last year.

FS-USA Booth "Despite airport closures and flight cancellations, train disruptions and the closing of major roads due to the snowstorm, Toy Fair had a terrific turn-out, and the atmosphere on the floor was upbeat and energetic right up until the very end," said Carter Keithley, Toy Industry Association (TIA) president. The event saw an 18% increase in foreign press attendance from 20 countries.

"Just getting to New York appeared like it was going to be difficult," said Toni Ivey, president of OmegaNet Inc., which produces this newsletter. "Even though the snow was piled high, the roads and sidewalks had been mostly cleared." Ivey was attending Toy Fair for the first time.

Toni Ivey and Christian Sorensen in the Snapo Booth The headline-grabbing snowstorm resulted in just six cancellations from the 1,066 exhibiting manufacturers, distributors, importers and sales agents displaying 150,000 toys, games and youth entertainment products at Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. The show featured 239 first-time exhibitors.

"We had a fantastic Toy Fair this year!" said Jason Schneider, director of product development and marketing at Ceaco/Gamewright. "Our initial concerns that the show would be off due to the snow storm were quickly allayed by Sunday afternoon when our booth was filled to near-capacity with both familiar and new faces. Overall traffic was up and sales were stronger than ever. Nearly all of our appointments showed up (most even on time!) and the general response to our latest line of games and puzzles was overwhelmingly positive."

William Elliott mans the Harmony Club Dolls Booth Toy Fair, the largest toy trade show in the Western Hemisphere, is an annual event that is owned and operated by the Toy Industry Association (TIA). TIA is the not-for-profit trade association representing all businesses involved in creating and bringing toys and youth entertainment products to kids of all ages, representing more than 600 companies who account for approximately 85% of domestic toy sales.

OmegaNet clients present at Toy Fair included Ata Boy, Channel Craft, Fabricas Selectas USA (FS-USA), Geo Central, Optari, and Sourcing International.

Featured Vendors

indicates a CAMEO EZ© web site.

Acacia Creations Since our products debuted in the U.S. in 2007, we've been working overtime to meet demand and we couldn't be happier. That's because at Acacia Creations we operate according to fair trade principles and return a percentage of each sale to our employees in Kenya. That means the more we sell, the more our workers and their families benefit! Also, because our items are made from recycled and reclaimed materials, the more we sell, the more we keep from being thrown away.

Badash Crystal: Our broad selection of mouth blown tabletop and decorative accessories from around the world will surely meet your needs. Every piece is individually and safely boxed. We offer superb quality and value for all your gift giving, bridal and/or personal pleasure.

Band Angels is a line of adhesive bandages in boys' and girls' colors (blue and pink) decorated with Scripture verses printed on them.

Best Blue Mountain Coffee the wholesale ordering web site for City of Refuge 100% Jamaica Blue Mountain® Coffee. 100% of the proceeds from your purchase of City of Refuge coffee go to help the City of Refuge Children's Home, enabling a Jamaican child to live and learn the ways of a loving and nurturing family environment.

Calypso Studios is a Fashion Accessory & Gift Company that creates products that encompass a relaxed and vibrant lifestyle. We are constantly moving forward and challenging ourselves with new designs and accessories, creating beautiful pieces that everyone can enjoy. We are excited to bring more color and sparkle to any wardrobe in an array of new designs for the gift industry, including our new and extremely popular Comfort Crosses and Wrap Bracelets. Visit us online today at to explore all of our new 2011 product! CAMEO EZ© member stores can now log into a site one time and place orders from several manufacturers. Check back often to see more lines. One Login - Multiple Shopping Carts - Easy Checkout.

Camille Beckman is known worldwide for the quality of their fine creams and lotions. For the past 18 years, this 'Made in America' product has been rated #1 in the personal care industry and continues to offer formulas based on rich and wholesome ingredients, blending small batches and using hand-crafted, old-fashioned methods that create a difference you can feel! Being that personal care products are an indispensable item for many gift shops, Camille Beckman is a natural choice because of their 27 years of service to the locally owned gift industry.

Coast Lamp Manufacturing was established and incorporated in the state of Florida in 1955. Now, a North Carolina Corporation since 1975, located in the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina. We are a family owned and operated company. Our product is UL/ULC listed and approved and made in the USA. Customer satisfaction and a long lasting relationship are our goals. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to serve you.

Divinity Boutique is a gift company that is focused on trendy and fun gifts that feature inspirational verse and themes.

Elegant Baby Elegant Baby® understands that babies deserve style just as fresh as they are! Our marvelous collection of baby products is full of bold colors and spectacular designs. From traditional to contemporary, today's baby gift is sure to become tomorrow's treasure. Products ranging from My First Rubber Ducky to My First Baby Bible, My First Baby Blankie, My First Baby Jeans to the iconic silver spoon, Elegant Baby is where style meets tradition.

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

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.

Halle Joy is a different type of company, committed not only to designing beautiful products, but to bringing joy to people throughout the world. A portion of the proceeds from every piece we sell goes to support worthy causes around the world.

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 topselling 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.

InDesign, Home of The Sophie Collection, one of America's leading fashion accessory wholesalers! All products designed by Anna Larsson Daley using only the finest textiles and materials available. We provide retailers with unique, high quality fashion accessories including the # 1 selling jewel embellished scarf at retail.

JTP Wholesale: Monogrammed toilet paper and coasters - The perfect gift for the person who has everything.

Leslie Handpainted Glass: Leslie Hand Painted Glass is Proudly Painting in Portland Oregon USA Specializing in Custom & Regionally Specific Designs - Personalized Wedding & Bridal Parties - Corporate Gifts & Events.

Nicole Brayden Gifts: a bright and trendy collection of stationary and home decorproducts. Lots of fun colors and designs offered. Introducing new and exciting "Purse Pad" stationary assortments as well as the trendy Cheeky Chic collection.

O3 USA: Founded on principles of creativity, functionality and a funky spirit, O3 USA strives strive to offer products that are unique, stylish, and, most importantly, cool. From kids' backpacks and luggage with integrated coolers, to fun accessories for the family, we hope you find what you are looking for with us here at O3!

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.

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.

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.

Stupell Industries: one of America's premier suppliers of handcrafted decorative accessories for upscale homes and offices. In business for over 30 years, our line includes a wide variety of baby products, kitchen and bathroom plaques, wall hangings, faux windows, picture frames, and other unique decorative objects. We are constantly enlarging and updating our product offering to keep abreast of the latest trends and styles in the fast-paced home decorative market.

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.

A Thread of Blue is your source for greeting cards picturing scenes from the Holy Land.

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 decor, inspirational signs, and cookbook stands. We offer quality with style, low minimums and fast shipping.

Wellspring makes functional products with fresh designs for companies that sell gifts. Great fun and cute personal accessories designed for the purse, stationery designed for organization and Flip Notes- the best-selling slim notepad consistently ranked by retailers as a top 10 in sell through. Perfect 4th quarter pick up gifts at under $10 retail- a sweet spot with today's consumer. Now with collegiate logos!

Storytelling to Win Customers and Sales

We grew up listening to stories at school, bedtime, around the campfire and at the movie theater. A good story will be remembered and retold countless times.

Stories enchant us; they often move us to laughter or even tears. Stories are powerful. Hollywood knows this; politicians are masterful at it. So are big corporations.

Spending billions of dollars crafting stories to sell their products and services, corporations use nearly every ploy imaginable to captivate their audience--from the downright ridiculous to tug-at-your-heartstrings raw emotion. Their savvy marketing campaigns, fueled by sophisticated market research, tout having the solution to challenges and the euphoria of having a life of prestige, love, happiness, and power. Today a product's story can even create more media buzz than the actual event. Think Super Bowl Commercials!

There's no denying it. In our high-tech, fast-paced world, it takes new and creative ways to capture the attention of today's consumers. The ART of STORYTELLING is alive and well.

Are YOU using stories to elevate your sales and business?

As an independent retailer, you have the distinct advantage to personally woo and captivate your customers once they walk through your door. Being on the front lines nearly everyday, you're an expert at market research. YOU are your very own and best marketing campaign. You have a story. Your store has a story. Every single one of your products and vendors has a story. And best yet, your customer's have amazing stories about you and the life-changing products you sell. Combined, these stories are your secret sauce! Why not start sharing them today?

As a speaker, author and product developer, Cheryl Karpen thrives on telling stories that inspire the heart and mind. With nearly a million gift books sold, her self-publishing company, Gently Spoken, is best known for the Eat Your Peas Collection ( Cheryl can be reached at 877-224-7886 or at

Quick Industry News

New Wholesale Websites

These CAMEO EZ© websites are new for February. Check them out!

Goods 4 U GlobalGoods 4 U Global is a sale group that offers handmade, fair trade, socially responsible goods from around the globe. Tony & Michelle Gach started in this industry as the U.S. sales and distribution company for Acacia Creations.

NMR DistributionNMR Distribution, "Purveyors Of Pop Culture", specializes in apparel, posters, games and gifts with licensed designs from Marvel, Coca Cola, Star Trek, Pink Floyd, I Love Lucy and many others. The company also has publishing items like books, calendars, posters and signs.

CAMEO EZ© is the B2B e-commerce system developed by OmegaNet Inc., publisher of this newsletter, for use by retailers in ordering inventory for their stores. A partial list of CAMEO EZ sites can be found at the company's portals such as,,, and A complete list of sites is available in the "Directory" on