Thursday, May 7, 2009

Keeping Up With Trends

I’ve been thinking a lot about trends as I prepare for NSS. I truly believe that consumers count seeing trends in their favorite stores. They want to know what’s new, what’s now, what’s fresh, what’s fantastic in the market. Today’s trends are turning over faster, and more than ever are tied to current events, lifestyle demands, and most importantly, fashion. What’s hot in fashion – from polka dots and embroidery, to retro-60’s mod, from eco-chic green fabrics to affordable luxe and bling on a budget – will be reflected, interpreted and designed for products to please the current crop of fashion-savvy consumers.

The National Stationery Show (NSS) is a treasure trove of information and products that showcase the latest fashion and lifestyle trends. Paper products are relatively inexpensive to produce, attracting some of the most talented designers, who are on the cutting edge, to get into the business. Many of the trends that have dominated fashion and home décor over the past few seasons –such as oversized black & white damask designs – were first reflected in paper. The social stationery industry was offering recycled and environmentally responsible products long before “Green” appeared on everyone’s radar. NSS was the first show to blend fashion with function for today’s expanding home office product demands, and its exhibitors were earlier innovators in the lucrative, ever-changing ‘tween market.

Stationery has become so important to the lifestyle market I recently learned that internationally acclaimed designers Vera Wang, Lilly Pulitzer, Martha Stewart and Kate Spade are debuting social stationery collections at the Show!

Here’s what I’ll be looking for this year:

 The evolution of “green” products which combine great design with cause-related consciousness

 Humorous or caring cards which uplift the spirits and cause a chuckle in these challenging times

 Executive accessories and leather goods which dazzle with vibrant colors and on-trend animal prints

 Designs which interpret world-style motifs in a fresh and exciting style

As a veteran trend-tracker, I’m so excited about the upcoming NSS. See you on the aisles!!!

- Deb Gold

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