The VM & Display Show

World-changing thinkers and innovators all under one roof.The VM & Display Show is the longest running exhibition for the industry.

Whether you are a retailer, designer in the leisure, entertainment industry or use Visual Merchandising to promote your products or services, this show is a must visit for everyone involved.

The show covers everything within Visual Merchandising and display from Mannequins, Print, Christmas Decorations, Display Services, Props, Design, Graphics, Lighting, Fabrics and everything in-between!

As the Chairman of The British Display Society, we will be exhibiting to promote our VM Training Courses, and our membership, both individual and Corporate. So come along to Stand H49 and meet the BDS Team. Let’s keep Visual Merchandising alive and kicking in this modern retail world. See how we can push your VM career. Check out our website;

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The Rise of Pop-Up Stores

Have you noticed the number of Pop Up shops quite literally popping up? With the increase of on-line shopping, Brands are now fighting to attract customers back by creating the pop-up shop experience that will have a lasting impression with customers. Retail, whether it’s a Pop-Up Shop or permanent, needs to be fun and exciting for customers. It’s all about creating retail theatre,  creating a memorable shopping experience for the customer which is something you don’t get when you are shopping on-line.

Pop-Up shops were introduced in the early 1990’s in cities such as London, New York, Los Angeles and Tokyo. These retail event spaces create theatre, create a fun place to shop and generate new customers, while building Brand awareness. This is a great opportunity for the Brand to educate customers, as well as connect with customers who normally shop on-line. It gives the Brand an opportunity for a Pop-Up shop without signing up to a long, expensive and complicated lease on a property.

While most Pop-Up shops are in Malls or on the street, some pop-up shops still remain physical bricks and mortar stores. In many department stores such as Selfridges in the UK, Pop-Up shops are installed and become part of the overall department store environment. It creates excitement and anticipation when a new Pop Up shop is being launched and is an opportunity to for Brands to promote a new product, or something that is on trend or even a Wedgewood Tea Shop in Peter Jones in London.

In February Creative Download was involved with creating the Concept/Pop-Up Store “FOMO” (Fear Of Missing Out) in Gothenburg. They are currently running an event entitled British Island, showcasing 20 innovative and sustainable British Brands new to Swedish market. This has proved to be very successful.

With any retail outlet (Pop-Up or Bricks & Mortar) good Visual Merchandising and Store Presentation is paramount.

You Don’t Get A Second Chance To Make A First Impression

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The Portmeirion Group

The Portmeirion Group is a British company based in Stoke-on-Trent, England.

A significant force in the homewares industry, Portmeirion Group encompasses five quintessentially British brands: Portmeirion, Spode, Royal Worcester, Pimpernel and Wax Lyrical. It is a market leader in high quality and innovatively designed tableware, cookware, giftware, table top accessories and home fragrances. With its reputation for quality, superior service and design innovation, visitors to Portmeirion Group’s stand will be delighted to see extensions to best-selling ranges as well as brand new designs that are perfectly on trend.

Portmeirion Group revealed new collections including Botanic Garden Harmony (Portmeirion), Atrium (Portmeirion) and Kingsley (Spode). “They have been heavily influenced by the current trend to bring the outside in – a huge trend for 2019 – while remaining steeped in each of the three brand’s individual heritage,” explained sales and marketing director Phil Atherton.

Here is a selection of photographs from the recent trade exhibitions at The Spring Fair at the NEC and Ambiente in Frankfurt. Once again, it was a pleasure to be part of the Portmeirion creative team with the dressing & product styling of the exhibition stand.

It does not matter whether you are a trade exhibitor or a retailer, create exciting theatre with your presentation. Grab the attention of those customers! Give them a memorable experience that you cannot find when shopping on-line!

Remember “You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression”

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Indulge your mum!

Here in the UK, Mother’s Day is on 31st March.  Other than Christmas and Valentines, Mother’s Day should be the third most valuable or rather commercial day of the year when it comes to sales and profit.  This particularly applies to independent gift/home shops.

If you don’t have the space to create an actual ‘window display’, then create a focal point within the shop to attract customers.  Young children may only have a small amount of money to spend on their mum, so cater to their needs.  Small toiletries and candles are always a winner.  If you are a larger retail, then pull together a range of feminine merchandise which could include throws, flowers, pictures or books.  Don’t over complicate the area. It should be simple to browse and shop from, and more importantly it needs to have ‘quick pick up lines’.

Many retailers now offer a free ‘gift wrap service’.  This could be anything from wrapping in nice tissue paper to that add-on sale with a sheet of gift wrap.  Make the customer feel special and give them a shopping experience which they cannot find when shop on-line.  As retailers it is paramount to step up a gear and get customers back onto the High Street.

Here is a selection of photographs from my files which should inspire you to make a splash of Mother’s Day to drive that all important revenue for your business.

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