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July 2015

July 2015

Party Line: Building Blocks
Shop Talk: Easley's Fun Shop
Making a Scene
Birthdays That Never Grow Old
Birthday Wishes and Beyond
Balloon Recipe
EMV: What you need to know
Industry & Trade Show News
You Said It
Party People: Lorise Baratta

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Easley’s Fun Shop

Easley’s Fun Shop

Spotlight On: Phoenix Four generations in the ‘big yellow building’ still a Phoenix fun spot With a history steeped in family fun, Easley’s Fun Shop in Phoenix is where the celebrations won’t be slowing any time soon. With four generations contributing to its retail history, what is “affectionately referred to as ‘the big yellow building’ on McDowell Road,” according to co-owner Debbie Easley, is seeing a bright future that continues to blossom in inventory, rentals and community presence. Evolution by the era When Easley’s opened in 1947, Bert Easley, a vaudeville magician, stocked the store with magic and novelty products. With a history spanning four generations, the Easley family has been witnesses to the evolution of the party industry and has been adapting fast along with it. “In the ‘60s, the merchandise mix included Don Post masks, capes and box costumes. In the early ‘80s…  » Read more
EMV: What you need to know

EMV: What you need to know

Credit card fraud liability shakeup looming October may not feel like it’s sneaking up on us, but it is, and it’s approaching in full swing with penalties, changes and expenses that could make your retail life a living … well, you get the idea. To start, the very first thing you need to know is that Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV) was founded to increase credit card security, unlike the popular myth that it was created simply to cost retailers money and create unnecessary headaches. While headaches may still occur and expenses may still take place, the overall idea of EMV is actually a good thing. Essentially, EMV involves the swiping of a credit card with the same magnetic stripe you are familiar with — except it also includes a new “chip” that creates a unique transaction code each time it is swiped. Together, the…  » Read more
Making a Scene

Making a Scene

Props, wearables could be on the rise for New Year’s Eve The glitz and glamour of the Roaring ‘20s will likely be a popular theme for New Year’s Eve parties again this year. So, keep that party going, old sport. In addition to black, gold and silver tableware and decorations associated with the era, party planners might opt for wearables and other props that make for great photo opportunities for social media sharing. Party & Paper Retailer caught up with Valerie Federici, ecommerce specialist for Grasslands Road, a division of Amscan Inc., and Dawn Kirschner, Unique Industries’ director of marketing and new product development, to find out what we may see when folks start buying for their New Year’s Eve celebrations. PPR: What was the big trend for this past New Year’s Eve? Federici: While party décor and tableware continue to be strong contenders, wearables…  » Read more

Party People: Lorise Baratta

Lorise Baratta Party Favor Website Stationery and Gifts Designs by Lorise Summit, New York Lorise Baratta is co-founder and creative director of Party Favor Website Stationery and Gifts, as well as Designs by Lorise. She originally started out creating art and giftware for both wholesale and retail markets while operating a couture line of party items. After working for a number of years providing designing experience to a private, corporate and governmental base, Baratta combines her love of art and life, with luxury paper and party accessories for celebratory events. 1. What’s the best advice or would ever give about how to succeed as a retailer?  Stay true to your passion, but do not let your business entirely consume you. You can quickly burn out, before even realizing it. I used to believe that we needed to work around the clock and never turn down any orders, but I’ve since learned that does not…  » Read more
Building Blocks

Building Blocks

As a general consumer, I have become increasingly aware (and wary) of giving out my personal information. It seems I am constantly spring-cleaning my email inbox, requesting to be removed from call lists and deleting solicitors’ spam messages from my text history. The conversation of privacy and information sharing comes up frequently at cashier lines and in almost everyone’s head as they’re browsing the Internet — some websites won’t even allow access unless the visitor provides an email address. You may already be aware, but companies sell the personal information you share with them to third parties who analyze our spending and Web browsing patterns. These third-party companies then target and market to individuals based on the information they’ve mined. Independent stores who don’t sell customer information often suffer from the mistrust that ensues from other companies’ data mining while attempting to create in-store loyalty…  » Read more