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May 2012

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Party Line: Color Your World

Party Line: Color Your World

What's your favorite color? The answer is said to reveal something about your personality. Red is the color of strength and vitality, orange appeals to the flamboyant and fun-loving person, yellow usually goes with a sunny and shrewd personality, green symbolizes hope and peace, blue is a soothing color of deliberation and introspection, brown represents stamina and patience, gray is the color of caution and compromise, black gives the appearance of mystery and purples are highly fastidious and witty. While it's simply a matter of personal preference, it's always interesting to hear how people answer that question, as color can play a role in everything from what someone wears to how they decorate their house. Needless to say, it also plays a rather large role in anything and everything related to the party industry. Whether it's a bride's wedding scheme or matching birthday balloons to…  » Read more
Shop Talk: A Pink Gorilla

Shop Talk: A Pink Gorilla

Spotlight On: Cleveland Where they make each day count, personally and professionally When Cornelia Franklin of A Pink Gorilla started making books from home while caring for her two children in 1984, she didn't envision herself donning a pink gorilla suit and delivering balloons just a few short years later. But a few years later, that's exactly what she did. What progressed to a personalized children's book kiosk has since turned into a 3,000-square-foot full gift and balloon retail shop in downtown Cleveland - A Pink Gorilla - that has worked with everyone from Lady Gaga to LeBron James. "In 1988, my husband Domonic's job moved us back to Cleveland where I opened a book pushcart in two local malls that was always highlighted with a handful of foil balloons," Franklin said. "After about six months of people asking to buy the balloons - which…  » Read more
A Retail Rainbow

A Retail Rainbow

Go back to basics with classic colors Classic colors, bold statements, simple phrases and innovative products that can be used for multiple occasions - from red and pink to "going green," these are the things that can help retailers cash in on those everyday party sales. Just like in fashion and home décor, those in the party industry are seeing a lot of classic black and white used as background color with pops of brights like red, hot pink or even silver and gold. "These color combinations are being used in all types of partyware, from everyday celebrations to children's birthday parties and more," said Kelly Karrmann of Creative Converting. "We've partnered these colors with patterns like polka dots and stripes to make their classic statements even bolder." Tammy Corzine of Celebrations in Ohio agreed that pink and black remain popular color combinations, but that…  » Read more
Big Balloon Wedding

Big Balloon Wedding

‘Balloon Lady' marries ‘Marathon Man' - in her store Amy Veltman Cullen, CBA and owner of "It's My Party" in Dyer, Ind., believes that balloons are on their way back when it comes to bridal décor. More brides are choosing balloons as a way to decorate, as balloons simply transform a room much better than any other decoration. "High spaces are filled with things from the ceiling such as the balloon drops and arches while mid-space is transformed by unique balloons," Veltman Cullen said. "Bottom and dance floor space are filled with latex balloons hovering on the dance floor. All in all, balloons transform a space." She believes in this so much that she not only had balloon décor as part of her Jan. 2 wedding, but she had the actual wedding in her party store - complete with balloon décor, of course. Love in…  » Read more
Special Delivery

Special Delivery

Little bundles of joy can deliver big sales First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes those moms-to-be looking to outfit their baby shower with the latest and greatest party products. The good thing about baby showers, for both retailers and moms-to-be, is that there are opportunities for multiple sales of different baby shower products, depending on the people involved. A baby shower with close family and friends may include a half-day event of food, drinks, gifts, photos and games in which baby shower paperware, banners, centerpieces, gift wrap, gift bags, candles, invites, streamers, balloons, confetti and decorations are essential items to complete the celebration. "The same mom-to-be is just as likely to have a smaller-scale baby shower with co-workers at the office, where time and space is more limited, and the decorations might feature just a banner and balloon bouquet," said Debbie Beer of…  » Read more

Making Headlines

Generate your own buzz to get customers lining up Many balloon pros and party retailers rely on word-of-mouth to increase awareness of their business, but sometimes you need to generate the buzz yourself instead of waiting for someone else to do it for you.While you may not realize it, you've probably already experienced a variety of newsworthy events that your community and the local media would find interesting: • Starting a new business - If you've recently started up your retail store or maybe even opened up a new location, don't sit around and wait for people to find out about you. Get the word out! • Joining the Qualatex Balloon Network - Let everyone know that you've joined a professional network of businesses dedicated to high-quality balloon work. • Becoming a Certified Balloon Artist - One of the benefits of being a CBA is…  » Read more

The Store Room: What would you do with $10,000?

Our monthly column is devoted to what works and what doesn't - for our readers, from our readers "If you were given $10,000 for your store, how would you spend it? Deb KerkstraCreative EventsAllegan, Mich.I think I would throw a block party for our small town so that people would be drawn to not only my shop, but to other great shops that we have. Most people ignore downtown areas thinking we are high priced with items no one needs. What I would love them to find out is that we have really cool shops that are very budget conscious. They would really benefit from downtown if we could just make them aware of who we are. Katie DhueyAffordable TreasuresLos Gatos, Calif. I would use it to upgrade our front counter and our balloon counter. I'd love to make these areas more ergonomic and more…  » Read more