A day at the Autumn Gift & Home Fair

This week I was invited to the  Autumn Gift & Home Fair (AG&HF) in Dublin, a trade show where retail brands go to buy their stock for next season’s collection. Above is a little explainer video.

Related: The Best of Irish Craft & Design at Showcase 2017

Did you know that traders source Christmas stock 14-15 months in advance?

At the event I got talking to one of the traders, Brian from  Central Floral Supplies in Cork. Brian’s stall was full of Christmas decorations and accessories – many of which will be bought by retailers at this show and sold in the 2017 Christmas collection. Brian told me that he sources these accessories 14-15 months in advance and shares how he predicts the trends. Watch his interview…

If you’re a retailer, you should attend

If you’re a retailer and you missed the show, I’d highly recommend that you go next year. As well as getting to meet lots of designers, you can attend talks by retail experts.

One of the talks this year was given by the store manager of the Guinness Storehouse Alan Donnelly. Alan’s talk titled ‘It’s Personal – The Rise of the In-store Experience’ about creating an excellent retail experience that hinges on more than just really good customer service.

Another talk was by Gillian Maxwell from Tiger. Her talk, called ‘Small is the Next Big’ explained how smaller format stores with compelling propositions for customers are doing very well and the big stores no longer hold all the cards.

An abundance of Irish design

Trade shows like this are wonderful for showcasing Irish design. Many of the designers really caught my attention so I interviewed some of them. You can watch the interviews here: 6 Irish homeware designers that you need to know about

What’s next?

If you’re a retailer, follow the Autumn Gift & Home Fair on Facebook so you can see when registration opens next year.

Also, check out other top rated trade shows like Showcase, taking place in Ireland in January 2018, and Ambiente, taking place in Germany in February 2018.


6 Irish homeware designers that you need to know about

Leave a comment!