Designers, grab your bags and business cards—it’s time to attend the action-packed Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market at AmericasMart. The show unfolds January 8 to 15, and features seminars, networking opportunities and a number of noteworthy events—many of which focus on improving designers’ and retailers’ businesses. BOH rounded up some highlights attendees won’t want to miss.
WHO TO MEET
The Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market features a full set list of notable names. Dallas-based Denise McGaha will be on hand to share her expert licensing tips, aiming to assist designers with choosing the right people to work with, how to stay true to your brand, and the pros and cons of working with an agent or going solo. Joining McGaha on stage will be Genevieve Gorder (host of Netflix’s Stay Here) and Madcap Cottage duo Jason Oliver Nixon and John Loecke.
Also offering hard-earned wisdom this Market will be the likes of Consort Home co-founders Mat Sanders and Brandon Quattrone sharing their style tips and designer Jenny Komenda showcasing her favorite seasonal merchandise and decorative accessories as Shop the Show influencers this Market. (“Off white is the new white,” she predicts in an AmericasMart blog post. “I’m looking forward to seeing more of the caned and rattan furniture trend at Market. I especially like seeing it applied in less boho, more modern forms. I am really hoping there are more basket pendants!”) Anna Bond of Rifle Paper Co. and Tamara Day of HGTV will also chat with attendees after panels.
WHAT TO SEE
With more than 9,000 brands exhibiting, the show is the largest gift and home furnishings market of the year. Must-see exhibitors include Surya, Summer Classics, Jaipur Living, Global Views, AHS Lighting & Home Decor, Loloi, African American Expressions, Artists Guild of America and Sferra, which will display a mix of new and classic products.
In addition to brand showrooms, the Market will also include a juried collection of antiques available for immediate purchase. More than 70 dealers will display wares in 40,000 square feet of space.
Designer attendees can expect to run into tastemakers from other realms; the event welcomes retailers and buyers in a range of industries, including culinary arts, event planning, architecture and hospitality. Professionals of all stripes are invited to receive complimentary headshots, a service that will be available daily from January 9 to 13, on Floor 7 of Building 1.
WHAT TO DO
In addition to getting schooled at the week’s panels (including how to expand your business beyond brick-and-mortar), designers can dip into a host of inspiring events and networking opportunities. Entertaining expert Annette Joseph will teach a two-hour masterclass on styling and photography (RSVP here), and offer tips on pitching editors and getting projects published. And Pantone will do a deep dive into the 2019 Color of the Year, Living Coral.
Market-goers can also swing by showrooms and floors for various social hours—including, on January 10, an Italian-themed cocktail party featuring Atlanta-based Shop the Show influencers Annette Joseph and Mandy Kellogg Rye, founder of the blog Waiting on Martha.