Having Fun at the Accessory Trade Show

I promised that I would talk about the accessory trade show I attended at a couple of weeks back. There are many cities in North America that put on accessory trade shows. The CGTA (Canadian Gift and Table Association) puts on two a year in Toronto, one in January and one in August. It is the largest show on its kind in North America for the trade only; the general public is not allowed to attend. This is where everyone that sells any kind of accessory, lamp, area rug etc. goes to buy their inventory. It is in 12 different buildings with over 1.3 million square feet of space used to house the show. To give you an idea how big that is, you would take all on The Bayshore shopping centre in Ottawa and add another 30% and it would be close to the physical size of this show. There are over 1,000 unique suppliers/importers/manufacturers there showing off their products. It is like going to the Christmas Signature show at the Ottawa Congress Centre, only on a grander scale. Some of the booths you go into are 10’ x 10’; others might be 50’ x 50’. There is one booth there, a 10’ x 10’ and all they sell are bows, and there are others where it is like walking into a large furniture store. It takes us 3 to 4 days to go through the show properly. We might spend 5 minutes in one booth, walk by many and then spend 2 or 3 hours in the next. We are always looking for unique, quality items. I discovered many years ago that many companies that have the word “quality” or “fine” in their company name usually are not! So we are careful to check out the quality we are looking at.

I go to these shows armed with my list of clients that need finishing touches to the projects, along with fabric swatches, digital pictures from client’s homes and in some cases, throw pillows from the sofa so I can find just the right item to finish that room. Have you ever noticed when you go into a room in a home where they have too much “stuff” that the room never looks finished, just cluttered and then you go into other’s and they have no accessories and the same holds true, it just doesn’t look finished. That is why putting up the correct size wall décor and the correct number makes such a difference. Same holds true for table top accessories and for lamps, area rugs etc. Accessorizing a room to me is a lot of fun and so important, it pulls everything together to give the final look you are going for. So many people don’t do that, they buy a room full of furniture but don’t think of accessorizing it and wonder why their room doesn’t look as nice as they hoped for. You should always allow 10 to 15% of your total budget for those final finishing touches. Your will be glad you did! I recommend that people accessorize room at least twice a year, to give it a whole new look. By changing the wall décor or lamps you will be amazed how the room changes. Greenery is so important too. A good quality faux trees are very popular and it is amazing how they can pull a room together. I just love doing it!!

About Catherine Pulcine

I founded CPI Interiors in 1998. I have over 29 years of extensive experience in residential interior design and decorating. Having worked with over 6,000 clients in the Ottawa area since 1998. Previously having work for an exclusive home interiors retailer to the Ottawa's foremost home builder, I has established a professional wealth of knowledge that I have built on by hiring professionals to work with me. This translates into a superior ability to offer a complete package of design & decorating services for any client's needs. I am a member of the Decorators and Designers Association of Canada, a member of the Capital Business Association and a Member of the West Ottawa Board of Trade. I am a past member of the Board of Directors of The Better Business Bureau of Ottawa. I am also past president of Kanata Chapter of BNI.
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