New for Mardi Gras 2008
January 2008

In This Issue:

Mardi Gras Sellers
Mardi Gras Crazy Hats
Mardi Gras Crazy Hats

Mardi Gras Dolls
Mardi Gras Dolls

Mardi Gras Boas
Mardi Gras Boas

Rhinestone Ball Jewelry
Rhinestone Ball Jewelry

Novelty Sunglasses
Novelty Sunglasses






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New Arrivals
Mardi Gras Masks
Venetian Style Masks


Greetings!

Almost before Christmas lights are put away, Mardi Gras season is here. Yes, this year we have an early Mardi Gras, February 5th, so there's no time to waste in getting ready. This is a huge lift for retailers in Mardi Gras areas. For others, there are still plenty of opportunities to improve business in the after- Christmas lull. This newsletter points out winners for both as we cover the hottest selling items for Mardi Gras. But even more detail can be found in the Mardi Gras Item Report.

Michael Gietl
Mardi Gras Beads
Mardi Gras Beads
Gaudy Baubles that are Sweeping the Country

Mardi Gras celebrations are growing by leaps and bounds, not only in the US, but internationally. What expresses the spirit better than Mardi Gras beads? Plenty of tradition connects beads to Mardi Gras since Rex initiated the custom in 1921.

Inexpensive metallic MOT (molded on twine) beads are the most popular throws from floats, while the nicer beads, called special throws, are often hand strung and come in every imaginable theme today. Both see brisk sales in gift shops during Mardi Gras season and are indispensible in areas of Mardi Gras celebration. Fleur-de-lis themes and tiger beads are especially hot in Louisiana. Inexpensive beads with dangling Venetian masks or sparkling disco balls are already selling well in all Carnival locations.

But what if your shop is 200 miles or more from the nearest Mardi Gras celebrations? Don't feel you're out of the loop. The center for Mardi Gras beads is New Orleans and these beads are shipping all over the country and out of the country in recent times to many locations where Mardi Gras is just beginning or doesn't exist. Football games, school sporting events, festivals, beach locations, concerts, and parties are all markets for Mardi Gras beads. The Mardi Gras colors of purple, gold, and green sell the best, but with all the themes and colors available today, there is something for every occasion. The inexpensive gaudy beads are a recipe for fun that grabs customers' attention. Include beads for the Mardi Gras item with the highest demand.

Mardi Gras Masks
Mardi Gras Masks
The Fastest Growing Party Item

Beneath the radar, items are trending up and down. This is important information for the success of retailers. Masks are the item in party supplies that are making a serious move upward. Wordtracker is a service that tracks internet searches. Results on January 1st show that masks lead all searches for Mardi Gras items with a margin of 2 to 1 over the next best item, which is Mardi Gras beads. This reveals the intense interest of buyers.

Masks are required by law for the riders on floats in New Orleans Mardi Gras parades, who are often referred to as "maskers". But that's the tip of the iceberg with masks so popular with revelers and a leading seller in gift shops. And the popularity doesn't end at the city limits. Wherever Mardi Gras is celebrated, masks are an extremely popular party item with brisk sales. They are costumes, souvenirs, and decorations. Why not, with the striking designs available today.

Mardi Gras masks take the traditional colors of purple, gold, and green and the selection includes feather masks, sequins, masquerade masks, and Venetian style masks. Stunning design reaches an all time high at an inexpensive price, but Venetian style masks are most extraordinary. If you need background information, see the Venetian Mask Report.

Masks are also booming outside of Mardi Gras. The spring sees masquerade balls, weddings, proms, and fundraisers using masks. The mask business thrives year round with the exception of the heat of summer. Florists, gift stores, and costume shops have a golden opportunity. Even prom and bridal shops need a source for proms, weddings, quinceaneras, and sweet sixteens. High demand and low supply makes masks a natural for improving sales so give serious thought to this rising star.

Mardi Gras Pins
Mardi Gras Jewelry
The Season Long Seller

Mardi Gras purists make a distinction between Mardi Gras and Carnival. Mardi Gras is the day before Ash Wednesday and Carnival is the season that starts on The Feast of the Epiphany (January 6th) and ends on Mardi Gras Day. The item that sells for the entire season is Mardi Gras jewelry.

Pins are the best seller and also make popular favors for Mardi Gras balls. But earrings are also very popular with themes of masks and crowns doing the best. Mardi Gras charm bracelets tell a story with unique charms that focus on the familiar themes of Carnival. Stock jewelry first because the season is here and it is already selling.

Once again, if you are far away from the celebration, don't feel left out. The media brings it into everyone's living room. In 19--- NBC did the first national radio broadcast of Mardi Gras and today television makes everyone aware. The spirit spreads even for those that can't be there. Just like you don't have to be Irish to wear a St. Patrick's Day pin, you don't have to be at the parade to enjoy Mardi Gras jewelry. Also the most popular themes of crowns, masks, and comedy/tragedy are also important for pageant and theatre. One more surprise may be when one of our displaced citizens after Hurricane Katrina walks in to buy Mardi Gras jewelry and tell interesting stories about how this really is a family affair.

Next Newsletter: Glitz and Elegance for Spring

From now until May event after event provide a fertile field for retail sales that includes prom, pageant, bridal, Easter, and Mother's Day. In addition, spring fashion rolls out and hats see their highest demand of the year. Whew! That's a lot to cover, so we will stick in an extra newsletter to do justice to all the opportunities coming up. A final word on Mardi Gras that sometimes receives a black eye from sensational reporting. I attend the Mardi Gras every year with my family in my home town of Lafayette, the second biggest celebration in Louisiana. It's a day of family enjoyment and extremes will land a person in jail. So-y'all come and pass a good time!

Copyright © 2008 Accessory Wholesale Inc. Feel free to reproduce the newsletter as long as the copyright notice is included and a link to www.awnol.com

Questions or Comments? Promos@awnol.com
Phone: 504-736-0357
Web: http://www.awnol.com


New for Mardi Gras 2008

Accessory Wholesale Inc | 5845 River Road | Harahan | LA | 70123 | Promos@awnol.com | 504-736-0357