Today was the last day of NY Now, and being an experienced show visitor, I knew this is the day to get nice stuff.
See, usually at the end of the show of this size many exhibitors, especially mid- and small-range want to sell their floor samples for “cash and carry”, so as not to ship them home, especially if home is overseas. The bigger firms may pack and go to another exhibition and need all their samples (like today, f.i., many of the reps told me they go next to North Carolina or to Germany or to Milan). Keep in mind, the prices are wholesale and sometimes lower, and some are willing to negotiate.
What is also nice when I get the invite to a fair at Javits, I know they sponsor fleet of free Academy buses, to move visitors and exhibitors from their hotels to the J.-Center. And I can get on one of them right next to one of my midtown subway stops and ride in luxury through throngs (what a mouthful!) to extreme West side, right to the Javits’ doors. See how hectic the streets are around us? Yes, that’s museum @Intrepid directly on course…
Finally, we arrived (15 measly blocks took us half an hour !) , I flashed my badge and walked to the isles. Started taking photos…here’s a nice girl at the Peruvian stand and her beautiful alpaca furnishings, here’s a booth with leather goods from South Africa…oh, shoot, I totally forgot – today the show closes at 2pm, I have no time for leisurely walks and snapping pics, I gotta run !
2.5 hrs later, I left Javits burdened with 3 huge bags full of wonderful things – you want to know what was there?
Here, I had to show it to you in batches – in wouldn’t fit into just one shot.
Batch #1: a box hand-woven from newspapers in Portuguese (Brazil), crystal wine glasses: shown 2, I got set of 6 (Slovakia), 2 stone candlesticks (shown 1 – Brazil), 2 hand-woven out of pampas’ grass trivets in shape of exotic birds (Argentina)
Batch #2: Merino lambswool scarf (UK), linen blouse with reglain sleeves and mother-of-pearl buttons (India), furniture lacquer primer and furniture lacquer green paint by Amy Howard Home
Batch #3: these are the 2 bags I had to carry the stuff, lying near a knitted lambswool bed throw, pattern called Barcode (by Go Home) – the color is distorted, it’s more of a warm beige-grey and not brown and it’s big: 48″x70″
Batch #4: freebies and household stuff: woven napkin holder and a straw bag (Brazil), silver cleaning cloth, linen spray, pin cushion (don’t remember the Cos, sorry – all domestic)
Batch #5: Pièce de résistance – plaid 60″x74″, mohair+merino wool (UK).
So, how do you think I feel?
While you’re guessing, a note aside.
Those wonderful, wonderful woolies from Britain? The guys who sold them to me actually put a sign” samples for sale” , told me I can buy as many as I liked and were unwrapping and unfolding them for me w/o hesitation, even though they had to hurry and pack. All other sellers were very nice, too – either told me their best price off wholesale or invited to buy at their sites at a discount or – if they were unable to sell – smiled and apologized. All, with one exception: the French. There was a whole aisle by a dozen or so French companies – and all of their reps were rude. One woman – selling house scents and spray perfumes – made a face and turned away when I asked if she could give me a discount off her $75 smallish bottle. Another, seller of packaged sets of table utensils and kitchen dish towels, was offended when I said $35 for set of 3 cheese knives is too much for me: “but can’t you read, madam, it’s MADE IN FRANCE!” And he had a sign “sale” above his merchandise! A third, with booth filled with various baskets, answered that black-n-white round basket I wanted to buy for my knitting, was priced at $25. When I asked “is this your best price?” – he shrugged his shoulders and yelled “now it’s $35!” It’s like nobody taught these salespeople how to sell, they took inquiries as personal offense!