Archive for July, 2008

Industry News

Monday, July 21st, 2008

Mark Sorak, General Manager of Store Operations has left Binder’s in Atlanta and is looking to join another growing company in the industry. Mark has also worked at Utrecht and Pearl. Contact Mark at msorak@yahoo.com or 404-219-2873.

Tonya Hill has opened a consulting/marketing business called McGinn Hill Consultants specializing in sales training and management, event marketing and market strategy. She brings 20 years of experience in the art and craft industry. Tonya’s phone is 704-224-7311 and her email address is tonya@mhconsultants.net

Sign of the Times Dept: Susan Kocsis (Search Press) informs us that Craftrends Magazine will cease publication effective immediately. Craftrends and CNA were the two trade publications for the entire general craft industry. CNA stopped publishing last year.

The LA Times reported today (July 16, 2008) that increasing cost of plastic ingredients is forcing Newell Rubbermaid Inc. owner of Sharpie and Prismacolor to lay off workers, scrap some of its basic home and office products and raise prices on other items by as much as 22%. Our fearless Sanford rep, Dan Canny adds these details, “Newell Rubbermaid’s Board of Directors Has mandated that NR exit approximately $500MM in unprofitable, resin based products across the entire portfolio of brands. This will affect Sanford’s Office Organization business. We expect to rationalize many SKUs from that particular line. As you know, those are not products that were prevalent in the Fine Art business. We expect to increase prices in October on our Office Organization line and other resin intensive product lines by a significant but undetermined percentage. The exact pricing for the affected items has not been finalized as of this morning. Again, given the nature of these products there is no significant impact on our Fine Art business.”

National office products wholesaler SP Richards has acquired Los Angeles-based PPI Wholesale.

The Loft of Athens, GA has moved to a new and larger location in the same town.

GOLDEN OPEN Acrylics Has Left the Building!

Monday, July 21st, 2008

Since the launch of OPEN Acrylics at NAMTA, the support and response from retailers has been incredible. Our commitment to retailers was to begin shipping orders by July 1. We are pleased to announce that even with the overwhelmingly strong demand, we were able to ship the product out not only on time, but early. This was a tremendous achievement for the entire GOLDEN staff, in part due to the early order writing completed by our trade partners!

OPEN Acrylics are already creating buzz and excitement in the artist community and artists who have begun experimenting with it have been sharing their experiences with others. Here are some links to commentary from independent artists who have tried the new products:

Robert Bissett, International Society of Acrylic Painters, page 12 of newsletter

Jamie Grossman, Signature Member of New York Plein Air Painters

Don’t miss out…for a listing of current store order commitments for OPEN Acrylics

To see a cool video product demo

Visit Mark Golden’s Blog

Technical information about the OPEN Acrylics product line, including application sheets, color charts and additional resources for reference is available at www.goldenpaints.com.

Art Alternatives 2008 Bulk Canvas Roll Drop Ship Program

Monday, July 21st, 2008

Here is a real opportunity. Stores who buy bulk canvas and sell it to students and artists by the yard compete with the big city discounters who have huge buying power. It’s never been a fair fight. For the brave stores who do take on this fight, awning supply distributors such as CR Daniels have generally been the source of choice, but dealing with a non-art supply distributor requires a bit more hassle than most retailers want to go through. Plus, the price is still not quite there. We worked hard to overcome the challenges and we think you are going to see a big opportunity with MacPherson’s new Art Alternatives bulk canvas roll drop ship program. Our sales representatives have swatch books to help you choose from the best of the best, whether it is unprimed cotton duck or primed cotton canvas in several weights or weave. Best of all it can all be managed through your established MacPherson’s relationship.

To help you sort out terms like double fill, warp and selvedge we have also provided a handy Art Canvas Glossary:

Art Alternatives Premium Canvas is Here!

Monday, July 21st, 2008

Introducing the long-awaited Art Alternatives Premium Collection Canvas line…a high-quality canvas you must see and feel! Triple-primed with acid-free titanium acrylic gesso, this beautiful new canvas features 10 oz. cotton duck canvas wrapped around heavy duty stretcher bars made of super-strong, kiln-dried pine. Staple-free edges allow for painting on all our edges and the deep spline provides generous canvas wrap-around for easy re-stretching. Available in two styles, the Gallery profile canvas features a 2-1/4″ wide stretcher bar with a 1-5/8″ profile, and the Studio profile canvas features a 1-7/8″ wide stretcher bar with a 7/8″ profile. Both are suitable for acrylics, oils and other painting media. Hang with or without a frame. Each style is available in 25 sizes. (Item # reference AA5400-AA5424) Studio retails at $5.39-$71.69. (Item # reference AA5450-AA5474) Gallery retails at $11.99-$227.29.

Remember that we also have free displays for AA5528 and AA5530 when you buy 50 canvases at a time! The display item numbers are AACNPOP1620S and AACNPOP1824S.

Check out a video that shows the re-stretching capability of Art Alternatives Premium Canvas:

Art Alternatives New & Noteworthy

Monday, July 21st, 2008

Airtight Stainless Steel Brush Washer in a New Jumbo Size (24 oz.)
A new edition to compliment our existing 8 oz. Stainless Steel Brush Washer, the larger 24 oz. size is specially designed for use with mineral spirits, turpentine and other solvents. The brush washer features a double latching lid that locks securely, forming an airtight seal so there is no spilling, evaporation or odors. A removable strainer cup lets sediment collect in the bottom. Convenient for travel, the bucket style handle makes it easy to carry or hang. It quickly disassembles for easy cleaning and will not rust! (Item #AA15622) Retails at $39.99.

Dragon Manikin (11″) in Time for the Beijing Olympics!
Your customers will love our new fiery and fierce dragon manikin! The dragon has long been a potent symbol of auspicious power in Chinese folklore and art. Use this exceptionally detailed artist’s manikin as a model for sketching or simply as an inspiring studio companion. A work of art in itself, the dragon manikin is ready to bring to life with paint, embellishments and decorations. Fully articulated and 11″ long, it is carved from solid, hand-finished hardwood. Available in Reno now and by the end of July in our other two warehouse locations! (Item #AA12550) Retails at 24.99

Industry News

Monday, July 14th, 2008

Correction: We posted an inaccurate report in last month’s ArtiFAX/Art Dog Blog. Purveyors of Art, in Boone, NC has closed its original location and moved 8 miles up the road to new and better facility in Foscoe, NC.

Ed Ras has accepted a position as National Sales Manager/Art and Craft with the Daylight Company. He will be heading up the sales efforts across North America (including Canada and Mexico) starting today. The past head of sales, Tom Moore, had left and is pursuing other opportunities. Daylight is based in the UK with offices worldwide.

At Jo-Ann’s, Keri Montgomery, Assistant Merchandise Manager/Fine Arts has been promoted effective July 21st to Assistant Merchandise Manager-Seasonal Crafts. Debby Hettinger remains as Merchandise Manager/Fine Arts and is doing double duty until Keri’s replacement is found.

Jack Walser of Walser’s in Torrance, CA reports the birth of a grandson. Hunter Jay Edmisten was born July 3rd, at 1:55 p.m. in Riverside, CA. He is 7 lbs. 14 oz. and all are doing well.

We are proud to report that three MacPherson’s people have taken and passed the NAMTA online Certified Art Material Professional(CAMP) test in June: Alyssa Bardini-Human Resources, George Bethurem– Northern Calif. Sales Rep, and Lisa Day-Purchasing. Congatulations!

The art supply market in Tucson, AZ is growing! Arizona Art, a one location company for over 20 years, has just opened its 5th store in Arizona. In addition to the original Phoenix store they have stores in Tempe, Scottsdale and Sun City. Store number 5 is located in the northwest section of Tucson, and will feature all the major brands of art supplies. Owners Larry Millstead and Susan Millstead found a great location near the Tucson Mall.

Sarnoff Art, in southeast Tucson, AZ for over 10 years is moving to a new location 4 doors away from the previous location. The shopping center has been remodeled, so Sarnoff Art has a “new” store with all new fixtures. Owners Henry & Maria Sarnoff, with the help of store manager/buyer Fred Soto, offer all major art supplies and fine writing instruments, and they operate a successful in-store frame shop, too.

Wet Paint of Tempe, AZ has put plans for a new store in Tucson, AZ on hold.

Jennifer Lubelsky recently left Barnes & Noble College Stores to become the Paper Buyer at Blue Tulip in NYC.

DeSerres France, which operates 13 art & craft stores in France under the brands Rougier & Plé, Graphigro and Créa, has filed a petition to restructure their business under court protection. If they are unsuccessful, the company plans to close all 13 shops. The stores (including seven in Paris and the Paris region), which employ about 180 employees, will have their fate decided in the coming weeks by the court of Commerce of Paris. The parent company based in Montreal, Canada purchased the France operation from group Artacréa in May 2007 for nearly five million dollars. The first store Rougier & Plé was opened in Paris in 1854.

Here’s a concept we learned this week from our great friends at Lefranc & Bourgeois: Systeme D. Defined as resourcefulness, or the ability to work around the system, the “D” comes from from debrouillard, one with the knack of making do. A typical phrase using this concept would be, “Thanks to Systeme D, I fixed this broken down oil paint display without the missing part.” What this world needs is a lot more Systeme D!

Charming Shoppes, Inc. announced the resignation of Dorrit J. Bern as President and Chief Executive Officer and has named the company’s Chairman of the Board, Alan Rosskamm, former Chairman and CEO of Jo-Ann Stores, Inc. to serve as CEO on an interim basis.

Our best wishes to Bob Fisher, formerly West coast regional sales manager at ColArt and now with University Art in Sacramento, CA, for a speedy recovery from a tenacious respiratory illness.

Sign of the times: George Bussinger, owner of McCallister’s Art Supplies in Dayton, OH announced on July 9th that he will close his business. McCallister’s was opened in 1953. George served as NAMTA President, founded the NAMTA Foundation in 2005 along with Steve Aufhauser, and received the Hall of Fame award for outstanding service to the trade association.

Please welcome Riley Jacob Ong, the latest member of the growing MacPherson’s clan. Born to proud parents Lissa and Ryan Ong at 11:59 am on July 11, 7 lbs. 8 oz. Mom, dad and baby are all doing fine!

George Szlemp of the Art Cellar in Cedar Rapids, IA reports that his entire store was wiped out in the recent Midwest floods. He is working with suppliers to get back on his feet, but the challenge is great. Anyone wishing to lend a hand should contact him directly via email: george@artcellarstore.com or phone: 319-363-1732.

Filiberto Lomeli, the merchandise coordinator at Santa Barbara City College Bookstore is retiring in August after over 20 years. He is a painter of acrylics and plans to paint full time.

Craig’s July ColArt News

Monday, July 14th, 2008

There’s still plenty of time to save on all these top-selling ColArt product ranges for BTS:
W&N Artist Oils (37ml and new 200ml), all Winton Oils, 200ml Galeria Acrylics, all W&N Canvas, new Liquitex Acrylic Inks, all Derwent Pencil Tins and Coloursoft pencil assortments. Ask your MacPherson’s contact for detailed savings on each range.

Don’t forget the new Liquitex BASICS GESSO: reformulated to be richer and thicker for greater coverage, it features improved eye-catching labeling and a convenient, new 250ml Squeeze Tube size. New No-Mess-Pumps are available separately for the 1/2 gallon and gallon easy pour jugs.

Derwent’s New Tinted Charcoal Pencils combine the dramatic beauty of charcoal with a gentle hint of color. These unique pencils can be smudged and blended for deep rich tones and may be sharpened to a fine point for detail. Available in 24 subtle colors including white for burnishing and highlights. This magnificent range is currently available in a blister card of 6, tins of 12 and 24, and a tub of 72.

For artists who are curious, yet still a bit apprehensive about trying Water Mixable Oils,
Reeves has introduced a value-priced range of 24 Water Mixable Oil Colors packaged conveniently in 12-, 18- and 24-color sets. Water-Mixable Linseed Oil is also available in 75ml and 250ml bottles with flip-top caps. All are AP certified.

And remember, CAP Dealers, stock up on the essential Liquitex HB and SB open-stock 2 oz. tubes while there’s still time!

Dan Canny’s July Facts

Monday, July 14th, 2008

• Many of you have asked about the new Sharpie Pen. Sanford will begin shipping that item to MacPherson’s on August 1st. You will see TV advertising featuring world famous soccer star David Beckham during the weeks of July 7th, 14th, 21st, August 4th and August 11th. Print ads run from July 8th through August 29th.
• Make sure to contact your MacPherson’s representative to get your Prismacolor Consumer Rebate materials. The rebate applies to any Prismacolor product such as open stock pencils, markers and NuPastels versus a specific set or sets.
• Be sure to order a back up Prismacolor BTS corrugate floor display. The quantities are modest and MacPherson’s has come out at a 50/20% (60%) discount off of the $1,472.22 MSRP for BTS! The Consumer Rebate tear pad and other rebate information is already on the display. The trays are removable so they can be used to merchandise an end-cap even after the consumer rebate ends. Call your MacPherson’s representative right now so you do not miss out on the opportunity to buy our best-selling marker and pencil sets and 2008 BTS Bonus Packs at a 50/20% discount for BTS.
• Prismacolor is offering two Pencil Set Bonus Packs for BTS 2008. The 24-color Prismacolor Pencil Set will have the 12-count Prismacolor NuPastel Set attached to it at no additional charge. This is a 41% value at MSRP in free goods! The iten number is SA1743688. This set is contained in the Prismacolor BTS Corrugate Floorstand.
• The 48-color Prismacolor Pencil Set will have the SA3750 Prismacolor Sketch Accessory Set attached to it. This is a $15 value at MSRP in free goods! That item number is SA1743333. This set is contained in the Prismacolor BTS Corrugate Floorstand.
• Your MacPherson’s representative will also have ordering details for the new Eraser Canisters and Prismacolor Accessories Tray. You can get the SA70521 Pink Pearl, SA70531 Kneaded Eraser, or the SA73030 Design Artgum erasers in display canisters holding up to 72-pieces. These are perfect for impulse purchase placement throughout the year and particularly at BTS.
• The Prismacolor Accessories tray is a convenient corrugate tray that contains the Design SA73318 Multi-Pack Eraser Set, SA3750 Prismacolor Sketch Accessory Set and the SA24187 Prismacolor Turquoise Sketch Accessory Set. All three of these items are great BTS items and should be in a high visibility location in your store during the BTS season. Your MacPherson’s representative has cost and ordering details for this item as well.
• We have a shipping delay on the 60-count Prismacolor Pencil Set. We will not begin shipping that item to MacPherson’s until July 31st. We apologize for the delay, but the set will still ship in time for most BTS sales activity. This set was designed for the Independent Fine Art dealer. It contains 52 different colors and extra pencils on the white, certain grays and the colorless blender. MacPherson’s has a special promotional price on this item for BTS, so make sure you plan to promote it. This set is ideal for the independent retailer to market to colleges and art leagues because it will not be found in large chain retailers
• Thanks to all of you who asked for our Artist Competition posters. The inaugural contest was a huge success and we thank everyone for their support.

Spray Paint Comparison Chart

Monday, July 14th, 2008

Ever wonder what key differences drive the core spray artists’ buying decisions? Here’s a chart that boils down the bullet points. (Click on the chart to enlarge.)

Itty Bitty Canvases from Art Alternatives

Monday, July 14th, 2008

Itty Bitties!This Summer’s hot new item, our Itty Bitty canvases and easels, are making a big splash with retailers and artists alike. Using mini canvases, artists create tiny art to accent home décor, artwork and craft projects. With even an itty bitty amount of imagination, the possibilities are endless! Once completed, itty art can be displayed on itty easels, traded as artist trading cards and more. Each 7 oz. cotton duck canvas is triple-primed with acrylic gesso. Measuring just 5″ tall and made of pine, the Itty Easels are perfect for displaying mini canvases, cards or any other small, flat memorabilia. There are 100 individually shrink-wrapped canvases in a display and 75 easels in a display. Watch for additions to this popular line in the next couple of months, ATC-sized canvases and black Itty Noir easels are on their way!

Here are some facts about our current Itty offerings:

  • Order in carton quantities (100) for Itty Canvas & (75) for Itty Easels only
  • Market as an impulse purchase by placing displays next to the register
  • 2″ x 2″ Itty Bitties Canvas Display measures 10-3/4″w x 9-1/2″d x 2-1/4″h
  • 2″ x 2-3/4″ Itty Bitties Canvas Display measures 10-3/4″w x 9-1/2″d x 3″h
  • 2″ x 4″ Itty Bitties Canvas Display measures 10-3/4″w x 9-1/2″d x 4-1/4″h
  • 3″ x 3″ Itty Bitties Canvas Display measures 13″w x 11-3/4″d x 3-1/2″h
  • 2-7/8″ x 4-3/4″ Itty Bitties Easel Display measures 11-1/4″w x 14-3/4″d x 5″

Regular Discount at 60% and the intro Promo Discount is 70% off

Click here for a complete SKU listing

Art Alternatives “Huge Canvas Sale” Banners

Monday, July 14th, 2008

We have several Huge Canvas Sale banners to lend out to retailers hosting big canvas sales. These banners are free for the asking and are a great way for you to shout your SALE message to passersby. Contact your MacPherson’s sales person for all the details.

Get more Art Alternatives sales promotional materials here

Bamboo is Renewable and Hot!

Monday, July 14th, 2008

Due to the abundant availability and rapid growth period of Bamboo, this wood has fast become popular in home decor, furniture, and hardwood floors. Appealing not only to the eco-friendly artist, Bamboo is aesthetically attractive, smooth to the touch with gorgeous lines and a smooth silky finish. This beautiful wood has now been adapted for art materials use as our clever wood easel producer across the Pacific has created three signature items made of Bamboo. We polled retailers at our NAMTA open house and the response was stunning. The result? We’ve added all three to our Art Alternatives lineup! Due in in early October, your MacPherson’s sales contact can get you the details to pre-book now. The three items include our Bamboo Sonoma (French Sketchbox easel) , the Bamboo Ravenna (table easel), and the Bamboo Pencil Box with tons of impulse appeal – you need to feel it to believe how smooth the wood is.

Bamboo Sonoma Easel item # AA13502 retails at $194.99
Bamboo Ravenna Easel item # AA1242 retails at $99.99
Bamboo Pencil Box item # AA18460 retails at $19.99

Big Idea: Word of Mouth Marketing

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

Word of Mouth
Our ace Southern California sales representative Dawn McKay reported recently that a customer promoted a store-wide sale through the social networking website called Facebook and saw a 30% sales lift. This got me thinking about how independent retailers can market their stores through cheap or free avenues in these very challenging times. I keep tabs on trends in small business by subscribing to various free news services available on the web. One recent article that I read was “Why Word-of-Mouth Should Be Core to Your Business”. In brief, the author lays out the case for why word of mouth or viral marketing is so much easier for small business to employ than the chains. After all, owners of independent stores generally have regular contact with customers and are the best messengers for communicating the virtues of the business.

While this article did not exactly lay out a plan for mounting a word of mouth campaign, it did direct me to a web site that specializes in this clever art. They are called the Word of Mouth Marketing Association and you can find their web address below.

Word of mouth is…
• The voice of the customer
• A natural, genuine, honest process
• People seeking advice from each other
• Consumers talking about products, services or brands they have experienced

Word of mouth marketing is…recognizing that a happy customer is the greatest endorsement!

The bottom line is it’s all about creating customer enthusiasm instead of pushing marketing messages:
• Focusing on customer satisfaction
• Improving product quality and usability
• Responding to concerns and criticism
• Opening a dialog and listening to people
• Earning customer loyalty

Want more information on this form of marketing that seems ideally suited to independent retailers? Check out these web resources:

Wikipedia on Word of Mouth Marketing (WOMM)

Entrepreneur Dotcom Article

Word of Mouth Marketing Association

Craig’s June ’08 ColArt News

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

ColArtWith all of the current ColArt BTS savings, it’s easy to overlook the new products released at this year’s NAMTA:

The amazing new Liquitex Acrylic Inks can be cross-merchandised in both the paint and ink retail sections of thestore yielding extended POS opportunities. These new acrylic inks are offered in 30 intense bold colors in 30ml glass dropper bottles along with the 10 best-selling colors in large 150ml PET bottles. All are extremely fluid and do not require dilution for air brushing or calligraphy. These super fine pigments are fast drying, water resistant, non-clogging, permanent and are inter-mixable with all other Liquitex Acrylics and Mediums.

Fine Artists can buy big and save big (up to 50% over 37ml) on the new Winsor & Newton 200ml Artist Oil Color tubes in the top-selling range of 40 colors.

Both new product releases are available with a 60/10% off Drop Ship discount through 9/15/08.

All CAP dealers can take advantage of these, along with all Liquitex HB and SB 2 oz. tube acrylics as well as Galeria 60ml tube acrylics and mediums at great saving.

Add these specials to MacPherson’s unprecedented Back-to-School dating program! Please see your rep for all these and the other ColArt BTS promos.

Soft Sales? MacPherson’s Can Help

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

It’s no secret the the economy has slowed and that increasing gasoline prices are having a negative effect on consumers’ shopping habits. We’ve heard from some of you that your business is down compared to last year, and that you’re worried Back-to-School might not be as strong as you had hoped.

MacPherson’s can’t change the direction the economy is going, but we can help you weather the slowdown by extending our Back-to-School dating terms.

Retroactive to May 9th, ALL BTS DATING ORDERS will now receive an ADDITIONAL MONTH OF DATING. Instead of 1% October 20, net October 31, 2008 terms, all BTS Dating orders will earn extended terms of 1% November 1, net December 1, 2008.

Also, to make sure your store stays stocked and inviting, we’ve removed our maximum order restriction. For the duration of the BTS promo, you may place an UNLIMITED NUMBER OF BTS DATING ORDERS per store location. Our standard minimums and terms apply. Use the link below to see more details.

We at MacPherson’s succeed only when you succeed. We want to make sure our mutual success lasts well beyond this current economic downturn. We are hoping also that our extended BTS terms initiative will similarly inspire your other suppliers.

Click here for all the details

Dan Canny’s Sanford June Facts

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

• Prismacolor is offering a great consumer rebate for 2008! Your customer will get a $10 rebate from Prismacolor if they purchase at least $50 worth of Prismacolor products. The rebate tear pad will be attached to the Prismacolor BTS Corrugate Floorstand and is also available from your MacPherson’s representative. This is a change from previous years because the rebate applies to any Prismacolor product such as open stock pencils, markers and NuPastels versus a specific set or sets.

• Prismacolor is offering two Pencil Set Bonus Packs for BTS 2008. The 24-Color Prismacolor Pencil Set features the 12-Color Prismacolor NuPastel Set attached to it at no additional charge. This is a 41% value at MSRP in free goods! The item # is SA1743688. This set is in the Prismacolor BTS Corrugate Floorstand.

• The 48-Color Pencil Set will have the SA3750 Prismacolor Sketch Accessory Set attached to it. The item # is SA1743333 and the set is in the Prismacolor BTS Corrugate Floorstand.

• We are seeing a lot of orders for the new Back-to-School Prismacolor Corrugate Floorstand. The quantities are modest and MacPherson’s has come out at a 50/20% (60%) Drop Ship discount off of the $1,472.22 MSRP for BTS! Be sure to order at least one back up display so you can take advantage of this unprecedented discount on Prismacolor Pencil Marker Sets. Call your MacPherson’s representative right now so you do not miss out on the opportunity to buy our best-selling Marker and Pencil sets and 2008 BTS Bonus Packs at a 50/20% discount for BTS.

• Your MacPherson’s representative will also have ordering details for the new Eraser Canisters and Prismacolor Accessories Tray. You can get the SA70521 Pink Pearl, SA70531 Kneaded Eraser, or the SA73030 Design Artgum erasers in a 72-piece display canister. These are perfect for impulse purchase placement throughout the year and particularly at BTS.

• The Prismacolor Accessories Tray is a convenient corrugate tray that contains the Design SA73318 Multi-Pack Eraser Set, SA3750 Prismacolor Sketch Accessory Set and the SA24187 Prismacolor Turquoise Sketch Accessory Set. All three of these items are great BTS items and should be in a high visibility location in your store during the BTS season. Your MacPherson’s representative has cost and ordering details for this item as well.

• We have a delay on the 60-Color Prismacolor Pencil Set. We will not begin shipping that item to MacPherson’s until July 31, 2008. We apologize for the delay, but the set will still ship in time for most BTS sales activity. This set was designed for the independent fine art dealer. This set contains 52 different colors and extra pencils on the white, certain grays and the colorless blender. MacPherson’s has a special 50/10% off (55%) promotional discount on this item for BTS, so make sure you plan to promote this item. This set is ideal for the Independent Dealer to market to colleges and art leagues because it will not be found in large chain retailers.

• Thanks to all of you who asked for our Artist Competition posters. The inaugural contest was a huge success!

Golden’s “OPEN” for New Business!

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

OPEN Acrylics feel like no other paint, representing a significant advancement to the most comprehensive suite of professional acrylics available. Since the launch of this product line at NAMTA, the demand for OPEN Acrylics has increased with each passing day, bringing great excitement to the artists eagerly awaiting its availability in their local store. OPEN Acrylics will generate incremental sales as existing customers reach to extend their range of techniques and will attract new painters to acrylics because of their remarkable working range. Recognizing the opportunity, more than 200 stores have submitted orders for the product.

For a listing of current order commitments, go to Golden Open Store List.Great introductory terms are still available so contact your MacPherson’s sales representative for details!

Digital Media

In related news, retail staff continues to support and embrace the new Digital Mixed Media products, creating custom POP materials for their stores, thereby increasing cross-selling opportunities for such items as specialty papers, rubber stamping supplies and acrylics! Contact your MacPherson’s sales representative to learn how to generate incremental sales with this exciting new category.

Visit Golden’s website to see a product demo or access technical information about OPEN Acrylics and Digital Mixed Media products, including application sheets, color charts and additional resources for reference.

Strathmore Artist Papers News from Don Bradley

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

Strathmore previewed its new 400 Series Hemp Charcoal pads in four sizes at NAMTA and expects to start shipping around July 11th. The paper contains 25% hemp, a readily renewable fiber, and 75% post consumer fiber; a truly tree friendly product. To help you launch the Hemp pads we are offering a 60/10% off SMIAB promo through the end of August.

By now you must have heard about Strathmore’s Artist Trading Cards (ATC). Several hundred of the assortments have already been placed! A couple of SKUs have been sold out but recovered very quickly and all are in stock and are shipping. Jeanette Gile, Strathmore’s Marketing Manager, has put together some great ideas for hosting ATC swap meets in your store:

• Traditional Trading Sessions
• Structured Swap Meets
• Make & Take Swap Meets
• Themed Swap Meets
• Jam Session Swap Meets

Your MacPherson’s rep has more details, and don’t miss out on any of this year’s great offerings in Strathmore’s BTS promotion!

Elmer’s and Bienfang June News from Mike Mankowsky

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

The foamboard category continues to show steady growth, especially where effort is made to effectively merchandise the newer value-added varieties of product, utilizing both a permanent display as well as temporary floor displays of the most popular sizes. To best assist in such endeavors, MacPherson’s will be promoting the Full Line Foamboard Display starting July 1. This permanent metal fixture (a $200 value) is FREE when you order 16 SKUs of Elmer’s 20″ x 30″ foamboard. For a limited time, you will also receive a FREE metal power panel which can be positioned on either side of the foamboard unit, along with two each of a variety of foamboard accessories, which include the X-Acto Board Cutter, #1 Knife, Snap Off Blade Knife, replacement blades, four types of painters paint markers, three types of glue sticks, foamboard stands and hinges, and two sizes of stencils. All together, it’s $155 (retail value) of product that MacPherson’s is providing FREE when you order 16 different SKUs of Elmer’s 20″ x 30″ foamboard. Now is the time to make a statement with your board merchandising, refresh your product assortment and increase your foamboard sales. Foamboard offers your customer a more durable and colorful alternative to poster board and is great for summer crafts and projects. Also, be sure to offer all of these recently added popular versions:

  • 1/2″ thick, 20″ x 30″ Black on Black
  • 3/16″ thick, 20″ x 30″ White Guideline, 2-Pack
  • 3/16″ thick, 20″ x 30″ Black on Black Guideline, 2-Pack
  • 3/16″ thick, 20″ x 30″ White Acid-Free, 2-Pack
  • 3/16″ thick, 20″ x 30″ Graystone
  • 3/16″ thick, 20″ x 30″ Sandstone

There is still time to cash in on the terrific BTS drop ship program on Bienfang Fine Art Pads. Order $1,500 retail value of these pads, which are now standard packed in cartons of just 6 each, and your order will be shipped pre-paid directly from our facility in Statesville, NC. You can also add any Elmer’s product, from X-Acto Knives to foamboard, as long as it is purchased in standard carton quantities, at extended discounts and it is all shipped pre-paid.

Contact your MacPherson’s representative for assistance with these outstanding programs.

Industry News

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

Mike MayerckPurveyors of Art, in Boone, NC has closed their original location and moved 8 miles up the road to new and better facility.

Mike Mayerck, a respected industry rep for over 20 years and formerly with Grimstad Comerford Group, has taken a position as National Accounts Manager with 3L Corporation of Denmark.

With sadness we report that Ron Nelson, MacPherson’s customer service rep extraordinaire, has resigned. Ron has been “Mr. MacPherson’s” for nearly 29 years and his resignation was a personal decision that he has been considering for some time. He always took great pride in helping each of our customers through challenging situations and took a similar pride in the success of our company. Ron’s departure really marks the end of an era at MacPherson’s, and the company will not be the same without him. We wish him the best.


Congratulations to Marilyn Hajjar, manager of Arch in San Francisco, who has been elected the President of retailer group IAMART. Kathy Brennan, the immediate past President, has been elected Vice President. They will both serve two year terms.

Michaels Stores has promoted Stuart Aitken to Executive VP/Chief Marketing Officer and Wilson Zhu to Executive VP, Global Sourcing. Jeff Scherer of Bain Capital will be the interim General Manager for all business units until a permanent GM is named.

Shelley Broader, formerly with Sweetbay Supermarkets in Florida, has been named president and chief operating officer at Michaels Stores. Broader becomes the No. 2 executive at the nation’s largest arts and crafts chain.

Tom Bazzone, Michaels Executive Vice President Specialty Business (Aaron Bros.), left the company July 2, 2008. Jim King has been given added responsibility as Aaron Brothers Senior Vice President – General Manager, reporting to Shelley Broader, President & COO of Michaels, effective June 23, 2008. In a related operational realignment, the three merchandising divisions will be led by Senior Buyers Eileen Miller, Deanna Young, and Sven Olsen reporting directly to Jim King. With these changes, Eileen Miller, Senior Buyer Photo Framer & Albums will also oversee Art Supplies and Wall Décor.

David Pyle has left F & W Publications to become vice president and publisher, Art & Jewelry Division, Interweave Press. At nearly the same time, the publisher announced the acquisition of American Artist, Drawing, Watercolor, and Workshop magazines from Nielsen Business Media.

Spectrum Art Supplies in Chicago has closed its store due to slow sales.

Cause for Celebration!: Look for the Grand Opening this week of Artworks on Main in North Carolina.

Lara Tefsky the art supply buyer at Goods Of Evanston has joined Tom Thumb Hobby & Crafts.

A.C. Moore Arts & Crafts Inc. is closing several stores and cutting back on opening new ones. The company blamed the current retail environment and said that after reviewing its properties this year it will shutter between 7 and 10 underperforming stores. It closed 2 stores last year and will be cutting back on its new store openings in 2008 from the 14 originally planned to between 8 and 12. In related news, the company announced the resignation of Marc Katz as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer in order to pursue a career opportunity in the private equity sector. In their search for a new Chief Financial Officer both internal and external candidates will be considered. In the interim, Michael G. Zawoysky, Vice President of Financial Planning and Analysis, as Acting Chief Financial Officer and has named Rodney B. Schriver, Vice President and Controller, as Principal Accounting Officer.

Charming Shoppes retail chain has named Alan Rosskamm its chairman of the board. Rosskamm was the chief executive officer of Jo-Ann Stores Inc. from October 1985 to August 2006, and chairman of Jo-Ann’s board of directors from July 1992 to August 2006. Charming Shoppes, based in Bensalem, PA, operates 2,410 stores nationwide under the Lane Bryant, Fashion Bug, Catherines Plus Sizes and Petit Sophisticate names.

John Lawrence, the buyer at Kennedy Book in Kentucky, retired at the end of June.

iAMart member Art Mart Muncie will be moving to a new and expanded location.

Pentel‘s Tim Fallihee has been awarded the Office Products Wholesalers Association’s (OPWA) leadership award for 2008.

Guillaume Hoareau joined Letraset in England June 2, 2008 as Sales Manager. Mike Travers will be taking a step back from the business on a day-to-day basis but will continue as a consultant for Letraset.

Sue Lindstrom former owner of the Paper Source is recovering well from a serious illness, but will no longer be involved in the business. In related news, Lonnie Tucker is now Paper Source‘s General Merchandising Manager.

Pearl has closed its Huntington Beach location. A sign on the front door reads “LOST LEASE”.

Staff at Daler-Rowney’s Bracknell, UK plant went on strike on June 6th for a one day protest over contract negotiations.

Positive signs for the art & craft industry: Mike Hartnett reports in his Creative Leisure New (CLN), “Meanwhile, home-seamstress haven Jo-Ann … delivered surprisingly strong first-quarter earnings after a stretch of dismal results, thanks in part to strong sales of sewing notions, quilting, and craft items. Same is true for Michaels … suggesting that consumers are going back to the basics as they spend more time at home.” – Jennifer Waters, a reporter for the Wall Street Journal, in the June 13 edition. Also CLN is reporting stronger that expected art material sales. The cause? Some think it’s due to Baby Boomers retiring and picking up (or returning to) painting. … The Ready to Paint series from Search Press (Watercolour Flowers, Watercolour Landscapes, Watercolour Trees and Woodlands) was featured on A Good Age, a retirement and aging blog written for The Patriot Ledger (circ. 51,105), the daily newspaper in Quincy, MA.

Best wishes to Lou Reeves, NAMTA executive board member & Arizona/Michigan based MFG Rep who recently suffered a heart attack. Lou sends his well wishers sincere thanks and is on the road to a full recovery.

Walter Foster Publishing is in the process of closing its warehouse in Laguna Hills, CA and moving the stock to a warehouse in Osceola, WI operated by another affiliate of its parent company, Quayside Publishing. The entire warehouse stock will be moved by July 7th and shipments are scheduled to resume by July 15th. The sales offices and creative staff will remain in California.

Andrew Knowles has left UK based art & craft distributor Design Objectives to pursue other career opportunities.

Helvi Wamsley, owner of the long closed Wamsley’s Art Supply and Bed & Breakfast in San Francisco, will celebrate her 90th birthday in July. All the best, Helvi!

Canson has appointed a new sales rep, recent University of Massachusetts graduate Emily White, who will be covering the Southern California territory.

New Store Openings: Utrecht has opened another store in San Francisco on Van Ness Ave. In the works are two other stores; Carle Place, a community in Long Island, NY and Ft. Lauderdale, FL. We have heard that Dick Blick plans to open a large format art supply store in Philadelphia. If our information is accurate, the store will be located in the 1300 block of Chestnut Street in the Center City and will be the largest store in the chain. The Philadelphia location will be the third store in Pennsylvania. The Artist’s Studio, an independent retailer, will open soon in Brookings, OR.

The main factory and storage building of Activa Products (maker of Celluclay) in Marshall, TX caught fire on the night of Monday, June 23rd, and burned to the ground. We are working closely with their operations team to keep products flowing until they get back on their feet. Owner Frank Strauss says, “All 40 employees have been assured of continued employment once full manufacturing resumes.”