|Wednesday, 05 May 2010 10:47 AM EDT|
Gifts at The Gathering 2010
Several gift suppliers were among the first-time exhibitors reporting strong interest in their lines at Christian Retailing's The Gathering 2010 in Louisville, Ky., April 21-23.
Tony Guard debuted his Life Discipler (www.lifediscipler.com), a pocket-sized electronic device that presents Bible verses on different topics throughout the day. "I have been very pleased with the orders," he said. "I was really here for the exposure because this is the first time the product has been seen, and it has far exceeded my expectations."
With 1,500 verses from five translations, the Life Discipler can be set to highlight scriptures relating to more than 40 different topics-from grief and temptation to marriage and wisdom-at 15-, 30- or 60-minute intervals with an audible alarm. The product retails for $24.95.
Darryll Shellhamer was enthusiastic, too, about the responses to the faith-based car magnets and decals from his SDS Design Associates (www.sdsdesign.com), a major supplier to the collegiate market. The series was prompted, he said, by a recent court decision that banned a faith-based registration plate and his desire to provide an opportunity for people to represent their beliefs as they travel.
Although Tammy Gentry's Penny Stones (www.pennystones.com) conversation-starter sets are already in some chain stores, she was glad to introduce the line-launched two years ago and a top 10 Moms in Business award winner last year-to independents.
Containing glass stones stamped with ice-breaker questions for families, friends and groups, the sets-including a Faith-Based edition as well as Love & Marriage and New Parents-retail for $14.95 each. "The response has been great," Gentry said. "People are looking for things that are new and different and reasonably priced."
Daniel and Darlene Linge were in Louisville to launch T-shirt company Petragraphics (www.petragraphics.com). The initial four designs include Scripture-based designs ($14.99 retail) and fine art prints with Bible verses ($19.99).
"We want to get the Word out through T-shirts," Daniel said, acknowledging the competitiveness of the apparel category. "Even though there are big companies out there, we can still grow, too. We are not out to be the biggest in the world."
Having debuted his Creation By Design (www.mybiblecards.com) Bible trading cards at the event last year, Steven Kaye returned with a second, 100-card set of the trading collectibles and almost 50 other new products. All based on the artwork for the cards, the additions include postcards, posters and T-shirts, with a card-based game to arrive soon.
"The cards have been so popular, and people were just asking for more products," Kaye said. "I decided to give everyone exactly what they wanted, and the response has been fantastic. Our new series has been out only a couple of weeks, and orders are going like gangbusters. I can barely keep it in stores."