Architect and Potter Mix with Entertainment Characters at TableTop Show
Licensed designs from an architect and a potter mixed with entertainment characters and interior designers as companies approached tableware from all angles during the Tabletop Show in New York this week.
Luca Andrisani, better known for his architectural work for New York buildings, unveiled a 50-piece dinnerware collection with Lenox that brought geometric shapes to dinner plates, while Flagstaff, AZ-based potter David Sanchez licensed his designs for Certified International’s melamine dinnerware and serving platters.
The formal designs mixed with entertainment characters that moved onto stainless steel drinkware for the first time in a broad way as suppliers Tervis and Zak Designs rolled out new products. Zak Designs is breaking its line, which starts sales in Q1, into adult (Deadpool, Batman, Wonder Woman, Nightmare Before Christmas) and children’s (PJ Masks, Paw Patrol, Frozen, Mickey Mouse) bottles. For its part, Tervis delivered its first stainless steel tumblers (Game of Thrones, Fiesta) in June and plans to add Disney and Marvel characters by year-end.
Among the other developments at show:
- Lenox’s Reed & Barton Division is paring back its assortment of Colonial Williamsburg-licensed products to flatware as it discontinues glass hurricane shades and pedestal bowls, says a Reed & Barton spokesman. “With Lenox there are many licenses” including Kate Spade, Marchesa and others and “we are becoming more focused on some of the licenses,” says the spokesman. The move, which follows Lenox’s acquisition of Reed & Barton out of bankruptcy in 2015, comes as the company expands its licensing agreement with interior designer Thomas O’Brien to include bone china dinnerware. The new 50-piece line, which will launch at Bloomingdale’s in April, extends the brand from barware and returns it to dinnerware after a 15-year absence.
- Tervis plans to add Disney characters to its custom build-to-order travel mug program by Q1, expanding a business that launched last year with the NFL and has since added colleges as well, says Tervis’ Maureen Mason. Tervis introduced its Customyzer program last fall. In addition to a name, Tervis can insert a customer-supplied photo between the two layers of a double-walled mug that is assembled at its North Venice, FL factory. The Disney program will have its challenges since characters can’t be blocked over on mugs where space is at a premium when a photo is inserted, says Mason. “We are going through the Disney style guides to see which characters will work,” says Mason. Tervis recently added a customization program at its store in Venice, FL, but is limiting it to tumblers with generic designs. “The hard part about doing a licensed version is we have to make sure nothing is getting blocked or manipulated so I am not sure if there is a way to work the licenses into our store format,” says Mason, whose company operates 46 stores.
- Certified International has no immediate plans for launching a new Debra Valencia-licensed line of dinnerware after having shipped the initial 19-piece collection last spring to ecommerce sites including Kohl’s, Target, Wayfair and Zulilly, says Certified’s Linda O’Donnell. Certified also shifted distribution of the licensed Blue Indigo porcelain dinnerware designed by actor Bronson Pinchot to independent specialty retailers after having launched it through Hobby Lobby. Certified is in discussions with Pinchot on a new line, says O’Donnell.
- Meyer Corp. debuted Rachel Ray Upstate and Soho stoneware dinnerware that’s designed to match the TV personality’s licensed furniture being produced by Craftmaster. Former supermodel Kathy Ireland has taken a similar approach in blending the designs and colors of furniture developed by licensee Bush Furniture with tabletop products fielded by Lenox.
Certified International, Linda O’Donnell, Design Dir., 212- 685-1098, email@example.com
David Sanchez/Mountain Fire Ceramics, Betty Jean Ruiz, 928-853-3812, firstname.lastname@example.org
Lenox, Beth Baer, Senior Licensing Dir., 267-525-5600
Meyer Corp., David Trigiani, Senior Sales Dir., 214-750-7535, email@example.com)
Reed & Barton, Tim Riddle, Pres., 267-525-5098, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tervis, Maureen Mason, VP Licensing, 941-441-4635, email@example.com
Zak Designs, Reggie Thomas, VP Marketing and Licensing, 509-244-0555, Thomas@zak.com