Thousands of retailers to descend upon Melbourne
Melbourne’s Convention and Exhibition Centre will set the scene for the Melbourne Gift Fair hosted by the Australian Gift and Homewares Association (AGHA), held from 5 to 9 August, uniting thousands of retail, hospitality and corporate buyers ahead of the 2023 festive season.
AGHA CEO, Linda Hickey, says the fair will welcome thousands through the door during the five-day event, with some fantastic additions which will see support for emerging artists and professional development opportunities for buyers to enjoy.
“We are delighted to be sponsoring talented artists to exhibit within Artisan Lane,” she says.
“It has been part of the fair since 2019 and attendees enjoy meandering through the lane, watching bespoke items created in real time.”
One such artist, Macerana of Bonita Shop, immigrated from Chile to Australia in 2016 and established her business after a breast cancer diagnosis, which led to the creation of beautiful turbans and these led to headbands and bandanas.
“I realised that having a beautiful thing on my head was giving me the confidence to go outside and not just be pointed out as a cancer patient,” she explains.
“The turbans made me feel beautiful with what I was going through.”
Bonita Shop has since connected with Made by Many Hands, a social enterprise supporting immigrant women across Australia with an online platform, through which to sell their products.
“They give us information on which markets, information, spots to apply and also learn from other women, meet like-minded people, which is a fundamental part of expanding business.”
Buyers will also have access to Business & Breakfast education sessions featuring experts in their field covering various topics such as sustainability, marketing and Retail HR, on the mornings of 6, 7 and 8 August.
Emily Osmond is an online marketing strategist and educator who has built an online community of over 20,000 on Instagram, previously ran a top-ranking, award-winning interiors blog and will share her insights on Instagram and brand building.
“Melbourne Gift Fair is a fantastic opportunity to join with exhibitors and buyers from throughout the nation and the Business & Breakfast sessions are a great way to build knowledge during an unmissable event in the heart of Melbourne,” she says.
After many years of interruption due to the global pandemic, the fair is expected to pave the way for a healthy economic surge later in the year, stocking Australia’s shelves with unique products across gift, homewares, toys, kitchenware, jewellery, fashion and art.
“As a previous exhibitor of the fair and now the CEO overseeing its delivery, it has been exciting to see the product offerings in advance. If you are a retailer, buyer, assistant buyer or range planner, it’s the place to be this August,” Hickey adds.
To register, visit the website.