Service of Eye-Catching Gifts

February 4th, 2016

Categories: Gadgets, Gifts, Retail, Time, Trade Show


Qlocktwo wall clock

Qlocktwo wall clock


I’ve highlighted some of the products that caught my eye at NY Now that ended this week. I’ve covered this tradeshow since well before the International Gift Show changed its name. I’d need more than a day to see everything and I was there only four hours hence the warning: This list is imperfect.

QLocktwo wall clocks by Biegert & Funk  [photo above] were showstoppers. The handsome clocks tell time in words: “It is ten to eight,” for example. The sales rep said they are made in Germany and Switzerland. The exhibit was clearly so popular that the staff had run out of marketing materials. I noticed that there were plenty of other timepieces at the show both to wear and display, a curious trend given the universality of smartphones, computers, laptops, tablets, automobiles and televisions all of which also display the time.

A French company, Cookut, introduced Creazy, a cup that you shake to make whippedRenova toilet paper cream in less than a minute. The secret: Three multi-faceted silicone beads. I stopped to admire myrenova’s toilet paper in juicy colors such as Marigold, magenta and lime. At the Ameico booth grownups had fun coloring a 71 x 39-inch coloring wall by OMY Design & Play.

Richard Upchurch founded and runs a two year old Brooklyn-based company, Brandnewnoise. He hand makes voice recorders and sound gadgets in his Red Hook studio.

sagegreenlife Edelwhite hydroponic gardenAt another booth I inspected the hanging indoor hydroponic garden, Edelwhite, made possible by sagegreenlife, [photo left], and had to touch Craft Advisory’s bubble wrap-like glass bowl [photo below] to confirm it wasn’t the real thing.

In the category of familiar if mislaid brands—I’ve not seen Louis Sherry chocolates in stores for years—I was glad that the 135 year old brand continues to sell its sweets in its traditional purple boxes [as well as boxes in other designs/colors]. My mother kept knickknacks in a kitchen drawer in a Louis Sherry tin box.

Whether or not you like to go shopping for gifts what catches your eye: Color, function, pattern, originality, or something else? With time evident from countless devices around us, to what do you attribute the burst of timepieces offered to the marketplace?

 Craft Advisory glassware

Craft Advisory glassware


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11 Responses to “Service of Eye-Catching Gifts”

  1. JS Said:

    Colored toilet paper used to be available until it was determined that it caused rashes and infections. That’s when it was taken off the market. I used to buy it in pink and beige, which worked in the bathrooms we had then. Hence, white toilet paper.

  2. Jeanne Byington Said:


    I wonder if there’s a second layer on the toilet paper that’s white to make the saturated colors safe to use. I saw the products boxed like gifts–sure looked like an unusual hostess present but a fun one if it didn’t cause subsequent trips to a doctor!

  3. hb Said:

    I’m not much or a shopper, but when I do look for gifts, I try to think first of what would appeal to the recipient. Then, if possible, I try to match that up with what I consider to be tasteful and enduring. I’m not too good with trendy and transient.

    I do have to be careful, though. For example: while I like receiving books, not everyone does.

  4. dmanzaluni Said:

    I loved your suggestion as to layers in the toilet paper. But unfortunately it would lead to even worse problems than everyone has already, on the subject of men liking the roll way up while women like it upside down.

  5. Lucrezia Said:

    Gift giving makes no sense unless it aims to please the recipient, so even if a shop holds the finest things on earth, they are worthless when knowing they mean nothing to the one in mind.

    Often, favorite haunts vanish and the trick is to find (rarer & rarer) replacements, so when backed to the wall and the shopping experience becomes a crap shoot, one can only hope the gift either “works” or that the exchange slip will!

  6. Jeanne Byington Said:


    I still have favorite gift stores such as Lillian Loo in Hudson, NY [I’ve written about them in the blog], Paper Trail in Rhinebeck and my client’s American Craftsman Galleries in NYC and Stockbridge, Mass. When a favorite closes down, it’s as though a family member has moved far away or worse.

    You hit on the secret: Finding something you think a person would like is actually exciting!

  7. hb Said:

    Hooray for dmanzaluni and his courage to bring the subject “up.” I lost the roll war thirty years ago, and am still not used to paper in the john being the wrong way around.

  8. Jeanne Byington Said:

    dmanzaluni and hb,

    Thank you hb for picking up the ball for me and for recognizing dmanzaluni’s bravery.

  9. Jeanne Byington Said:


    You made an interesting point about liking books–which you might naturally buy for others–but if they don’t much like them, it would be a mistake. Should I be buying a gift for someone whose taste is very different than mine, I try skirt the issue just as I’d not buy clothing involving a size for someone I’d not seen in a long time or whose size I don’t know and can’t guess. If they like to eat or cook, maybe a cool gizmo, such as the whipped cream cup I describe in the post, would be perfect. It doesn’t involve color, pattern or style.

  10. Phyllis Stier Said:

    Phyllis wrote on Facebook: Brian & I saw the clock in a store at the Wynn Hotel In Las Vegas. It had a variety of languages ; came in a desktop or wall model, was very expensive, but amazing!

  11. Jeanne Byington Said:


    I knew this wasn’t the first time the clock was exhibited at the show. I looked up the retail price of a wall clock and it was expensive but a stunning addition to any home or office–time as art!

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