Saturday, February 3, 2018

What is trending this year?  Let's talk.

Returning from the Gift Market, I can report that INSPIRATION is definitely on the rise.   Everything from jewelry to t-shirts to signage, there are words of wisdom, inspirational thoughts, clever quips and more which are meant to raise us up and put hope and a smile on our faces.

This is really nothing new.  Every few years we see INSPIRATION return as a theme for the year.  And this year, with all the politics, division, etc. etc. going on around us, there is no doubt that we need some positive thoughts and a means for making our journey through life a bit happier.

We also saw once again HOME as the center for where we spend our most important hours, with our most important people.  Along with HOME is everything associated with FOOD..accesories for the kitchen, new cookbooks and ways of cooking food, new super foods, new recipes and even a subscription for a box to be left on your front door with all the ingredients for a yummy dinner.

Apparel is popping up in every gift store.  We are done with collectibles (who has the space for more figurines??).  But there is always space in the closet or dresser for new clothing.  Hey, I have even heard of subscription services for "renting" outfits which you can either buy or return after wearing them.

In the gourmet food section, we are seeing a great deal more experimentation with ingredients never to be found in chocolate.  I have saved an article about rose chocolate...more about that in another post.  And to quiet our guilty consciences, more and more goodies are being packaged in 100 calorie packages so that we believe we aren't over eating those delicious snack foods.  Americans are known to be "snackers" and why not make us all feel better about that!!

The Pantone color this year is a variety of purples and that is right down Sweet Tooth's alley.  We have always associated ourselves with that color and even the walls in our new store are a purplish color, our take out bags are purple and some of our favorite jewelry is purple.  This month's birthstone is amethyst and we are showing all the wonderful jewelpops from Kameleon jewelry in that wonderful purple color.

Hey, Valentine's Day is right around the corner.  And Valentine's Day is always a high point of February.  We've got INSPIRATION, FOOD, PURPLE JEWELRY, NEW SCARF VESTS, NEW EVA'S SCARVES , PURPLE ICING ON OUR VALENTINE COOKIES...what more can our sweethearts ask for?  See you soon. Watch this space.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Happy New Year! Starting Over Again.

Here I am on January 13, 2018 and it has been a good little while since my last post in November.

Happy New Year!!  By now you may have caught up with us in our new location, 36th and Harvard, in between Toni's Flowers and Ed Beshara's.  It really feels like after 25 years we have come to rest in a very Happy Place.

September 1, 1992...that was the day we signed the papers to own Sweet Tooth, which was in The Farm Shopping Center.  With us that day was my sister and her husband (our partners at the time), my Mom and Dad and our friend and attorney Richard.  We owned a Gift Shop, a Candy Shop, a retail store and we knew absolutely nothing about retail.

What an adventure.  Mom and Dad are gone and we no longer have partners.  However we are once again starting over in a new space, with some new customers and new merchandise and it feels just right.

At this time of the year, we normally attend the Dallas Market.  Yes, we are going there again in a few days.  And it always feels just right at the Market, since we have wandered those halls for over 25 years.  We know where all the bathrooms are, where our special showrooms are from which we have ordered over the years, even some of the sales reps whose faces are so familiar and welcoming.

Every January we start again.  We look for new merchandise, something special and unique which we can bring to our customers and the trip is like a cross between Candy Land and Monopoly.  Getting to Dallas is a bit tiring, but once inside the Dallas Market, we sigh and  the fun begins.  Sometimes we hit it big...just the right merchandise which distinguishes us from other online and brick and mortar stores.

So watch this space to hear about the latest and the greatest at Sweet Tooth.  Visit us, if you haven't and let us know what impresses you and what you'd like to see in our store. 

By chance we picked the Pantone color for 2018...a version of purple for our walls, which is one of the compliments we get from folks over and over.  Ah well, purple has been a favorite at Sweet Tooth, vibrant, cheerful and looks good on just about everyone and everything.

Our staff, Doris, Lisa, Brianna, Julie and Virginia (occasionally Alyssa and every Saturday, Sabrina) are the basis for all the good stuff that happens in our store.  We are fortunate to have a team who care and who work well together.  Sometimes from my new, tiny office I hear their laughter and it warms my heart to know they are "taking care of business" and having fun.

See you at our Happy Place.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

How NAFTA Affects Local Retail

I know I usually write about candy, gift items, events at the store, etc.

However today I came across an interesting article which I thought I would pass along.

The article was about NAFTA, North American Free Trade Agreement, which we are hearing so much about in the news these days.  I wonder if we are thinking whether changes in that agreement will affect local business right here in Tulsa and in our state?

100 U.S.-based trade associations have just sent a letter to U.S. Trade Representative Robert E. Lighthizer, urging him to preserve trucking provisions as related to crossing the U.S. and Mexican border to deliver goods.

The letter explained why the current provisions should stay intact.  If changed, new provisions might have a negative impact on business in the U.S.

Not only do retailers have to be concerned about the impact which recent hurricanes have had on various ports receiving and sending goods.  Now we have to be concerned about potential changes in the NAFTA agreement.

So it's not just me writing about candy and gifts.  It is me writing about RECEIVING candy and gifts in a timely and efficient manner....not to mention increases in costs for all those shipments if the trucking provisions are changed.  Increases in costs for the retailer often turn into increases in costs for the consumer and occasionally loss of jobs in industries which support retail. 


Saturday, October 28, 2017

Halloween....You Know It is Fall

Wow, time is rushing by and it is almost Halloween.

As a child, I loved Halloween.  Didn't you?  We didn't buy a costume.  Rather we went to someone's closet in our house, pulled out someone else's clothes and figured out what we could a farmer, or a ghost or a beauty queen.  It seemed to work and frankly, we didn't know any better.

Then on Halloween we would rush around our neighborhood, collecting candy (of course, our favorite), cookies, apples, rice crispie treats and whatever someone's mom had made to give out at the door.  People decorated their porches with pumpkins and sometimes scary critters.  No blow up characters, no lights, no store bought items.  I am not criticizing what people do today.  In fact, Halloween costumes and decorations are really BIG TIME now and people do have a lot of fun putting ideas together.

When we first bought Sweet Tooth, Halloween candy was more popular purchased at our store.  Now days, Halloween candy of the sort we carry is candy grandparents buy to give to their grandchildren....with the warning from parents not to give the kids "too much sugar".  Sometimes people find a decor item or candy to give to a friend, or bring to the office.  Our candy orders these days for Halloween are a lot smaller than at that earlier time.

When we were at The Farm Shopping Center, some merchants participated in a Treat or Treat evening.  Kids from all over Tulsa would come to The Farm and have a great time running around from store to store, gathering candy.  Our store was somewhat special...we always had the most interesting and unusual candy and we also loved to dress up in costumes just like the kids.

This year, at our new location, we will still be dressing up and at the end of the day, if we have any left over wrapped candy, it will go home with us for the Trick or Treaters who might show up at our front door.  I have to say that those kids are wide-eyed and delighted with the candy we put in their pillow cases, their plastic pumpkins or their decorated bags. 

And we continue to smile and laugh the entire evening, even when the teenagers show up for their treats. know it is Fall when it is time to Trick or Treat.

Friday, September 29, 2017

I Am Back at Sweet Tooth's Blog. Miss Me?

It's been a while since I sat down before THE BLOG.  Things are both winding down and gearing up in our new space at 36th and Harvard.

I need to say that we have been very pleased with the response to our new store.  Between Toni's Flowers and Ed Beshara's Menswear, it is the perfect location for us.  Our neighbors are fantastic and if we get hungry, there is always Fellini's for lunch or a snack.  Who could ask for more?  Maybe The Inviting Place on the north end of the building.

Our plans for the Fall are beginning to jell or is it gel?  This month we are introducing our Thursday evening, once a month or so event with FATE NIGHT.  Intriguing, huh? hope so because we want to see you there.

Thursday October 12 from 5-7 pm we will help you spin the Wheel of Fortune so you can receive your FATE of a discount or a gift at Sweet Tooth.  Then on to Rose wine (or water), a bit of appetizers and of course, chocolate.  We are featuring Seattle Chocolates and Marich Pastel Cherries...both will taste yummy with wine.

In addition, we are featuring our Obsidian jewelry collection because of its metaphysical powers.  Gemstones are known to produce all sorts of responses from the people who wear them....from greater energy to releasing stress to connecting with spiritual realms, telepathy and healing, to name a few of its powers.

As the only Tulsa retailer of Obsidian jewelry, once featured at Miss Jackson's, we are pleased to offer a new collection each month.

Naturally we want our guests to check out our other jewelry lines, our apparel, our gift items and candy.  We have our fall and Halloween goodies at this very moment and as seasonal candy, they cannot be re-ordered.  We hope you don't miss out on your favorites.

Watch our Facebook for events.  November 12 is our Holiday Party, November 26 is Santa's arrival at Sweet Tooth and in December we will be hosting a number of trunk shows.

We look forward to seeing you.  Happy Fall.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Socks: The New Necktie

Is it news to you that Socks are the new necktie for many men?  We are seeing lots of options for men, women and kids in the sock category.

Fun socks, colorful and clever, show off the wearer's personality.  Just think.  If you have to wear a suit, a uniform or something other than your favorite clothes, you can add a bit of whimsy and zing to your outfit by putting on a pair of trendy socks.

We have been carrying a line of comfortable, soft and colorful socks from one of our favorite sales reps, Trudy.  Just yesterday we ordered an entire displayer of the latest and greatest socks to arrive in August at our new store.  REMEMBER THE NEW STORE AT 36TH AND HARVARD??

Not only will we have kids socks, but men's sizes and styles have been added to this line.  How about O.U. and O.S.U. socks?  Sure enough, those collegiate socks will be at Sweet Tooth too.  Let's also mention Halloween socks, Christmas socks and the old/new style....knee high socks.

Trudy told me that on one of the morning programs she saw a variety of men and boys modeling knee high socks with bermuda shorts in just the right length.  Come on, Tulsa, let's show those folks in the East and West Coast our good looking legs!!

Watch for this sock trend.  Don't be the last person to pull on a pair of amusing or colorful or trendy socks.  Set the style at your school or work or just around the house.

You can find these socks and a whole lot more at our new location:  3541 South Harvard, next door to Toni's Florist and Ed Beshara's Mens Wear....also Felini's and Inviting Place.

Excitement abounds.  We will be moving into our new space the week of July 10 and the new store will open Monday July 17.  Be there or Be Square.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Moving and Tweaking the Details

Time is slipping away....just a few weeks until we move from 38th and Harvard, to 36th and Harvard.

Those 2 or 3 blocks may not sound like such a big deal.  Well, moving is always a big deal.  Think back to the last time you moved from one home to another.  Didn't you go through a ton of stuff you had been hanging on to just because......

That is just exactly what we have been doing for at least 18 years, if not all 25 years of Sweet Tooth's history.  Fortunately for us we have a couple of good things going in our effort to sort out the keepers from the losers.

(1)  Our new space will be smaller than the one we are in now.

(2)  Lisa, one of our staff, is simply great at getting rid of things we don't actually need any longer.  And I am her cohort in that project.  We quickly pass our ideas past Jeff and when he isn't looking, out the back door go all those old displayers, packages, boxes of stuff we haven't used in a very long time, etc.  Today I actually put papers from 2003 in the recycling box...but I did save the binder in which they have been sitting for 14 years. No use wasting the re-useable items.

Our last day at 38th will be Saturday, July 8.  The very next day we will begin to pack up items, jewelry, candy, etc. which we are keeping.  And on Tuesday Michael our neighbor and our mover will begin to take all sorts of cases, shelving, etc. over to 36th Street.

With the expertise and curiosity of our staff, we will spend that week re-establishing all the inventory we are keeping.  And by Monday, July 17, if all goes well, we will open the doors at 3541 South Harvard.

Pardon us if we have a few weeks of forgetting where things are.  Tweeking the details will be a critical task for all of us.

In August, THE GRAND OPENING.  Won't you be there to participate in the celebration??  Watch our email newsletter, our Facebook and Instagram sites for details, times, etc.

36th will be our last reinvention of OUR HAPPY PLACE and we want you to be there with us.  Onward.