Tuesday, September 11, 2018

NECCO,-- Closed Its Doors and Gone!!

Here's what I know about the oldest American Candy Maker, known to all for manufacturing NECCO candies and those Sweetheart Hearts we have all consumed for Valentine's Day.

NECCO, founded in 1847, is now gone.  Doors shut, 400 employees laid off and no website to check out NECCO's products.  Although there are rumors about an unknown company buying NECCO, there is no real hope that the products we have loved will return to store shelves someday.

And there is no insider information as to what happened that caused the company to close its doors.

So, a brief pause for the passing of the oldest candy company in America.

However, Black Jack, Beeman's and Clove gum are returning in November.  As Mary Engelbreit says in her Engeldark cards: 

WHEN LIFE SHUTS A DOOR, OPEN IT AGAIN.  IT'S A DOOR...THAT'S HOW IT WORKS!!

Stay tuned.

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Tariffs. What They Mean For You And Us.

National retail organizations are beginning to comment on the effect which President Trump's tariffs on goods coming into the U.S. will have on retail and its employees.

I have read that these tariffs, if enacted, will up the cost of goods and affect the employment of people who have retail jobs.  Naturally this is an area of concern for us as we continue to order for our store.

The products and candy which we have on order at this point were not effected by any future tariffs.  They were ordered, produced and shipped prior to the Administration's new policies on tariffs.  What we are looking for is the effect it might have on 2019 goods.

Retailers continually face the question of what to do about increasing costs both in product and in shipping costs.  These increases have to be added to the bottom line of what consumers are paying both at local stores and online, and retailers ability to hire staff.   I have written about this situation at least once before, hoping that we can all be prepared for any changes in pricing or ability to have goods arrive on time.

We will keep you posted as to these matters and what retailers will be able to do to adjust pricing as minimally as possible.

Stay tuned.


Thursday, September 6, 2018

Get Ready! I Have a Few Thoughts I Want To Share

I want to say Happy Anniversary to Sweet Tooth Candy & Gift Co.

YES.  September 1, 1992 Shirley and Willie Burger and our friend Richard Borg went with Jeff and me to Sweet Tooth in The Farm Shopping Center to sign the papers purchasing Sweet Tooth.  Along with us were my parents, who seemed pretty fascinated by their daughters going into retail without any past experience in that business.

My parents aren't with me any more.  However I want to say that they never complained about our choice and always supported what we were doing.  Occasionally we had to ask for a little help and they gave it willingly and without hesitation. 

Some may remember my Dad who often came to the store to chat with customers, to see what we were up to and to always buy some chocolate bars which he gave to the staff at Zarrow Point where my Mom lived for 7 years.

Eventually we bought a bench for him to sit on.  The year we opened a small shop by the Food Court in Woodland Hills, Dad could be found sitting on the bench across from our shop, watching folks walking by.  When he was ready to go home, he would sometimes forget where he had parked.  Dad always made it home, though!!

October is the month I most remember my parents and how much I do miss them.

Our daughter Sabrina has been with us every step of the way.  Even when she didn't live near, she was still the Voice of our t.v. ads, recording those CDs in New Jersey, Tennessee and at OSU.  Sabrina is the best daughter ever...o.k. I know most parents think that of their children...but my One and Only is still the most precious, wise person whom I know.

October is also the month when we really dig in and prepare for the 4th Quarter, that time of year when retailers get very busy, have lots of merchandise, plan events for their stores and look forward to the shoppers who still shop locally and value the customer service they receive in a physical store.

26 years of meeting, greeting, helping, admiring, talking to people and feeling really good about all the contacts and friends we have made over the years.  Even some folks who I actually never met in person:  Kristen at Kristofer's and her mom, Connie; Michelle and others at Kameleon; people answering questions on the phone when I called their business.  If I had stayed in the profession I started out to do, teaching English, I would have loved all my students but I would never have made all the friends I have made at Sweet Tooth.

So Happy Anniversary to all of us...those who are gone and those who are here with us now.  See you at "The Tooth" as our friend John Klein calls us.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Patience Brewster is Back! And boy, is she great!!

Patience Brewster is back!! 

We are very excited to be the Exclusive Retailer in Tulsa for Patience Brewster.  We have focused on her mini-ornaments for this year and just put them out in the store yesterday.

If you don't know Patience Brewster, then you are really missing one of the most creative, eclectic, clever, colorful and just totally fun artists in the U.S.

A few years ago we were able to carry some of her pieces in our store.  They were very popular and we were simply delighted to meet Patience at the Gift Market where we chatted with her and she signed several of her drawings for me and Sabrina.

At some point around that time, Patience decided to withdraw her art pieces from stores and basically go online or in special boutiques.  We were unhappy to see her go, however situations like that have happened to us before.  Remember Mismatched Sox??  We simply loved those as well.

A few months ago I received a postcard with the most fabulous Great Dane ornament on the card, which told me that Patience Brewster was opening her art pieces to stores once again.  I jumped on the opportunity to apply for Sweet Tooth to carry her work and we got it!!

So now I am encouraging you to drop by Sweet Tooth as soon as you can to preview these pieces.  We have dogs, flamingos, skunks, porcupines, elephant, lion, Santas, fairies and so much more, but all are in limited numbers.  We had to adhere to a deadline for ordering and there is no re-ordering this year.  Once we sell out of the pieces, we will have to wait until 2019 to see what Patience offers at that time.

The ornaments are "minis" and are all priced at $25.00.

Don't miss out on Patience Brewster.  You will come to cherish her beauty and her eclectic style.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Goodbye to Kameleon. We Will Miss You!!

On Friday we received the news that Kameleon Jewelry is not going forward with their jewelry line.  Wow!!  What a surprise that was for all of us at Sweet Tooth.

Kameleon was introduced to us by one of our very best sales reps and friend, Susan Beeson in 2007.  This sterling silver line was the creation of Bob...yes, there really is a Bob in the world!!  Bob attended Gift Markets and we were able to meet him and to work for several years with Susan. Bob introduced a concept which has never been matched by any other interchangeable jewelry line.

We began to build the line and soon it became one of the strongest selling lines in our store.

If you don't know Kameleon, it is one of the best, if not the best, interchangeable jewelry.  Made of sterling silver, it has interchangeable jewel pops which fit in all the core pieces....earrings, pendants, rings and bracelets.  It is,in reality, a collectible which has grown in value over the years.

We are going to miss Kameleon.  However the Clearance Sale which we are now having for this line will be a real bonus for those who want to complete their collection or for someone who would like to partake of some of the core pieces with jewel pops...a jewelry style which will be popular for years to come.

We have settled on a 50% discount on the jewel pops and a 60% discount on the core pieces.  It is always important to go out with a BANG and we are doing just that.

Over the years, Kameleon has introduced us to many of our loyal and favorite customers, often people who we know well and have had meaningful conversations.  We are so very proud of what we have accomplished with Kameleon.  Selling this jewelry has taught all of us at Sweet Tooth a great deal about maintaining relationships with our customers, about the loyalty that develops between staff and customers, and the beauty of a jewelry line which has set the standard for many other lines.

I also want to say GOODBYE to my friends in Nova Scotia, home office of Kameleon.  I will really miss talking to Michelle, who has become my soul sister.  I wish the best to the professional staff at Kameleon and hope we meet again.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

What's The Deal With Sugar Free Chocolate?

I have to tell you that Sugar Free Chocolates and Candy often get a bad rap.  I know that before we had Sweet Tooth I also thought that Sugar Free wasn't worth my time.

However, I have news for you!!  Sugar Free can be very tasty and I don't mean "after taste".  That has worked for us, as we carefully check with the manufacturer and (as the retailer)we taste the candy before we bring it into the store.

Take today, for example.  For 26 years we have been selling the Grand Truffles, double dipped, hand made from Sweet Shop.  And they are very very good.

When Sweet Shop recently introduce 4 Sugar Free truffles, I decided to give them a chance and I am happy I did.  Today we tasted Chocolate Brownie and Chocolate Cookie, Sugar Free Sweet Shop truffles.  They are yummy...smooth chocolate, beautifully presented and none of what people think of as that "after taste" of sugar free.

Now I have to tell you that eating too much Sugar Free in one sitting or even one day may have an unhappy effect on your digestive system.  We always caution the rookie Sugar Free customer to carefully introduce sugar free to his/her diet.

If we won't eat it, we don't expect anyone to eat it either!!  That is a good rule to follow.

As candy retailers, we often get that question:  How does it taste?  Is it good? 

Acknowledging that everyone's taste buds are different, we can safely say that what we sell at our store is good for just the right person.  Let's face it:  I love licorice but not all our customers do.  To each his/her own, right?

So next time you are in Sweet Tooth, and we offer you a sample of sugar free chocolate, give it a try.  We just love seeing the smiles on people's faces when they try it and like it.


Thursday, July 19, 2018

I Am Back ... Lots of News!!!

Greetings!!  As of July 17, we have passed our first year in our new store at 36th and Harvard.  We have noted that some of our previous customers haven't yet found us.  Hopefully they will see us as they pass by the traffic light at 36th and Harvard, or look on Facebook or Instagram.  In any case, if you can pass the word to friends that Sweet Tooth is still here and bustling, please do.

Currently we are working on the calendar for all our Fall events.  Beginning in September, we will have a Kameleon Trunk Show.  October we are having a Trollbeads Artisan Event, the release of Eva Unterman's Fall Scarf Collection and a Glass Pumpkin sale in cooperation with the Tulsa Glassblowing Studio (we now carry their pieces in the store).

November brings our annual Holiday Party on November 11, a Trollbeads Uniques event, and of course, a visit from Santa....we have a lot of fun with him and his new throne.  In addition, there will be some Black Friday events and we will begin to be open on Sunday afternoons.

December is always a hopping time of year.  We will have another Kameleon Trunk show, a book signing with Teresa Miller (bring your pets!!), Christmas Caroling with our flute and accordion friends and lots more.

In between all these scheduled events, there is bound to be more to do at Sweet Tooth.  Our new space has offered us the opportunity to bring new candy, chocolate, jewelry and gift items into the store.  We have really bumped up our Made in Oklahoma section and we will have our Fall Tunics and Leggings at the end of September.  We are mid-town's location for ordering Cookiedoodle cookies and cake pops.

The Fall always brings the latest new collections from all our Gift Section....so new, new everywhere. We are announcing the return of Patience Brewster art and ornaments in the store as well.

We are continuing to sign up customers for our Store Loyalty Cards which definitely come in handy during the holiday season.  Filled cards are worth $10 off on regularly priced items.  Watch also for our specialized weekly emails featuring Kameleon, Trollbeads and Obsidian jewelry....also mentioning our Ionic Designs from Julie who lives in Tulsa.

We are always available to answer questions, check on future shipments and just get to know you.  Hope to see you soon at Sweet Tooth.