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Christmas 2008 Trends

It's never too early to start thinking about Christmas. The world’s retail market assembles each year in January, at the Christmasworld International trade show, to begin speculation on the year’s coming holiday season shopping trends.

Held this year in Frankfurt, Germany, Christmasworld uncovered several trends likely to capture the imaginations of consumers this Black Friday. The following undercurrents, when adapted to the pet industry and the many gift items you may now be ordering, are sure to turn a few heads – as the traditional model of the holidays takes a few unconventional twists and turns.

This year’s trade extravaganza focused on trends from around the globe – in each of the four directions: North, East, South and West.

Nordic countries are defined by simplicity and grace. This year, consumers are likely to gravitate toward these principles with preparing for the holidays. Solid colors, understated décor and accessories with few embellishments appeal to the no-frills consumer looking to de-clutter their holiday season and their home.

Pet consumers in line with the trends of the north may take a simpler-is-better approach with solid-colored holiday items featuring single words or phrases that share universal appeal.

A Far East Christmas, inspired by Zen-like themes and linear designs, likely will score with consumers as well this holiday season. Ever carried a Bonsai Christmas tree on your store shelves? You may want to order a few this year as consumers look for small, simple ways to celebrate the holidays.  Colors that push the envelope of “holiday” tones may be more appropriate this year. Metallic hues, black and gray add a soothing quality to the holidays many crave.

Chinese silk dresses and oriental barrettes and accessories bring out the geisha inside every pampered pooch. Appeal to the consumer’s flare for the exotic and unique pet gift this year. In the wake of a stunning summer Olympic season, all eyes turn eastward this holiday season.

The opulence of the historic South, together with its modern infusion of electric color, forms the inspiration for another holiday trend. Any gift items that feature classic style with bright color accents is sure to please a more sophisticated clientele this busy holiday season.

Think old-fashioned cameo silhouettes on a background of magenta when stocking your boutique merchandise this fall. Any items that hearken back to a more gentile existence, while capturing the fun and flavor of a modern world fit into this growing trend.

Kitschy is cool this holiday season as retro American pop art and graphic design themes grace more merchandise. Fun candy-colored tones and anything sparkly rate high on the consumer radar this year. Though once thought garish and reminiscent of carnival décor, American pop art themes have returned with increasing popularity. The fun and frivolity they inspire makes kooky and colorful holiday merchandise attractive to a wide consumer base. <HOME>

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