These blog postings are intended to give you ideas and support in your entrepreneurial journey. The road is not without its bumps, but together we can make the ride smoother!  I invite you to read my book, Specialty Shop Retailing: Everything You Need to Know to Run Your Own Store, for more information.  I am currently working on a 4th edition, to be published by Henschel Haus in the fall of 2017.  Watch for  it soon as a trade paperback and ebook!

A special welcome to those of you coming to this blog through Gifts and Decorative Accessories magazine! It has been my privilege to write for Gifts and Dec for over 15 years, and I am pleased to be able to keep in touch with subscribers through my blog as well as my regular columns.

You can get this blog delivered to your inbox every Monday by sending your name and e-mail address to To unsubscribe, just send an email with unsubscribe as the heading.

This lovely gift from Royal Copenhagen is a great example of how packaging can work as an extension of your store’s identity.  For starters, the color scheme reflects the brand’s characteristic blue and white, based on the company’s signature hand-painted porcelain.  The design on the paper echoes the designs that Royal Copenhagen made famous. The hang tag tells the cus … (read more…)


Keeping customers coming through the doors is a challenge for stores large and small.  According to a post-Black Friday Associated Press article, a JC Penney branch in NJ “was trying to ma … (read more…)


The holiday season is about to start in earnest, which means that for most of us there will be many more shoppers in the store than normal.  All of our preparation — buying merchandise, hiring and training staff, creating displays and promotions — culminate in these busy few weeks of sales. To use a sports analogy, it’s game time!

Here are a few tips to help you have a winning season: