WC’s Holiday Gift Guide


Image from Google

It’s that time of year again. You’ve made your list and checked it twice–why brave the cold and crowds only to return with lackluster loot? WC&Co. hit the Union Square Holiday Market to scope out the hottest seasonal swag. Step up your gift game this year with our top holiday picks.

Gift trends this season are all about the artisanal and the unique, with a lean towards local and handmade products. Here in NYC, we’re coveting this bevy of offerings from the 5 boroughs and beyond.

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Art Basel/Design Miami 2016


As the first cold days settled on New York, thousands flocked to warmer climes over the weekend, heading south for Art Basel/ Design Miami 2016. The annual extravaganza of art, fashion, design, and star-studded pool parties brings together the cream of the international art crop for what is essentially a high-end exposition-cum-bazaar for all things creative. It’s also a fantastic place to get a peek at the future of art and design, and what trends to watch for in the upcoming year. Here are some highlights.


Major themes this year were the crossover between art and design, exploring the relationship between the functional and the aesthetic in re-conceptualizing domestic spaces. Continue reading

Top Trends From Expo East 2016

Hello, we’re back from Expo East in Baltimore where we had access to 1,900+ exhibits in the organic and natural space. Retailers, manufacturers, health professionals and brokers gathered in Anaheim for Expo West in the spring and Baltimore for Expo East in the fall to review the latest trends in the natural and organic industry.

We are excited to bring you a recap of our take on the top trends and innovations coming out of the Expo East show and would like to hear your input as well.

Cold Brew Coffee On Draft
Is it a Guinness? An English stout?
No, silly, it’s cold brew coffee and it’s delicious. Cold brew coffee is first air-roasted in small batches and then brewed in cold water for a coffee that is lower in acid, thus less bitter than warm-brewed coffee. Whether it’s in a can like the La Colombe lattes we sampled or on draft like the Chameleon draft, the WC&Co. team enjoyed this latest coffee trend.

Fermenting—Yummy Bacteria!
Fermenting foods is one of the oldest artisanal food processes around. Now we know that the fermenting process has probiotic benefits that are great for your gut! WC&Co.’s favorite brands were Jacob’s Raw and Cleveland Kraut’s. Both brands have also been experimenting with different flavor combinations that will make you crave putting Kraut on everything you eat. Try the Curry Kraut or the Whiskey Dill Kraut by Cleveland Kraut. You can thank us later.


On-The-Go Nut Butters
Nut Butters, like Almond, Pecan and Cashew are the perfect protein snack and the packages are  beginning to accommodate a busy ‘on-the-go’ lifestyle. Check out Justin’s Banana Chips with a side of Maple Almond Butter or Pretzels to dip into Honey Peanut Butter next time you get hunger  pangs at 3 pm. Nut Butter has created new flavored nut butters such as Pecan Pie Almond Butter or Blueberry Cinnamon Bun Cashew Butter. Bye-bye ol’ Peanut Butter! There are new flavors in town.

Bone Broth – The New Superfood
Bone broth is the latest product that claims multiple benefits, such as healing your gut, protecting joints, looking younger, sleeping better and immune support. The bones contain gelatin and collagen and the broth is made from grass-fed, humanely raised animals. Our two favorites were Ancient Nutrition Bone Broth Protein, which came in powder packets that you can enjoy in hot water. The other was Bonafide Bone Broth.
Just pour & heat!

Quirky Jerky
We are in the middle of a jerky renaissance. No longer is jerky only available at 7-Elevens and gas stations. Artisanal snack meat brands are being sold at health food stores across the nation. One of our favorite brands is Krave jerky. Krave has successfully married high quality ingredients and premium flavors. Lorissa’s Kitchen launched its Korean BBQ flavor and we are total fans. Lightlife is in on the game with a plant protein jerky.

And That’s Just A Nibble!

For a downloadable PDF version of this report, please click here to download and share!

For more information from Expo East, or to connect to hear our POV on how these insights could transform your brand, contact Wendy Church.

Wendy Church
Director, Creative Services



TRANOÏ, which means “between us” in Italian, is an artistic platform that gathers and curates the very best of avant-garde and progressive designers as well as contemporary and leading brands, and puts them in the hands of the most influential players in the fashion industry.


The tote and program from the show.

From the Tranoï Site: Four times a year during Paris Fashion Week, and twice a year during New York Market Week, the TRANOÏ fashion trade show takes place in prestigious venues and establishes a relationship between creativity and business.

The prestigious venue for this year’s TRANOÏ NY event was The Tunnel, located in Chelsea on 11th Avenue. My companion for the show was friend and professional perfumer, Sherri Sebastian, of Sebastian Signs. Sherri was to participate in a panel discussion about trends on Saturday so she set off to gather what information she could from all of the latest items on display.


Rich and Sherri


Vendors, Buyers and Groupies

We walked the floor, Sherri with an eye on trends while I considered the packaging. Below are some photos from the event.



One curiosity was the infusing of artifacts. Fragrances were a good part of the show and so perfumes were in abundance. But fragrances don’t always have to be housed in a perfume bottle, they can be absorbed into objects. Rather than have a jar of aromatic crystals in your home, perhaps a sculptural display would suffice.



A drop of fragrance with one of these and you have a conversational scent pieces.

Having gathered her thoughts, Sherri shared her opinion with the Trend Panel on Saturday. Overall, she thought the show was lovely, understated and elegant. There were highly curated collections of the hottest luxury must-haves. There were many heavy oud inspired notes – oud is the synthetic version of agarwood. Sherri spoke about how the trend will be towards more muted and resinous woody notes. Florals will become greener. The Rose trend will migrate towards violets and other vintage floral notes. The Trend panel agreed with her insights, adding that oud could become a new fragrance category.


On the packaging side, there was a lot of black.


…and more black, which is to be expected in the luxury market.


If black wasn’t dark enough for you, one of the fragrances had ingredients such as gun powder, blood and brandy. But some still appreciate color,  especially gold.




In the end, all was pretty and elegant. But in a market where you can sample the scent before the purchase, packaging will take a back seat. You may be drawn to the display because of design but if it’s not what you want, you’re not going to make a purchase.

Just like consumer goods, you can wrap a chicken dinner in the best packaging in the world but if the customer wants steak, you’re not going to sell your chicken. I’m not sure that adding gunpowder, blood and brandy is going to help in that market.


What’s In Vogue?


What’s in vogue right now? What stays in vogue? How and why do fashionable things become unfashionable? What was once popular becomes passé, you feel like you can’t wear a garment you once loved because now, it’s different. It’s old. It’s no longer in. Like fonts, trends and fashions come and go and though you may like Serifs and Leg Warmers, you don’t use or wear them anymore.


What is it about our sense of taste that discards what once was for the latest what is? Only to look back at what once was ten years later and loving it again for its retro look.

For example, the icons on iPhones used to be dimensional. When they hit the scene, everyone dimensionalized their logos, following the trend, with swoops of highlights and drop shadows. Then, with an update to Mac’s operating system, all icons went flat. Suddenly, that was cool and in vogue. The pendulum swings. Will the next generation be Wowed when dimensional icons start showing up on their smart phones?


Retrospectives can give us a condensed view of what’s been, so we may compare and contrast trends, determine what was a fad and discover what has become classic. 100 Years of British Vogue was celebrated in Trafalgar Square at the National Portrait Gallery. The exhibit closed at the end of May.


To see how the world turns, the exhibit is experienced in reverse chronological order, so you get to travel through time from 2016 to 1916 . A selection of photos from the exhibit can be found here: http://www.cnn.com/2016/02/16/fashion/vogue-100-article/index.html

Keeping on the trend, Vogue featured Bo Gilbert, their first 100 year old model, in their May issue.


For a quick review of what was fashionable in the hair and makeup field, you can check out this video, “100 Years of Beauty in 1 Minute.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LOyVvpXRX6w

Of course, the times we live in can greatly affect what’s fashionable. San Serif fonts have been all the rage as of late, but now, Serif fonts are poised for a comeback. Is this due to all our mobile devices having higher resolution that can now handle serifs? As opposed to early versions of our devices where clarity was an important ally against frustration.

To see what’s in fashion in fonts, you can always check MyFonts best sellers. http://www.myfonts.com/bestsellers/

To see what’s in fashion now, you can check out this slideshow of Vogue’s Met Gala: http://www.vogue.com/slideshow/13429562/met-gala-2016-red-carpet-celebrity-fashion-live/

Following what’s in vogue, The Met has extended its Manus x Machina Fashion in an Age of Technolog exhibition through September 5th.


From The Met’s web site: Over 120 pieces of haute couture and ready-to-wear fashion are yours to discover in Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology. The exhibition explores the creative process and unravels how designers are reconciling the handmade with the machine-made in fashion. Galleries will focus on embroidery, feather work, artificial flowers, and pleating alongside innovative processes such as 3D printing, computer modeling, and more.

Fashions may come and go but Clothing and Writing are here to stay, they may just take different styles to get their point across.


EntranceThe 2016 Summer Fancy Food Show took place at the end of June in NYC, so our team headed across town to scope out the latest in food trends and innovation. Over the course of two days, we sampled our way through the exhibition halls hosting over 2,550 companies from over 50 countries.

Here are a few brands that struck our fancy:

ShrubVinegar & Juice Infusions

American Roland Brands new line of fruit juices with vinegar can be used as a mixer that adds a tart and slightly sweet flavor to drinks and food. They are called SHRUB and come in Honey Ginger, Peach, Cranberry, and Fig flavors. Our team used the Fig SHRUB to make Figgy Old Fashions. They were perfect!

CentoItaly’s Past is Present

Every savvy chef uses Cento brands and products. From the fresh Anna pastas to the Cento San Marzano tomatoes, the full line of products transports you to the Italian countryside. These quality products are now available in an Organic line.

SivieroIce Cream Porn

The appetite appeal in the ice cream & gelato category was mind-blowing. Clear packaging that displays the frozen delicacy is currently on shelf but we were truly impressed by the sexiness of Siviero Maria ice cream. How could you resist? Peel pack the top, grab a spoon and dig in.

ArtisansTotally Cheesy

Cheese wheels, sliced cheese, cubed cheese, soft cheese and hard were on display from every country. We enjoyed cheese from France, Italy, & Spain, but our favorite was from the U.S.A. Simply Artisan knocked it out of the park by combining flavor and functionality. The feta on watermelon was sublime.

Lidia.jpgCelebrity Chefs

We were surprised to see so many chef branded products. From sauces and dips to frozen foods, many chefs are bringing their secret recipes to your home cooking. We were especially honored to have met Lydia Bastianich. Her show, restaurants, and products exude authenticity and taste. We’ve crowned her the Italian Julia Child.


For more information from the Summer Fancy Food Show, or to connect to hear our POV on how these insights could transform your brand, contact Wendy Church at wendy@wallacechurch.com