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Christmasworld trend ‘A gentle touch of nature’ sets the accents for displays at the Koch & Christmann garden centre in Kaiserslautern

May 12, 2017

No shortage of resources for visual merchandising experts Stefanie Thierfelder and Julia Nawra in the design of their POS displays.

At the beginning of May 2017, visual-merchandising specialists Stefanie Thierfelder and Julia Nawra set to work to provide suitably accentuated displays for some very large areas – and so the Christmasworld trend for the seasonal festivities in 17/18, ‘A gentle touch of nature’, made its way into the premises of Koch & Christmann in Kaiserslautern – just in time for the profitable Mother’s Day trade. Co-owner, Gisela Koch, won the professional shop-window decoration, which was raffled off in the prize draw at Christmasworld and Floradecora in 2017 and organised in cooperation with the trade journal ‘florieren!’. The experts faced a huge challenge, since the main shop of the garden centre-cum-florist’s has a total sales area of around 600 m² inside and an additional 1200 m² outside. Moreover, the elegant and well-chosen selection of fresh flowers, plants, pots, vases, plant holders and cachepots, decorations and accessories, such as greetings cards and fragrant candles, were already very stylishly displayed. So the job was specifically and deliberately to implement some or all of the trend themes at Christmasworld and use them as a thread running right through from outside to inside. Constituting a central element were the original pantone colours mint, coral and sand from the Christmasworld Trend Book.

After consultation with Gisela Koch, Stefanie Thierfelder and Julia Nawra concentrated, for this, on a design for the outside areas that involves lots of banners, as well as a move to enhance the shop window displays along the street with posters so that they create better impact from a distance. In the entrance, there is a ‘teaser’, an inviting bit of decoration that catches the attention and arouses curiosity - which is then left to be satisfied in the sales area. Here, there are three tables which implement the Christmasworld trend with fresh flowers and appropriate decorations, including a number of individually created decorative items.

Koch & Christmann’s main outlet in Kaiserlautern
Koch & Christmann’s main outlet in Kaiserlautern was deliberately enhanced with large posters and with squares of foil in the relevant pantone colours stuck on the windows. Source - Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH / Jean-Luc Valentin

Stylish look for Mother’s Day in mint, sand, coral and gold

Together with the co-owner, they agreed on decorations in the style of ‘A gentle touch of nature’. This is a trend that is inspired by nature and is instantiated in subdued colours, delicate materials and fine textures. Luminous corals and gold set the accents in an interplay of restrained linen shades, slate, mint, rosé and lime. “We have sought out, specially, a set of colours that are entirely new to us, in order to surprise our customers with a hitherto unknown look that is, nevertheless, on trend,” says Gisela Koch. During the intensive preparations she discovered, to her own surprise, that many of these elements were already included in what was there. Thus, for instance, individual display tables were already painted in mint green. Vases, plant-pot saucers, candles and plants were brought together in the trend colours and recombined. To the left of the main entrance, the team added a few branches painted in coral red to an existing installation of painted white birch branches. Ms. Koch also had banners made in the corresponding pantone colours sand and coral red, together with large posters and flyers bearing the words “Trend Show starts Wed. 3 May. So you, too, know all about it! Come in and take a look around”.

informal horizontal arrangements and traditional floral-foam-based arrangements in the trend colours
The florists at Koch & Christmann produced informal horizontal arrangements and traditional floral-foam-based arrangements in the trend colours. Source - Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH / Jean-Luc Valentin

In addition, their florists conjured up some very suitable flower arrangements, bouquets and garlands combining elements in mint, rosé, coral and gold – sometimes as traditional posy-type arrangements on a foam base, sometimes in contemporary horizontal arrangements. In the entrance area, roses in delicate rosé and apricot, with accents in coral led in towards the trend installation inside.

A greenhouse with plenty of depth and height
A greenhouse with plenty of depth and height: Julia Nawra considers what it looks like to the customer, while Stefanie installs the new eye-catchers. Source - Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH / Jean-Luc Valentin

So the creative duo of Thierfelder & Nawra had plenty to work with, in implementing the Christmasworld trend. On the one hand, they were able to make use of the available material and, on the other, they could build on the active support offered by Koch and Christmann’s team, who were very open to their recommendations and happy to adopt them. As the spaces are very large and high, the experts hung lamps in both geometrical and more amorphous, flowing forms to create eye-catchers of an appropriately large scale.

The lamps were sprayed in the relevant colours in advance, or covered with textured foil, which was stuck on, in order to incorporate forms inspired by nature. To complete the effect, they then added the ‘decorative package’ that they had bought in, specially for use here. They included, for example, cushions and throws, napkins, greetings cards, gift wrap, gift boxes and bags, candles, slate boards, baskets, plant-pot holders, vases, shells, decorative ribbons and drawer knobs.

central display table near the tills, arranged in the style of the Christmasworld trend ‘A gentle touch of nature’
The central display table near the tills, arranged in the style of the Christmasworld trend ‘A gentle touch of nature’, invites Koch & Christmann’s customers to go on a mini tour of discovery – and offers plenty of ideas for Mother’s Day gifts. Source - Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH / Jean-Luc Valentin

All these measures are intended to arouse the customers’ interest and offer an interesting experience as well as to provide temptations to buy. Lots of people are motivated to go into a florist’s in search of a present. If they then find themselves captivated by a new decorative idea or item that they were not expecting, or by a harmonious style combination, then they are often happy to add a little special something to the flowers they are going to give as a present – or indeed, to treat themselves to something. For it continues to be the case that only around 30 percent of purchases are for necessities, whilst 70 percent are spontaneous ones resulting from spur-of-the-moment inspiration. For the high-street retail trade, then, it is all about playing the ‘inspiration’ card and constantly offering something new, if possible, at the same time as telling a story of some kind in the shop window and taking customers by surprise. That not only goes for the most lucrative and most emotionally charged time of year – Christmas – but for every seasonal festivity and celebration. “This kind of creative investment is well worth it: not only are customers grateful for good ideas, they are also prepared to spend money on beautiful things,” insist Stefanie Thierfelder and Julia Nawra.

Company spirit and a passion for fresh greenery

The core team surrounding Gisela Koch (from left to right): Sabrina Göbel, Fabienne Weiler, Christiane Klein, Anna Wahl, Gisela Koch, Hannah Rau, Nina Leis, Laura Welker.
The core team surrounding Gisela Koch is delighted with the new look. From left to right: Sabrina Göbel, Fabienne Weiler, Christiane Klein, Anna Wahl, Gisela Koch, Hannah Rau, Nina Leis, Laura Welker. Source - Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH / Jean-Luc Valentin

Bei Koch & Christmann handelt es sich um ein Familienunternehmen in über 125jähriger Tradition (gegründet in 1891) mit aktuell insgesamt 30 Mitarbeitern in den Bereichen Gärtnerei, Floristik, Raumbegrünung, Ideengarten, Gartengestaltung, Grabpflege und Zierpflanzenbau.
Gemeinsam mit ihren beiden Brüdern leitet Gisela Koch seit 2002 das Unternehmen. Während sich die gelernte Sozial- und Medienpädagogin mit viel Engagement, Herzblut für grafisches Design, verkaufsfördernden Ideen sowie Aktionen dem Endverkauf und der Floristik widmet, teilen sich Helmut Koch (Gärtner und Florist) und Albert Koch (Landschaftsgärtner und Ingenieur der Landespflege) den Zierpflanzenbau, die Friedhofsgärtnerei sowie den Ideengarten, Garten- und Landschaftsbau untereinander auf. „Das ist die perfekte Symbiose, die uns nur mit unseren leidenschaftlich motivierten Mitarbeitern gelingen kann“, freut sich Gisela Koch. „Für meinen Vater war Stillstand gleichbedeutend mit Rückschritt. Diese Aktion hätte ihm sicherlich Spaß gemacht“, ergänzt sie. In diesem Sinne hofft die Unternehmerin, ihre Kunden aufs Neue zu begeistern und auch neue Kunden für sich zu gewinnen.

Um sich über die kommenden Trends auf dem Laufenden zu halten, ist der Besuch der kommenden Christmasworld vom 26. bis 30. Januar 2018 bereits fest eingeplant. Die parallele Floradecora (26. bis 29. Januar) als neuer Marktplatz für Frischblumen, Pflanzen und vorkonfektionierte Arrangements macht den Messebesuch für die Gärtnerei Koch & Christmann noch lohnenswerter. „Inspiration und frische Deko – also alles, was unser Herz begehrt, kompakt in sechs angrenzenden Hallen beieinander, zu einem Termin, finde ich geradezu perfekt“, sagt Gisela Koch.

Note for journalists:
You will find further information and high-resolution photographs at christmasworld.messefrankfurt.com

Christmasworld: Seasonal Decoration at its best
Christmasworld is the world’s most important order venue for the international decoration and festive articles sector. Held annually in Frankfurt, it presents the latest products and trends for all festivities of the year and provides innovative concept ideas for decorating large-scale and outdoor areas for the wholesale and retail trades, shopping centres, DIY markets and the green sector. The last event was attended by 1,061 exhibitors from 42 countries and over 43,200 visitors from 110 countries (including Floradecora). Christmasworld is characterised by the complete spectrum of festive decorations while a wide-ranging complementary programme with Trend Show, special exhibitions, events and expert lectures is a valuable and informative source of supplementary inspiration for everyday business life in the sector. Next event: 26 to 30 January 2018.

In addition, the new 'Floradecora' from 26 to 29 January 2018 offers immediately available fresh flowers, plants and flower arrangements for seasonal decoration as an additional line – at an ideal time at the beginning of the year, right at the heart of the strongest sales market for flowers in Europe. The innovative trade-fair concept spotlights fresh goods, enables visitors to make a direct comparison and leads to an intuitive product selection. At the first edition of Floradecora in 2017, 67 exhibitors reached over 10,700 trade buyers from the three concurrent trade fairs, Christmasworld, Paperworld and Creativeworld.

Background information on Messe Frankfurt
Messe Frankfurt is the world’s largest trade fair, congress and event organiser with its own exhibition grounds. With some 2,400 employees at 30 locations, the company generates annual sales of over €640 million. Thanks to its far-reaching ties with the relevant sectors and to its international sales network, the Group looks after the business interests of its customers effectively. A comprehensive range of services – both onsite and online – ensures that customers worldwide enjoy consistently high quality and flexibility when planning, organising and running their events. The wide range of services includes renting exhibition grounds, trade fair construction and marketing, personnel and food services.
With its headquarters in Frankfurt am Main, the company is owned by the City of Frankfurt (60 percent) and the State of Hesse (40 percent).
Further information on the company can be found at: www.messefrankfurt.com

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