It’s trade show season here at Nashville Wraps, and we are excited to share our new collections in person. Our customer Susan Green, owner of Birmingham Bake & Cook Company, has been attending the Atlanta Gift Show for years. She says, “One of the things I love about the Nashville Wraps‘ booth is that the displays and groupings give me such great tools visually to bring back to the shop. It’s exciting! None of us can be creative in a vacuum – we need each other!”
There are so many reasons why attending trade shows is important. “They are critical for re-energizing not only our inventory and offerings, but ourselves,” explains Susan. “I get to talk to reps and other store owners. We talk about what works, what doesn’t, what’s hot and what’s not. Because our shop is small, we must have a consistent influx of new and interesting products to show and be excited about! Also, I love meeting people at market that I have previously only talked to over the phone.”
From Professional Chef to Retailer Extraordinaire
Susan got started in the restaurant industry at age 16 and never seriously thought of doing anything else. Graduating from Tufts University near Boston in 1978, she managed her first restaurant that following summer. A few years later, she graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY.
She moved to Birmingham, Alabama in 2008 after living in NYC for about a decade. She says, “The culinary scene in Birmingham was already quite robust and has grown tremendously in more recent years, with no signs of slowing down! Opening a retail operation seemed to make sense after a well-rounded culinary career – a good use of my experiences in the front and back of the house as well as with merchandising, marketing and standards.”
Kitchen Gadgets Galore!
Her merchandise is what she refers to as “fun and functional” along with “practical and cool” including sustainable cookware, serveware, baking and decorating equipment, kitchen gadgets, barware, cutlery and even a “Just for Kids” section. Half of her sales are for gifting items, especially hostess gifts. Fun and practical kitchen gadgets are the most popular, followed by bakeware and textiles.
Birmingham Bake & Cook publishes a weekly newsletter using Constant Contact, along with Facebook promotions and local Chamber of Commerce events. They do lots of off-site events like garden club meetings, as well as in-store events like cooking workshops and book signings to draw new customers. They have an in-house knife-sharpening service and a great rewards program called the Red Bag Rewards Club.
Nobody Beats Nashville Wraps
Her customers love Nashville Wraps’ kraft paper shopping bags. Susan says, “I can get just what I need within 48 hours AND I can order online in my jammies (if I need to!). We get all of our packaging, ribbon and tissue from Nashville Wraps. For a very brief time I ordered the bags locally, but their bag prices delivered (not shipped) worked out to be the same as Nashville Wraps bags including freight. Plus, I can always count on when they will arrive. So, I switched back to Nashville Wraps!”
Susan says she’s obsessed with taking great care of her knives, but her favorite kitchen tool – the one she loves to hold in her hand – is her rolling pin. She LOVES to bake fruit pies.
Because Susan has too much great merchandise to mention, you will have to just visit Birmingham Bake & Cook Company yourself. And we would love for you to visit us in person at any of the upcoming tradeshows including the Atlanta Gift Show July 14-18 to view our new collections! Happy Summer!!