The SnowSports Industries America (SIA) trade show in Las Vegas is always full of energy and edgy boarders. This year was no different except that SIA took a giant "green" step forward and included the EcoSource booth designed by Seattle companies, Utility and Dept. of Energy (DOE). The booth showcased green products from SIA exhibitors. It was packed with clothing, skis, boards, gloves, hats, waxes, creams and lotions, and more -- all eco-friendly.
But it was the booth construction that really captured attendee attention. Two elegant chandeliers made of discarded plastic water bottles dangled over the booth, reflecting light and looking very crystalline. The walls of the curved S-shaped booth were made of honeycombed Tripanel, a lightweight structural panel with a high strength-to-weight ratio. It is an economical replacement for foam-board products and can be recycled (unlike foam board). Benches, chairs and a reception table were all made of the honeycombed Tripanel and proved to be strong and durable. The wall panels were held together with hot-rolled steel joining plates made from recycled scrap metal. The floor was covered with a brown craft paper-like cardboard called Ram Board, a heavy-duty reinforced temporary floor protection designed for contractors to protect new and existing floors.
Shirts, tees and jackets were displayed on hangers made from post-consumer waste paper and logo-printed with vegetable inks. Pant hangers were made of 100-percent polyethylene (PET) recyclable plastic -- the type used for water bottles.
Tripanel shelving was suspended from the tops of the walls with unbleached 100-percent biodegradable and recyclable jute twine. Jute is a natural fiber and is the second most important vegetable fiber after cotton, in terms of usage, global consumption production and availability. Snowboards and skis were held in place on the walls with recycled rubber-coated bolts.
The materials used in this booth have great applications for outdoor retailers serious about utilizing green materials. Recycled paper clothes hangers from Ditto are attractive, hold a lot of weight and are easily customized with a store logo. The smoke-gray PET plastic hangers can also be imprinted and are perfect for hanging pants and shorts. The Tripanel walls are just the thing for covering the back of a front display window or covering a partial wall inside a store. Combine Tripanel walls and Ram Board flooring to create a green display in the front of the store to show off eco-friendly products.
There are many ways to use these innovative products. It just takes a little imagination to tell a green story. Click here to check out photos of the booth. To learn more about the products used, check out these websites:
Sharon Leicham is the creator of The MerchandisingHUB, the author of "Merchandising Your Way to Success" and "How to Sell to Women" and is a regular columnist for SNEWS® writing on merchandising and marketing topics. You can access all of her columns by going to www.snewsnet.com/merchandising, where you will find tons of information targeted at the needs of the independent specialty retailer. You can email us with questions and comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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