Spring Fair (NEC Birmingham from 5th – 8th February 2023), has announced it will host the Gift of the Year 2023 judging featuring the shortlisted products in a dedicated showcase and welcoming over 70 expert judges from across the industry during the four-day show.
The judging panel is made up of a diverse and lengthy list of experts and leading retailers in the gift industry, with extensive knowledge and understanding of products and categories. Judges include Senior Design Manager at Moonpig, Dale Boreham; design award-winning judge Jen Baptiste from Black Culture Market; small business retail expert and founder of The Resilient Retail Club, Catherine Erdly, brand licensing expert Emma Russell from the Natural History Museum; Trading Director at Hobbycraft, Heather Robbins; Giftware Buyer at F Hinds, Amanda Evans; award winning retail professional, Michael Apter from Paper Tiger; and Adam Bass, founder of Golden Goose brand licensing consultancy. They make up just a few faces on the panel, with many more retail, sales and brand experts attending Spring Fair and adding their expertise and professional opinion to the judging.
Highly respected as a top industry accolade, ‘Gift of the Year’ recognises the best products, talent, and inspiration across the gift industry. The shortlisted brands include a large number of Spring Fair exhibitors.
The best sellers and the must-have gifts, My Gift of All Time celebrates the best of the best; Beauty, Bath & Spa celebrates grooming, beauty, health and wellbeing products as well as those that bring a spa-like touch into the home; the Branded Gift category includes products linked to well-known characters or brands, and those licensed by famous designers, organisations or household names; Cards, Wraps and Stationery includes diaries, calendars, paper, gift boxes, pens, notebooks and more; Toys, kits and gadgets for children are included in the Children’s Educational and Pre-School category; Commemorative, Collectable and Charitable celebrates gifts for any occasions, including collectibles, souvenirs, personalised products and trinkets. Contemporary Gift offers funky, design-led gifts with a modern feel. Products designed and made in smaller studios come under the Design and Craft category. Fairtrade and eco-friendly gifts make up the Ethical and Sustainable Gift category. The Fashion Accessories and Jewellery category includes wearable accessories and jewellery made from a multitude of materials. Festive and Occasions wraps up products specifically designed and themed around key calendar events or parties. Celebrating the Food and Drink shortlist are gifts you can eat, drink or make, whilst Board games, card games, party games and non-traditional games make up the Games category. The Home and Garden category includes any item that adorns the home – modern, tradition, classic, country, urban living or fun and quirky. Home Fragrance includes products that bring fragrance into the home and with gifts for budding chefs and those who love to entertain, the Kitchen and Dining shortlist showcases the best in the category. Celebrating all those techy, gadgety gifts, the Novelty, Tech and Gadgets category incorporates gifts with a touch of silliness. Any gift product retailing at £15 or below was considered for the Under £15 category.
Winners of the Gift of the Year Awards will be announced on 11th May.