Inside Out

Waynette Goodson

Waynette Goodson is both the editor in chief of Casual Living and its brand ambassador. Her goal is to become a thought leader in the world of outdoor furnishings and design. Thus, she focuses on sharing insightful information to help you increase your business. Waynette will keep her finger on the pulse of the industry and wrap it all up in one handy blog, casually speaking.

  • March to Market

    As we look forward to Casual Market Chicago (Sept. 20-23) and reflect on the Las Vegas Market (July 31-Aug.4), it’s interesting to compare the two. In one corner, we have the heavyweight, Casual Market Chicago, boasting a complete collection of outdoor furniture, trends and accessories for more than three decades. It’s the only show in North America dedicated to the casual furnishings industry endorsed by the ICFA. Attendees can expect about 250 manufacturers filling more than 350,000 square feet at the Merchandise Mart, with permanent showrooms on Floors 14, 15 and 16, as well as temporary ... Read More
  • An Eye for Design

    Now here’s an issue that thrills me from my Chanel eye glasses to my Prada-clad toes – the Designer Issue. Sigh. Once upon a time I worked on Seventh Avenue in New York as a fit model (back before size 6 became the new 14). Today I still have the fashion fever, and one’s home is certainly an extension of one’s style. So I’m so excited that upscale designers are having such an impact on the “5th Room.” The slogan “You’ve come a long way, baby,” perhaps best describes the metamorphosis the outdoor space has undergone ... Read More
  • The Great Pillow Chase

    As a Shelby, N.C., girl who came up on Red Bridges barbecue, I’m proud that my debut as the new Casual Living editor is this Made in America issue. I drive a Ford Fusion, I listen to Willie Nelson, and I’m about as American as it gets. I’m also excited to come on board Casual Living at the beginning of the market season, starting in downtown High Point with Showtime, the largest fabric show in the U.S. What did I learn? Simple: Buy quality fabric. One demonstration of the Defense finish at Altizer – when they ... Read More
  • A state of anticipation

    Does anyone besides me remember Carly Simon's song made famous by the Heinz ketchup commercials in the late 1970s? The words of "Anticipation" have been running through my mind frequently this month as I look toward the events and projects coming up on the summer calendar. "It's keeping me way-ay-ay-aiting." For the past two months, we've been anticipating the annual Casual Living Merchandising Awards. It's always exciting to see what retailers are doing to showcase casual home furnishings in fresh and inviting ways, and certainly this year has been no exception. When the judging was finally ... Read More
  • Tools, techniques of retailers

    Casual manufacturers have told me. Retailers insist that it is so. And our own proprietary research affirms it time and again. But the idea of how much people love and are intrigued by living in their outdoor spaces really came home to me in a new way with a telephone call I received recently from a young university student working on a research project of her own. She peppered me with questions about the casual furniture industry, each of my answers leading her to more questions – boy, she’d be a great reporter someday! – and when there was finally a ... Read More
  • Calling all stores!

    Tie a string around your finger … leave a reminder in your Smart Phone … stick a Post-It to your computer screen. Whatever it takes, don't forget to enter this year's Casual Living Merchandising Awards. For 16 years, Casual Living has recognized casual retailers for excellence in merchandising – store fronts, displays and accessories – and it's that time of year to do it again. Last year, eight retailers – both single-store and multi-store – earned the honors, including Martin Viette Nursery in East Norwich, N.Y., and Village Green Home and Garden in Rockford, Ill., for Best Overall Merchandising. By submitting this ... Read More
  • Authenticity rings true

    The Millennials already have changed the consumer landscape and not just for themselves. We’ve all felt their influence on what we do and how we think. And one way they have had an impact on consumers as a whole is in the desire for authenticity. Authenticity isn’t a new concept from this up-and-coming generation, but they’ve taken the idea and elevated it to new level of expectation, one that consumers of all ages and demographics have come to share. With so many products available of every conceivable style, color, function and price, this idea of genuineness and ... Read More
  • Enticing enhancements

    February is that month of the year when winter has us tightly in its grip but we’re already looking forward to spring. When Punxutawney Phil makes his appearance, is there anyone who doesn’t hope that this time he won’t see his shadow and we’ll get that early spring? Groundhog Day isn’t the only heads up to the warmer season. February 10 is National Umbrella Day, and while I’m sure the founders of this celebration were thinking primarily of ye old bumpershoot, I say we should adopt the day as another way to focus attention ... Read More
  • Colorful remarks

    Anytime I get a chance to talk with designers – be they fabric designers, furniture designers, interior designers or landscape designers – I can’t help but try to draw out where they find their inspiration. Perhaps I want to dig into that idea simply because it’s a question with such a nebulous answer, for design ideas, they will tell you, come from anywhere and everywhere. So, at the recent Showtime event, one of my favorite questions to ask fabric folks was along those same lines: Where do color ideas come from? True to past experience, the answers indicated inspiration can ... Read More
  • Cross Over

    At virtually every trade event, someone usually makes comment to me on the crossover of styles from indoor to outdoor home furnishings and vice versa. So I found it interesting to note the parallels between trends designers are telling us to watch for both interior and exterior rooms, trends the experts promise are continuing full strength into 2016. Whether indoors or out, consumers are looking for ways to incorporate nature into their home furnishings. At the fall High Point Market, designer Nancy Fire said that consumers want to be “one with nature,” using botanicals, organic materials and a mix of ... Read More
  • Wish List

    At this time of the year, I am ever so grateful for the invention of wish lists. Each member of my family started keeping an electronic one of these going a couple years ago, and it has made gift buying so much easier ever since, especially for those hard-to-shop-for people. You know who you are. Once upon a time, these gift lists were the purview of department stores and specialty boutiques for bridal registries. In fact, Marshall Field introduced the first bridal registry in 1924, a good 70 years or so before Target introduced the first electronic version at dedicated ... Read More
  • Back to the Future

    Remember that great movie franchise with Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd? Believe it or not, Back to the Future II – the one that transported Marty McFly and company forward to 2015 and back again – came out in theaters in 1989 (more than 25 years ago), and turned moviegoers’ attention from the past to a year that once seemed forever away and is now nearly complete. Movie makers can take our imaginations in myriad directions when they bounce us back into the past or thrust us far into the future. Of course, only time can tell if any of what ... Read More