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from Patio and Hearth Products Report

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It’s Time to Cover Up

Now is the time to start thinking about covering up the grill and patio furniture as the fall and winter months bring unfavorable weather. One’s grill or patio set should be seen as an investment that needs to be protected. So to get the most out of your outdoor products and to ensure they last from year to year, it’s important to cover them up.

Covers made by Two Dogs Designs

Covers come in a variety of materials, including nylon and vinyl. It’s important that buyers keep in mind the nature of their specific climate, making sure that if they live somewhere with heavy rainfall, they buy covers that are waterproof. The covers should fit snug but with room to make it easy to apply and remove them. They should also have tie-downs and fastenings to stay in place during high winds.

Two Dogs Designs is just one company that has found a niche in the patio furniture and product covers industry. Every Two Dogs Designs’ cover is made of heavyweight, 600-denier polyester with a PVC lining and one-of-a-kind Velcro tie-down straps. Two Dogs Designs prides themselves on offering high-quality, stylish covers in a variety of colorful and neutral patterns and designs.

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Eco-Friendly Hearth Products

Morso's 5660 Fireplace Insert

Going green involves more than just preserving the world we live in—it also brings a sigh of relief to our wallets. As the colder months approach, it’s time to think about ways we can help our planet as well as keep within our budgets.

Many manufacturers of hearth products have been producing more eco-friendly stoves and inserts as the demand for green products has increased. By educating customers about clean, efficient hearth products, retailers play an important role in protecting the environment and in helping their customers save money. One way to accomplish this is to convince customers to ditch their wood-burning stoves and replace them with environmentally-friendly pellet stoves.


Toba by Wittus

A user friendly pellet stove and the most eco-friendly product on the market boasting over 90% efficiency, the 2011 IF Product Award winning Toba from Italy is the next generation of fashionable heating. Contemporary styling, high end materials, and a distinguished face, make the Wittus Toba one of the smartest choices when considering a pellet stove.

Perhaps a fireplace insert would do the trick? The Morso’s 5660 Fireplace Insert can help increase the efficiency of that wood-burning fireplace your customer already owns. Available in standard or with optional blower kit, it has a large combustion chamber that accommodates 20-inch logs and delivers high performance with 75%-plus efficiency.

Finally, remind your customers that no matter how they heat their homes, they need to make sure the heat stays inside. Windows and doors should be draft-free and the house should be insulated properly. If these steps are taken, one can get the most out of their stove or fireplace.

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The Companion Group’s New Online Catalog Attracts Attention

Stuff-A-BurgerTM Press from The Companion Group. One of the many products featured in their recent catalog.

With the advent of the Internet, traditional advertising has started to fall by the way side. This translates to fewer ads in newspapers and more banner ads on websites. But some traditional advertising methods have found ways to stay relevant in this new information age. Eye-catching catalogs are the perfect example.

Catalogs have always been around for retailers and manufacturers as a way to market their products. They represent a medium that has made an easy transition from print to Internet. Many companies still send out catalogs– only now they do it through email instead of snail mail.

The Flip-TipTM Digital Thermometer from The Companion Group

The Companion Group has published a product catalog since 1988. And while customers in the late 80s and early 90s expected it to be delivered through the postal service, today’s retailer can simply download The Companion Group’s catalog directly from their computer desktop.

This year’s Companion Group catalog highlights many unique and inventive barbecue accessories that would be helpful to any grill master. The novel Stuff- A-BurgerTM Press lets the cook create delicious toppings on the inside instead of outside the burger. The Flip-TipTM digital thermometer features an adjustable silicone depth gauge, allowing consistent placement of the thermometer for more accurate readings. Finally, their stainless steel flexible skewers available in 11 and 30 inches are great for game day parties or family nights.

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Warming It Up with Patio Heaters

Infratech Electric Heaters

Don’t let a little cool weather drive you away from using the patio. With well-placed and even stylish patio heaters, one can keep their patio active well into the autumn months. So instead of fighting the weather, embrace it with these patio heaters.

Looking for an efficient heater? Infratech’s electric heaters convert over 90% of input energy directly into infrared radiant heat, and they operate for just pennies per hour. The electric heaters are safe for outdoor or indoor use, operate silently, emit no greenhouse gases or unpleasant odors, and do not require ventilation.

The Vintage Series by Patio Comfort from AEI

The Vintage series by Patio Comfort from AEI combines the classic and elegant design elements of old-world, handcrafted aluminum components integrated beautifully into the latest in safety-oriented, functional, high-performance, long- lasting comfort heating products. The textured finish and color are designed to complement and enhance your outdoor entertaining and dining areas.

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Hip Hearths: A Modern Approach to Fireplaces

Lennox's Montebello® ST

At one time, a brick fireplace and mantel were considered contemporary; as times change, so does the definition of contemporary style. What was a contemporary fireplace design five years ago might well be passé now. Two companies that offer the contemporary look are Lennox Hearth Products and Hearth & Home Technologies.

The Lennox Montebello ST is a see-through fireplace allowing the consumer to enjoy the crackling flames from inside or outside. It features a high-definition split-oak log set, a choice of 6 liner styles, free-standing screens and andirons. The Montebello provides 60,000 BTU/hr for superior flame height with a 50 percent turndown capability. Installation is easy and the Montebello has been tested for weather resistance and structural soundness. A Limited Lifetime Warranty also protects all Montebello ST fireplaces.

Heat & Glo's Solaris 36-MR by Hearth & Home Technologies

At Hearth & Home Technologies, Heat & Glo is one lineup that caters to the contemporary crowd. The Solaris 36-MR has a patent-pending transparent Razor burner positioned at the center of the fireplace, producing flames that appear to be suspended in mid-air. The fireplace is outfitted with LED lighting and mirrored glass, creating a dramatic illusion of continuous levitating flames dancing into infinity.

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Manufacturer of the Year: Tropitone

Tropitone's Montreux URComfort Cushion Lounge Chair

Each year at the International Casual Furniture & Accessories Market™, the ICFA honors various manufacturers for providing excellence in the areas of products, merchandising, and service.  This year, Tropitone received the esteemed Manufacturer of the Year Award.

Tropitone’s URComfort series has gained much attention since its debut at the Pre-Market show in July.  And at this year’s Casual Market, it was no surprise that their Montreux collection with URComfort was a show-stopper.

The URComfort cushion seating is unique in that it harmonizes with the movement of one’s body to find the most comfortable position, whether it is sitting in a dining chair or in a swivel-action lounger.  It moves with the person, thus providing the sitter with ultimate comfort.

Along with the URComfort, Tropitone has capitalized on the use of technology.  Retailers can utilize Tropitone’s website with customers to help them design the perfect furniture for themselves, right down to the fabric and frame.  The customer can then see it on the screen without trying to envision it in their head.

In this digital age, it’s important to try and find ways to engage customers, especially if it can lead to a new purchase or even create return buyers.

We hope all of you enjoyed this year’s Casual Market as much as we did and we look forward to next year’s show!

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Casual Market: Morning Highlights

This year Patio & Hearth is live-blogging from the Casual Market in Chicago.  In these blog posts over the next couple of days we hope to highlight some of the collections that have stood out to us. 

Homecrest Bungalow Collection – This fully upholstered collection combines Homecrest’s comfort with today’s organic styling.

Kingsley-Bate The Somerset Collection - This stylish solid teak collection features a trellis lattice back and weather-resistant construction.

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