Custom Retail Curation

At AOW, we match retailers with artisanal brands to create access to unique handcrafted products that set your business apart. First, we establish your customer profile, brand aesthetic, vendor criteria, and product objectives. We use that knowledge to identify and select a carefully curated portfolio of artisan brands, then guide you through the process of working with artisans.

  • Are you losing customers to large-scale online retail?
  • Are your core product lines available online at a discount?
  • Do you have a hard time finding unique, exclusive goods?
  • Do you need to give your customers a new reason to shop?

“Artisan-made goods are the answer.”

The focus is on you.

We’ll establish your customer profile, brand aesthetic, vendor criteria and product objectives. Then we’ll use that knowledge to select and present you with a carefully curated portfolio of artisan brands.


How it Works:

Initial Consultation

During this half-hour phone consultation, AOW Handmade and the client will:

  • examine the customer’s needs and interests;
  • discuss brand aesthetic, product interests, target customers, business objectives, vendor criteria, and design inspiration;
  • clarify requested price points, shipping methods, lead times, and terms.

Scope of Work

Following approval of the direction, AOW and the client agree on a contract and level of services.

Planning

AOW will then develop a product plan based on the client’s trend boards, MOQ’s, category priorities, wish lists, and price points.

Initial Presentation

AOW Handmade will provide a full range of suitable artisan brands via a visual presentation, including product photos, a brief summary of each brand, approximate price points, shipping details, and lead times. AOW will send the presentation to the client for approval. Following approval, the client will select the top requested brands they want to connect with.

Vendor Selection

The client will then select the number of agreed upon vendors to ask for quotes, samples, etc. AOW will initiate introductions to those vendors and facilitate initial orders, terms of payment, deadlines, etc.

Follow Up

AOW will stay in the loop through the first order to assist with communication and general facilitation until the initial order is completed.


Why Artisan-Made Goods? 


Consumer trends demonstrate the demand for artisan-made goods.

“The Experience Economy”

According to trend forecaster Nelly Rodi, the allure of travel and of interacting with other cultures has become an important part of American consumer culture. Referencing the culture of origin in the design, creation or marketing of a piece is a value-added component.

Travel & Global Culture

As a result of the increased interest in the experience of travel and global culture people increasingly see themselves as citizens of the world. The Mintel Group reports, “Now, these global citizens can support economies thousands of miles away by shopping for artisan goods.”

Conscious Consumerism

More and more shoppers are paying attention to the origins, life cycle, and charitable activities of products and their parent companies. The purchase of “global” goods can be an affirmation of personal values.

Country of Origin

Pam Danziger of Unity Marketing believes that American consumers show a definite preference for goods manufactured in certain countries. “It suggests opportunities for brands to create awareness in the minds of consumers about the place of manufacture and how to position ‘place’ to influence the consumer toward purchase.”

Why AOW? Who is Annie Waterman 

Annie O. Waterman is the founder of AOW Handmade. She circles the globe, discovering new artisans and maintaining her many established relationships with workshops and artists. By attending dozens of tradeshows each year, she stays on top of design and product trends the world over.

Annie’s wealth of information and extensive network allows her to be the perfect matchmaker for her retail and wholesale clients. Many of them don’t have the time or budget to search for fabulous handmade finds in unusual plac- es. For over 12 years, AOW does the legwork so you don’t have to.”

With her extensive knowledge of local brands in every corner of the world, she stays up to date on the exciting products they create. AOW can help you easily and efficiently offer unique new products that keep you ahead of the com- petition. Your customers will be delighted with the treasures you offer, and your competitors will wonder where in the world you discovered them!