Q&A: Alison Garrison, Maine Street Living, Vice President

Colorful Penguins is one of a  collection of  bedding sets launching under a new license with Ed Heck.  mainestreetliving.com

Colorful Penguins is one of a collection of bedding sets launching under a new license with Ed Heck. mainestreetliving.com

What special initiatives are you implementing to boost your business?
Maine Street Living will launch the Ed Heck home goods line at the New York Home Fashions Market from Sept. 19-23. Our customers will see a “world” of space dedicated to Ed Heck and the many textile home goods items we are introducing at market. From packaging design to product construction, the Ed Heck line will incorporate artwork from both his books and his paintings. Product events and rollouts, including this September launch, will also feature displays of gallery artwork and book signings where you can meet the artist behind the design. In addition, the Ed Heck license is coming to the travel industry and will be debuted in March 2012 at the Travel Goods Show in Las Vegas. Ed Heck’s licensed products will be featured in luggage and travel-related items in addition to a line of home products for bed and bath including sleepwear. In the fourth quarter, the sleepwear initiative will roll out at major baby retailers. This line will include infant layette sets and youth and adult sleepwear.

What are the details on the Ed Heck licensed program? Why is this license so compelling from your point of view? What are your expectations for this collection?
Yes, “the world is going to Heck!” World-renowned pop-culture artist and published children’s author Ed Heck has artwork shows in galleries around the globe. Why partner with Ed Heck? Because his brilliant satirical humor and bright characters connect with people of all ages. Ed Heck’s art will make you smile. The “world of Ed Heck” will bring together generations with colorful inspirations. Consumers can design a nursery, spruce up a child’s room or create a whimsical office space. His appeal to all cultures in these home and travel initiatives make the marketing possibilities unlimited.

How do you differentiate your company from the competition?
Maine Street Living believes in offering customers a quality product at the best value. Our soy-based EnviroTech™ memory-foam brand is just one example of our success in design, development and marketing to a broad customer base. Our products are featured in TV markets and at mass retailers. We have earned a reputation for quality due to established partnerships with factories around the world for over 20 years. When a buyer, and ultimately a consumer, chooses Maine Street Living product, they are getting the very best in design, innovation, production and customer support.

What is your forecast for business for the remainder of 2011? What factors will drive your business for the rest of this year?
We have several textile initiatives over and above our new Ed Heck line that will contribute to our success.  Our EnviroTech™ line continues to grow in the industry and has done very well in both the U.S. and Canadian TV markets and retailers.  Towards the end of 2011, EnviroTech™ will also be seen in U.K. and Germany markets. Our lines in blankets, sheet sets and top of the bed (Casco Bay Comfort, Scarborough Linens and New England Bedding) are also leading performers. One of our strongest items is an exclusively designed seven-piece fleece sheet set which was a top sales generator for the third and fourth quarters in 2010 and will exceed projected expectations in this year 2011. For the remaining of the year, Maine Street Living is rolling out several Rug Gallery shows for the TV markets in the U.S., Canada and U.K.  We expect to see the Ed Heck line in mass retailers throughout the U.S. at end of the third quarter and beginning of fourth quarter.