Hot For Hort Couture

Hot For Hort Couture

Village Green Nursery’s Jessica Salisbury fell in love with Hort Couture when she discovered it. Instantly, she knew the brand would be a great fit for Village Green’s two garden center stores.

“Our customers seek new and unusual plant material and are always looking for new and creative container garden ideas,” Salisbury says. “I knew in order for the line to be a success, I needed to promote the line heavily in our spring ads.”

But in addition to promoting Hort Couture in ads, Village Green hosted a fashion show featuring models who resembled the brand’s recognizable Lady Couture silhouette. A designer created head pieces made from fresh flowers, and the models walked a runway holding a Hort Couture fashion plate filled with annuals and tropicals.

“My advice for people interested in the [Hort Couture] line is go big or go home,” Salisbury says. “The more you show, the more you will sell. Also, believe in what you are selling and make it work. Train your sales staff on the whole concept and do ‘manic-an’ container gardens. Customers will see the containers made up, and they will want to resemble that container.”

Check out photos from Village Green’s fashion show below.

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6 comments on “Hot For Hort Couture

  1. I love the concept and I love the press it’s getting, but more than either of those, I love the little old lady in the red coat who looks like she could give a hoot about the whole thing. She’s priceless!

    I’d like to see a follow up with more info. How well was this show attended? I realize we’re looking from the audience, but I only see five different people. How well was it received by those in attendance – especially considering it’s late August? Were any sales attributable to the event? Will they do it again and if so, what, if anything, will they do differently?

  2. These pictures reinforce something that many in our industry refuse to recognize. Generally speaking, it’s the demographic of the people represented in these photos that are (and always will be) our target customer. Some in our industry will have you believe that we need to ‘market’ to the X and Y generations more. The fact is that even the people in these photos were not interested in gardening while they were in their 20’s. It like fine wine; it’s an aquired taste that takes maturity, financial well being, education, etc. before one becomes interested. Just relax…the next generation of gardeners will be there in time. Instead of spending those marketing dollars trying to get a segment of the population that isn’t interested (and won’t be at the age of 20) in shopping your retail garden center, spend it on good high quality product and keep marketing to the Boomers.

  3. A follow up on this article….
    We did our fashion show, at our spring’Garden Party’, which is in April. This is when we launched the line. I had to create a buzz, so that is why I decided on the fashion show. Our Garden Party brings in around 1,000 guests during the weekend. The fashion show had between 50-60 guests. The age group was a great mix. After the show, we sold out of Colocasia’Mojito’ and Tiger Fern. We had 50 of each. We also sold 22 fashion plates with annuals. In our greenhouses, we had the line set up similar to how it was shown at the trade shows, which created buzz on its own. We will be doing a fashion show again in the spring, at the Garden Party. This season we will be teaming up with a local, high end, botique. The models will be wearing her fashions and accessories. The botique will be promoting this to their customers, as well, as their summer fashion show. All in all, the customers that responded to this line were of ages 25 to 60. It did not go over well with the older customer. However, we have enough petunias and geraniums for them. Our general customer is looking for unusual annuals and they want great ideas for their containers. We also have a large number of gen x and y. I am a gen x, so as soon as I saw this line, I really understood it and knew that this is exactly what our customers were looking for!

  4. I love the concept and I love the press it’s getting, but more than either of those, I love the little old lady in the red coat who looks like she could give a hoot about the whole thing. She’s priceless!

    I’d like to see a follow up with more info. How well was this show attended? I realize we’re looking from the audience, but I only see five different people. How well was it received by those in attendance – especially considering it’s late August? Were any sales attributable to the event? Will they do it again and if so, what, if anything, will they do differently?

  5. These pictures reinforce something that many in our industry refuse to recognize. Generally speaking, it’s the demographic of the people represented in these photos that are (and always will be) our target customer. Some in our industry will have you believe that we need to ‘market’ to the X and Y generations more. The fact is that even the people in these photos were not interested in gardening while they were in their 20’s. It like fine wine; it’s an aquired taste that takes maturity, financial well being, education, etc. before one becomes interested. Just relax…the next generation of gardeners will be there in time. Instead of spending those marketing dollars trying to get a segment of the population that isn’t interested (and won’t be at the age of 20) in shopping your retail garden center, spend it on good high quality product and keep marketing to the Boomers.

  6. A follow up on this article….
    We did our fashion show, at our spring’Garden Party’, which is in April. This is when we launched the line. I had to create a buzz, so that is why I decided on the fashion show. Our Garden Party brings in around 1,000 guests during the weekend. The fashion show had between 50-60 guests. The age group was a great mix. After the show, we sold out of Colocasia’Mojito’ and Tiger Fern. We had 50 of each. We also sold 22 fashion plates with annuals. In our greenhouses, we had the line set up similar to how it was shown at the trade shows, which created buzz on its own. We will be doing a fashion show again in the spring, at the Garden Party. This season we will be teaming up with a local, high end, botique. The models will be wearing her fashions and accessories. The botique will be promoting this to their customers, as well, as their summer fashion show. All in all, the customers that responded to this line were of ages 25 to 60. It did not go over well with the older customer. However, we have enough petunias and geraniums for them. Our general customer is looking for unusual annuals and they want great ideas for their containers. We also have a large number of gen x and y. I am a gen x, so as soon as I saw this line, I really understood it and knew that this is exactly what our customers were looking for!

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