Retailers report good holiday shopping season
The 2018 holiday shopping season was a good one overall, according to several Carlinville retailers, many of whom noticed a particular uptick during the community’s special Christmas shopping weekend in early December.
“Business was very good,” said Cindy Geninatti of My Sister’s Closet, noting sales during the Christmas Market weekend were about the same as is typical for that weekend. “The Christmas Market definitely brings in a lot more business than just a regular weekend,” she said.
Geninatti said popular Christmas gifts at the store included the Brighton line of jewelry, as well as new leather and feather earrings and holiday decor items.
Holly Crowe of Crowe Boot and Shoe said though her company has only been open two years and therefore doesn’t have much holiday sales history to compare against, they did better this year than last year. During the Christmas Market, her store set up a booth at Cross Church. “We were able to set up a display and show people what we have, and tell them where our store is,” she said. “We had some people come in because of that.” Popular items included gift cards, Darn Tough socks and children’s slippers.
For Heinz Furniture, business varied week to week during the holiday season. “The two weeks before Christmas were slow,” said Greg Whitler. “The first two weeks in December and around Thanksgiving were pretty good, but closer to Christmas, it was slower than I thought it would be.” The Christmas Market generated some additional traffic for his store, but not a significant amount. Popular items included home decor and recliners.
Perry Brown of Mother Road Antique Mall described the holiday shopping season as “very good” for business. “We had a much better December than we did last year,” he said. “2016 was the best so far. Last year was down, and this year was back up.” He said the store saw a “huge” increase in traffic during the Christmas Market weekend, which is their best weekend of the year. “Last year, Friday and Sunday were better than this year’s Friday and Sunday; however, Saturday this year blew away last year’s Saturday. Friday and Sunday, sales were lower than last year, but Saturday was just crazy and made up the difference. It was good to see out-of-towners and good to see local folks, and we were happy to have them in.”
Popular gifts at the antique mall were vintage ceramic Christmas trees, plastic blow mold Christmas decorations, and what Brown described as “cheesy 70s” decor.