Saturday, March 23, 2013

Ikal Mayang

Thank You GOD, Praise To The Lord, Bless You GOD – GOD, thank you so much for such an amazing, amazing blessing this month :) I get to set foot in Hong Kong again (for the second time) and also get to visit Shenzhen, China :) This time around, it was only just me with Leonardo. It was a very short 3 days working trip.

We arrive in Hong Kong on Monday, the weather was splendid; windy & cooling - we visited the famous Li & Fung showroom and 2 Lighting supplier’s showroom. I was so impressed with Li & Fung showroom – each concept & categories have their own glass cubicle with well display merchandise. It goes to show that they are still the ‘big brother’ of the general modern trade. It was a melting pot of everything – from sights, smells and textures. We were there for our Christmas sourcing, so we visited 2 Lighting supplier’s show room. The latter showrooms are crammed closely together, while the richer Li & Fung is a lot more spread out. As this is my first time on a festive sourcing trip, I didn’t actively participate in much. I let Leonardo do most of the asking, talking, questioning, choosing the range & assortments etc. I just stand at the side way and observe :) Probably, comparing to Jonas, I was perhaps not really that participative. Well, a Buyer has to get used to both of the good & bad words. At times, things are said that don’t make a lot of sense and it is part of the job to know how to live with that. The best thing is to know who you are always :)

On Tuesday morning, we boarded the train (first class) and we arrive in Shenzhen in an hour’s time. The coach we ride in may be first class, but by that it doesn’t mean that it comes with everything first class treatment. It just that the ticket price is a little bit more expensive and less crowded and we get to have a seat. So, with Shenzhen, I have already covered 6 cities of China – having previously visited Yiwu, Guangzhou, Kumming, Dali & Lijiang. In Shenzhen, we visited a Christmas ornaments factory. Wow, I was impressed with all of the collections, there were so many of them, so much to learn, even a single hanging Christmas ball have a matte finishing, shine finishing, glitter finishing, etc. And tinsels...there are so many types of them. Imagine this, half the size of a football the showroom for tinsels only. Awesome. There was the mainstream & upmarket collections. Most of the selection was done by Leonardo, crossing fingers that we will have a Glittering 2013 Christmas.

I discovered that I don’t enjoy the buying session as much as I used to…like back in 2011. I still love looking at the new assortments, touching the new collections, asking & checking out the latest market trends…but maybe I’ve changed. Something has changed. Perhaps it’s the atmosphere, or the situation. Maybe it’s the fact that I’ve got so much on my mind and other priorities – and that the frivolity of retail sourcing takes a back seat. I am indeed taking a painful baby step every day in learning to re-discover the job that I used to love.

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