25 Years Of HomeWorld: It’s About The People

A milestone business anniversary often is an occasion that encourages reflective celebration in an otherwise competitive pressure cooker with little room or time for such sentimentality.

So with that, please indulge me while I wax a little sentimental about HomeWorld’s quarter century of covering the housewares industry, chronicled in this special 25th anniversary issue (September 15, 2014).

Early Lessons

I learned very early from the industry after joining HomeWorld in February 1990— something I’m sure many who participate in this business eventually realize— that it isn’t made up just of pots and pans and coffeemakers and hair dryers and peelers and storage containers and mops and dishes and knives and vacuum cleaners and heaters and the like. It is also made up of people that create and market all of these products.

I’ll admit now that during the initial moments of my first visit with a housewares company, non-stick coatings supplier Whitford, I wondered to myself what in the world a former sports reporter was doing at a polymer coating plant. Any such trepidation changed when I met the good folks at Whitford, whose zest and graciousness  taught me how appreciating what an industry sells starts with appreciating who is doing the selling.

It is a bonus that we get to experience housewares every day of our lives, and that helps keep us irresistibly connected to the business. Raise your hands: How many of you peek under dinner plates at restaurants just to see who makes them? You can put your hands down, now.

Covering Change

Looking back 25 years, I presume to speak for many in our organization and many involved with housewares when I say there is so much for which to be grateful, professionally and personally, from this industry.

HomeWorld Business has been privileged to cover a housewares market that has undergone more change during the recent 25 years than perhaps the 50 years before the first HomeWorld edition in September 1989. 

Our editors in this issue look back at 25 key retail developments, 25 influential trends and 25 iconic products from 25 years of HomeWorld Business. We invite you to look back, too, by sharing your views and stories on these topics (respond by using #HomeWorld25 on Facebook and Twitter).

Took A Chance

This issue also features an interview with HomeWorld Co-Founders and Co-Publishers Dave Palcek and Cynthia Evans, who reflect on an industry that 25 years ago took a chance on a new style of authoritative, statistically robust and colorful trade magazine at a time when some said another housewares trade magazine wasn’t needed.

That’s even more proof, if the occasion of HomeWorld’s silver anniversary affirms such initial trust, that the housewares industry is very much about the people. And that’s something we all can celebrate.