Charleston Gardens specializes in home and garden furnishings, so what’s it doing selling jewelry?
The company added “vegetable jewelry”—pins made of bronze, pearls, and jade designed to look like pea pods, garlic, radishes, and scallions—to its merchandise mix this past spring. The pins sell for $75-$115.
After autumn, says Charleston Gardens owner/founder Leeda Marting, consumers generally lose interest in their gardens until the following spring. “We realized that we needed to start selling items that could perform well during the last quarter of the year,” says Marting. “And we wanted to be able to offer gift-oriented items around holiday time.” The fall catalog also offers a “gifts for her” section featuring sterling silver dragonfly pins in blue, black, or green for $85.
Launched in December 1994, Charleston Gardens has a catalog circulation of 1.7 million and annual sales of slightly more than $6 million. Marting says that she’s been open to expanding beyond gardening and decor products from day one. “As long as the additional products in some way relate to the core business, we are always looking to expand,” she says.