Lyndal Thomas, founder of LyndalT, began selling artisan flowering tea and glassware in Sydney 14 years ago, expanding into fine china in 2015. For most businesses two years of Covid has been tough and like many other people in the industry Thomas was very excited to exhibit at the Sydney Gift Fair, which was held from 18 to 21 February.
“It has been lovely to be back and meet some old favourite clients,” she enthuses.
“They have been all happy to place an order and see the latest collection because I haven’t seen them for two years.
“We have a new range of heritage colours. Previously we had pastel and bold primary colours, so now we have the new mustard, aubergine, crimson, lavender, mint green and olive green. The response has been fantastic.”
Thomas says she has noticed a significant change in the kind of buyers attending the fair compared to before the pandemic.
“It has been a mixture of buyers—two thirds have been existing, a third have been new and a lot of those have been online-based, which is remarkably different to two years ago when we last exhibited.
“Pleasingly, the orders have been on the larger size and that could partly be due to the higher number of SKUs since we doubled the number of colours within the range. There has definitely been some good spending over the last four days, that is for sure.”
One of LyndalT’s latest collections, a limited design range, is a collaboration with Chris O’Brien Lifehouse. A donation of $5 for each product sold from this collection will be given to Arterie, an art and craft initiative for patients and their families coping with cancer treatment, a cause very close to Thomas’ heart.
She has been involved with Lifehouse since 2017. “A cup of tea can make all the difference between feeling overwhelmed and being reassured. Drinking tea from fine china is a special invitation to calm nerves and offer inclusion within a community.
“Staff can share teatime with a colleague over a cuppa which is both supportive and restorative, enabling a moment to converse and talk about what’s going on in life.
“I enjoy going to Chris O’Brien Lifehouse. It is a positive institution where specialists and community come together to fight cancer, providing hope.”
Thomas adds she loved her experience at the Sydney Gift Fair and all the positive feedback regarding her brand.
“The AGHA fair has been a really lovely community—the support is beautiful and we all share the same problems. As a result, I have come away with a lot more solutions, so it is great to work with like-minded businesspeople.”