H-SAN LUIS OBISPO

Sep 10, 2013 1:16 AM by Connie Tran, KSBY News

Fall and Christmas merchandise going up on store shelves seasonably early

Many retail stores on the Central Coast already have fall and even Christmas merchandise on the shelves, even though technically, we're still in the summer season. It has come to the happiness and disdain of some.

"You'll see people come in and they'll go 'ugh, Christmas!'" said Tam Bailie, manager of Beverly's Fabrics and Crafts in downtown San Luis Obispo.

Bailie said their Halloween and Christmas merchandise gets delivered to the store around late July/early August. She said there is no storage, and therefore all of the merchandise must hit the store's shelves. Bailie said some customers come in and are overwhelmed by the sight of Santa.

She said, "It reminds them, 'Oh I've got to start thinking about it now. I've gotta start getting ready for Christmas already.'"

Bailie said she also must have the seasonal merchandise out early to meet some of her customer's needs.

"We're a craft and fabric store. The crafters that are selling at shows and online, which is huge right now, start beating me up in June- even for holiday merchandise, so they can get ready for those, the big selling season for them," said Bailie.

Mary Verdin, president of the San Luis Obispo-based marketing firm Verdin, said it is certainly not just arts and crafts stores that have Halloween and Christmas decorations for sale. Many large retailers, such as Costco, are ringing in the holiday season, seasonably early because sales tend to increase.

Verdin said, "They have found that by starting a little bit earlier, and making that holiday season longer, they are getting more sales, because people start buying a little earlier."

Bailie said despite the economy, people still come in during the summer months to buy Christmas merchandise, before things sell out during the actual holiday season.

Verdin said shoppers that don't like seeing Christmas or Halloween goodies out during this time of the year, may have to just get used to it.

"I think this is how things are going to be," said Verdin of the trend.

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