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"Gibson continues to see incremental flatware growth but the overall market seems to be pretty flat," said David Nicklin, vice president of marketing and licensing.
categories in that channel have challenged the flatware business.
Inspired by the arts and craft movement's simplicity of design and hand-crafted attention, Fortessa's Mission 18/10 stainless steel flatware brings classic, angular forms to the table.
"Thanks to upscale designs and improved product quality, there's no longer a stigma to using stainless steel flatware at almost any meal."
When asked what drove business in 2015, Scott Bial, group president of tableware at Lifetime Brands, said, "We address all aspects of flatware including sets, place settings, open stock, etc.
"Palais" charger, Spode "Blue Colonel" dinner plate, Muirfield "Magnificence" dessert plate, Gorham "Strasbourg" sterling flatware
Sometimes it's OK to pick flatware based on whimsy.
Many of the newest plastic-handled flatware designs cater to the more sophisticated consumer and are garnering more interest from traditional and specialty retailers on a year-round basis, vendors said.
Godinger is focusing on several variations of wood-handled flatware, including pakka wood handles as well those crafted from rosewood, acacia and olive wood.
New color treatments and plating techniques; new ways of configuring expanded sets--both upstairs and down; and retail newcomers interested in the category have invigorated the business far beyond what a modest 0.8 percent increase in flatware sales would suggest.
Owen, meanwhile, has a background in the steel business and experience in running flatware factories.