High impact two days of information over-load. I thought the textile show was over whelming: enter junior apparel shows. Super sugio young professionals handing you cards and bags, asking you to come in the loud-synthesizing area with over flowing racks of clothing, where the buyer & her BFF’s are hardcore shopping and pricing. I received many bags, cards, line sheets, booklets, and bought nothing. It feels good to walk away with something.
The areas I ventured to and spent time at were:
PROJECT which was filled with the mid to high priced clothing and accessories for men and women in that young professional bracket, focused on the casual street wear and trendy night wears and accessories. It was pretty much closed by the time I got to it, being at the far end of Vegas in the Mandalay Bay CC, I was disappointed to miss out on Citizens of Humanity, SEVEN for all Mankind, and Cult of Individuality (love all their jeans). I did walk into the Adriano Goldschmied… Whoever that is has not made it to Pittsburgh yet (probably bc the jeans were over $100 at wholesale! What the what now?!). Maybe at the PGH jean Co. But seriously…
POOL TRADESHOW was also at Mandalay and I headed there before Project, looking for accessories and tech goodies. It was filled with budding designers, hand makers, and niche novelty or utility. I found my favorite Japanese toe socks, unisex bowties, and new patent pending bike gear. I do get tired of the hipster screen printing, urban outfitter replica so often remade in any show, it was refreshing to see a few stand outs in the mustache crowd.
SOURCING: Asia dominates the booth selection and China even presented a Home sourcing, which was akin to Linen & Things quality. I over heard an exhibitor say that this show never had less than 30,000 visitors. This year barely 10,000 & sales were slow or worse. Scary. However I found that Taiwan was quite impressive with their hosiery and other fashion accessories. Eco, microbial material, and “sustainable” fabrics were there and presented by knowledgable sellers like Red Pod Inc.
“Hot Technology: taking the fashion world forward” with
TUKATECH (coolest dressmaking technology)
Wildfire Interactive (recently acquired by Google)
The latter three companies were young and of the social media and information distribution channels side where Mr. Sareem, a charming older Indian man, was on the manufacturing technology side and you can see the disconnect of these worlds on the stage. Stitch, a multi-retailing panel for online merchants, was slightly cued in to that side of the world since his programming needs to understand some of the logistics, which kept the discussion flowing at awkward points. In store vs online retail and the future of virtual wallets was heavily discussed, garment fit is high importance, and personal customization is expected.
“Doneger Group: women’s summer/spring 2013 big picture”
David Wolfe, the creative director, was whimsical and honest about upcoming trends. He made us laugh and though I can’t tell you because it’ll ruin the surprise, know its all about the color However, he is as giddy about technology as I am and he shared a few interesting new concepts.
-QMilk, fabric made out of unusable milk (oh..ok?)
-Organic bacteria being used as growing garments (ew?).
-Smart E-foil, a resin material that becomes transparent when your heart beats faster (because embarrassment wasn’t quite embarrassing enough?).
-Electric foxy is a performance monitoring material that links to your computer so you can print a muscle report (?).
-And my favorite, $1,200 little 3D color resin printing machines for personal use (YES!).
“Color=Happiness for Fall/Winter 2013/14” with Laurie Pressman the VP for fashion, home, & interiors at PANTONE
Insightful, beyond insightful, Ms. Pressman’s knowledge of color in every day life into the global changes effecting vibrancy of the spectrum was as enchanting as the color stories presented. Very Eastern, inner-reflection, and modesty… Love love love!
-Endlessness (soft edge, natural pattern, reflective)
-Preciousness (eggshells, heirloom objects, heritage pattern)
-Bliss (luscious coffee, violent fig, metal luster)
-Togetherness (sinuous, melting reds, irregular finish)
-Awareness (hand sewn, sobriety, smoky clouds)
-Wholeness (nautical, tweeds, tasty greens)
-Joyousness (theatrical, inflated forms, vivid)
“The Fashion-Home Connection” with Home Textiles Today & Pressman from Pantone
The general store was the first mixing of fashion & decor items in retail. A ton of talk on the home industry and it’s relative handicaps compared to fashion industry & how to use your fashion brand to move into the sector. Most important fact about color and purchasing : 5% rational decision vs 95% emotional/intuition.