Stories for December 2005

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Friday, December 30

Suspect: Contemporary Menswear With a Twist

Suspect clothing puts a new spin on the term “fashion emergency.”...

Wal-Mart States Its Case for RFID

The reality of RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) is hitting closer to home for apparel vendors as mass-market retailers such as Wal-Mart Stores boost their mandates for vendors in 2006....

New World of Gadgetry Available to Apparel Makers

Eleksen, a British company whose headquarters are at Pinewood Studios, where most of the James Bond films were made, is planning to bring some Bond-like gadgetry of its own to the apparel ma...

Action Sports Trade Shows Kick It Up a Notch

In January, action sports retailers and vendors will notice some changes at the Action Sports Retailer (ASR) and Agenda trade shows, as the shows attempt to court both indep...

Ashworth Adds Adler

Carlsbad-based golf lifestyle maker Ashworth Inc. added a new outside director to the company’s board. Detlef Adler is chief executive officer of Seidensticker, a German manufacturer of woven shirts and an Ashworth su...

Brooks' Best

Brooks College, in Long Beach, Calif., recognized its best student designers with a ranging fashion presentation called “Equinox,” held Dec. 21 at the Long Beach Conven...

Knit-to-Shape Sweaters Under Scrutiny

One positive element coming out of the recently negotiated U.S.-China textile agreement is that knit-to-shape sweaters coming from China will not be subject to quota....

Jeantex Group Acquires Yves Castaldi Corp.

Jeantex Group, the Huntington Beach, Calif.–based manufacturer of denim for brands such as Stronghold Jeans, Blue Cult, Guess and Lucky Brand Jeans, announced it has signed ...

Bidding for Quota

The practice of selling quota visas revived...

Tommy Sold for $1.6 Billion

Tommy Hilfiger Corp. was purchased for $16.80 per share, or about $1.6 billion, by global private equity fund Apax Partners. In August, the company hired J. P. Morgan Securities Inc. to help look for ...

Fortune Gets New Tech From Microsoft

Vernon, Calif.–based sportswear manufacturer Fortune Fashions is overhauling its back-office operations with the latest business-management software from Microsoft Corp....

Tech Consultants Join Forces

Atlanta-based Productive Solutions LLC and New Jersey–based Optimyze LLC have formed an alliance to provide research, consulting and technology guidance services to mid-market apparel...

Shopping Center Owners See a Future With Bright Lights

Shopping center managers are giving new meaning to the term “retail theater.”...

Sacramento-Area Mall Fetches $15 Million in Sale

Encino, Calif.–based R&A Associates has purchased the County Fair Mall in Northern California from Santa Ana, Calif.–based Triple Net Properties LLC for $15.1 mil...

N.Y. Label Goes West

Something about Vintage Vandal by Steve Vintage, a collection of hand-screened vintage clothes for men, reminds buyers of the left coast. Perhaps it’s the line’s skate-rat-goes-to-work vibe created by ...

Melissa M

After taking a four-year hiatus, designer Melissa McElrath has resurrected her line Melissa M and updated its image from young contemporary to contemporary....

Executive Shift at Delta Galil

Tel Aviv–based private-label manufacturer Delta Galil Industries Ltd. announced that Dov Lautman, chairman of the board of directors, would take over as chief executive officer of the company. Lautman replaces Arnon T...

Bridal Group Marriage

Federated Department Stores’ bridal division, The Bridal Group, has purchased certain assets of the Mr. Tux and Squire Tux stores, a 55-year-old retailer that sells and rents out tuxedos through its chain of m...

Caruso Moves Forward on Glendale Retail Center

Los Angeles–based real estate developer Caruso Affiliated got the go-ahead to proceed with its $264-million retail-residential project in Glendale, Calif., after a rival firm withdrew its laws...

JH Design Acquires Sledge

Sportswear licensing company JH Design Group recently acquired Sledge USA, a sportswear line of sweats and T-shirts designed by Phillip Teboul....

Friday, December 23

Here Comes Santa Claus

The Los Angeles Fashion District Business Improvement District spread a little holiday cheer Dec. 13 at the Para Los Nintilde;os Youth Center, where 10 yo...

2005 Year in Review

There was more of everything in 2005....

Fantasy-Inspired Finale

“Fantasy, Folklore and Fairytales” was the theme of the Los Angeles Trade-Technical College fashion show, held Dec. 16 at the college’s downtown Los Angeles campus, and...

Booming With the Baby-Boom Generation

Da-Rue of California, the Los Angeles company whose sportswear line and retail outlets cater to the grandmother crowd, is flirting with a younger generation to grow its business....

CMC Passes Safety Test

For the second time in two weeks, the California Market Center in Los Angeles was evacuated, but this time it was a planned operation....

Among Giants: Bebe Opens on Rodeo

After more than 29 years of selling women’s fashions and opening 227 Bebe boutiques, Manny Mashouf, founder of the Brisbane, Calif.–based Bebe Stores Inc., has an address that has given him a s...

Levi's Protest

Los Angeles–based anti-sweatshop coalition Sweatshop Watch held a Holiday-themed protest in front of the Levi’s store in Santa Monica, Calif., on Dec. 17. The protesters charged that garment workers who produce...

'Tis the Season of Gifting

Frederick’s of Hollywood celebrated the Holiday season with piles of gifts and mounds of snow at the Frederick’s flagship store on Hollywood Boulevard in Los Ange...

Blue Courts Nasdaq

Commerce-based Blue Holdings Inc., makers of Antik Denim and other premium-denim labels, has filed an application to list its common shares on the Nasdaq Capital Market (formerly called the Nasdaq Sma...

Warhol Echo

William Anzevino, at right with design partner Richard Florence, calls his 1,000-square-foot store a gallery. He and Florence opened the Hollywood space on Dec. 15. Anzevino’s description of the store, Anzev...

Christmas Cheer

Children from the Salesian Boys and Girls Club and the Salvation Army Red Shield Community Center stopped by the California Mark...

Acting Labor Commissioner Named

Robert A. Jones has been named the state’s acting labor commissioner until a full-time person is found to take over the job, according to the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency, which ma...

Mealtime Law Clarified

Employees looking to collect on penalties for mealtime violations have a one-year deadline to collect, thanks to a Nov. 23 court ruling in the case of Caliber Bodyworks Inc. v. Superior Court...

Lacoste Fights Back

New York–based sportswear maker Lacoste USA announced that more than $1 million worth of counterfeit Lacoste merchandise had been seized in raids conducted in retail and wholesale businesses in Puerto ...

Warnaco Picks Up Euro Calvin

New York–based Warnaco Group agreed to acquire all the shares of the company that runs its licensed lines and related wholesale and retail businesses for Calvin Klein jeans and accessories in Europe and Asia, ...

Macy's Changes

Cincinnati-based Federated Department Stores announced several executive changes to its Macy’s division in the wake of the company’s merger with May Co. and its planned shuttering of May’s Marshall Field’s and Robinsons-May nameplates. The executive ch...

Friday, December 16

2005 Retrospective: SoCal Retail Rents Show Strength

Real estate continued on a strong path in 2005, fueled by a number of factors. Demand for specialty fashion increased the need for boutique space on prime thoroughfares in Los Angeles and San Francisco. And instituti...

2005 Retrospective: Textile Jobs Hold Steady While Apparel Manufacturing Work Continues Decline

In California, the number of apparel manufacturing employees, including those working in apparel knitting mills and cut-and-sew factories, fell by 3.1 percent to 80,200 in October 2005 from 82,800 the previous year.

Blue Holdings Adds to Board

Commerce, Calif.–based Blue Holdings Inc., maker of premium denim brands Antik Denim, Yanuk, Taverniti So and U, named Gary Freeman and Robert G. Lynn as independent board me...

Sage Goes Western

Los Angeles–based private-equity investment firm Sage Capital Partners LP has acquired a controlling interest in Western-themed apparel and footwear retailer Corral West Ranchwear Inc. Sage said it pla...

Designers Head to Hong Kong with FBI

Smaller labels, such as Desanka, face a common—but not insurmountable—predicament when it comes to offshore production, according to Frances Harder, founder and president of Fashion Bu...

Maybe Now, Liz

New York–based Liz Claiborne Inc. has entered into a confidentiality agreement with Quincy, Mass.–based retail chain J. Jill Group to allow the manufacturing giant to “participate in [the] proces...

Quiksilver's Ski Gear Goes Camo

If Quiksilver is correct, the ski forecast for Winter will be pink, camouflage and plaid....

San Francisco's Pixie Girls

SAN FRANCISCO—Saunter into Pixie Boutique in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood and you’ll find an assortment of fashionable clothing and accessories for women. The pink-hued shop is feminine but ...

Luxury Retailers Head Inland

Nationally known retailers and restaurateurs once feared to tread in Southern California’s Inland Empire, according to David White. He is a city official of Riverside, Calif., entrusted to pitch these ...

Discovery of Suspicious Package Leads to Evacuation of CMC

Workers were evacuated from the California Market Center for about an hour on the morning of Dec. 14 after the center’s security officials were alerted to a suspicious, unattended package on the CMC...

High-Tech Sewing at Vecchiarelli Store

The annual customer appreciation day sale at Vecchiarelli Bros. sewing supplies store is not for the faint-of-heart. This year’s event took place on Dec. 10, and by late afternoon, more than 3...

Wellman Adjusts Poly Price

Fort Mills, S.C.–based fiber maker Wellman Inc. will adjust the price of its Fortrel polyester staple fiber to August levels (plus an additional $0.03 per pound) to reflect the “renewed stabilit...

Levi's Legal Eagle

San Francisco–based denim maker Levi Strauss & Co. has named Hilary K. Krane senior vice president and general counsel. She begins in January. Previously, she was assistant general counsel and part...

Project Moves to Javits, Launches Seed

New York–based contemporary menswear show Project Global Trade Show will move to the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York for its next show Jan. 16–18. The s...

2005 Retrospective

If there were one word that would best sum up the events that shaped the U.S. apparel industry in 2005, it might be “China.”...

2005 Retrospective: Wall Street Gives Decent Marks to Target and Ross

One of the biggest business stories of Holiday 2005 has been promotions, and discounters such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Target Corp. and off-pricers such...

Investors Acquire Geac

San Francisco–based investor group Golden Gate Capital has reached an agreement to acquire software firm Geac Computer Corp. Ltd. for $1 billion in cash....

2005 Retrospective Retail Sales Specialty Chains: Wet Seal, Hot Topic

Liquidation companies seemed ready to pounce on Wet Seal Inc. throughout much of 2004. The retailer had long been lagging in the highly competitive teen market. For two years, the Foothill Ranch, Cal...

Future Fixation: DDC Lab Opens L.A. Store

Call it the science fiction of fashion....

Lectra Presents Awards to Educators

Technology provider Lectra presented awards to three leading fashion-school educators who demonstrated excellence in promoting technology to the next generation of apparel designers and worke...

Dirtbag Gets New Licensing Deal

San Francisco–based Dirtbag Clothing Inc. has signed an agreement with Signatures Network Inc., which will represent the Dirtbag clothing label for all of its future licensin...

2005 Retrospective: China's Gains in Apparel Imports Comes at a Cost for Other Countries

China was the king of the hill as the principal supplier of textiles and apparel to the United States in 2005. It now makes about one in four garments sold in this country. China exported $22 billion ...

Manufacturer Sues Antik Denim

A small private-label manufacturer took Antik Denim to Small Claims Court over unpaid invoices and won $5,000 from the blue-jean maker, whose highend pants are known for their intricate pocke...

Go East, Young Woman

Jennifer Heim had worked for two years as a buyer at Intuition, a boutique on Los Angeles’ Westside that focuses on celebrity fashions. In 2005, she decided that opportunity lay east....

Timing is Everything for Designers Looking to Produce Offshore

Desa Fasiska would produce her 3-year-old designer label Desanka in China—if she could....

Rate Raised Again

The Federal Reserve raised the federal funds rate by a quarter point to 4.25 percent, marking the 13th consecutive rate increase. Although the rate hike was expected, analysts say the Fed’s strategy of...

Manufacturer Sues Saks on Chargebacks

A bankrupt apparel maker has sued Saks Inc. in federal court, seeking hundreds of thousands of dollars for alleged unauthorized chargebacks and breach of contract....

Friday, December 9

Talla: Prints of San Francisco

San Francisco–based Talla Wesely’s clothing line, Talla, is all about the prints. Wesely’s richly colored modern graphics of birds and leaves printed on T-shirts, tote bags, silk scarve...

Joe's Revisits Men, Debuts Kids

Joe’s Jeans Inc., a subsidiary of the Commerce, Calif.–based Innovo Group Inc., has announced the revival of its Joe’s Men’s line and the addition of a children’s line, Joe’s Kids, for Spr...

Premium Denim: Like Mother, Like Daughter

Los Angeles–based premium denim brand J&Company has taken the signature embellished pockets and washes from its women’s line and shrunk them to fit smaller bodies....

TALA Plans Installation Lunch

The Textile Association of Los Angeles will host its annual installation luncheon in the Fashion Theater at the California Market Center on Jan. 31, where the group will pre...

Levi's Peter E. Haas Sr., 86

Peter E. Haas Sr., former executive of San Francisco denim giant Levi Strauss & Co., died of natural causes in San Francisco on Dec. 3. He was 86....

Sears to Buy Canadian Unit

Hoffman Estates, Ill.–based retailer Sears Holding Corp. announced it is proposing to buy the outstanding shares of Sears Canada Inc. for $14.54 per share following an initial $16.06-per-share distribu...

CFDA's New Chief

Steven Kolb has been named executive director of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, replacing Peter Arnold, who left in August to join John Varvatos’ design firm. Kolb was most recently executive dir...

Online Retailers Give Thanks for 'Cyber Monday'

As “Black Friday”—the day after Thanksgiving—has become a Holiday shopping benchmark and buzzword among retail marketing analysts, it comes as no surprise that those same analysts are now touting ...

A Boutique for Bags, Back Talk and More

Sassy clothes are sold at almost every shop on Los Angeles’ Robertson Boulevard. But Alison Muh wanted to give the fashionable street something with a little more bite when she opened her boutique on N...

Sirens & Sailors Adds Black Chandelier

Sirens & Sailors carved a reputation for offering designers with an avant-garde edge, such as Grey Ant and Desanka. On Dec. 2, the store partnered with Black Ch...

Tag-It Taps Eclair Prym

Woodland Hills, Calif.–based Tag-It Pacific Inc. has struck a co-licensing agreement and strategic alliance for its Talon zipper division with German company Eclair Prym. The agreement allows the compa...

Diane's Rwandan Partnership

New York–based designer Diane von Furstenberg will carry exclusively designed scarves by women from Rwanda at her flagship store at 385 W. 12th St. in New York. The limited-edition mohair scarves were ...

L.A. Port May Get Its First Female Executive Director

After a national search, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has nominated Geraldine Knatz to become the executive director of the Port of Los Angeles....

KAMA Elects New President

The Korean Apparel Manufacturers Association appointed Mike Lee as president Dec. 8. Lee is the chief executive of the young contemporary brand Poison Ivy and previ...

Bloomingdale's Ruttenstein, 69

Retail executive Kal Ruttenstein died on Dec. 8 in New York after battling cancer. He was 69. Ruttenstein was the senior vice president of fashion direction at Bloomingdale’s, where he worked for almos...

Trunk Gets Behind the Music

Santa Monica, Calif.–based contemporary rock ’n’ roll T-shirt maker Trunk Ltd. has partnered with VH1’s Save the Music Foundation, which helps restore music programs in public schools in the United States...

Cosa Nostra Refines Rock 'n' Roll

Known for his edgy rock ’n’ roll clothing, Jeff Sebelia has refined the look of Cosa Nostra into a more wearable line with cleaner styling. Sebelia made his grand entrance onto the fashion scene with ...

2005's Influential 20

California’s fashion industry held its own in 2005 amid sweeping global changes that included ever-shifting international trade policies in Asia and Central America and the formation of the largest dep...

True Religion Opens Store, Considers Opening Retail Chain

When Jeff Lubell searched for names for his premium denim brand in 2002, he decided on True Religion because virtually everyone wears jeans, no matter their background, and can find ...

Real Estate Influences Pulitzer Decision

The Lilly Pulitzer label was a standard bearer for the preppy look and a favorite of former First Lady Jackie Kennedy. Laura Lieblich gambled that the label’s bright colors would continue to a...

Paul Smith Lands on Melrose

British designer seeks to make L.A. love the suit ...

Lilja: Contemporary Knits From San Francisco

As knitwear designers for the contemporary line Lilja, Juliana Beach and Linnea Michaelson can’t help but be control freaks. Michaelson said she chose to study knitwear design as opposed to woven desi...

Fed-May Merger Could Lead to Big Chargeback Headaches

The consolidation of two of the country’s largest department- store chains means that chargebacks will probably be on the rise next year for apparel manufacturers....

U.S. and Peru Negotiate a Free-Trade Agreement

After 18 months of negotiations, the United States and Peru have come to terms on a free-trade agreement that will eliminate tariffs and trade barriers between the two countries....

Moshika: Femininity With an Edge

To Los Angeles–based designer Vanessa Carreno, fashion is not all glitz and glamour. The Mexican-born designer studied the garb of women soldiers during the Mexican Revolution of 1910 for insp...

CMC Sets Textile-Show Dates

The California Market Center has set its show dates for the next run of the Los Angeles International Textile Show....

Nygard Acquires Times Square Property

Canadian manufacturer Nygard has acquired a six-story office building in New York’s Times Square, where the company plans to locate its world headquarters. The property is located at 1435 Broa...

Bucking Trends in Fashion Markets

Real estate prices in key fashion markets may become a little pricier in 2006....

Worn Free: Tees Inspired by Lennon and Zappa

Steve Coe proved his friends wrong when they told him the wealthy and the famous would scoff at the idea of doing business with a new manufacturer....

Just Divine

On the runway, Ryan Seacrest’s men’s shirt collection, R Line, was paired with Chip & Pepper’s premium denim and King Baby Studio jewelry, while in the audience, there was ...

Promotions Drive November '05 Sales

Retailers hope cold weather boosts December performance. ...

Friday, December 2

MAGIC Adds Bling to WWDMAGIC

MAGIC International will expand its jewelry resources in February with the addition of MODEUROPE, a new fashion jewelry show featuring product from Europe. “This will be the first ti...

Jeantex Group to Acquire Sanatex Inc.

Huntington Beach, Calif.–based Jeantex Group, manufacturer of denim for brands such as ABS, Blue Cult, Guess and Luck...

Denim 'Round the World

Although denim has been a quintessential wardrobe staple for Angelenos for years, it’s still a growing trend internationally. Not everyone is on the same page when it comes to what makes for fashionable denim...

SAP to Acquire Retail Software Provider

German software giant SAP AG said it is acquiring Scottsdale, Ariz.–based software provider Khimetrics Inc. for an undisclosed sum....

L.A. Style Meets London Tradition

Young Los Angeles–based designer Corinne Grassini is no stranger to accolades. Her line, Society for Rational Dress, debuted in 2004 at Gen Art’s Spring ’05 show, “The New Garde...

Apparel Manufacturers Tap Into Techwear

Some apparel companies are betting that wearable technology will be the next big thing to hit the retail sales floor....

Blue Planet

Blue Cult goes international with insight from the world market ...

February Swim Show Cancelled

The Swimwear Association of Florida has cancelled its February Spring/Summer Miami Swim Show, originally scheduled for Feb. 5–7 in Miami. One of the smaller swim trade shows, Swim Show was cancelle...

Negotiator Named

Scott Quesenberry has been named chief textile negotiator by the U.S. trade representative’s office, replacing David Spooner, who recently hammered out a deal with Chinese officials to limit apparel an...

Pakistan Makes Push for Better Economic Ties

Pakistan is making a big push to grow its apparel and textile industry, which now makes up about 24 percent of the country’s gross domestic product....

X-Large Goes Feminine With XGLA

X-Girl’s tomboy customer is ready to show her feminine side. Enter XGLA, a new division launched for Spring 2006 under the X-Large umbrella that includes the urban men’s line X-Large and sis...

Dell Departs

Donna M. Dell’s tenure as California Labor Commissioner has ended. Her last day will be Dec. 9. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger now must appoint an acting labor commissioner to replace Dell, who took office...

Counterfeit Plea

A Newport Beach man pleaded guilty to selling counterfeit designer merchandise out of his home, answering federal charges of trafficking in counterfeit goods, according to the U.S. attorney’s office in Santa A...

Svoboda's Plus-Size Road Show

Plus-size apparel designer Jessica Svoboda is taking her show on the road with a new series of “traveling boutiques,” starting with a Dec. 2–4 stop in New York....

Simon Takes Interest in Santa Rosa Mall

Indianapolis-based Simon Property Group Inc. has acquired a 50 percent interest in the Coddingtown Mall in Santa Rosa, Calif., for about $37 million, the company said....

Paula Bradley: Creating Rock 'n' Roll Style

British expatriate Paula Bradley is a stylist with a rock ’n’ roll past....

Retailers Gamble, Experiment With Promotions for Holiday

’Tis the season to dazzle consumers with big discounts and generous gifts....

Undressing the Field of Costume Design

For those who have wanted a behind-thescenes look at the field of costume design, Holly Cole and Kristin Burke have created the complete “how-to” guidebook. “Costuming for Film: T...

All the Small Things: Denim With a Twist

As more and more premium-denim brands sashay into the already teeming market, designers are hoping to make their denim brands stand out with unique takes on the theme. From distinctive silhouettes to ...

Levi's Takes Beverly

The 150-year-old jeans brand Levi Strauss & Co. opened a more than 4,100-square-foot store at 316 N. Beverly Dr. in Beverly Hills on Nov. 30. The store will carry the full line of Levi’s products. The comp...

Stop Staring! Receives Minority Business Award

The Los Angeles Minority Business Opportunity Committee awarded local manufacturer Stop Staring! the Minority Manufacturer of the Year award on Nov. 17 at the Annual Minorit...

Competitive Research

Congress has earmarked $13 million for the National Textile Center to fund research on how to make the U.S. textile industry more competitive in the global market. The money, provided through a U.S. D...