Winning Season at WWIN
Even though traffic seemed to be slightly off during two of the four-day-long Women’s Wear in Nevada show, buyers had beefed-up budgets over last year and were writing orders. Exhibitors who crowded into the sold-out show, held Aug. 19–22 at the Rio All-Suite Las Vegas Hotel and Casino, were generally pleased with business.
“It was actually phenomenal,” said Steve Barraza, chief executive of Tianello, a line of misses wear headquartered and manufactured in Los Angeles. “Order writing was up 25 percent over last year. No. 1, the right buyers were there. And No. 2, we had the right product.”
Several buyers frequenting the Tianello booth were from catalog companies associated with Gump’s, Norm Thompson Outfitters and the Smithsonian Institution. “We are getting a lot of catalog business because we are made domestically and they can test small orders and then reorder big and get it quick,” Barraza said.
Another Los Angeles–made label that showed at WWIN was Staples, a sophisticated sportswear line co-founded by Rosemary Brantley, chair of the fashion design school at Otis School of Fashion and Design in Los Angeles.
“We just had some good heavy hitters sit down and write,” said Sarah Kirakossian, who represents the line. “Seventy percent were writing for Fall and 30 percent for Spring. If they had open-to-buy, they were buying. But they are still kind of scared.”
Roland Timney, one of the organizers of the event, put on by Specialty Trade Shows Inc., said he felt it was a great show. “We had a very good Monday, and then Tuesday and Wednesday seemed slow. And Thursday was a killer day,” he noted.
The popular show—frequented by specialty-store buyers, catalog companies and resort gift shops—had 850 booths with 500 exhibitors representing 1,500 lines, Timney said, which is about the same as last year because the show size doesn’t change.