L.A. MARKET WEEK
July L.A. Market Serves Buyers Filling In and Looking Toward 2020
The July 28–31 market in Los Angeles attracted buyers placing orders for everything from Immediates to Fall 2019 fill-in pieces as well as those springing ahead to next year. Showroom buildings visited by buyers included the California Market Center, The New Mart, the Cooper Design Space and its resident show Brand Assembly, and the Gerry Building.
Color, workwear and niche looks popular at CMC
Mimo Boghossian of the Rue de Mimo boutique in South Pasadena, Calif., can be found shopping at almost every L.A. Fashion Market. For Boghossian, this market was bursting with color at the CMC.
“I’m seeing a lot of bright color palettes,” she said. “I’m seeing a lot of pinks. Mustards are still strong.”
Boghossian was going through the styles at the Sharon Koshet Sales showroom, where owner Sharon Koshet said the market was fairly steady.
“Even though it is a slower show, I still do my phone calls. It brings in people who don’t go to Las Vegas,” she said of MAGIC and its satellite shows, which are slated for Aug. 12–15.
Barbara Fields of the Barbara Fields Buying Office also weighed in on trends. Floral prints have been big, she said. She also flagged some silhouettes that have been trending for juniors. Tube tops and bra tops in solid colors, stripes and prints have been popular. “The workwear trend is hot,” she said. “It’s been big in belted cargo pants, rompers and joggers.”
Having an individual point of view is important for any showroom, said Rosanne Tritica, co-owner of the Betty Bottom Showroom. Tritica’s customers typically look for jackets and other items with unique details.
“We developed our own niche,” she said. “It is the details that make an item great.”
Fall into Spring at The New Mart
At The New Mart, shopping for the San Carlos, Calif., boutique Holly Hill Urban Style, Holly Hill and store manager Shelley Hill were searching for Spring 2020 collections with wholesale prices falling within the $30 to $50 range but found that they were a bit ahead of the game searching for Spring goods.
“Not a lot of people have Spring yet. It’s too early, and we’re bought up for Fall. We’re looking for a bit of fill-ins for Fall and Immediates in jewelry and accessories,” said Holly Hill. “For Fall, we’re looking for good burgundies, berries and golds.”
At his eponymous showroom, Michael Bush saw buyers who wanted Immediates and were looking toward the future as he showed his lines Qué, Insight and Last Tango. He saw buyers from California and Idaho who were buying through March 2020.
“Half of my sales are Immediates and half are for the future. That is every single market,” he said. “If I have compelling product and it’s six months out, they’ll buy it.”
In town to see Eileen Fisher, Beth Bauerle, who owns the 6,000-square-foot Main Paige The Store, located in Grand Junction, Colo., also wrote orders at Johnny Was and other showrooms during her visit to L.A. Market Week. Stocking her high-end boutique, which serves women ages 30 to 60, with more sophisticated styles was her goal for this market.
“I come to Los Angeles three times a year for Eileen Fisher, and I write lines all day. I needed some fill-ins for Fall, for October/November and some Holiday,” she said. “Blush is huge right now—people love it because it looks pretty with their faces. Blues are always the strongest because they are the easiest hues to wear.”
Tie-dye, sequins, animal prints trending at Cooper Design Space
Israel Ramirez, owner of the Siblings Showroom at the Cooper, said that tie-dye was an important look for Resort and pre-Spring, with sequins and prints also strong.
Big trends played a role in the small market. Ramirez said he saw a lot less traffic than at other L.A Markets but that traffic was steady. “It was in line with what I’m accustomed to seeing this time of year,” he said. Retailers visiting the market included the specialty boutique M.Frederic, which runs eight standalone bricks-and-mortar locations and six locations in airports. Also seen at the market was Ambience San Francisco, which runs four boutiques in San Francisco.
Nicole Friedman Mariani of the Cooper’s Collective Showroom also agreed that traffic was good for a small market. “Retailers are coming here to catch up and make reorders,” she said.
The Brand Assembly trade show produced its third July market show at the Cooper, said Adam Eisenhut, the event’s vice president. Twenty brands exhibited this time, while some Brand Assembly shows can see 150 brands exhibit, he said.
Shelda Hartwell, vice-president of Directives West, the merchandising consulting division of The Doneger Group, said that Brand Assembly styles were colorful and feminine.
“Centerstage is still color, from blended shades of tie-dye, bright pops of color and textured, warm neutral tones,” she said. “Luxurious sweaters, easy-wear lounge and daywear lingerie stood out. Label highlights; Mate the Label, Jet, Scotch & Soda and Monrow, to name a few.”
Gerry sees traffic from luxury retailers
Showrooms within the Gerry Building saw buyers who were visiting their trusted wholesale partners for a more personalized experience in a calmer atmosphere. At the Joey Miller Sales Showroom, buyers were investing in versatile one-size-fits-all knits in hues of icy blue and red from Istanbul’s B & K Moda, priced at $33 to $42 for Fall pieces.
“We had a lot of Colorado, Indiana, Hawaii and locals from Pasadena,” said Miller.
Traveling to Los Angeles to shop for their Tucson, Ariz.–based Showcase at Canyon Ranch, a boutique at the famed luxury property, Peter Molk and Robyn Molk were searching for specialty-driven merchandise and new lines.
Interested in fabrics that offer a soft hand for their affluent clientele, they visited the Jamie Prince Showroom,where they foundlinens for Spring and ordered T-shirts from the Stewart Archer Showroom.
“We like to buy things that are closer to our season, and some of these lines have Immediate merchandise,” said Peter Molk, but he mentioned that they were also interested in Spring 2020. “Our Fall is bought up, so we’re also looking for January through February deliveries for Spring.”
The pair finds this market useful as it allows them to bypass attending shows in Las Vegas and instead head south to attend the Active Collective show running July 31–Aug. 1 in Anaheim, Calif.
“We come three or four times a year,” said Robyn Molk. “We’ll come again in October, which is the big one.”