Kingpins New York at Pier 36/Basketball City provided insight into latest innovations to push the needle on cultivating sustainable practices in denim making. | Photo by Milliron Studios

Kingpins New York at Pier 36/Basketball City provided insight into latest innovations to push the needle on cultivating sustainable practices in denim making. | Photo by Milliron Studios


New York’s January 2024 Textile-Event Roster Attracts Attendees Keen on Green

New York City was the destination for apparel professionals across different categories Jan. 17–25 as the 2024 sourcing event calendar began with a full roster of shows. Kingpins New York, Texworld New York City and Apparel Sourcing New York City, Première Vision New York, and the New York Fabric Show boasted exhibitor rosters to suit every design, fiber, fabric, production and manufacturing need.

Despite an array of offerings at many of the shows, one consistent theme played out across the board: ecological mindfulness. Whether attendees were concerned about working with partners within their North American regions or wanted to discover alternative, sustainable fabrics, visitors to the New York shows looked forward, through Spring/Summer 2025, to become inspired, cultivate a creative vision or establish a plan for success over the coming year.

Kingpins makes it easier to make denim green

The Jan. 24–25 Kingpins New York show at Pier 36/Basketball City on the west side of Manhattan was the first to be held during Kingpins’ 20th-anniversary year in the city where it was founded. The show provided an intimate setting for denimheads from every facet of the denim category and region of the world to discuss their next steps toward creating products that are as eco-conscious as they are cool.

“It’s important that we help the community discover new products and methods that will help them meet their sustainability goals,” said Vivian Wang, Kingpins Show managing director and global sales manager. “At Kingpins, we look at trends a little differently. We look at the economic, technological and cultural drivers behind the trends. For example we hosted a panel discussion in New York that explored how denim fit is evolving and what is instigating that evolution.”

This show also included a fresh layout. Kingpins’ seminar space and coffee station, in addition to The Boxes—an innovation and trend installation—were centrally located in the middle of the show floor. Exhibitor booths stemmed from this central meeting area. “This new layout brought people to the center of the space and encouraged traffic flow throughout the entire show floor,” noted Wang.

The intimate nature that Kingpins provides allows today’s denim experts and the next generation of bluebloods to come together with a common goal of advancing the industry. Deirdre Jennings, business development manager at Sapphire Mills, an exhibitor that served as a show staff uniform–sponsored supplier, noted the event’s positivity and the opportunities it provides for building connections among like-minded denim professionals.

“The industry’s focus on eco-friendly practices and materials was obvious, and we were pleased to showcase our developments in this area,” said Jennings. “Attendees at Kingpins NY were actively seeking textures, naturals, softness and drape in fabrics. Notably, there was a keen interest in our latest sustainability initiatives at both the fabric and plant levels.”

The co-located Texworld New York City and Apparel Sourcing New York City from Messe Frankfurt Inc., with Printsource New York, hosted its Jan. 22–24 exposition at midtown Manhattan’s Javits Center, providing opportunities for attendees to explore innovations in resources such as fabrics, trims, accessories, garments and print design.

Partnering with the Milan-based educational institution Arsutoria, Texworld NYC produced a leather trend area. More than 200 material samples were showcased in the section to create a vision of aligning traditional craftwork with innovation.

More than 50 product categories were represented by exhibitors from countries including Korea, Turkey, Taiwan, Peru, China, Japan, India, Pakistan and the United States. During this edition of the show, attendance was up, exhibitors increased 10 percent and partnerships have grown, according to Walker Erwin, marketing manager of fashion and apparel shows, who noted collaborations with SEAMS and the Material Innovation Initiative.

“We had a lot of new, special feature areas. Partnerships have grown a lot in the last year. We had the SEAMS Pavilion, which was U.S.A.-based suppliers and manufacturers. That was an area we’re looking to grow. Obviously since COVID we want domestic sourcing options.”

The Mii partnership yielded an exhibition of sustainable offerings including plant-based materials and alternative resources to build greener approaches to fashion.

“Regenerative fabrics were trending,” Erwin said. “We knew it would be popular, but it was interesting to see it come to fruition and see all the brands that are actually using them.”

During its Jan. 17–18 run, Première Vision New York produced its Spring/Summer 2025 show within a new downtown Manhattan event space, the Tribeca Rooftop + Tribeca 360°.

Première Vision’s “a better way” program, which was introduced during the July 2023 installment of the producer’s Paris show, was implemented during this New York edition to present greener sourcing options based on five pillars: social initiatives, impact of production sites, traceability, product-and-process compositions and sustainability, and the end-of-life of the finished product. “A better way” is designed by using information sourced from exhibitor surveys in addition to certification agencies including ZDHC, GOTS, FSC and OEKO-TEX Standard 100.

“A lot of people today think they’re doing sustainability. They do a little checkbox off of one sustainable criterion and say, ‘We’re a sustainable brand now, but they’re not,’ explained Michelle Tam, who manages visitors marketing for U.S., Canada and Mexico. “We had signs that differentiated our exhibitors that were part of the ‘a better way’ program so people could find the exhibitors and booths that offered sustainable fabrics.”

According to Jayesh Vir, president of the French textile firm Green Whisper, which offers fabrics made from banana fiber, the largest advantage that PV New York offers is accessibility in the “fashion capital of North America,” which draws a number of United States–headquartered brands of different sizes.

“Sustainable textiles made from raw materials with zero impact on the environment. They were looking for alternatives to conventional sources like cotton, polyester,” said Vir. “Visitors had already done their homework before coming to the show. They have a clear idea of their requirement. As a result, we could make good quality contact and exchange. It was our first time at PV NYC and our experience was enriching. We had good quality contacts.”

The Fabric Shows hosted its New York Fabric Show Jan. 17–18 at the New Yorker Hotel in Midtown West on 34th Street. During the event, attendees found functional fabrics, sustainable resources, notions, trims and European collections. Exhibitors included the Ermani Group, Telio, Products From Abroad, Junior Hagen, Carr Textiles and Jose Maria Ruiz.

“At The Fabric Shows we focus on North America–based resources, and, at each of our shows we offer additional local resources,” said Susan Power, the show’s producer.

During the show, the New York Embroidery Studio hosted an interactive stand where attendees could have their event bags embroidered for a personal touch. Additional service providers included Brooklyn’s MCM Enterprises and Spoiled Rotten USA from the Bronx, which promoted local New York City production. MMODE, the Montreal-based organization focused on highlighting the region’s important brands.

Although the New York Fabric Show focused heavily on North American and local New York City–based resources, there was an international-sourcing presence. Blending a U.S. focus with a global reach allowed attendees a worldwide sourcing perspective within the intimate setting of The Fabric Shows’ model.

“While most companies are America based, our fabrics and trims are from around the world. Many of our U.S. and Canadian converters and importers have done the sourcing for buyers and bring them materials from the Americas, Europe and Asia,” said Power. “Additionally we welcome agents for European mills. NYFS also features a few select collections from India.”