Colors, Convenience Dominate Accessories Trade Shows

Accessories the Show kicked off the week at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center on Sunday, where vendors displayed new offerings for spring.

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NEW YORK — Color, convenience and customized were the buzzwords floating around last week’s overlapping accessories trade shows.

Accessories the Show kicked off the week at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center on Sunday, where vendors displayed new offerings for spring. 

Personalized pieces were a popular item, with buyers gravitating toward anything initialed or monogrammed.

Three Jane designer Katie Schloss dived deeper into the niche with her map pendants, which can be customized to any location in the world.

“My little sister was studying abroad, and I was trying to think of a gift for her — she’s really hard to buy for,” Schloss said of her inspiration. “I made a necklace with a map of our house in Connecticut, that way she could have a little bit of home.”

Schloss noted that premade designs, such as landmarks, universities and islands, were top sellers, as well.
Stacking rings, a big trend for fall, remain strong sellers for spring, with several buyers saying that it is difficult to keep up with customer demand for the popular style.

“I’m loving all the gemstone jewelry and layering pieces,” said Kristin Snyder, owner of Sophie Stargazer boutique in Lancaster, Pa. “I’m [pleased] because they have been selling very well.”

With the delicate rings remaining popular at a lower price point, buyers focused on handbags to round out business. For spring, many designers rolled out larger tote bags, justifying the higher price point for buyers and customers alike.

“There are so many companies that are really smart right now about having lots of pockets and different slots, and just making it more versatile,” Snyder said. “It’s really smart. For bags, [price points] are at the higher end, because you are going to use it forever.”

Fabiola Pedrazzini’s booth was a popular stop at ENK’s Accessorie Circuit, with the handbag designer’s spring line combining the convenience of a tote with another eye-catching trend: bright colors.

“People are loving the yellow tote,” said company president Liat Dvir. “Bloomingdale’s picked us up this coming spring, so we’re going to be there with our blues, yellows, blacks and whites.”

Aram Itani, owner of the Virginia-based Aram boutique, was drawn to several vendors based on their bright offerings.

“There is definitely more color, because we just finished fall,” said Itani. “I’m seeing a lot of yellows and fuchsias, which I really like when mixed with white.”

While ENK brought out plenty of veteran vendors, including Rebecca Minkoff, Erickson Beamon, Alexis Bittar and Frye, the show highlighted 15 new designers in a centrally located section aptly named “Fresh.”
Among the designers, selected by trade show executives, was Los Angeles-based brand Jakimac, whose leather harnesses attracted a diverse array of buyers.

“[We have] two really controversial stores — Free People and Kat Von D’s gallery in L.A.,” said founder Jackie Capozzoli. “Urban Outfitters just picked up one of the harnesses, as well as some small boutiques. It’s been lots of fun.”

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