LAS VEGAS — The Doneger Group’s men’s wear overview on the opening day of the MAGIC show here is usually standing room only for retailers seeking insight into the top trends of the season.
Not this year.
With the U.S. in economic crisis, the availability of seating was a harbinger for MAGIC and the satellite trade shows last week at the Las Vegas Convention Center and surrounding venues. MAGIC Man, the oldest and largest component of the event, was significantly smaller.
Retailers scoured the aisles for items that would provide a bit of pop on their floors and lure a consumer who is reluctant to shop. Although some have begun selling a smattering of early spring merchandise at full price, merchants are being conservative, watching their inventories and expenses closely as they seek to keep their heads above water. Open-to-buys for fall were down around 20 percent for many stores and often retailers were in the market for spring goods, which they had waited to purchase until closer to need.
Above all, the quest for value drove retail orders. Manufacturers answered the call, offering just enough tweaks and novelty details to keep things interesting.
MAGIC officials declined to provide an exhibitor count, but the 900,000-square-foot South Hall, which had housed young men’s — streetwear vendors as well as S.L.A.T.E., the progressive streetwear component of the show — was abandoned. Those vendors were relocated to the Central Hall to join the classic and contemporary men’s manufacturers. Pool, one of MAGIC’s sister shows, was also located in the Central Hall, as was Premium at MAGIC, a new subcategory that brought together vendors relocated from Project, another member of the MAGIC family.
The Central and North Halls — the latter of which housed WWDMAGIC and MAGIC Kids — are just over 1 million square feet.
The former fashion show stage was replaced by registration desks and there were several areas on the floor where retailers could sit and rest while looking over their order pads. This prompted Lazard retail analyst Todd Slater to suggest in a research note that MAGIC consider merging with another Vegas stalwart, the WSA Shoe Show, usually held within weeks of MAGIC twice a year.
“Not surprisingly, attendance was seen as significantly lower, highlighted by a material reduction in key brands and fewer specialty store buyers,” Slater wrote. “Vendors in the entire South Hall venue merged into the Center Hall. Roughly 10 percent of the space was dedicated to seating.”
Taking the final spot on the mens’ portion of New York Fashion Week calendar next month will be none other than @tomford. Though he’s shown his men’s wear in New York in the past, this will mark the first time the designer has shown his men’s collection alone during New York Fashion Week: Men’s. His runway show will debut on February 6 at the Park Avenue Armory. #wwdfashion
London-based couture house @ralphandrusso has certainly been in the spotlight, having its dresses worn by @beyonce, Angelina Jolie, Meghan Markle in her engagement photos and more. For couture, Tamara Ralph focused on ornamentation — think: feathers with chain mail, jet embroidery and clusters of pearls and crystals. See the rest of the collection on WWD.com #wwdfashion #couture (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo)
Minnie Mouse celebrated her 90th birthday by getting her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. For her celebratory luncheon, @coach’s creative director @stuartvevers dressed her in a custom made prairie dress, complete with Vever’s take on the polka dot – black sequined versions – under a cropped motorcycle jacket. The designer also put his own mark on Minnie’s classic red shoes, infusing the color with sparkles and adding some Coach crystals. “We chose colors that were very Minnie and also represented quintessential Coach elements,” said Vevers. #wwdfashion #nationalpolkadotday (📷: George Chinsee)
@nickjonas is unveiling his first-ever apparel collection through a partnership with John Varvatos. The limited-edition capsule, which makes its debut in spring, also marks the first time the designer has collaborated with anyone on a line. “The process in working with Nick is amazing. It’s inspiring to be around someone who is not only connected with the trade that they do, but also with what’s happening in the environment around him, and how that connects to what we do with style,” said Varvatos. (RG: @johnvarvatos) #wwdfashion
@margotrobbie steps out onto the red carpet wearing @miumiu. The actress is nominated for “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role” in “I, Tonya” at the #SagAwards. (📷: Stewart Cook) #wwdfashion
For @massimogiorgetti of @msgm, the Nineties are his favorite decade. “They had a huge impact on my personal growth. What I like of the Nineties is that they are not so precise in terms of style as other decades…there was actually a bit of everything,” he said. As seen on MSGM’s Spring 2018 show: tie-dye and a bit of grunge, two styles that are synonymous with the decade #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @kukukuba)