By  on June 19, 2006

LOS ANGELES — The Boutique Lingerie trade show sponsored by designer Samantha Chang, in its second installment at the Gerry Building here, proved to be a small but potent crowd-pleaser in the late fall-holiday market.

Arobatherapy, Aubade, Fleur't, Hipster Music, Huit, Lavit, Panache Lingerie, Chang and Underglam exhibited novelty camisoles and boy-short sets, and assortments of lacy looks that mimicked the softer, lighter statement of the market's sportswear offerings.

"I believe in creating a more exclusive environment for intimates buyers to focus on lines without being disturbed," Chang said. "At the same time, I can give them more attention because there are no distractions, so it works both ways."

Although the June market is one of the smallest in Los Angeles, Chang estimated about 50 or 60 buyers made their way to the show.

"It's mostly a regional market, but I still felt it was important to have a small show," she said.

Judy Eisen, buyer for Cheeks boutique in Aspen, Colo., said: "A lot of the lines in the show used to be in showrooms that you otherwise wouldn't go into, so having them all in one area makes it easier on us."

Among the items she ordered were short and flirty separates from Underglam, Aubade and Elle Macpherson, citing a trend toward mix-and-match items instead of matching peignoir sets.

"Samantha has an eye for a good assortment from each buyer," said Victoria Roberts of Zovo Lingerie in Seattle. "You have your appointments in the showrooms, and you go to Samantha's show for discovery,"

"Ever since we've shown with Samantha, we've opened accounts with stores we've been trying to get in for months," said Lavit designer Vivian Baril. "It's a pretty and professional atmosphere, and she's very picky about whom she chooses."

Noah Walsh, a sales representative for Los Angeles-based Underglam, a newcomer to the show, was impressed with the caliber of buyers.

"I met with probably about 20 buyers from California, Seattle, Arizona and Jackson Hole [Wyo.]," Walsh said. "It was a fantastic turnout, especially for a June show. I think the L.A. market is starting to diversify and people are starting to realize L.A. is more of a fashion scene. And it's about time somebody brought a nice lingerie show to L.A. Before, buyers had to run around to different buildings, and now it's under one roof."

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