By  on June 23, 1994

NEW YORK -- Gold Toe, a socks label of Great American Knitting Mills, is stepping up its marketing with new packaging, a new motto -- "all walks of life" -- and plans for in-store shops.

The line is currently approaching department stores about setting up main floor shops that would have socks for adults and children in the same area.

"Our research has shown that women frequently buy socks for all the members in a family. We are a company that can provide socks and hosiery for both children and adults," said Nathalie Roy, marketing director for Great American. The shop program is to start in spring 1995. As yet, there are no commitments from stores, Roy said.

The new packaging continues in band form but now has a goldtone photograph of the product enclosed. Before, the band simply carried the logo.

On Tuesday night, in its newly remodeled showroom at 575 Fifth Ave., Gold Toe hosted a 75th anniversary celebration and the launch of a corporate campaign benefiting AmFAR, Save the Children and Big Brother/Big Sister. The program is a continuation of the label's support of these three charities in another campaign last Christmas.

"In keeping with the 'all walks of life' theme, we've invited sports figures, models, actresses and singers to be a part of our new campaign, which directly benefits these charities," said Roy.

Guests -- including Karen Alexander, Carol Alt, Toukie Smith, Ricki Lake, Cyndi Lauper, Rosie Vela and Byron Lars -- were invited to put their feet in wet cement tiles in the showroom. Roy said that for each tile, Gold Toe will donate $3,000 to the charity the celebrity chooses from the three.

The tiles will be part of a traveling exhibition at retailers across the country to promote the brand and the proposed new shops. With each retail stop on the road, local celebrities will be invited to make impressions of their feet and chose a charity for a Gold Toe contribution.

"We want to create an 'event destination' with the new department store shops, where customers will go to see whose celebrity footprints are there," said Roy.Great American Knitting is a subsidiary of Bidermann Industries Corp.

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