LAS VEGAS — The mood picked up considerably at CurveNV last week compared with a year before, as brands and buyers put the worst of the recession behind them and set out to satisfy consumer demand for affordability, size variety and newness.
“The show is about innovation,” said Laurence Teinturier, executive vice president of CurveExpo Inc., organizer of the three-day CurveNV lingerie trade fair held at The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino. “Every brand has to bring new product and retailers are looking for new players.”
There were plenty of innerwear upstarts, including nearly 30 first-timers out of 180 exhibitors. There were also more buyers — 1,923 buyers, an increase of 9 percent from a year ago.
Among the exhibitors was Snoa Lingerie, with sleepwear wholesaling for $32 to $110 and featuring eco-friendly fabrics such as organic fleece and biodegradable viscose wool, and Candace Kelly, a active line wholesaling from $39 to $99 with cotton loop terry culottes, jumpsuits and halters.
Arin Robinson, who started Zinke with her sister and premiered it last year at CurveNV, said the brand is sold at 60 stores and is becoming known for its 90 percent silk charmeuse bralets and panties. Prices are $35 to $175.
“Stores had been resorting to basics, but now they are saying, ‘We need to see that special piece in our store,’” said Robinson.
Out of all the intimates categories at CurveNV, shapewear was the leader in attracting newcomers. Joe Smith, Wacoal’s manager of international logistics and specialty stores sales, reported wholesale shapewear sales climbed 45 percent in 2009.
In the crowded shapewear field, companies are trying to carve out lucrative niches. HCI Direct, a 35-year-old company behind direct mail pantyhose, hosiery and shapewear brand Silkies, introduced Sculptz, a shapewear and legwear line wholesaling for $8 to $35.
“We identified a gap in the market for comfortable shapewear,” said Jean Vernor, president and chief executive officer of Sculptz. “There are a lot of women who would wear it or wear it more often, if they could…and [Sculptz shapewear] is not a garment that is going to hurt you all day.”
Regardless of category, price remained a critical factor in ordering decisions.
Robert Zarabi, president and ceo of Felina Lingerie and Jezebel, stressed his pricing strategy is to keep Felina bras under $40 retail and Jezebel’s under $30. Smith of Wacoal outlined an expanded value program with five full-figure bras priced at $48 at retail, compared to $58.
“It helps the retailer capture that multiple sale,” he said.
Roomier bras were a focus, as well. Smith said Wacoal offered H cup sizes for the first time. Jim West,East Coast sales manager for Chantelle, said the brand’s cup sizes go as high as 44H and that it added three-part-cup styles at every price point, notably $68, $78, $88 and $98 at retail.
“In specialty stores and department stores, the three-part-cup category has been a real mover for us,” said West.
Chantelle also presented the younger, contemporary Passionata brand, which has bras wholesaling for $20 to $35. Chantelle began testing the label in the U.S. last season. Tiffany Berrier, a specialty business manager for Chantelle, said Passionata targets professional women in their 30s with T-shirt bras being the bestsellers in the U.S.
“Our strategy is to build the brand in specialty stores and learn about the American consumer,” said Berrier.
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews
“Stranger Things” is getting a new cast member for season 2. Meet @sadiesink_, the 15-year-old who will be joining the Netflix series for its new season. You may recognize her from “The Glass Castle” with Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson, but the Texas native’s next role goes in an entirely different direction. She describes her character, Max, as “a rough and tumble skater girl [who] becomes friends with the boys at school.” The second season debuts on October 27. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdeye
Amid the Harvey Weinstein controversy, there’s another sector that’s being put under the spotlight for sexual abuse: the modeling industry. While rumors about abuse and sexual harassment of female and male models — and the photographers, agents and others who perpetrated it — have circulated within the fashion world for years, model @cameronrussell started posting stories from models on Instagram last week about abusive situations they’ve encountered — from sexual harassment and molestation to attempted rape. Over 75 have weighed in so far. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews
To celebrate its 16th anniversary, @dylanscandybar tapped designers and celebrities to create mosaics out of candy. The mosaics will be auctioned off to support the philanthropic cause of each participant’s choice. Pictured here is the mural created by @aliceandolivia's Stacey Bendet. For a first look at some of the other artwork being unveiled tonight, go to WWD.com. #wwdeye
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye
"Nowadays when life is not so happy with everything going on in the world, I think people come to me for a little bit of whimsy and color and fun." - Designer Rebecca De Ravenel on her cult-favorite jewelry line. (📸 : @vsteves) #wwd40
“Everyone is talking about how the retail industry is struggling, but I think it’s an incredible time because brands who are doing something different and innovative are setting themselves up for the future,” said @adamgoldston, who founded the luxury athletic brand @apl with his brother @ryangoldsten. The Goldston’s are part of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables. See the rest of the list on WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
@eyeswoon blogger Athena Calderone debuted her first-ever cookbook, “Cook Beautiful,” which is heavily centered on the presentation and visual expression of food. Pictured here are her miso glazed carrots from the book. Get the recipe on WWD.com. (📷: @johnny_miller_) #wwdeye