After attending PV for more than 30 years, you'd think Barry Bricken has seen it all. But that's far from the case. "There's always a new novelty out there and that's why we continue to come here," he said. Novelties, in fact, make up 80 percent of his line. Bricken and his design director, Jerry Dellova, therefore, spend all four days of the fair scouring booths for great finds.

For fall, Dellova plans to continue with colorful, textural clothing, but he said he finds himself toning the looks down a bit. "Everything is getting lighter in weight and cleaner," he said. "After seasons of heavy textures, embellishments and bright colors, we are seeing a turn toward something more subtle." The details are less obvious, too. For example, he said a jacket might be done in a plain fabric, but its facing, undercollar and pockets are more colorful or contrasting. "It's those hidden details that I think our customer will really appreciate come fall," Dellova said.

While Bricken shopped at PV on his own, WWD and Dellova set off to four other mills — two for wovens, one for knits and another for shirtings.

FILTEX: Dellova spotted a group of raschel knits in wool and acrylic. "These are a great way to follow up on the bouclé and tweed trends from last fall, but in a different way," he said. "I think treating them like wovens would be really interesting." Dellova plans to do unlined jackets in the raschel knits, making them feel like sweaters. "These really offer all the color of a bouclé woven without all the weight," he added. "Our customer wants things that are easier to wear."

CONTE: Next up at Conte were plaids injected with a bit of bouclé for texture. Again, Dellova had jackets on the brain. "This look could be the continuation of the men's wear trend," he said. "They have a fairly traditional look, but the bouclé gives them something special — it makes the fabric less flat and certainly less boring." Also important, he noted, was the fabric's washed finish, which gave it a younger feel. "So many washed fabrics looked wrinkled, which our customer doesn't understand, so this is perfect. It's still casual, but doesn't look sloppy." Each swatch also had a multitude of color in it, which Dellova said will make it easier for the Bricken customer to match with the rest of her wardrobe.LANIFICIO DI SORDEVOLO: Here, Dellova said the flat, geometric jacquard wool gauzes were another option to replace the tweeds and bouclés from last fall. "They have a slight Mod look to them, which I love, and, although they're flat, the colors are wonderful and give a great dimension," he said. While he plans to use these fabrics for jackets, he said he's beginning to think they would work for skirts, too. "The gauze fabric is so light, which makes it really versatile."

NEOSETA: After seasons of paisleys, Dellova is ready for a new print idea. "I think foulards are going to be key again, and the ones here are super," he said. Featured on wool and silk, he pointed out that these looks are clean, neat, geometric and linear. "After so much heavy print and pattern, they just look more wearable." Also important, he said, is that they're a great match for the men's wear looks he saw at the other mills. "A shirt made of this would layer nicely under the wovens I found earlier," he noted.

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