Elyse Kroll is about to unveil a few surprises at Fashion Coterie.
This season, an additional pier has been added to the mix: Joining Piers 90, 92 and 94 is Pier 88.
"Like the other piers, this one will have its own personality," said Kroll, executive director of ENK International, which produces the Coterie. "We have some very solid, very important collections on Pier 88."
Some brands that will be housed on the new pier include Michael Stars, Rock & Republic, Missoni Sport, E.vil, Paola Frani and Morphine Generation.
"Cynthia O'Connor is bringing very important young contemporary brands like Julie Haus and Toast," Kroll added, referring to the founder of Cynthia O'Connor & Co., a multiline women's apparel and accessories showroom based here. "I think Pier 88 is going to be a very interesting pier."
Typically, the piers house roughly 300 designers during the three-day period, but Kroll said Pier 88 will house a smaller number, likely around 200. It will be a mix of designers who are repeat Coterie attendees, but also will welcome those collections new to the show. "We feel that a lot of people needed bigger booths, and we needed a place to expand and to give people different placement," Kroll said.
"It's also about who's willing to go and who's not," she continued, adding that some brands may have had some trepidation about pioneering this new territory. "I think it allowed us to have the collections be presented a little better and give people breathing room. Each collection will feel better now."
Another pier means more square footage for retailers to traverse and more collections for them to squeeze into their itinerary, but Kroll isn't concerned about overwhelming visitors. In fact, she thinks they should be up for the challenge.
"Whether I have [the collections] or not," Kroll said, "there's a lot to see in the world. There are shows much bigger than mine. If I can collect the best ones under one roof, that's great. If they don't want to shop everything, they're doing themselves a disservice."As well as the new pier, Kroll has some additions to her show roster. Added to the list of shows produced by ENK International are Blue, a premium denim trade show, and Climate, an activewear-driven trade show. Both shows will take place Jan. 22-24 at the Show Piers during men's market week here. They'll be housed on Pier 92 during The Collective, ENK International's men's show, though both Blue and Climate will feature women's and men's collections.
"Blue will be opened up to the premium denim collections," Kroll said. "We'll show them in a way that they haven't been shown before." While the participants are still being ironed out, Kroll said they will include the best premium denim brands in the women's market and will total about 50 collections. "We'll present them in a cool way," she said.
The show will likely feature new interiors, which are still being worked out, as well as DJs, lounges and food service.
Climate, the activewear show, will include roughly 35 collections. "I wanted to create an active show for fashion retailers — and that includes clothing, shoes and outerwear," Kroll said, noting that trade shows of this nature weren't well represented on the East Coast. "They occur more out West," she added.
Kroll said it's important to put the spotlight on brands such as Nike and Puma that will show at Climate because they've influenced the fashion market so much in recent years.
"Stella McCartney worked with Adidas, as did Yohji [Yamamoto]," Kroll said. "I mean, come on! These brands have influenced our way of dressing in such a paramount way. I felt it was time to introduce them to our retailers."
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