NEW YORK--Current business may not be so stellar, but buyers getting ready for the StyleWorks show are hoping an infusion of bright colors will energize sales through early fall. Slim pants are also prominent on some shopping lists. The eighth edition of the show, which will offer 350 contemporary and young designer lines, will be held Feb. 24-26 at the Hotel Inter-Continental. For the first time, the show will include a section of European resources. Previous editions included just a smattering of European labels, said Debra LaChance, creative director and owner. Among the 20 vendors that will be featured in the European section are Vertigo, Paco Rabanne, Tempo Paris and Isabella Co. LaChance said the show also has been targeting foreign buyers, and she expects at least 25 percent of the retail crowd to be international, up from 10 percent in previous editions. Also to be unveiled is a new service called StyleWorks Interactive, aimed at assisting manufacturers and retailers in Web site marketing. Buyers, many of them hurt by the cold weather and blizzard conditions in December and January, say they nevertheless have healthy open-to-buys for the show--and most have definite ideas of what they want. The Sandpiper, a contemporary sportswear retailer in Atlanta, was hurt by the cold weather in January. Owner Melissa Murdock is hoping that the Olympics and stocking up on whimsical fashion--"clothes with sort of an attitude"--will turn business around. "I think tourists will be looking for lightweight, cool, feminine clothes while they are here, and we will definitely be prepared," said Murdock, who will be shopping for summer and transitional fashions at StyleWorks. Murdock's shopping list includes long, flowing skirts with T-shirts and belts, flippy skirts and shots of bright colors like bubblegum pink and lilac. Connie Strunk, owner of Next Boutique Ltd., Kingston, N.Y., lashed out at what she sees as a plethora of too-tight clothes and said she is on the hunt for loosely fitting fashions. "I want clothes that someone other than a 13-year-old would wear," she said. "I don't want tight pants and tight tops. My customer is not interested in those clothes." On Strunk's list were business suits, pantsuits and narrow, cuffed trousers, as well as soft white blouses. She noted that business was down in January and is off this month, but she expects sales to improve as winter fades. "We are located on a waterfront, and so we just didn't get many customers coming here to shop because of the cold weather," she said. "Hot colors, like lime, baby blues and lavenders, is what is really exciting," said Max Martinez, owner of Max, a two-unit contemporary store in Denver, who said he will be on the lookout at StyleWorks for low-slung pants and floral print dresses for the summer season. "Our business has been strong," she said. "I think there are so many options these days." "I am keeping an open mind," said Sandy Masters, senior buyer for The Limited. "I will be looking at everything, from stretch pants to zipped-up looks." Among the exhibitors, designer Jeanette Kastenberg said she is hoping to use StyleWorks to nab some specialty accounts for Jeanette X, which has been launched for spring and already has department store accounts. The line, which features boot leg pants in coated pleather, textured lace blouses and pants and seersucker A-line skirts, more cutting-edge than her signature collection. Jeanette X wholesales for under $100, while the signature line ranges in price from $100 to $300. Jeanette X is expected to generate sales of $7 million in its first year, she said. "The fashion news is the glen plaid pants," said Susan Lizan, president of Against Gravitee, which will be showing Mondrian-inspired and fractal prints in blouses and skirts as well. The contemporary resource, with goods for spring, summer and early fall, will also feature structured dresses.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast