BLOOMINGDALE'S FLAGSHIP OVERHAULING INNERWEAR AREA

Byline: Karyn Monget

NEW YORK--Management has given the nod to refurbish the entire innerwear department at the Bloomingdale's flagship here.
That's the word from Laurene Gandolfo, divisional merchandise manager of intimate apparel.
Gandolfo credited the "explosive" business of bras and shapewear for getting management to OK a major six-month facelift, which began in mid-May.
Gandolfo would not give figures, but she said a lot of changes would be made in the fourth floor department.
"No one has been happy with the way the floor looks," said Gandolfo.
"It's all closed in and there are no wide-open spaces. But its a very profitable business, and that's why we're allowed to redo the department."
She said "a lot more space will be given to foundations," especially bras.
Gandolfo noted that among the location changes for vendors, Calvin Klein innerwear will be relocated to an in-store boutique that had housed the licensed Donna Karan Intimates collection for the past 1 1/2 years. Klein's innerwear has been housed in a small boutique area within the panties department.
The Karan line will be moved to an in-store boutique that's been the domain of Natori innerwear for over five years. The Natori line will be relocated to designer sleepwear, which is across from its former location.
"We want to keep the designer sleepwear close to designer ready-to-wear," explained Gandolfo, pointing to the entrance of the innerwear department, which faces American and European rtw boutiques.
She further noted that two gazebos will be torn down--one that currently houses cleavage-enhancing bras in the bra department and another that features fashion daywear, in the main sleepwear and robe department.
The idea, she said, is to "create a wide-open space."
The walls along the 59th Street side of the walls will be gutted to expose windows facing the street, she said. Another wall that divides designer sleepwear and the panties area also will be gutted.

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