PARIS -- Traffic was up and spring trends were plentiful at the January edition of Bijorhca, the jewelry and accessories trade show that ended here last Tuesday.
Organizers of the five-day show estimated that attendance was up about 13 percent from the year before, and they attributed it partly to the fact that this edition took place in its temporary venue at the Porte de Versailles, rather than its usual location at the Parc des Expositions Paris Nord, near the Charles de Gaulle airport.
Daniele Chapey, Bijorhca's general director, noted that while buyers were still exercising caution, they were actively ordering and appeared to be more optimistic as a whole than they had been for the last several years.
A spate of trends helped to spur business, and among the strongest were:
Worn metal and macrame combinations with a washed-ashore look.
Native American-inspired metals and faded fake stones.
Ethnic featuring African- and Asian-looking carved and patterned beads and earthy colors.
Botanical themes with leaf and plant motifs, as well as real flowers set in clear resin.
Most exhibitors reported satisfactory business, and several pointed out that they had come to the show with as wide varieties of merchandise and price ranges as possible to cater to as many buyers as possible.
"For this show, we widened our price range to go from very expensive to diffusion," said jewelry designer Alexis Lahellec, who is based here. "About two years ago, we also changed our price structure; our prices now average about 10 percent less."
Lahellec also offered a big selection of trends, including a best-selling Oriental-themed line as well as a group that had the look of buried treasure.
Edouard Rambaud, an accessories designer based here, expanded his line to include 12 design groups this year, as opposed to the five he showed a year ago.
"This enabled us to get four different price points," Rambaud said, noting that this definitely helped drive business for his firm. Among his top-booking groups were a Navajo jewelry series in metal and fake turquoise and lapis lazuli, sunglasses and home accessories.Elsa, the firm here that is the distributor for Christian Lacroix jewelry, showed at Bijorhca for the second time and reported a good business with novelty items such as pieces in heart, moon and sun motifs.
"People buying from us are not so concerned about price," according to a sales representative for the firm. "They are willing to pay for the name."
For one of the few U.S. firms at the show, Crislu Corp., business was said to be steady though not booming. Lloyd Crisfield, president of the firm, said that Europe is generally a good market for him and represents 11 percent of his annual volume. But he noted that in some countries, demand for his cubic zirconia jewelry has been flagging because of economic conditions.
"In Italy, we're getting murdered," Crisfield said.
“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