NEW YORK — If the spring edition of the Fashion Coterie is any indication, a retail revival could be on the horizon.
The trade show, which ended its three-day run here Oct. 2, saw its 1,100 booths bustling with buyers placing orders for spring. There was an array of trends getting retailer attention, from the newest fit jeans from Citizens of Humanity and Earl Jean to the latest signature scarf-print dress from Tibi and a halter bikini from Shoshanna. Spicing up the season were colorful preppy sweaters and floral dresses.
“I am seeing some of the greatest fashions I’ve seen in a while,” said Sofiya Ifaimoua, buyer for the Brooklyn, N.Y.-based Brighton Wear boutique. “The colors are great and the clothes are just overall great-looking.”
Ifaimoua was just one of the 11,800 retailers walking the floors at Piers 94, 92 and 90 on the banks of Hudson River at the ENK International-produced Coterie, where the prevailing upbeat mood effervesced from the feeling that the economy is on the road to recovery.
“I literally just came with a suitcase and have been so busy at this show,” said Deborah Sweeney, a New Zealand-based designer who showed at the Coterie for the first time. “I’ve had such great feedback. It’s such a great opportunity for me, since I am only in about six stores in the U.S. right now.”
With a wholesale range from $35 to $50, Sweeney showed an Eighties-inspired line of sweats, dresses, skirts and jeans in pink, brown and gray. The line also featured leopard-print chiffon miniskirts and pointelle cardigans in bright colors. Sweeney also showed her accessories line, which included handbags and some jewelry.
Also new to Coterie was Dosty, a New York-based contemporary firm. The line wholesales for $34 to $85 and includes pieces made for easy mixing and matching, like a soft cotton motorcycle jacket in colors such as soft yellow and tan, with pants made in the same colors.
“It’s a new and sophisticated way to look at the tracksuit,” said Dorothy Lanier, designer of the line. “It’s more dressed up than a tracksuit, but still comfortable.”Also in the line were French terrycloth ponchos and featherweight corduroy pants. Selling well were knit arm and legwarmers at $9 a pair.
Rory Tahari also made her debut at the show with her line, T21, launching for spring 2004. With wholesale prices of $35 to $200, the wife of designer Elie Tahari put together items such as white cotton pants with a mesh stripe down the side with matching jacket, and lightweight tops made for easy layering.
“The line was really born out of what I thought was missing from my own wardrobe,” Tahari said. “I wanted easy, great-looking clothes that I could throw on and run out with.”
Tibi, another contemporary firm based in New York, featured preppy green sweaters with pink tennis skirts and floral sundresses in bright colors. According to designer Amy Smilovic, retailers were looking for the updated prep look with a feminine edge.
“This has been my best show to date,” she said. “It’s been consistently busy, not a second of quiet.”
At Lila, a fast-growing contemporary line that debuted in February, retailers were looking for an alternative to the denim jacket, such as a pink cotton, tailored jacket. Also big booking were cotton stretch camisoles and cardigans, along with tailored pants in yellow, coral and pink. The Lila line wholesales for $68 to $79.
Pleated tennis miniskirts.
Preppy sweaters in colors such as lime green and bright pink.
“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