By  on April 19, 2005

DALLAS — Buyers looked for spring and summer immediates and early fall styles at Fashion Industry Gallery’s four-day market.

FIG officials said the market, which ended April 3, was strong in traffic and sales and plans are moving forward to open a 25,000-square-foot expansion by yearend.

Retailers were greeted in showrooms with bright, pastel and earth-tone colors such as purple, turquoise and shades of brown and green, lush embroidered styles and beading, which is going forward for fall in a big way after scoring at retail for spring.

Shannon Bartkowiak, owner of Shannon’s, a specialty store in Corpus Christi, Tex., scouted for fall goods and found an array of denim styles to offer her misses’ customer base, which she said demands style as well as comfort.

“It seemed like all the fall collections revolved around denim, so I’m going with it,” she said. “I picked up Tommy Bahama jeans with a contoured fit that gives the illusion of a low-rise fit. I also loved the exotic embellishment that’s all over the place as trims.

“But I was most impressed with the toned-down floral prints and mesh fabrics, which will be perfect for my conservative south Texas customer,’’ Bartkowiak said. “Weston Wear’s turquoise, pink and chocolate sportswear looked great and so did Sweet Pea’s sophisticated but fun muted-tone sportswear that will work fine for carpool moms.”

Chantal Browning, owner of Chantal’s in Colleyville, Tex., increased her budget by more than 10 percent.

“Trina Turk is one of my favorite designers and I loved her crystal-trimmed shirts,” Browning said. “I also liked Chameleon’s fur-trimmed sweaters and Blue Genius’ fun denim jeans, which also fit really well.”

Valentine’s Too, a  store in El Paso, on the Mexican border, attracts shoppers from Juarez, Mexico, and merchandises for them, also, said Lynn Lettunich, co-owner with Phyllis Crowell.

She bought Charlotte Tarantola’s embellished sweaters, Purple 7’s loosely woven knit ensembles, Streets Ahead’s denim jeans, Sweet Pea’s mesh tops and To Be Free’s embroidered sweatshirts.

“I also really loved Rozae Nichol’s new secondary line called Common Thread and all the rich colors such as amethyst, teal, gold and burgundy,” she said.Missy Altus, co-owner of NoNo’s Fashions, also in El Paso, said she shopped FIG for deep berry colors and lots of sparkling crystals and beads.

“Poleci looked incredible, especially the bead and stitch detailing,” Altus said. “Women will like the great variety of items such as bolero capelets, tank tops, dresses, gauchos and lots of pants. I also was impressed with Parameter’s Russian-style beaded embellishment, rich brocades and velvets, and their fur-trimmed collars and cropped jackets with short sleeves — very fresh. For evening, Dina bar-El can’t be beat when it comes to elegantly draped columns with crystal details, usually in charmeuse or chiffon.”

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