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Here, a rundown on the latest and greatest resources to hit the mart.
After entering its eighth year as a bridge line of sportswear and separates, the New York-based Iris Singer Collection debuted Iris, a new division of upscale, dressy evening separates catering to women 30 to 60 years old. The line’s main draw is its use of satin backcrepe fabric called “hokaido,” a luxurious blend of Japanese triacetate and rayon. Cuffed trousers, silk georgettes, and back-pleated skirts come in blue, sage and beige colors for spring, in misses’ sizes 2-16. Hand-painted silk and acetate blends from Italy, India, and Japan are used for beaded floral jackets and bustier dresses. Wholesale prices range from $60 to $110 for tops and bottoms, $175 to $275 for jackets, and dresses $125 to $140.
Iris, a family-run business, has 200 better specialty accounts, including Boutique Elle in Woodbury, Long Island and Ames in Los Angeles. Owner Irving Singer estimated sales volume for 2002 at $3 million wholesale.
New York-based Leilei marked its Chicago debut in August, where the 12-year-old line has been gaining recognition for offering updated looks on misses’-related separates. Sales manager Howard Kschonz described the spring season’s bright, fresh colors in citron, flame, hot pink, and turquoise. Cotton stretch denims will be introduced for spring, along with silk georgettes, 3/4-sleeved jackets, and camp shirts, which come in prints and solids. Bold, floral prints with embroidery — and an Asian-style twist — round out themes for tops and bottoms, sized 2-16. Tops are priced wholesale from $18 to $22, jackets between $35 to $55, and bottoms range from $30 to $54.
Aimed at a customer base of 35 to 65 years old, Leilei’s 400 accounts include Jack Gleason in Denver, and Nordstrom stores. Volume is projected at $1 million wholesale, according to Kschonz.
Bruce Brown & Associates
Oklahoma City-based Culturalpersona adopts a classic approach to its edgy denim line, targeting a contemporary customer base of women in their 20’s to mid-40’s.
The line’s low-rise boot-cut, dubbed “Joie de Vivre,” comes in three washes including blue, tinted vintage, and a creased rinse.
For spring, the low-rise, slim leg “Sleekster” introduces brand new Dupont fabric, a mixture of 25% Lycra and 75% cotton for an increased stretch fit. Red and white-colored denims are also new to the Sleekster cut, which have been chemically treated for a worn-look. Jeans wholesale on average for $46.
Culturalpersona’s specialty retail accounts include Bliss in Portsmouth, N.H., Crush in Malibu, Calif., and Only She in Chicago. Volume for 2002 is projected at $1.5 million, according to Hamilton.
ANDY THE-ANH P.O.W.
Suite H 314
Power of Women, known simply as P.O.W., is an interesting interpretation of urban chic, lending exotic Mideastern flavor to contemporary activewear silhouettes. Offering over 80 draped and finely textured Byzantine-influenced pieces, the line wholesales from $38 for a ruched microjersey top to $150 for a linen viscose-blend jacket. Also available are several novelty silk print blouses and low-rise, flare-cut pants and skirts in sizes 2-14. The collection’s spring color palette is a sharp contrast to the line’s earth-driven fall tones, featuring hues ranging from white and creme to coral, muted crimson, burnt orange and rose.
Vietnamese-born designer and owner Andy Thê-Anh’s use of flowing European silks along with asymmetrical lines and detailed stitching create a luxurious couture-inspired look, targeting women aged 25 to 40-years-old.
Launched in fall 2001, the Montreal-based line has 100 Canadian retail accounts and 75 in the U.S. Director of sales Dawn Shaheen projects this year’s sales volume to be $2 million.
“Whether you’re dealing with motherhood or dating, our products cover the gamut of real life topics with humor and style,” explained partner Maria Peevey, who along with co-creator Megan Weinerman, developed San Francisco-based Simply She, a contemporary sportswear line. The collection includes loungewear sets, baby Ts, hooded pullovers and innerwear sets.
The 2 1/2-year-old line expresses what Peevey described as “universal experiences” by conveying witty logos such as, “I am a busy woman” and “I’m always right,” onto form-fitting cotton and Lycra spandex blend pieces using screen-printing and embroidery methods. Top sellers include a camisole and thong set, as well as sleepwear sets, offered in classic colors like heather gray, red, and black.
Spring will feature updated looks of all items, like a racer-back tank top with inner-bra lining. T-shirts wholesale from $8 to $22, innerwear and lounge sets range between $18.50 to $34, and hooded pullovers are $22.50. Projected volume for 2002 is $1 million.
Known for its novelty and pieced jackets, Milwaukee, Wis.-based Canvasbacks introduced the Marcela collection this year as a complementary line to its current casual-driven collections.
The collection contains brocade and jacquard woven jackets in acetate, viscous and wool-blends. Jacket silhouettes are accentuated with glass buttons, mink piecing and various collar styles and trims, giving the line a decorative and refined look. Offered in dark hues, silk and viscous-blend skirt and pant separates are also available in sizes 2-16.
The price point for Marcela is higher than Canvasbacks’ other lines; skirts and pants wholesale $79 to $94 and jackets average $250. Vice president for sales and marketing Julia Wallace said first-year volume is projected to be $250,000.