DALLAS — An expanded area of contemporary showrooms, bigger temporary shows and a continued outreach to buyers will propel FashionCenterDallas in the second half of 2005.
The $20 million facility opened in March 2004 on the top floors of the 15-story World Trade Center, showcasing more than 15,000 lines of apparel and accessories in a cleanly designed environment bathed in natural light.
"In the last 18 months, we have clearly established FashionCenterDallas as the leading national marketplace," said Cindy Morris, chief operating officer of the Dallas Market Center Co., which manages the wholesale complex. "And over the second half of 2005, we are going to expand upon this success. We see an opportunity to continue to broaden our reach across the U.S. and internationally."
One of FCD's key draws is its array of contemporary lines, and the center will pick up more in August when it reassigns 9,000 square feet to its 15th-floor neighborhood of contemporary showrooms, for a total of more than 125,000 square feet. The DMC is negotiating with seven to 10 new showrooms to occupy the space, which formerly housed swim vendors. The swimwear is moving to a dedicated area on the 14th floor.
"We are pleased that demand for contemporary space in FashionCenterDallas has grown since it opened," Morris said, noting the new showrooms are due to open in time for market week, Aug. 18-21.
The center's temporary shows are also on the upswing. They currently include about 135 booths in the juried Scene show of contemporary, bridge and accessories categories on the 13th floor, and Temporaries on 12, which spans 700 booths of upper-moderate-priced merchandise on the 12th floor, including prom, shoes, Western wear and a variety of sportswear and accessories.
"In the last three markets, the temporary shows have become a serious destination," said Peg Canter, vice president of apparel trade shows. "I've had lots of stores tell me they have found product that is not represented in their competition, and they have gotten really good markups."
In response to demand from resources that are too pricey for Temporaries on 12 but not contemporary enough for Scene, Canter plans to create a new temporary show of juried misses' collections next to Scene."I'm looking into creating a 100-booth show for them," Canter said.
She was not sure if the new show would make its debut at market week Oct. 27-30 or next March, but was leaning toward next year so that the project could be sufficiently budgeted in 2006.
In the short term, Canter intends to boost prom business in August by hosting three associations of prom stores — the Cool Book, the National Prom Association and Hot Shot — that collectively represent about 75 stores in Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Arkansas.
To serve them, the DMC will underwrite a two-day prom seminar and fashion show, and provide breakfast, lunch and meeting places for retailers. About 100 exhibitors are expected to lease booths for the show, and all prom vendors in the building will be invited to participate in the fashion show, she said.
Earlier this year, Canter moved temporary shoe exhibitors from the first floor to the 12th floor for closer proximity to fashion buyers and to increase the number of exhibitors. The shoe show numbers about 25 booths and is expected to grow.
In addition, a 10,000-square-foot Mexico pavilion will open this month on the sixth floor to promote fashion accessories and home products. According to the DMC, it will represent the first permanent showroom of Mexican products in the United States.
On the marketing front, FCD will energize its ad campaign in July with the new slogan, "Find Your Center."
The DMC has recently concentrated on attracting Florida retailers. "Since FashionCenterDallas opened, we have seen an increase in out-of-territory attendance by more than 25 percent, particularly from the East and West Coasts," Morris said. "Our retail development efforts continue to attract buyers from a large geographic zone supported by retail road trips, telemarketing and targeted direct marketing efforts."
“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