With about 750 brands spread across 300,000 square feet of the Mandalay Bay Events Center, Project Las Vegas was downsized from its previous 550,000-square-foot home at the Sands Expo and Convention Center. The factors were the intentional migration of brands to the new Premium section of MAGIC, as well as the slow economy.
Although the trend-driven show was smaller, it still exerted significant gravitational pull on retailers, and traffic was heavy and steady on the show floor, vendors said. Against the backdrop of low expectations, many attendees said the season has proven stronger than anticipated.
“I thought it was going to be a lot worse,” said Jade Howe, founder and designer of Howe, which he owns in partnership with Seattle Pacific Industries. “We actually have more appointments this season than last, and we’ve been busy all day.”
Howe pointed to the appeal of his poly-viscose suits that retail for $250, and other key items such as cardigans and $155 Japanese denim jeans as reasons for the brand’s resiliency in the retail downturn.
“We’re not going to post the same numbers we did last year, but I’m happy with the season so far,” said Eric Kim, founder of Monarchy, a division of Hartmarx Corp., which is operating under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Kim was confident his brand would survive the bankruptcy proceedings and was pushing his new higher-end Monarchy Black label, which features cleaner styles and better fabrics.
At the opposite end, Kim was also hawking an affordably priced label, called Manchester, which was previously only sold to Buckle Inc., but has been picked up by Macy’s Inc., Dillard’s Inc. and Von Maur Inc. department stores. To aid independent specialty retailers, Monarchy was offering 15 percent wholesale discounts to selected partners, with the stipulation that they not lower retail prices.
Monarchy’s high-low price play was echoed by James Hammonds, men’s buyer at American Rag Cie who said the retailer was doing best with high-end luxury product and low-cost basics.
“We’re doing well with really exclusive stuff like Rick Owens Dark Shadow and then cheap, easy basics,” he noted. At Project, some of his favorite brands included two heritage labels: Woolrich John Rich Bros. and Farah Vintage, a label debuting from Perry Ellis U.K., featuring reissues of trouser styles from the Sixties and Seventies.
There'll be no rest for those headed to Europe for men's, as Paris just closed the gap with Milan. According to a provisional calendar released by the Chambre Syndicale, Paris Men's Week will now open a day earlier on January 16. See new highlights on the official lineup on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
BREAKING: Jonathan Saunders is leaving @DVF. The designer has resigned from his position as chief creative officer of Diane von Furstenberg, the company said in a statement on Friday. At the time of his hire, von Furstenberg said Saunders’ arrival symbolized and facilitated her stepping back from the day-to-day duties that occupy the work of a full-time creative director. The British designer joined DVF in May 2016 and was in charge of all product categories. #wwdnews
For @versace_official’s spring ad campaign, the brand emphasized the archival prints from the spring tribute collection dedicated to the late Gianni Versace. Closing out the show were five of Gianni’s favorite models: Cindy, Naomi, Carla, Helena, and Claudia. Bowing on December 18, the new campaign is yet another tribute to supermodel-dom as the images by Steven Meisel are fronted by @iamnaomicampbell, @cturlington, @gisele and more. #wwdfashion
Four-time Oscar-nominated actress Annette Bening has been waiting 20 years to play Gloria Graham in "Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool," which will be released on December 29. The movie about Graham – a Hollywood star known for her controversial relationship with a younger Englishman named Peter Turner – is based off a memoir Turned wrote. "She felt vulnerable to him, because she loved him, she really did love him. And anyone that we really truly are in love with, we re vulnerable to in a very deep way," said Bening. Read our full interview with the modern icon of an actress on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @ninebagatelles; Styled by @cristinaehrlich)
The crisp white button down: a staple that can be dressed up or down and accessorized throughout the decades. Here, on a Art Basel-goer in 2017 on the left and on the iconic Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday” in 1953 on the right. #tbt #wwdfashion (📷: Andrew Morales)
Known for her work with @victoriassecret, 25-year-old model @georgiafowler is raising her profile in Hollywood. Fowler stars in @vincecamuto’s holiday campaign, which launched in partnership with “Pitch Perfect 3.” “Almost every shoot with Vince Camuto, I’ve had to face a fear…It was definitely a challenge. I’m so grateful for it, though. I’ve always wanted to be a pop star, so that was the perfect chance,” Fowler said. Head to WWD.com to read about Fowler’s experience modeling, including at the #VSFashionShow, and her relationship with Nick Jonas. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
EXCLUSIVE: Huda Kattan just became the first beauty influencer to land a major beauty deal. Kattan's business, @hudabeauty, has received a minority investment from private equity firm TSG Consumer Partners. The brand, which industry sources say is on track to do $200 million in retail sales for 2017, will receive support on product, retail and geographic expansion through the deal. Get all the details on the deal and read @_a_collins' interview with Kattan on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdbeauty #wwdnews
Peruvian model @juanaburga_official – who is known for walking the runways of @rodarte, @viviennewestwood and @torybuch – is making the move to the big screen with drama “Los Últimos.” The film premiered in Argentina in November and arrives in the U.S. and Europe in 2018. On making the switch from modeling to acting, Burga told WWD: “It’s a completely different thing – a lot of people think it’s similar or try to connect things, especially like getting used to the camera or being looked at all the time or playing these different characrers, but film is a completely different story.” #wwdeye (📷: @jgreenery)
London’s newly opened @designmuseum will look back on the life and work of Azzedine Alaïa in a show that the designer helped to curate before he died of heart failure last month. The retrospective, which Alaïa had worked on with Mark Wilson, chief curator of the @groningermuseum, will look at the impact of his work worldwide. The show, “Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier,” will run from May 10 to October 7. Read more about the exhibit on WWD.com #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @zefashioninsider)