This story first appeared in the June 23, 2010 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
DALLAS — With a newly opened yoga studio on the premises, Fashion Industry Gallery aims to attract yoga and activewear lines to the venue in the second half of the year.
Called Urban Yoga, the studio has “brought great energy,” said Jessica Baxter, FIG marketing director and manager of the yoga center. “We opened the same week as market so we could show our tenants the great new perks. We had some buyers as well as tenants who stopped in for a quick lunch class.”
Yoga classes are $10 during market, she noted, and $15 otherwise. The studio offers 22 classes a week and is targeting people who live or work downtown.
FIG, which specializes in women’s contemporary clothing, accessories and shoes, doesn’t currently feature yoga clothing or activewear, although several of its sportswear resources offer crossover pieces, including Cosabella, Love Tanjane and Twisted Heart.
“Recently, a lot of buyers say that cute, comfortable, relaxed clothing has been selling really well,” said Bekah McKee, marketing coordinator.
FIG houses 300 to 400 labels depending on the market, Baxter noted. Among the regular women’s exhibitors are Chan Luu, Elizabeth & James, Gerard Yosca, Juicy Couture, Lacoste, Michael Stars, Milly, Poleci, Rebecca Taylor, Trina Turk, True Religion, Velvet and Vince.
Bringing in additional men’s lines is a goal.
“There is definitely some opportunity to grow the men’s wear into something more dressy because we don’t really have that,” she said. “We’re targeting more contemporary, higher-end lines.”
More than 20 men’s resources currently show at FIG, many of them with their women’s counterpart collections, including Arnold Zimberg, Ben Sherman, Citizens of Humanity, Hudson, James Perse, Joe’s Jeans, Rock & Republic and Three Dots.
Management is also prepping for the FIG Finale, a biannual sale for the building’s wholesalers and retail clients that is open to the public. Slated for Aug. 27 and 28, it typically draws 2,500 people to shop discounted fashions and accessories at the end of the season.
FIG will host an undetermined guest designer at its Oct. 21 to 23 market and spotlight breast cancer awareness. The designer will be feted with a cocktail party.
The venue is using e-mail and direct mail as its primary marketing tools, Baxter said. Market previews that feature photos of merchandise have been especially effective.
“People love the images and it really showcases the lines in the building,” she said. “It’s a much more visual representation of what FIG is.”
Traffic has been consistent, Baxter said, and the venue has seen growth from states including Illinois and Florida.
“It has stayed steady throughout the recession and this year, and we are looking to grow that,” she said. “People are loyal to FIG.”
The venue has carved a niche by offering personal services to retailers, such as private tours of the building that McKee tailors to an individual buyer’s needs.
“People say it’s beneficial,” McKee said. “We need to figure out a way to promote it prior to market in a bigger way so people can sign up in advance.”