DALLAS — Buyer traffic rose 50 percent at Fashion Industry Gallery’s spring market that ended its three-day run on Oct. 29, according to director Emma Greathouse.

More than 100 retailers were new to the venue, with increased attendance from the Midwest and California, she noted. The venue, which focuses on contemporary and bridge fashions, jewelry and accessories, displayed more than 500 lines.

“We have worked with our showrooms and designers to enhance the buying experience by providing a business center, complementary valet parking…and hundreds of new lines,” Greathouse said.

Exhibitors felt the uptick.

“Our traffic was excellent,” said Greg Mider, owner of Mider Group showroom. “We had major stores come in a day early and we were ready.”

“It’s been extremely busy,” added Mila Bostanica, sales manager for Bleulab reversible denim, which showed at S. Collier showroom for the first time. “I think I picked up 35 new accounts, like Halls, Joe Brand, Elements, Tootsies.”

Susan Asmar, manager of Joey showroom, had a “great” market. “We’re selling printed caftans, glitz and constructed dresses,” she noted. “You’re in the heart of glitz and glamour in Dallas. Bring it on.”

New York designer Jay Godfrey was featured at the traditional Thursday evening cocktail party at the building’s park, and FIG interns modeled his spring looks.

Retailers reported mixed sales results. Several said business was gaining but others found it challenging.
“Business has been good, up 18 percent September through October,” said Jane Webb, owner of The Webb Clothing Co. in Oklahoma City. “I’m planning a 10 percent increase for spring, which doesn’t increase as much as fall.”

Webb, who will mark her store’s 30th anniversary next year, planned to invest in Maginn because it appealed to women of all ages, printed denim by Current/Elliott and Bleulab’s reversible jeans.
“Finally, colored jeans are selling again,” she added.

Catherine Abdalla, co-owner of Brothers in Lafayette, La., said fall sales picked up in October when the weather cooled.

As she reviewed Christopher Blue jeans, Abdalla said, “I have a more positive outlook. I love the skinny and colored bottoms and also the flowing full pants. Dresses are still huge but they’ve been trending for so long that I’m excited to see skirts.”

Abdalla planned to order from Isda, Michael Stars, Show Me Your Mumu and Brightly Twisted.

“Fall is still challenging,” said Barbara Kille, owner of Turtletique in Dallas, which vends bridge labels to executive and social women. “We’re working hard for the dollar. I am planning my spring pretty much even with last year. I love the newness in knit tops and tunics color, style, fabrication and even shapes. It’s exciting because tops can be dressy, casual or career depending on what you wear them with.”

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