A guide to some of the special events, features, guest appearances and more at the slew of trade shows in Las Vegas next week.
This story first appeared in the February 12, 2014 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
SWIMMING WITH SHARKS
How many companies have a fledgling business or great product, but wish they had investors to propel them forward?
Now, entrepreneurial exhibitors and attendees can seize the opportunity to pitch producers for ABC’s hit reality show “Shark Tank” and get information on the upcoming season six and its application process.
Which apparel, accessories or technology company will be the next big thing? Depends on who can impress the self-made millionaires and billionaires who host the show, including John Paul DeJoria, Steve Tisch, Barbara Corcoran and Mark Cuban, aka “The Sharks.” Any hopefuls have to get past the producers first, so start polishing those proposals.
The “Shark Tank” booth is located at WWDMAGIC on The Concourse, Booth 72903 in Las Vegas Convention Center’s Central Hall. — Marcy Medina
AccessoriesTheShow, at the Venetian and Sands Expo and Convention Center from Feb. 17 to 19 (part of the Modern Assembly collective), will feature 57 new lines among its 500 collections, including Amy Butler, Anu, Chookie Design, Chez by Cheryl, KBD Studio, Parson Gray, Moda Luxe and Whitney Howard Designs.
Also new to the show is Kathy Hilton, who will be on hand to present her new handbag line.
The show is also pumping up its jewelry offerings, with lines including Angel Court Jewels, Barse Jewelry, Jolie Altman, Mishky and Sandrhyme Jewelry. Returning for a second run will be the Designer Lab Las Vegas, which will showcase new lines from Embrazio, Green Tree Jewelry, Kutula Kiss, My Maggies and Studio Caleidoscope.
Finally, hair accessories and hats appear to be trending, judging by the long list of exhibitors in that category, like Dye Ties, Hera’s Gem, MEMAR, Pin & Tube, Pink Pewter and Toucan Hats. — M.M.
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Attendees can hang with some of fashion’s hippest influencers at Social House, the home base for official WWDMAGIC bloggers, located in the middle of LVCC’s Central Hall Concourse, Booth 73115.
The nine bloggers are:
• Samantha Peterson, thebrunetteone.com
• Sabrina Mallah, sabrinablogs.com
• Amanda Weiss, fashionableeme.com
• Kaelah Beauregarde Flynn, thecluelessgirl.com
• Andi Eaton, ouiwegirl.com
• Annette Vartanian, avintagesplendor.com
• Esmirna Tapia, platformsforbreakfast.com
• Cheryl van den Berg, ohtobeamuse.com
• Mai Nguyen, maisassygirl.blogspot.com
They were selected through a Facebook contest, natch. Sit in on show-floor conversations moderated by Emily Kolberg and Kelsi Smith of Stylesmith, including trend reports, discovery sessions and tips on growing a brand with social media. Between sessions, post, tweet or snap a selfie with your favorite tastemaker. — M.M.
OASIS IN THE DESERT
Amid the chaos and cacophony at the apparel trade fairs, ENK Vegas is taking retail buyers on a mini vacation to Oasis.
Back for its second rendition, Oasis is a curated installation highlighting what show organizers deem the most innovative and noteworthy — but not necessarily most expensive — from among the 550 women’s brands participating in the fair.
In contrast to the square formation used in August, Oasis will be configured in a line stretching from one end of the show to the other. Because it’s adopting a smaller format, the number of brands displayed in the area has been reduced to 32 from 40.
Among the fashion, accessories and beauty brands exhibiting at Oasis are newcomers 01 by Johan Ku, DPM Fragrance, Kai-aakmann and Theodora & Callum, as well as stylish standbys like Calvin Rucker and Tom Ford Eyewear.
Calling it a destination for retailers, Sunni Spencer, vice president of ENK Vegas, said the area was created for “brands that want a special environment.” — KHANH T.L. TRAN
This directional launch space, located at WWDMAGIC in Booth 72910 on The Concourse in LVCC’s Central Hall, showcases new apps, marketing solutions and social media trends relevant to the business of fashion today.
Hosted workshops will be held daily for exhibitors and attendees to learn how these innovative products can help advance their businesses. Participants include LightSpeed Retail and iSync.
Also located at Sourcing at MAGIC in Booth 90406, Level 2 of the LVCC South Hall, Buzz Boutique features companies offering software solutions for PLM, patternmaking, databases and dressing-room technology. Participants include FastFit360, T2C and Source4Style. — M.M.
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Liberty Fairs has a patriotic streak.
The trade show is bringing back The Foundry, an installation featuring U.S.-based companies on the often unheralded end of the fashion supply chain, to educate attendees on alternative sourcing options.
Among the participants in The Foundry are embellishment specialist Basic Line, vertical cut-and-sew house US Blanks, zipper manufacturer Ucan Zippers/Catame, garment production resource Knit Generation, denim fabric supplier Cone Denim, T-shirt blank purveyor Rich Honey, and woven label producer Labeltex.
“We really feel that American manufacturing is important to the future of our business and our industry,” said Sam Ben-Avraham, founder of Liberty Fairs. “We believe in the effort and are creating ways to support the factories. We’ve been very selective with our curation this season.” — Rachel Brown
SNOOKI, JOE CAPOBIANCO AT WWDMAGIC
Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, the pint-size reality star of “Jersey Shore,” will be promoting her line Snooki Love by Double Zero in the Young Contemporary section, Booth 74206, on Feb. 19 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Also in Young Contemporary, Steady Clothing celebrity spokesman Joe Capobianco, star of Oxygen’s “Best Ink,” and one of the world’s best pinup tattoo artists, will be at the brand’s booth (#75723) for a meet and greet on Feb. 18 from 11 a.m. until show close at 7 p.m. — M.M.
A BIGGER STITCH
Growing steadily is Stitch, one of the women’s shows presented by Business Journals Inc.
Stitch aims to provide retailers “considerably more product expansion and a broader shopping experience in every category on the floor, and buyers will need to project and allocate more time to shop market,” said Britton Jones, president and chief executive officer of Business Journals Inc.
The show this season features nearly 100 new brands. The luxury outerwear category is not only larger but more diverse than any previous market, according to Jones.
“We will be seeing as much fur [as before] but also brands focused on higher-end leather, shearling and down collections — product will skew more contemporary in this category,” he said.
International designer offerings have also grown, featuring more brands from more countries under the umbrella of more established importers, to enhance the reliability of global shopping.
The show has also seen a significant uptick in exhibiting showrooms and agencies representing major regional marts in the U.S. — M.M.
GET YOUR GROOVE ON
Motown superstars The Commodores, often referred to as America’s original funk/soul band, are still going as strong as they were in the Seventies. They’ll headline FN Platform’s opening night party from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Feb. 18. Hits including “Easy,” “Brick House,” “Three Times a Lady,” “Nightshift” and “Still,” plus a few cocktails, should get guests in the groove. — M.M.
GET EDITED WITH MARIE CLAIRE
Stop by the Marie Claire Shoes First booth at the front of FN Platform to see what’s trending in footwear and which sought-after shoes are catching the eye of Marie Claire’s associate accessories editor, Elana Zajdman.
Not surprisingly, shoes are going social: The mag will be posting its top #SHOESFIRST pics via Instagram (@marieclairemag) and Twitter (@marieclaire). Print is still in the mix, too: Visit the photo studio to find out how your shoes could be featured in an upcoming issue.
Marie Claire Shoes First is in the LVCC South Hall, Level 1 entrance, Booth 81301, daily. — M.M.
ON THE AGENDA
Back for a second season in Las Vegas, Agenda, part of the Modern Assembly collective of shows with Liberty, Capsule, AccessoriesTheShow, MRket and Stitch, is diversifying its streetwear bent by bringing its WMNS section to Las Vegas. The ten women’s brands include LoveMade and Hellz Bellz, and there’s also a contemporary surf section with brands such as Captain Fin Co., Wellen Surf and Mowgli Surf.
(A stand-alone women’s show is also planned for New York.)
Also new to Agenda in Vegas are megabrands like Reebok and NB and buzzy audio brand Beats by Dre, joining staples such as Vans, Herschel Supply Co., RVCA and Polar.
Agenda is at the Venetian and Sands Expo and Convention Center, Hall D, Feb. 17 to 19. — M.M.
STORENVY.COM JUMPS IN THE POOL
PoolTradeShow, at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center Feb. 18 to 20, has partnered this season with online marketplace Storenvy.com, which will feature a microsite from Feb. 17 to 23.
On the site, consumers can buy directly from a selection of vendors (from both the wholesale and cash-and-carry sections), capitalizing on the movement toward more immediacy and direct-to-consumer sales in fashion.
Featured brands include Son of a Sailor, Pennyroyal, Rais Case and Mokuyobi Threads.
San Francisco-based Storenvy.com aims to change the way consumers discover new brands and products by creating a social and community-driven experience fueled by brands with stories to tell. The site allows users to create custom stores on their own URLs and discover brands through social sharing. Founded in 2010, the company has received $6.5 million in funding from Intel Capital, Spark Capital, First Round Capital and others. — M.M.
CELEB SPLASH AT FN PLATFORM
Meet musical multihyphenate Fergie — singer-songwriter-actress-designer — as she presents Fergie Footwear on Feb. 19 from 1:15 to 2:45 p.m. at LVCC South Hall, Level 1, Booth 81626.
And returning to FN Platform for the second straight year is “The Hills” star Kristin Cavallari, showing off her collection for Chinese Laundry on Feb. 18 from 2 to 3 p.m. in Booth 81833. — M.M.
ON THE CUSP
WWDMAGIC, along with Fashion Business Inc. and Global Purchasing Cos., will again present the Emerging Designer Showcase in LVCC’s North Hall.
The 10 apparel lines are Busayo, African-inspired fashions and fabrics; House of Perna, from former “Project Runway” contestant Amanda Perna; Isabella Rose Taylor, a 12-year-old designer; Malika, designed by Indian-born Parsons grad Malika Rajani; Doubtless USA, formerly called Nameless USA and designed by Avery Humphreys; Nina K.L., custom wedding dresses designed by Nina Lamanna; Parsons grad Paula Cheng; Rosario, designed by Mario De La Torre; Toy Syndrome, designed by Natalya Nyn, and Ziva, designed by Divya Kalavar.
Accessories lines exhibiting are Grey Vintage, Love + Leather, Shoshanna Lee and Stephanie Sachs. — M.M.
CURVENV’S EARLY BIRDS
Believing a shorter show is a more focused show, CurveNV gets a jump on Magic Market Week by starting its two-day run at the Venetian Convention Center on Feb. 17. Visitors can check out its new Web platform ahead of time to book appointments online and peruse brand snapshots.
With a focus on high-end lingerie, the show aims to be a one-stop shop for intimates buyers on the West Coast, where they can find everything from corsetry to bridal to maternity. New to the show this season are 18 lines including Absolutely Pom, Ajour, Hottotties by Terramar, Kocolala, Lamour Intimates, Love Haus, Maison de Papillon, Pretty You London and Vannina Vesperini.
Curve also features 32 swim brands from California, Italy, Brazil and Colombia, as well as men’s underwear, loungewear and swimwear. Each day, the shows hosts a retailers’ breakfast and Eveden Fit School seminars and workshops. — M.M.
People often come to Las Vegas to party, and they won’t be disappointed during the apparel trade shows.
On Monday, Liberty Fairs and Earnest Sewn are celebrating the reintroduction of the denim brand at Tao from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. with DJ Cassidy spinning the tunes and a performance by Boy/Friend.
Also Monday, WSA@MAGIC is kicking off with cocktails and conversation from 5 to 6 p.m. at Booth 65500 in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center. At 11 p.m., Diplo will get the Project and Pool crowds dancing at XS.
On Tuesday, FN Platform is boogying with The Commodores at the FN Platform Café in the LVCC South Hall from 6:30 to 8 p.m.
On Wednesday at 10 p.m., Project and Moods of Norway will lead the party pack to the Marquee for a performance by A$AP Ferg. — R.B.
NEW SITE FOR TENTS @ PROJECT
A year after making its debut in Las Vegas on a parking lot at the edge of the Mandalay Bay Convention Center, the Tents @ Project are moving inside the building. While the sight of a giant white tent pitched indoors, stretching over 20,000 square feet and adorned with teardrop chandeliers, might seem incongruous, the change of location and ambience is intended to note the shift in price points, retail distribution and editorial aesthetics for the 94 brands showing there. Indeed, it’s a Big Top for better fashion.
“It’s well-merchandised and elevated and gives it its own voice,” said Tommy Fazio, president and creative director of Project.
A former men’s fashion director at Bergdorf Goodman and Nordstrom, Fazio selects the brands exhibiting in the Tents as if he’s merchandising a new wardrobe for the season. With a focus on the chilly climes of fall and winter, he added outerwear purveyors like Andrew Marc, while catering to luxury retailers such as Mario’s and Neiman Marcus that often shop in the Tents.
“Denim can start at $195 and prices go to $5,000 for a suit from Michael Bastian,” Fazio said.
Now that ENK Vegas houses all the women’s brands formerly at the main Project show, the Tents host some dual-gender brands — April77, Drifter, J Brand, Vince and Raleigh Denim + Workshop, among them — in addition to unisex accessories from Faribault Woolen Mill Co. and Duluth Pack. The majority of exhibitors in the Tents come from the men’s fashion camp, including Savile Row-based Hardy Amies, J. Lindeberg, Shipley & Halmos and Jack Spade.
The Tents are sharing space in the main center aisle with Project and ENK Vegas so that each of the shows will manage its own entrance from the convention center’s hallway. The established premium denim brands that sell men’s and women’s, including Hudson Jeans, Seven For All Mankind and AG Adriano Goldschmied, continue to claim their territory in Project’s front row leading to ENK Vegas.
“We’re trying to make it a more seamless shopping experience for the retailer,” Fazio said. “We do have a large amount of brands at Mandalay Bay and, coming from the retail world, I’m just trying to make it easier on everybody.” — KHANH T.L. TRAN