Get ready for conflicts in February.
New York Fashion Week, which runs Feb. 6 to 12, will have some major competition from the trade show circuit during that time.
The biggest trade show, Coterie, is scheduled for Feb. 11 to 13, as are Fame and Moda, while Designers & Agents will run Feb. 9 to 11. Capsule and Cabana are both scheduled for Feb. 10 to 12.
Retailers are going to have to pick and choose where they plan to spend their time during what is typically a busy week filled with scores of fashion shows, presentations and appointments.
Usually, Coterie and the other trade shows are scheduled several days after the New York fashion shows end.
Danielle Licata, president of Coterie and East Coast Womenswear at Informa plc, said, “Yes, we are testing a slight move up of the Coterie show dates this season occurring on the final days of NYFW.
“Coming off an extremely strong September, we feel this test will give us an opportunity to even further increase buyer traffic, specifically international, which is trending up and U.S. specialty stores who often have to keep travel budget and nights in New York City as tight as possible,” she said.
She said she anticipates that some larger department stores will be stretched for time “trying to accomplish showroom appointments and the shows simultaneously, but are prepared to extend hours for early or late appointments as needed.”
On the brand side, she noted they have seen very little pushback as most of their largest brands have duplicate sample sets and enough staff to cover both, “and the smaller and International brands are thrilled at the opportunity to get a higher caliber and most robust retailer traffic to the show.”
For future seasons, they are still holding existing date patterns, but based on their findings, “it could be something we explore moving for the future,” Licata said. She noted that Informa continues to partner with the Council of Fashion Designers of America in many ways, and dates is just one of the topics they’ve discussed to create a strong New York and global marketplace for brands.
Ed Mandelbaum, owner of Designers & Agents, doesn’t believe there will be conflicts with retailers who need to attend fashion shows during his exhibition. “I have more of a concern for hotel rooms,” he said. He added that it’s too late to change anything since dates have been announced, venues committed to and flights have been booked.
Steven Kolb, chief executive officer of the CFDA, said it’s a positive that Coterie and other trade shows have scheduled their exhibitions around fashion week. “They did this because they are invested in making NYFW both editorially and commercially successful,” Kolb said.
He believes it could be a different audience and many of the retailers have large enough staffs to send different people to the various events in New York.
Officials at Liberty Fashion Fairs, which sponsors Cabana and Capsule, didn’t return an e-mail seeing comment.