SWATCHES

BANK ON IT: As the International Fashion Fabric Exhibition rolls into the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center March 18-20, about 20 exhibitors have donated fabric samples to help create a fabric bank for students at the Fashion Institute of Technology.
“This is something we wanted to do,” said Jonathan Larkin, president of the Larkin Group, which sponsors IFFE. “We approached FIT with the initiative, and they were in 100 percent agreement.”
In the past, Larkin said, students would often have a difficult time acquiring enough fabrics for their projects.
“We’re nurturing the next generation of designers, and we think the fabric bank will help them realize their visions,” he said.
Among the suppliers participating so far are Cranston Print Works, Mission Valley Textiles, Tillman Fabric Inc. and Regal Fabrics. Larkin plans an industrywide mailing to solicit more.
“Although this is not an initiative of IFFE, we’ve always worked closely with FIT,” Larkin noted. “We give them a free booth at the show where students can show the industry what they’re working on. It’s the kind of help we wished we’d had when we were students,” he said.

PROFIT OFF AT BURKE: Profits at Burke Mills Inc., Valdese, N.C., sank 44.2 percent to $352,000, or 12 cents a share, after a $168,000 tax benefit in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 30.
In the year-ago quarter, profits came to $631,000, or 24 cents a share. Sales in the latest quarter slid 2 percent to $8.6 million from $8.8 million.
Burke Mills said that it had increased operating schedules in the fourth quarter compared with the third quarter.
The third quarter had been hurt by the installation and startup of new equipment. In the full year, profits tumbled 62.4 percent to $944,000, or 34 cents a share, from $2.5 million, or 92 cents, a year ago. Sales declined 5.7 percent to $34.1 million from $36.2 million.
The company noted that the operating results for the year were hurt by a combination of soft demand, increased raw material prices and the delayed timing and impact of the start-up of a new dyeing facility.
Burke Mills is involved in the throwing, texturing and dyeing of spun yarns.

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