4 OR 5 MARKETS? COUNCIL TO HASH IT OUT

Byline: W.H.

NEW YORK — The question of whether to stage four or five accessories market weeks per year — one of the hottest issues in the industry — will be debated at an open meeting of the Accessories Council March 27.
The schedule for many years has been for five market weeks, but many question whether this meets today’s buying patterns. As stores tend to buy more irregularly than before, many in the industry wonder whether four formal markets a year might suffice.
The meeting, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Amphitheater at the Fashion Institute of Technology, will start with a debate moderated by Liz Conover, president of Lopez Cambil Ltd.
Richard Graziano, president of R.J. Graziano; Marshall Ackerman, vice president of B.H. Smith, and Peter Baum, chief executive officer of Crossroads, will speak in favor of four markets per year.
Ellen Mash, vice president of sales for accessories at Liz Claiborne; Alicia Stern, president of Capezio Handbags, and Kenny Horowitz, vice president of leather goods at Kenneth Cole Productions, will speak in favor of five markets.
The debate will be followed by a question-and-answer period.
Everyone attending will be asked to fill out a survey expressing his or her position on the issue. The results of the survey will be forwarded to Accessories Council members and members of the National Fashion Accessories Association (NFAA), according to Sheila Block, executive director of the Accessories Council.
Accessories market weeks have been determined by the NFAA, a 65-year-old handbag industry group, since 1948. Harold Sachs, executive director, said he will attend the debate and looks forward to input from the industry.
Admission is $20 for Accessories Council members and $25 for nonmembers. Tickets can be reserved by calling the council at (212) 868-6750.
The group was founded a year ago to increase consumer awareness of accessories and unify the industry.

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