Byline: R.F.

NEW YORK — As a growing number of legwear vendors launch in-store programs for retailers, stores are welcoming any help they can get.
“All of our major vendors offer in-store help,” said Karen Failes-Coad, hosiery buyer for the department store division of Dayton Hudson. “I think it’s pretty much expected. I don’t know that it translates into better space, but it certainly helps business for everyone.”
Jill Weinstein, hosiery buyer, Proffitt’s, Alcoa, Tenn., said, “Our store people feel that if they’re going to get help from a vendor, then they’re going to give that person more real estate. It doesn’t take a genius to figure it out. We have so much turnover — as do most department stores — that we’re happy to get extra service.”
Sales for Liz Claiborne socks and tights at Proffitt’s saw a double-digit percentage gain this fall, since merchandisers started visiting Proffitt’s six top stores twice a month, Weinstein said.
A third department store hosiery buyer, who didn’t want to be named, said, “This fall I made an agreement with a manufacturer. The deal was they gave me merchandisers, and I gave them aisle space. It’s definitely helped their business tremendously.”