L.A. MAY HAVE 2 SETS OF SHOWS

NEW YORK — There’s a new wrinkle in the ongoing debate over the dates of the Los Angeles International Textile Show, one that may ultimately lead to two sets of shows.
As reported, the Textile Distributors Association, which endorses the show, and the Textile Association of Los Angeles, which, along with the California Mart, sponsors the show, are in a fracas over the timing of the twice-yearly event, which is held at the mart. The TDA wants to move to a January/August schedule, one the association said would better fit the selling season of the printed fabric converters who make up the bulk of TDA exhibitors.
TALA said it wanted to maintain the April/October schedule it has had since the show’s inception in 1993. TALA has granted the TDA its wish for at least one show, setting the next event for Jan. 23-25 at the Mart.
James Gordon, however, president of TDA member Gordon Textiles International Ltd., which represents 18 upscale fabric mills — primarily from Europe — has approached TALA and the Mart about mounting a second show if the dates are switched to an January/August schedule.
Gordon said the January/August timing was “meaningless” for his firm.
“The January/August dates,” he said, “may work better for the print converters who cater to the budget and moderate markets, but for fashion fabrics, the timing is all wrong.”
Bob Berg, executive director of TALA, said his organization and the Mart “have been contacted by Gordon and have had discussions about another show, but it must be stressed that nothing definite has been planned.”
Gordon said that if the January/August schedule were permanently established, his firm would “definitely not” participate.
“Our customers are virtually finished for fall planning, and we have nothing to show for spring,” he said of a January show. “The only people looking in January would be men’s wear and tailored sportswear manufacturers, and most of them are in the Eastern portion of the U.S.”
To have a show this April, Gordon said, “TALA and the Mart would have to make a decision by Christmas, or else logistically, it would be very hard to pull off.”
Other TDA members also expressing interest in keeping the April/October schedule are Majestic Mills, JL DeBall, Barn Hill Textiles and Raxon Fabrics Corp.
“[April/October] fits well with our corduroy business,” said Ronnie Mack, executive vice president of sales at Majestic, who noted that even though the company would participate in a second show, it would also be a part of the TDA show.
“We are not looking to be a rebel,” he said.

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