FASHION RETREAT: The Church of the Holy Innocents at 128 West 37th St. in Manhattan plans to turn its lower level and part of its grounds into a renaissance court and garden serving the garment center.
Father Donald Sakano, who was named pastor in July 1993, said the idea is to provide a respite from the pressures of the workplace.
“It is currently unused space, and we thought it could be used as a quiet, restful place for the working people of the area, who could come for lunch,” Father Sakano said. “It would also be used for many other purposes, including activities like fashion shows, receptions and possibly a theater group.”
Built in 1868, the church is among the oldest structures in the area. The goal is to start construction on the 5,000-square-foot space and 700-square-foot cloister garden in early 1995, and open sometime in the spring.
As a fund-raiser for the space, the church will hold an all-day sample sale on Dec. 8-9, with clothing donations from designers and manufacturers, as well as vintage jewelry donated by parishioners. The sale will continue from noon to 2 p.m. thereafter, until all the merchandise is sold.

CARONE STAYS AT HE-RO: The He-Ro Group has called off the search for a new chief executive officer, with William J. Carone, acting chairman since January, to remain principal corporate officer for the foreseeable future.
“I’ll be here for a while,” Carone said after He-Ro’s annual meeting earlier this month. The dress maker had been looking for a chief executive officer since the death of Herbert Rounick, the company’s founder, chairman, and ceo, in Sept. 1993.
Carone, who is also senior vice president of Rosenthal and Rosenthal Inc., said He-Ro “has made a lot of progress” since starting its massive downsizing in October 1993. Carone, who will work with Allan R. Bogner, president and chief operating officer, will not enter a formal contract with He-Ro and will continue to be paid a salary of $12,000 a month.
“I think it’s the right way,” he said of the contract arrangement. “This is the way the majority of shareholders are comfortable with.” The restructuring eliminated several licensed lines and focused on its two largest labels — Black Tie by Oleg Cassini and Niteline by Della Roufagali — and its 24 retail stores.
“We feel we’ve turned a corner,” said Carone, adding fall saw “a little slowdown” in sales, mirroring a tough retail climate for apparel. But “early spring bookings are very strong and at this point are ahead of 1993.”

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