RETAILER SPOTLIGHT

Allyson Bass, co-owner and buyer, Allyson Barrett, Northbrook, Ill.

Where she shops: “Chicago and New York.”

Secret finds: “An Italian blouse line called Nara. They’re fitted and stretchy, with feminine details like ruffles around the neckline. They come in beautiful colors, too.”

Tried-and-true lines: “We mostly do a mix of European lines — Rene Lezard, Vestimenta, Gianfranco Ferre Studio, MaxMara, Brunello Cucinelli cashmere, Gunex trousers. Others are Maria Pinto eveningwear, Cambio jeans and Three Dots T-shirts.”

Current bestsellers:
“Leathers and suedes are fabulous in everything like reversible, ostrich and two-tone looks. Soft suitings, clean-front pants, evening separates, cropped pants, basic denim, fabrics that travel easily and printed T-shirts and sweaters.”

Favorite showrooms:
“Karin Berger and Bernice Burg.”

Biggest challenge at the Chicago Apparel Center:
“Sometimes the New York vendors don’t stay long enough. Even though the show is four days long, they’ll only stay for two. We need more time.”

March market agenda:
“Fall clothing and accessories like belts and textured shawls and scarves. Also, new T-shirt lines like Tease Tee’s, pleated pants, leather, suede, tweed and cashmere blends for tops and outerwear, geometric-printed or colorblocked knits and long, lean skirts. We’ve only been open for one season, but my open-to-buy is the same as last market.”