RETAILER SPOTLIGHT

Byline: Rebecca Kleinman

Reba Ruth, manager, Carol’s Closet, Gainesville, Ga.

Where she shops: “We used to go to New York and Dallas, but found that we can get everything here [in Altanta]. We shop for 99 percent of our inventory in Atlanta.”

Secret finds at AmericasMart: “I doubt if I have anything that other boutiques haven’t discovered, but Geiger and Anne Pedersen are hard to come by in our area, so, these lines are very special to us. We do two trunk shows twice a year, which are very popular.”

Tried-and-true lines: “Michael Simon and Berek for sweaters. Joseph A. T-shirts coordinated with Pulp jeans. For dressier things, we like Rimini, Montage and Karen Miller. Albert Nipon, Blue Ice and Austin Reed for suits. For mostly silk, Due Per Due is a great line. Mia Nola is a nice sporty weekend line. Resort Two and Telluride are also good for casualwear. We buy all of Brighton’s accessories, including their shoes and perfumes.”

Current bestsellers: “Our best trends are more casualwear and color. We’ve always been known for our color, though. We’re doing very well with capris, and anything with three-quarter sleeves is excellent. We also sell Brighton belts by the hundreds. The more ornate the better.
Anything in an animal print also flies out of the store, giraffe being stronger. Chocolate and red leather has been popular too. Cashmere knits are great, especially around the holidays, and embellished looks. The younger girls really like crocheted shawls.”

Biggest challenge at the Mart: “Finding daytime dresses that appeal to modern women. It’s the hardest category. We’ve found some great things from Albert Nipon, Joseph Ribkoff and UMI, but we can always use more.”

October market agenda: “Completing spring. We won’t do fill-ins, but may pick up some gifts. Our open-to-buy is up about five percent.”

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