DALLAS — Showrooms reported brisk traffic at Fashion Industry Gallery’s early fall market here, which ran March 25-29.
“January attendance exceeded our expectations and March did better than January,” said Gavin Smith, director of FIG, who declined to give specific numbers.
FIG is the new boutique mart that focuses on contemporary and bridge collections and includes 38 permanent and temporary galleries in a loft-like downtown setting.
Buyers shopped for cropped bouclé jackets, fake-fur trims, trenchcoats, stoles, ponchos and retro styles that evoked the Twenties and Thirties.
“I was really impressed with FIG’s fall offerings, especially the emphasis on tweed jackets and colorful ponchos and shawls. They’re versatile and can be dressed up or down,” said Shelly Cox, owner of Cayman’s, a specialty store in Norman, Okla., who left orders for Rebecca Taylor’s snappy tweed jackets, Millie’s colorful trenchcoats and Autumn Cashmere’s luxurious sweaters in pink and purple.
Dale Simmons, a buyer at Reed’s, a 100-year-old specialty store in Tupelo, Miss., liked FIG’s mix of contemporary and updated misses’ styles. With a budget hiked 10 percent, she bought Renfrew’s colorful stretch poplin sportswear in hues such as salsa red and tangelo, Isda’s clean and classic sportswear, Dismero’s item-driven related sportswear and Tibi’s bouclé jackets with Peter Pan collars in sophisticated colors such as cherry mocha.
Katy Culmo, owner of By George, a two-unit specialty business in Austin, Tex., perused Tracy Reese’s khaki and pink dresses and sportswear that included scalloped detailing, though she prefers to mail in her orders later rather than write them at the show.
Sales representative Pam Martin said traffic and orders in her showroom were brisk. “Stores were focused and ready to buy,” Martin said. “They liked the whole lifestyle specialty approach that FIG is all about.”
In related news, New York designer Nicole Miller, who has shown at FIG since it opened in January, has decided to leave FIG and open a showroom at FashionCenterDallas in time for the June market, said Jennifer Mallicote, executive director of sales.
“We tried something new and it didn’t work for us,” Mallicote said. “We have a long history with the Dallas Market Center, and we’re moving back because we feel that’s where the traffic is and where the stores are shopping.”
Representatives from FIG didn’t return phone calls seeking comment on Miller’s move back to the DMC.