YARNELL’S NEW KNITS: The Yarnell Group, a New York converter of woven fabrics, has opened a knitted apparel fabrics division based in Los Angeles. It is called Westville Knits and is headed by Gary Hammer, president. Hammer had been a West Coast sales representative for Yarnell.

Yarnell also said it is opening a sales and marketing office in Dallas this Saturday to service the Southwest.

AFTER NAFTA: As a result of the ratification of the North American Free Trade Agreement, KPMG Peat Marwick, an accounting firm, and the Department of Commerce are hosting a one-day conference entitled “Gain the After NAFTA Advantage.” The discussion will be held March 2, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Atlanta, and will explore details about NAFTA and how to sell U.S.-made textile, apparel, carpeting and home furnishings products to Canada and Mexico.

The scheduled speakers are Rita Hayes, assistant deputy secretary of commerce for textiles and apparel; Charles Lipscomb, chief executive officer of J.C. Penney de Mexico, and Thurmon Williams, of Sears, Roebuck. Williams currently is president of Sears de Mexico, although he is to be reassigned within the next few months, said a Sears spokeswoman.

The keynote address will be presented by Raymond E. Vickery, assistant secretary-designate for trade development, Department of Commerce.

The conference will be moderated by Irving Vigdor, managing consultant of Redwood Associates, Merrick, N.Y., an international trade consultant for the textile and apparel industries.

WESTWOOD NAMES COHEN: Westwood Inc., a New York textile supplier, has named Paul A. Cohen national sales manager for both its converting division and its Rochambeau worsted mill operation. It is a new post.

For the past 4 1/2 years, Cohen was vice president, sales, of Copen Associates’ Copen Sport division, a domestic converter of woven apparel fabrics. For 8 1/2 years prior to that, he was vice president of sales and merchandising for Ital Fabrics, an importer of Italian fabrics.

PRINT SEMINAR: Barbara Arlen, president of Barbara Arlen Design Associates, a New York textile design and stylist firm, will discuss printing techniques and applications at the upcoming Print Show, an exhibit of original artwork for printed fabrics, to be held Jan. 18-20 at Parsons Midtown Exhibition Center, New York.

Arlen will make her presentations on Jan. 19 and 20, from 8:45 a.m. to 10 a.m. in room 401 of the exhibition center. Reservations are required and can be made through the Gura Agency, New York.