Thursday, August 12, 2010

Intermezzo Fashion Trade Show

After taking a 2 year hiatus from the stress and pressure of the corporate world of fashion, I have returned as the regional account exec of an emerging line of women's wear that has a design studio and showroom located on 30th and 7th Ave in NYC. It's a small team: My bosses (a young, hip Indian brother and sister team who attended boarding school in London), 2 designers, and the 2 account execs (myself and a seasoned vet). As account execs, our job is to get this line into specialty boutiques around the country.
To spy our competition (lines such as Theory, Alice and Olivia, BCBG, etc.) we registered as buyers and headed over to the Intermezzo Trade Show. This is one of the tradeshows we are not exhibiting in since we are doing the world-renowned WWD Magic Show in Las Vegas next week and the Coterie show back in NY, next month.
If you have NO IDEA what I'm talking about, this is the fashion industry in a nutshell: All the items you see in your local boutique and department store comes from somewhere, right? Right! Buyers-the term used for employees of retailers that pick the items you see in the stores-shop the tradeshades to purchase the newest creations from the designers who are hand-selected from a jury and can afford to lease a booth at one of these tradeshows. A designer would have to have alot of financial backing to afford to be here and plus the finances to actually produce any orders they recieve from these buyers. There are rows and rows of competing clothing lines so it was fun for me to see what each booth did to stand out and to showcase it's unique brand identity. Some were open, welcoming any passerby in. Others were guarded and insisted on seeing your credentials (even though you can't even get into the place without proper credentials) and making an appointment to show you their line. This is to protect themselves from other designers there to spy on the competition (like us) and potentially knock them off (not like us).
Intermezzo was nice enough to provide a free catered lunch of pasta and radichio salad. I hear lunch at Magic will be a boxed lunch. No fret, a free trip to Sin City during the biggest fashion trade show for an entire week is compensation enough. Will update you with a full report of that experience the end of next week.

I know you've seen the glitz and glamour of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week that occurs twice a year but that's for get the world excited about new collections. Tradeshows are were the bulk of orders are written. So here is your backstage pass; get a glimpse of what the world of corporate fashion is like at a tradeshow.

Location: Jacob Javitts Center, NYC.
Price-Better: Bridge: Contemporary: Designer

Industry -Apparel

Attendees -8,000

Markets -Womens

Exibitors -550

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