Making the Most of Trade Shows for your Business

.

 

 

 

 

Walking through the print supplier section of Premierevision. This is such a great way to see all of the newest directional trends happening in the world of prints--this season it looks like exploded floral prints and bold color '60s inspired simplified shapes are some of the incoming trends.

 Trimmings of all kinds to finish off your designs. The multi-color pom poms are definitely a huge trend right now.

 

The next show I attended was Texworld.

This was held at the Javits Center and is a great show for my particular customer base as it keys in on suppliers and resources that are within my main customer's price points--from mass market to slightly higher contemporary pricing. This is my jackpot trade show.

This is where I spend quite a bit of time when it comes to seeking out newness in fabrics and new suppliers who are willing to help develop even newer fabrics with my company.

I can make relationships with these suppliers that can really help to grown my business.

I spent a good chunk of my day on Wednesday here making new contacts and setting up appointments either for later in the week in my office or potentially when I'm traveling overseas to see their facilities.

 

 Endless amounts of fabric options at one supplier's booth

 

Some of the top hi-lights of fabric trends included the following...

 Novelty tweed looking knits that mimic woven that you might see in a Chanel design...these have lots of stretch so you can create a very sleek look while keeping that "tailored" woven look

 Eclectic muti-color knits that have a very "Gucci-esque" feel. Mixing and matching done with enough thought behind it but looking a bit haphazard.

 Textures--textures--textures...we cannot get enough of them!!

 

 Fun rib knits done in unusual multi-colors, with a bit of shine, or melange or interesting patterns incorporated--fun newness when it comes to stripes and ribs

 Loving this simple monochromatic look of textured knits, pleats, ribs, crunchy textures with a bit of sheerness--a palette and feel that feels like Morocco or Greece...gorgeous for high summer and transitional time periods...

 

The last show that we checked out was the DG Expo at Penn Plaza.

This is a show that is geared to smaller businesses. Products and services that have low minimums to help support small and start-up businesses.

So even though my company is geared towards bigger accounts and much higher volume, a show like this is great for me because I can utilize these suppliers when I need something done very quickly and locally to help get something up and running without having to meet high minimum requirements that most of my overseas suppliers and factories require. I can also have it turned around quite quickly.

It's just as important to think about the start-up opportunities that help turn small businesses into large businesses. They go hand in hand.

This is a place where you can find local sample rooms to produce small runs and do quick embellishment (embroidery, beading, etc.).

Also, because many of these services are offered in the US, the manufacturing can be done much more close to season so it gives me a lot of insight into the most current, fast turn, fast fashion fabrics that are being requested by their customers. Once again--more good insight to share with my own customers.

.....and after this exhausting but exciting and productive week, I finally had Friday in the office to start to lay it all out and really bring it all together so that I can start to utilize it in the best way for my customers.

I'm anxiously awaiting for all of the great suppliers I saw to send me their headers of fabrics with their pricing so I can start to get rolling on a new season of product development.......It's the most wonderful time of the year for a designer!

Related articles:

Join Me on a Jr Contemporary Fashion Shoot

Latinas and the Business of Fashion

NYFW Features Some of the Best Fashion Designers of Latin America

Winter Fashion- Shoes Jackets and Some of the Best Accessories 

Having a Small Business Strategy to Grow a Fashion Brand

Pages

About the author

Tina Trevino

Tina Trevino is the Senior Design Director of KBL Group Intl. Ltd. in NYC and manages their large creative design team and Director Community Relations for Latin Business Today. She shares all of her insight on upcoming fashion trends for the season with her team to start the collaborative design process. The company specializes in sweaters, knits and wovens. It provides product for ladies, men, contemporary, jr, and children. Tina specializes in coordinating directly with large US retailers to design exactly into their targeted customer needs. With many years under her belt in the industry, she has also gained the ability to go beyond the fashion component and help to work through sourcing, fitting, production and merchandising issues as well.