Last week my husband drove us to the Magic Las Vegas 2017 Trade Show. This three-day fashion extravaganza is the most comprehensive fashion trade show in America. It only happens twice a year on the West Coast, and last year was the first year that I went. It was 120 degrees then, so I was happy this year when it was only 102 degrees with a light breeze.
Below is a short video that may give you the feel of attending this event, and you will see a few of my designs as well.
When we arrived we headed straight for the Convention Center, registered and dashed to our first seminar. The topic under discussion was, Looking At The Future of Creating a Brand and Getting it to Market. One of the for panelists was Dov Charney. The moderator was Francis Harder, President of Fashion Business Incorporated. Dov founded American Apparel in 1989. American Apparel ranked as one of the largest apparel manufacturers and marketers in North America. Although that company closed its 110 stores, Dov's new company, LA Apparel is an example of how tenacity benefits a fashion brand. When it was Dov's turn to speak he was candid, brash, dominating and opinionated. The other panelists lacked a direct approach, but were informative all the same.
After a late lunch, we returned to the Convention Center late for our final seminar of the day. The topic was Building a Profitable Fashion Business/Steps to Production and although the energy level did not compare to our earlier seminar, we managed to stay awake.
While walking the Convention Center floor on the second day, I ran into FIDM (Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising) colleagues and industry connections. We saw many different domestic exhibitors, and brands of ready to wear. On the other hand, sourcing had little domestic representation. The sourcing floor was dominated by China, India, and Mexico. In my opinion, independent fashion designers would benefit more from domestic partnerships with manufacturing and textile companies. Access to a local company is preferred when building a team, and provides for better quality control.
A word of advice, wear shoes that are comfortable, but fashionable to avoid blisters. Bring your own water, otherwise be prepared to dish out up to $6.00 for a 16 ounce bottle.