There’s no question that there were plenty of great collections, and items within collections, to be found at the Vegas shows last week. So despite the tenuous business climate and a few adjacency issues (in the process of being worked out) in the newly combined MRket and Project shows, retailers were overwhelmingly pleased with the new format, and newly optimistic about the spring ‘17 selling season.
Some recent realizations that were topics of discussion at the shows: 1) cool product at value pricepoints trumps big brands; 2) Brands can now bypass the retailer and build a community directly with their consumers; and 3) difficult business opens new opportunities.
Here, a few of my favorites from Las Vegas spring ‘17.
Hudson Jeans is back to its core DNA—military x rock—with a very cool collection of distressed looks, rip and repair military details, denim and non-denim fabrics, some looser fits and their own interpretation of athleisure knits. Jeans are in the $185-$295 retail range; I especially loved a bomber jacket in a lighter shade of army green at $295 retail.
DionAt Dion, the excitement was in fabulous floral neckwear and in their next-generation super-salesman, 12-year-old Paul Tsakanikas (shown here at the Dallas show). FYI: Dion is the only tie maker left in Canada and will celebrate 50 years in 2017.
Daniel WonDaniel Won is surely one of the most creative talents in the business. With much inspiration from the Vietnam War, his distressed jeans with camo trim ($250 retail) are among the best we’ve seen. I also love the military coat with waist cord done in shirting fabric ($325 retail), the embroidered shirts that combine camo with tropical florals, and a fabulous reflective camo jacket.
Private White V.C.
Big in Europe but relatively new to the United States, Private White V.C. is a collection worth investigating. Shown here: James Eden, CEO of this London-based company, models a double-zip outerwear jacket. For more info: privatewhitevc.com.
Edward Armah still has the fire: for designing, for selling, and for dressing up. “It’s why I still love this business,” he explains, dressed down here in a drawstring linen pant, sneakers, sport coat and all the right accessories. Check out his new linen-cotton (73/27) gauze printed pocket squares in a gorgeous assortment of spring colors and patterns, $31.40 cost. Guaranteed irresistible.
Scotch & SodaFor fabulous printed shorts and swimwear ($35 cost for $78 suggested retail), you can’t do better than Scotch & Soda.
For a truly great gift item for basketball fans, I love this perfectly sized duffle bag in genuine basketball leather from Vestige. $135 suggested retail. Available at Proper Fools showroom: properfools.com.
Nifty GeniusNifty Genius, launched by James Costa in 2015, is an American collection incorporating Japanese ultrasuede technology in the labels and trim. Conceived and priced as a consumer-direct collection, Costa has since offered it to key retailers, affording them 60-70 percent margins. Great cut-and-sewn shirts are in the $105 to $140 retail range. My favorite piece, a floral jacket with knit trim shown here, wholesales at $115 for a $290 suggested retail. Other great items: a perforated ultrasuede jacket lined with cotton-modal stretch, a French terry herringbone short, and a pant and vest in nylon seersucker. Check it out!