by Karen Alberg Grossman

Although Project NY and other events worldwide have recently announced their cancellations this season, the Chicago Collective and New York’s Best Menswear Show (January 23-25 at the Park Central Hotel) want to stress that they are keeping calm and carrying on.

Bruce Schedler, VP of the Chicago Collective and Stylemax trade shows, confirms that the Chicago Collective show (pictured) is on as scheduled (February 6-8), with recently clarified mandates.

  • Masks are mandatory at all times inside the Mart.
  • Vax cards and negative tests are not required by exhibitors or buyers for entry.
  • Vax cards are required for eating/entrance into the show café.

“We’ll have 401 exhibitors to be exact and we’ve had zero cancellations to date,” notes Schedler. “We remerchandised and rebalanced many segments of the show floor, allowing us to bring in several new exhibitors, making this the largest Chicago Collective we’ve ever produced. Without compromising the integrity of our brand offerings, we’re certain our buyers will be extremely pleased with the new brand additions and the expanded Italian Trade Agency offering.” He points out that the ITA has more than doubled its presence at the show, bringing some incredible brands this season. “We love working with them, knowing our retailers will discover elevated Italian fashion in the relaxed and friendly atmosphere of the Chicago show.” 

He goes on to note that the show’s hotel blocks are just about sold out. “We have many first-time retailers coming from across the country, as well as our incredibly loyal core group of retailers who always support the show. Without them, we couldn’t have emerged as strong and fast as we did after being lights-out for a year and a half.”

Schedler apologizes that due to new city mandates, they’ve had to curtail many onsite show events and perks, including the opening night party. “We were excited to have 34 Heritage as our opening night sponsor, but they’ll now sponsor our August 2022 opening event which will be something extra special! More details on that to come.”

Concluding with a genuine expression of gratitude, Schedler conveys much appreciation for the unwavering support the show receives from retailers and brands. “We are truly thankful for so many great people in this terrific menswear industry. We couldn’t do it without you.”

Likewise, Don Wechsler of New York’s Best Menswear Show says he “has been receiving calls nonstop” since yesterday’s announcement about Project NY but wants all to know that his event will take place as scheduled later this month.