Monthly Archives: October 2013

Boutique & Specialty Stores: Photos & Video

The Underfashion Club discussed Boutique & Specialty Stores on October 15, 2013 at The Cutting Room, NYC. Karen Thompson of Lace Silhouettes Lingerie, Dan Alden & April Burch of Great Barrington Bra & Girl, and Dan Koch of Town Shop stepped up to the stage to tell us about their practice in the intimate apparel industry. Listen to learn about retaining and capturing today’s customers! 

 

Moderators:
Joe Smith, Sales Director, WACOAL AMERICA INC.
Laurence Teinturier, Co-Founder, CURVEXPO INC.

Panel:
Karen Thompson – Lace Silhouettes Lingerie –
Peddler’s Village, PA /Princeton & Cape May, NJ

Dan Alden & April Burch – Great Barrington
Bra & Girl – Great Barrington, MA

Dan Koch – Town Shop –
New York City, NY

The Underfashion Club, Inc. supports education today for a better industry tomorrow!

Did you attend? Catch yourself in our album!
CLICK HERE to see all of our photos from the event.

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2014 Femmy Awards Announces Honorees

The 2014 FEMMY AWARDS, presented by The Underfashion Club, Inc., the intimate apparel industry charitable organization dedicated to education, is scheduled for Tuesday, February 4, 2014 and will take place at Cipriani 42nd Street between Lexington Avenue and Park Avenue in New York City.

The Femmy Awards honor those individuals and companies that have significantly contributed to the Intimate Apparel Industry and its growth.  The Gala is recognized as one of the premier events in the Intimate Apparel Industry, and is the fundraising vehicle that enables the Underfashion Club to support its extensive Scholarship, Awards, Internship and Grants (SAIG) programs.  These efforts bring to life the Underfashion Club’s credo of “Education today for a better industry tomorrow.” 

The 2014 Femmy will proudly host the 11th Annual Student Design Contest featuring the designs of Fashion Institute of Technology students. The students’ garments will be displayed that evening and the attendees will select three student designers to receive cash awards.  The design contest is an integral part of the Underfashion Club’s mission to help educate, influence and attract new talent for the industry.

2014 marks the 56th Anniversary of this not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization established to provide Intimate Apparel Industry leaders with a forum to exchange information and ideas, and support the Intimate Apparel market as a vital aspect of the fashion industry through its ongoing commitment to support the education of new talent.

“We are delighted to announce our 2014 honorees, who will join with us in our ongoing efforts to raise funds to promote education, innovation and growth within the Intimate Apparel Industry.”

– Victor H. Vega, President of The Underfashion Club

 The Underfashion Club will salute Roslyn Harte, President of Lances Harte, Inc. with a special President’s Award at the 2014 Femmy Gala. Roslyn, who is celebrating 60+ years in the intimate apparel industry, and her 90th birthday year! She has been a dedicated mentor to hundreds of IA professionals and impacted the careers of thousands.

Other honorees include retailer Hudson’s Bay Company l Lord & Taylor, manufacturer, Delta Galil USA LLC, supplier Iluna USA LLC, Innovation Award recipient Jocky International, Inc., and Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Seth Morris, President/CEO, Carole Hochman Design Group, division of Komar Brands.

Brand Expansion ~ Eurovet & Invista™

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On September 30, I attended a Special “test” event hosted in partnership by Eurovet and INVISTA™.  It was a first ever fabric exposition in NYC of the Interfiliѐre show presented internationally and  covering trends for Fall/ Winter 2014.  I have to admit, I was a bit iffy about attending.  Perhaps I am somewhat inured to that so often seems like marketing hype, but I was in for a very pleasant surprise.  The event was terrific; informative, in a great venue, and delicious food as well as an open bar. I can not wait for the next one!

I met my colleague who writes the Retail Briefs column on our Lingerie Briefs website and asked her if she would give her perspective on the whole presentation.  Ali Cudby is internationally known for her work with lingerie retailers, manufacturers and consumers. Her company, Fab Foundations®, features a worldwide lingerie boutique directory, bra fit information based on her trademarked FabFit Formula, and a blog that features the latest industry news and trends.  Here is her take…..

It’s important to be strategic when considering expansion. There’s plenty of upside – new market, new customers, and dreaming about the ka-ching dropping to the bottom line. On the flip side, getting expansion wrong can be expensive in both dollars and cost to your established brand’s reputation.

Before you go rushing off to multiply, it’s important to consider how and when to grow. One way to consider expansion is with a test. Even smarter – doing that test with a partner who stands to benefit while also shouldering some of the cost.

lycra_invista_8151826The lingerie world recently saw an ideal example of that kind of brand expansion test. The players were Eurovet – the company that runs our lingerie trade shows worldwide – and INVISTA™, the company that brings us Lycra®.

The event was a taste of the famous and highly attended Interfiliѐre, the fabric supplier side of the annual July trade show in Paris. The exclusive event connected key buyers and retailers with leading global fabric mills with a first-of-its-kind trend presentation format. “The trend presentation allowed us to bring deeper insights directly to the American market and its key players,” states Marie-Laure Bellon-Homps, CEO of Eurovet.

In other words, for Eurovet, it was an opportunity to test the viability of bringing the bellonInterfiliѐre fabric show to the US market in the future, most likely in conjunction with Curvexpo.

For INVISTA™, it was a chance to share some key innovations in Lycra® directly with the designers and manufacturers who make the fabric decisions for intimates, activewear and swimwear

Both partners won by presenting their benefits directly to the market of pros who stand to gain directly from their products and services. By doing the test as a one-day event, with a select subset of strategically selected mills, expenses and exposure were limited. The event was a success, with great turn-out and a fantastic look at the trends we’ll be seeing translated to garments in Spring/Summer 14 and even looking as far forward as AW15.

So, as a retailer, what does this mean for you? First of all, when fabric shows come to North America, it means better access to materials for independent brands that may not otherwise have the opportunity to see the newest fabrics, trims and trends the market has to offer. Access means more choices to eventually find their way into the products you’ll be seeing on the market.

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It’s also helpful for you, as retailers, to see the fabric market for yourself. These raw materials will ultimately make their way into the lingerie that you will be buying the following season. Since fabric is providing some of the most exciting innovation in lingerie, direct exposure helps you better understand what goes into the lingerie you select for your stores.

Learning more about the fibers and fabrics that go into lingerie, active-wear and swimwear means being able to explain the difference quality makes to a finished garment. It’s important to understand quality differences and share them with customers in order to justify the premium prices that come with higher-end garments. There is opportunity to upsell more easily when customers understand the value of quality products.

The more you, as a retailer, are educated about all aspects of the products you offer customers, the more it enhances your brand.

 

 

 

New Members Join the UFC Board

The UnderFashion Club  is pleased to welcome our newest members to the Board of Directors

Amy Bittner

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Amy Bittner grew up in Evansville, Indiana, but her fascination with design has taken her far, first to Florence, Italy to study fashion then to New York City and the Fashion Institute of Technology where she was an Underfashion Club scholarship recipient.

While at FIT, Amy earned several awards including 1st prize in the 2011 UFC Student Design Contest, 1st place in the Lululemon Design Competition, and Critic Award Winner at the FIT AAS Exhibition. She has been published in Best of Intima Magazine, Guitar Aficionado Magazine, The Daily at NY Fashion Week, and was featured in the book Emerging Fashion Designers 3.

Amy graduated from FIT in 2011 with an Associates Degree in International Fashion Design and a Bachelors Degree in Fashion Design, specialized in Intimate Apparel.

Amy began her career in the intimate apparel industry as an Assistant Designer at Carole Hochman Design Group for their Lauren Ralph Lauren Division. She is currently a Design Assistant at The Moret Group.

In her free time Amy enjoys biking, costuming, playing dodgeball, and exploring all the nooks and crannies of the “Big Apple”

Maureen Stabnau

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Maureen Stabnau is currently SVP Merchandising at Bare Necessities.

She joins the Underfashion Club board with 20 years of experience in the Intimate Apparel industry. Since 2001, she has led the buying team at the pioneering and highly successfully e-commerce site www.barenecessities.com. Prior to joining Bare Necessities, Maureen was a VP, Divisional Merchandise Manager of Intimate Apparel at Lord and Taylor for six years. She has rounded out her experience in the industry having held positions on the sales team at Wacoal and as the Sleepwear Merchandise Manager at Federated Merchandising Group.

Maureen graduated from the University of Delaware with a BS in Human Resources and a Business Minor. She lives in New Jersey and is an avid golfer.

Ria Stern

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Ria Stern is currently Global Marketing & Brand Director, Hyosung Textile Fibers including: creora® spandex, MIPAN nylon, and Specialty Polyester fibers.

She has been with Hyosung for over 7 years and previously spent 20 plus years with DuPont (the majority of the time in Textiles and Apparel segments.)

Ria has experience in global marketing, communications, branding, strategic planning, product development, sales, manufacturing, and quality control

She holds a Masters Degree in Business Administration, a B.S. in Environmental and Bio Engineering, and recently obtained certification from Columbia University in “Making Green from Green.”

On a personal note, Ria lives on the Upper West Side of New York City with her husband, daughter and 3 cats.