ICON HONORS 2015 Call for Entries Open Now

Your road to ICON HONORS recognition starts here.

Enter to win–and to take your place alongside the best in the home and gift industry.  It’s the most celebrated and respected recognition you can achieve.  And no one is more eligible to win than you.

There are 16 categories of competition within the main categories of INNOVATION, CONTRIBUTION, BRANDING and ACHIEVEMENT.

For more information, view the ICON HONORS 2015 Call for Entries press release.

Your online submission is simpler than ever with new features to make entering even easier.

Every ICON HONOR starts here, so don’t miss your chance.


ICON HONORS 2014 Call for Entries2

Denim Do’s for Spring/ Summer 2015

Denim pieces are a classic no matter the season. For Spring/Summer2015 lines are mixing it up with denim shirts, dresses, rompers, jumpsuits and more in addition to traditional jean pants. We spotted new cuts, designs and even the return of the overall all over the October Atlanta Apparel Market Showrooms and Temporaries.

Overalls, denim tops and a denim jumpsuit by Paige Denim (Floor 9 S335B)


Fit and flare acid wash dress by Kensie Jeans (2-102B)


Ombre denim dress styled with a fur vest and statement necklace by Hot & Delicious (2-115)


Patterned jean by Beija-Flor Jeans (2-540)


Cargo jeans with a knit waistband by Kensie Jeans (2-102B)



It’s T-shirt Time!

T-shirts are back for Spring 2015. With an assortment of witty taglines and eye-catching designs, you’re sure to find the perfect tee for your customer. We’ve assembled a few of our favorite Southern exhibitors in the 400 section on Floor 3, right off the escalator. Stop by to check them out, and keep an eye out for the T-shirt trend throughout Atlanta Apparel.

Charlie Southern

Charlie Southern

Southern Doe

Southern Doe



Southern Cross Apparel

Southern Cross Apparel

Southern Snow

Southern Snow


States of Mind

State of Mine

Flashback to Neon Brights for Spring & Summer

Ark & Co.Walk the aisles and showrooms of the Atlanta Apparel Market and you might think it’s 1984 instead of 2014. Flashes of neon burst from racks and displays across collections. From accessories and trims to separates to dresses, vivid color brings life to myriad pieces.

Ark & Co.  Esley Honey Punch USA

Bursts of nJulia Jordaneon aren’t restricted to a single category; there are pieces in lines ranging from Young Contemporary to Fashion Accessories to Moderate and Better collections. While everyone of every age can’t pull off electric pink chiffon shorts or a glowing yellow crop top, punches of brightness add life to tops, dresses and accessories making the luminous options available to every customer.

Whether you’re looking for a burst of life to create a bold summer display or just looking for a few pieces to add pops of color, ideas abound at Market.

Voom by Joy Han Kaya di Koko-Vaccarelli Katherine WayZ&L Europe

Expert Tips for Selling S.A.S.S.

Tsu.ya by Kristi Yamaguchi;

Tsu.ya by Kristi Yamaguchi

As the semi-annual S.A.S.S. (Shape. Active. Swim. Sleep) collection returns to the October Atlanta Apparel Market (showrooms: October 16-20, temporaries: October 16-19) we asked experts from the collection for their tips for integrating shapewear, sleepwear and activewear into your clothing store.

Cindi Ahlers of Tsu.ya by Kristi Yamaguchi; Lauren Bartley, junior account executive for Yummie by Heather Thomson; and JoAnne Grazzini, national sales director for PJ Harlow share these things to keep in mind:

YOUR CUSTOMERS. Employ the same size-ordering technique you use for you ready-to-wear items with you shapewear, sleepwear and active wear. Don’t take the smalls and extra-smalls out of consideration – ladies in those sizes might also want a little extra support. Also consider who is ultimately making the purchase. Conservative, comfortable pajamas might go over better than a sexy lacy piece if your customer is mom buying for her teenage daughter.

Yummie cropped

Yummie by Heather Thomson

YOUR OTHER LINES. Are your jeans flying off the shelves? Would your best-seller dress look great with leggings? Use these pieces to help incorporate new active and lifestyle collections into your store. Match a loungewear top to your denim and leggings to your tunics – you might be able to sell the coordinating casual pieces as well.

TECHNOLOGY. Fabric technology has come a long way in loungewear and activewear. Knowing the science behind shapewear jeans can help you close the sale and makes you a hero when the skinny jeans finally fit. Advising your customers on how to care for an item is equally as important – you don’t want her satin pajamas ruined because you didn’t tell her to wash them inside-out. Ask the line about its specific fabric technology before your place your order.

PJ Harlow

PJ Harlow

YOUR DRESSING ROOM. Ever have that customer who walked away from the perfect dress because she had a few trouble spots? Include sample of all of your shapewear pieces in your dressing room so she can slip one on under whatever she tries on. She loves the way she looks and you love that she bought both pieces.

THE CALENDAR. Pajamas make great holiday gifts. Reminding your customer of this as she buys her party dress means she has one less gift to buy and you increased your holiday profits. When the weather heats up, selling shirts with stay-cool technology may make you the most popular store in town.

What tips do you have for selling shapewear, activewear, swimwear and sleepwear?

Tsu.ya by Kristi Yamaguchi is located on Floor 2 Booth 620. Olympic Gold Medalist and “Dancing With the Stars” winner Yamaguchi will make an appearance in the booth on Friday, October 17.

Yummie by Heather Thomson is located on Floor 2 Booth 602. Buyers who share photos of their selections on social media tagging the line’s official accounts will receive a discount on their order. Visit the booth for more information.

PJ Harlow is located on Floor 2 Booth 600 on the atrium. It will fulfill last-minute holiday pajama orders through November 15.

Spring/Summer Trends from Coast to Coast

For Spring/Summer 2015, we’re looking to our NY/LA Co-Op on Floor 9 for color inspiration. 

Cosmetic hues, light greys and powder-blush tones bring soft sophistication to seasonal silhouettes in lightweight and textured fabrics.

Jay Godfrey

Jay Godfrey



chan luu YI9A5366 crop

Chan Luu


Sweet, whisper-light pastels appear in barely there shades of biscuit pink, dusty blue, shrinking violet and hushed green, adding a soft and subtle element to the season.

Rebecca Minkoff

Rebecca Minkoff


Nanette Lepore

Nanette Lepore


Chan Luu

Chan Luu

Visit the NY/LA Co-Op on Floor 9 for these top lines.
Chan Luu
Tori Richard

Jay Godfrey
Yumi Kim
Nanette Lepore
Rebecca Minkoff
Kendra Scott

Trend forecasting courtesy of WGSN/Stylesight.

Raffles – When and How Do I Do It?

By T.J. Reid

tj sketchAs retailers do more and more to sponsor and take part in charitable causes and help raise funds for different organizations, one of most profitable and easiest option to consider is a raffle.

These are very simple to do when having an out-of-store fashion show or other community event. You will need to order some 2-part tickets with stubs that are easy-tear with accurate sequential numbers, depending on how you plan to disperse the gifts. I found these available through many sources, just by using Google. Most are sold in rolls of 2,000 for as low as $6.79 a roll or $67.90 for 10.  Who would ever need more than 20,000 ticket (although they can last forever!)? Oddly enough, I found Amazon the most expensive of all vendors shown.

You can raffle just one item or several, whichever you think is best to increase fund-raising and create excitement.  I personally like to have 10 to 15 items which are displayed on tables.  In front of each prize, is a bowl or box or some type of container where tickets are dropped.  The ticket buyer then can choose which items they hope to win, and drop their ticket into that box.  Most will buy multiple tickets and try to win several items, or on occasion someone may drop all their tickets in on one item.

Tickets are usually sold $2 each or 3 for $5 or 8 for $10 or 20 for $20.  Again, the price is up to you, but multiples sell better, because it is easy to grab one bill out of a wallet, and need no change in return.  The average attendee has probably paid for her admittance ticket long before the evening and this additional money is just part of the event fun. They are happy to buy.

When a ticket is purchased, the buyer takes the two part ticket and splits in half, keeping one for themselves and putting the other in the box for whatever item they are trying to win.

Later when the drawing is held, it is the buyer’s responsibility to be in attendance when their number is called and to have their numbered stub as proof of their win.  This can be a delightful time to see people calling out excitedly, “That’s me! I won!”

I recommend this raffle announcement takes place during an intermission or refreshment break of your show to give time for winners to pick up their items at the end of the event.  It also assures that attendees will remain for the entire event, just in case they are a winner.

This is a win/win situation for everyone involved.  Those who do win prizes are thrilled and the charity group is rewarded greatly with extra money, in addition to their basic event profits.  It is not uncommon to raise at least $1,000 extra at any event with an attendance of 100. People feel generous when attending an outing that is pleasant and they know is worthwhile and beneficial to the community or a certain cause.

And where do you get these free prizes?  Note the word FREE is most important.  Local merchants are asked to donate items or gift certificates.  $25 is an average value of prizes, although if some are priced more, make sure they are given extra attention and more prominent placement in the table display.  Always show the actual value of the item when listing the name of the business who donated it. These names should always be printed in any program handout.  Don’t just solicit from the usual retailers.  Go to grocers for certificate, car washes for passes, movie theaters, hairdressers, pedicure/manicure salons, restaurants, florists, and the list goes on and on.  The only thing they can say is yes or no, and ignore the no’s and praise the yes’s by rewarding them with your future business!

If you are a co-sponsor or very involved in this function, your prize should be valued at least $100.  You may find your vendors are happy to assist in your generosity.

At this time of Breast Cancer Awareness and Thanksgiving when Local Food Banks are so in need, take the time to plan an event to show that you care enough to help a worthy cause.

T.J. Reid is editor of FASHION ADVANTAGE magazine and will be speaking at AmericasMart on Saturday, October 18th at 10:00 AM during the October Atlanta Apparel Market. Her seminar is on the 8th floor and all buyers are invited to attend.  There will be door prizes, and you don’t even have to buy a ticket!