If you own a clothing store or boutique, apparel and accessory trade shows are a must when it comes to finding the newest, most unique products. We suggest that you visit one (or a few) in your area and always travel to one (or a few) in another city if you can. This will give your store a more competitive assortment and help you generate more sales over time- customers love a store that offers something new consistently! If you won a small store, you are always competing to offer something that is unusual and innovative and the more trade shows and showrooms you visit the broader your choices become. We've done some research on your behalf and compiled a comprehensive list of womens apparel trade shows that you should be visiting on your next search for the perfect products and brands. Pick a few that are closest to you or that you can travel to. Try to visit both larger trade shows and smaller fashion fairs.
Side note: Always look to bring in a new designer or brands every season, it will add freshness and more excitement to your store:
Coterie: (New York, NY) Taking place at the massive Javits Center in NYC twice a year in September and February, Coterie is the place to go if you are looking for the newest and most contemporary in apparel. It is a great platform for both young brands as well as already established ones. It includes a combination of some of the most popular names in both women's apparel and accessories. Even though it is the largest apparel show in NYC it allows you an opportunity to network with all the designers and brands directly in a buyer-oriented atmosphere. It is a massive show so don't forget to bring your walking shoes!
TMRW: (New York, NY) This is a show that is held twice a year in NYC along with Coterie. It is a more private, intimate gathering of the newer contemporary brands. The event showcases designers of the future displaying the most innovative and high-quality styles. It is a more intimate setting, allowing the buyer to really network and connect with each designer individually.
Fame NY: (New York, NY) It takes place three times a year also at the Javits Center in NYC and it is geared towards junior-contemporary wear at great margins. This is a perfect show if you are seeking young apparel at higher re-stock rates. It is more of a fast fashion market where brands like Steve Maden, Glam and Lumiere flourish. Footwear is also a big component of the show. The set-up including booth decorations and music creates a fun, high energy atmosphere perfectly emulating the junior marketplace.
EDIT: It takes place at the Javits Center in NYC and as the name hints, it is a carefully edited and curated group of emerging and already established brands. It caters to more luxury and advanced contemporary brands and it offers higher level amenities and a sophisticated atmosphere. Quality and uniqueness should be top-notch so if your customer seeks quality at a higher price-point this is the show to attend. However, keep in mind that attendance has to be approved and often times they are by invitation only. Department stores and vetted specialty stores are specifically targeted to attend and presented with high quality look books and materials as well as personal phone calls from the Edit development team.
Intermezzo: (New York, NY) Held three times a year in May, January and August at the Javits center concurrently with the Accessories Circuit show. It is a great combination of contemporary, bridge, casual, denim and active wear women's markets along with easy access to a variety of accessory brands. It is a great show to attend if you have a more eclectic boutique where you offer a wide range of apparel products along with accessories- definitely a time saver.
Designers and Agents: (NY, LA) This independent trade fair is over 15 years old and it is held both in New York as well as Los Angeles at the New Mart Building in the Fashion District. It is focused on bridging the gap between retailers and designers and bringing them closer together. It has a more intimate setting where the buyer can better connect with the brand. This show gives a sense of discovery by bringing in emerging brands and newer, more innovative apparel products. It features designers from both the US and internationally, such as Europe and Japan. If you're looking to really sit down and have a conversation with the brands you're bringing in, this is a great show to attend.
Capsule: (New York, NY) This show takes place twice a year and is a great place to meet independent designers with a more progressive style. It focuses on a more high-end customer base and offers a great selection of unique apparel. It is a well edited combination of international as well as US based designers at a higher price-point for the most part. You can find some forward-thinking treasures at this show, and explore independent designers with great innovative ideas. It has a relaxed atmosphere that is very buyer-friendly and business forward. It also features some unique accessories and footwear.
Moda Manhattan: (New York, NY) A trade show that takes place three times a year and features contemporary apparel at a medium price-range. It features brands that cater to the woman anywhere from early 30's to more mature. It offers lots of great resort brands which makes it a must to visit if your store carries a selection of resort wear. It also incorporates a great selection of casual and cocktail dresses at reasonable price points from brands like Sangria and Dona Morgan. Although the show features some new designers, it is more suitable for restocking your updated classics and finding some great pieces from more established designers at a good price point.
Apparel Sourcing USA: Taking place twice a year in NYC at the Javits Center this trade show gives you the opportunity to buy directly from manufactures and suppliers around the globe. This is a show that brings both designers and retailers together in their own search for products and materials. It is also a great informative event where you can attend seminars and meet various organizations in the industry on an international scale. In addition to finished apparel (which you'll be in the search for) this trade event also offers resources for contract manufacturing and independent label development for designers, so you'll see brands also attending along side retailers. If you are looking for higher bulk orders and a great price point this is a good show to attend.
CURVEEXPO: A show that takes place in New York and Las Vegas as well as internationally in Paris, Moscow, Cannes and Shanghai that houses great lingerie and swim brands. It also features a great selection of accessories. The show is your destination for great luxury and casual intimate apparel as well as some of the best swimwear brands. It features both established designers like Donna Karen Sleepwear and Betsy Johnson Intimate and new comers both local and international. This is a perfect show to attend if you are looking to stock on sleepwear and swimwear and are traveling to New York for market week.
Axis Women's Lifestyle: It takes place in New York and Los Angeles alongside the Capsule show and it is an innovative, forward-thinking combination of brands offering contemporary active wear, swimwear, intimates, wearable electronics, and athletic lounge products. It also includes a combination of accessories and some beauty products. This is a good show to attend if you own a fashion lifestyle boutique or a gift shop focused on women's apparel and products. It allows you to get a large amount of your shopping done in one place and/or find some unique extras for your store.
Agenda: A large show that takes place in three different cities (Long Beach, Miami and Las Vegas) and it features street wear, active wear, action sports products and a variety of sporty unisex accessories and lifestyle products. If your shop caters to both women and men and it has a more sporty, hip hop edge this is definitely a show you should visit. The trade show also offers events and resources including a brand building conference, and a chance to meet manufacturers and individuals in the logistics, innovation and technology fields. This is also a show where footwear and skate brands flourish.
MAGIC: This is probably the biggest trade event taking place in Las Vegas twice a year in February and August. Although this event is divided in over 15 different portions including kid's wear, junior's, men's, footwear and accessories, the women's apparel event is the one we'll discuss a little further. This show offers great price points and includes lots of women's products and apparel from many established brands. It features contemporary and junior wear in a variety of styles and vibrant colors. This is a great show to visit if you are located on the west coast, or have multiple locations as you'll be able to order larger quantities from well-known brands. That being said, you might also come across younger brands that will surely fit nicely with your selection.
Dallas Apparel and Accessories Market: Taking place at the Dallas Markets Center, this trade show features women's contemporary and bridge apparel and accessories. If you are located in the area, you should attend this show for better quality, more luxury-oriented women's products. This is a show where you'll be able to collaborate with newer brands that offers a selection of unique styles and accessories. That being said, a large number of established brands and showrooms are also present at the show.
JF & A Chicago: Organized by TransWorld, this trade show features price-conscious jewelry, accessories and fashion all in one event. If you're in the Midwest area you should check it out! It offers great deals and the shows are organized very often, so it gives you an opportunity to restock on little items in your store. They have a great selection of affordable jewelry, scarves and other fun accessories.
Stylemax: It takes place four times a year at the Merchandise Mart in Chicago and offers a selection of both apparel and accessories. The show was recently updated with a new floor plan and includes more lifestyle brands and gifts. If Chicago is an easy place for you to visit, we recommend this show for finding the newest products from great brands in the bridge, contemporary and better markets. If you're looking for freshness and quality in the area, Stylemax is a great show to attend. They also offer great amenities for the visiting buyers including complimentary coffee and lunch as well as hotel discounts for those who are traveling.
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