Category Archives: Events

Recap: Fashion Focus Chicago & Fashion Town Hall

This recap is a few weeks behind, but I wanted to share my experience at Fashion Focus Chicago 2014. The week started on October 14th with the Fashion Town Hall kick off event at the Chitownhallphotocago Cultural Center. The program, headed by Mayor’s Fashion Council director, Tonya Gross, featured speakers from the various fashion organizations, including AIBI and Fashion Group International, the Macy’s Fashion Incubator program, and all of the local colleges with fashion design programs.

One of the interesting organizations I learned about was HIVE Chicago, which networks high school students with local designers and companies for internship and learning opportunities. I also found out that the SAIC’s fashion resource center is open to the public, I will definitely need to make time to check that collection out!

The presentation highlighted some great companies and designers here in Chicago, including Shernett Swaby, Lagi Nadaeu, Oxford Clothing and Optimo Hats.

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Nena Ivon gave the keynote address, and was very interesting to listen to. She’s a current instructor at Columbia College, and has an extensive background in fashion from working as a the marketing director for Saks Fifth Avenue. She gave advice to designers about promoting themselves, and the importance of wearing your own products (or bringing a model with you to events if you design for another market):

“I’ve one of one, I’ve never been one of many.”

“Who knows you better and your product better than you do?”

She also pointed to some figures that show that the Midwest will become the hub for the country by 2025 (let’s see!)

Following the program, emcee Ryan M. Beshel led a panel discussion with some industry figures including Nena Ivon, Maria Anderson (of Agency Galatea), Diana Michelle and Jivesh Toor from J. Toor (honored in September by FGI as Rising Stars in Menswear), Lagi Nadeau (honored by FGI as Rising Star in Women’s Apparel), and Jonathon Smith of StyleChicago.com.

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Some take-ways from the discussion (paraphrased):

Ryan M. Beshel: Take your blinders off and look outside of the city, and country for inspiration.

Jonathon Smith: Figure out the business side of fashion before doing runway shows. Take advantage of mentorship expereiences.

Nena Ivon: Listen to honest feedback, it’s not personal. 

Diana Michelle: Know yourself and how to communicate and define your personal brand. Also, maintain relationships and figure out who do you want to do business with.

And some exciting news, the Chicago Fashion Resources listings are back!

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Recap: Chicago Textile Expo Fall 2014

On the tail end of Fashion Focus Chicago, the first Chicago Textile Expo was hosted by my friends at the Fine Fabric Sales showroom, Diana Muzzy and Flo Fiore-Battaglia. I was invited to be a speaker and my seminar was called, How to work with your Pattern Maker.

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I brought my experience as a freelance pattern maker as well as my experience working for a full-scope development service provider. I discussed pattern terminology, and how to communicate your design effectively through tech packs, reference garments and went over the basics of pattern “warranties”, grading and marking. It was great to answer questions from the group and meet new designers and students who attended the seminar.

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The Expo itself was great as well, it’s always fun to see what’s new in fabrics and trims from the various vendors. All in all it was a successful show, which we celebrated during the industry networking night on Tuesday 10/21.

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Pictured above with (left to right) Flo Fiore-Battaglia, Diana Muzzy and Jessica Steffes.

Speaking at … Chicago Textile Expo

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I’m excited about speaking this week at a new show, the Chicago Textile Expo, which is hosted by my friends Diana Muzzy and Flo Fiore-Battaglia of Fine Fabric Sales. I was invited to put together a seminar about pattern making, and I’ve been working on my presentation all week in between work projects and attending a few Fashion Focus Chicago events. My colleagues at The Apparel Agency are also speaking on the topics of material and consumer trends.

My presentation will focus on the process of pattern making and product development, and how to work with your pattern maker to ensure you have a good working relationship and get the results you seek in your products.

PATTERN DEVELOPMENT: HOW TO WORK WITH YOUR PATTERN MAKER

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Xochil Herrera Scheer – The Apparel Agency
Wednesday October 22, 2:30 – 3:30 pm
Learn about the pattern development process, terminology on technical specs, types of patterns, grading and markers. Great for those looking to take their concept from design into prototyping, who want to know how to communicate and work effectively with their pattern maker, taking the guesswork out of making your patterns production ready.
Xochil is Production Manager for The Apparel Agency and has a background in technical design and pattern development for apparel and accessories.
The show starts tomorrow, Monday October 20, and runs through Wednesday. In addition to the seminars and access to wholesale fabric and trim vendors, there will be an industry networking event on Tuesday evening. Come say “hello!”
To see the seminar schedule and to sign up, visit: http://www.chicagotextileexpo.com/seminars—speakers.html

Paris Sourcing – Premiere Vision Plur/El & TexWorld

Xochil attended Premiere Vision Plur/El and TexWorld in Paris, in February, on behalf of The Apparel Agency. She sourced for clients who purchased Sourcing Packages.

The Apparel Agency attended two international textile trade shows this season in Paris this February: Premiere Vision and TexWorld. These shows are the MUCH larger versions of the domestic shows attended in New York in January, with vendors from Europe, Asia and North and South America. I had the opportunity to attend the show on behalf of some clients who booked a Sourcing Season package, and one new client attended the show in person as well.

Luckily the first day after arriving and getting checked into the hotel, there was time available for some sight seeing. The streets of Paris are beautiful this time of year, and the weather was perfect for a stroll along the Seine. I took a three hour walk around the city, taking in the sights, and also visited the Notre Dame and Eiffel Tower.

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The trade shows offered a HUGE range of vendors for knits, wovens, technical performance fabrics, buttons, zippers and trims, and many interesting laces and eyelet fabrics, reflecting the trends for Spring/Summer 2015. I also got to attend the trend presentations at each show, which was interesting and informative. In addition to the presentation, trend pavilions were set up to showcase materials from different vendors for groupings such as performance materials, print design, organic and eco fabrics, and more. TexWorld also featured Apparel Sourcing, a section of the show dedicated to sourcing manufacturing and private label resources. TexWorld’s SS15 trend report is available to download here.

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Premiere Vision Plur/El  featured multiple shows including the Indigo print show, Modamont for accessories, Zoom for manufacturing resources, Cuir a Paris leather and fur resources, and Expofil for yarns and fibers. The show filled 6 expo halls, it was truly an amazing experience. Premiere has a fantastic photo library and even a couple videos on their website so you can see what the show is like here. Also, a portion of Premiere Vision’s trend report can be found here.

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Those interested in more information about Premiere Vision or TexWorld can visit their respective websites for more information:

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Premiere Vision – Paris

A version of this post by Xochil Scheer originally appeared on www.theapparelagency.com on 4.15.14.

TexWorld USA SS15

Xochil attended TexWorld USA in New York, January 21-23, on behalf of The Apparel Agency. She sourced for clients who purchased Sourcing Packages.

My latest sourcing trip was to TexWorld, held at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City. This show is put on by Messe Frankfurt, and is held bi-annually in New York, and Paris. The organization also puts on other trade shows for fashion, home, beauty and other industries. TexWorld shows a large collection of fabric and trim suppliers and mills from the around the world, and is heavily represented by Asian, Middle Eastern and European vendors.

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I attended the show with a few clients who went for the first time, and also sourced on behalf of clients who were unable to attend in person.

The show this time around was a little smaller than the show in July, but offered a great range of vendors for knits, wovens, technical performance fabrics, zippers and trims, and many interesting laces and eyelet fabrics, reflecting the trends for Spring/Summer 2015.

Those interested in more information about TexWorld USA can visit their website for more information.

A version of this post by Xochil Scheer originally appeared on www.theapparelagency.com on 1.28.14.

Premiere Vision / Indigo SS15 New York

Xochil attended Premiere Vision and Indigo SS15 in New York, January 14-15, on behalf of The Apparel Agency. She sourced for clients who purchased Sourcing Packages.

The spring sourcing trade shows run January – March, and The Apparel Agency regularly attends 3-5 shows during this time.  The Premiere Vision / Indigo show in New York kicked off the season. Sourcing always on behalf of current clients, so each time is spent with different vendors, and seeing a new variety of product offerings, fabric and fiber technology, colors and prints.

Premiere NY 2014

Premiere Vision in New York is the “preview” version of Premiere Vision in Paris. It serves as a snapshot of the new trends, and vendors, who show at the Paris show. Indigo, which runs together and in the same building, is the print show and has 3 floors of print design houses which sell custom prints, embellishment and knit techniques for designers to purchase and utilize in their collections.

I attended the show on both days, January 14-15. The first day was spent with a client who attended the show for the first time, and it was a great learning experience for her. She found many fabric options and vendors from Turkey, Italy, Spain and Japan for the launch of her new company. The second day, I spent the day sourcing for clients who weren’t able to attend in person.

A version of this post by Xochil Scheer originally appeared on www.theapparelagency.com on 1.17.14.

FGI Chicago Event: Robert Rodriguez at Neiman Marcus CUSP

Fashion Group International of Chicago hosted a special collection viewing and meet and greet with designer Robert Rodriguez with CUSP at Neiman Marcus on Michigan Avenue. The new store looks fantastic, and it was amazing to see Robert’s Spring 2014 collection on models. I attended with my colleague Nichole from The Apparel Agency. Robert was a pleasure to meet; he was very humble and a really nice guy.

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Fashion Focus Chicago 2012

Fashion Focus Chicago is always a fun week full of fashion shows and other industry events. Here’s a few photos from this week’s festivities:

10/19: Macy’s Chicago Fashion Incubator show with my colleagues from The Apparel Agency.

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10/20: StyleChicago.com Art of Fashion 2012 Show. Attended with my colleagues from The Apparel Agency. We worked on the patterns and dresses shown by designer Michael Alan Stein.

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10/21: Via Del Corso Masquerade Affair at FIAT of Chicago, attended with my friend Jessica. I was illustrated by the talented Rosemary Fanti.

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NEW Wholesale Fabric Show – Low Minimums!

That’s right, a fabric show targeted to the independent designer, with low minimums! The show is so new that there is no name, website, or registration, but don’t let that deter you from attending. I am re-blogging the show information from Kathleen Fasanella’s website Fashion-Incubator.com.

The show will take place on February 6-7, 2012 in New York City’s Hotel Pennsylvania.

Hotel Pennsylvania: 401 7th Avenue, 33rd Street, New York, NY 10001
Show Hours: 9:30 to 6:00

Additional details can be found on the event’s Facebook page, or on Fashion-Incubator.com.

Please pass on this valuable information to any other designers or manufacturers that you know, the more successful the show is, the higher chance it will happen again! This is very important for independent designers.

A partial list of vendors who will be in attendance:

Appliques with Glitz
Barbie International
Buttonology
Carr Textile
Dill Buttons of America
Elliott Berman Fabrics
Fabric Avenue
Fishman’s Fabrics
Global Leather
HWC/ Hamburger Woolen
Labels IG
Kendor Textiles
Novatex Int’l
One World Button
Oriole
Philips Boyne
Products From Abroad
Robert Kaufman Company
Sextet Fabrics
Shannon Fabrics
Solid Stone Fabrics
Stylecrest Fabrics
W and W
Zinman Textiles

Stay tuned for more details.