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Trade shows

Examining examples of trade shows and learn how they are sponsored and used for the promotion of lines or collections.
A male model walking the runway in jeans, a padded jacket and a t shirt with the word raw printed on it.

Fashion trade shows function as a showcase for professionals within the industry to exhibit their work, demonstrate products and discuss the latest trends and movements within the fashion world. Trade shows are an efficient way to market brands and create brand awareness.

Trade associations and specialized trade show producers sponsor their own shows for the purpose of promoting lines of textiles, apparel, accessories, and home fashions. These trade shows, lasting anywhere from three to eight days, are typically located in the exhibition halls of wholesale marts, at large hotels, or at convention centers. Some companies rely heavily on trade shows for presenting their lines; others present their lines primarily during fashion weeks and/or market weeks at a major market center and may exhibit at only one or two of the primary trade shows.

In addition, websites for trade shows include exhibitor information, buyer information, product search services, show information and registration, and show evaluations. Because of the expense of attending trade shows in person, online exhibits of lines and expanding buyers’ opportunities to purchase goods online have grown in popularity.

Examples of trade shows in the United States include:

  • NYC’s Javits Center is the home to many industry trade shows each year, including MODA, Accessories The Show (ATS), International Apparel Sourcing Show, Apparel Sourcing USA, Home Textiles Sourcing, FAME, NY NOW (home, lifestyle, and gifts), and Home Textiles Sourcing Expo (fabrics and finished soft goods for home applications).
  • Las Vegas has become a US hub for trade shows, including MAGIC, one of the largest fashion brand trade shows covering men’s, women’s, and children’s apparel, footwear, accessories, sourcing, and resources (Figure 12.6).
  • Denver hosts Outdoor Retailer, which is sponsored by the Outdoor Industry Association and is the largest outdoor recreation trade show in the United States.

The MAGIC tradeshow, where fashion professionals are seen milling around different brand booths.

Trade shows such as MAGIC provides opportunities for retail buyers and fashion professionals to preview multiple fashion brands.

Market weeks, fashion weeks, and trade shows provide the consumer with a glimpse into upcoming lines and collections to create intrigue and foster buying intention. However, the ‘see now, buy now’ phenomenon has allowed consumers to fulfill their desires instantly by purchasing merchandise as soon as it is showcased.

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