Feb 6, 2016

FFANY 2016

 My dreams have come true. I had the pleasure of going to FFANY in New York City this past week with The Shoe Hive. For those who are not familiar with FFANY, it is widely known as the New York Shoe Expo. Buyers and sellers are connected at this shoe expo to discover new brands and get a preview of the latest fashion trends. This is what a lot of retailers refer to as "going to market". They are able to see the collections for the following season to decide what they will purchase for their stores and boutiques. This is the side of fashion most consumers do not think about or care much about. But for me, a fashion major and a fashion lover, this side of fashion has always been of interest to me.

Elizabeth, the owner of The Shoe Hive, invited me to New York for the 2016 Fall FFANY show. We spent two long days in The Big Apple going to showrooms and running through Manhattan. I got to see first hand how the job of a fashion buyer is done. I was asked my input on what products we should purchase for the store--from the style, to the color.

As we entered into each designer's showroom, we were greeted by receptionist and served hor d'oeuvres until our representative was ready to meet with us. Many retailers are appointed a brand representative. They will assist you with pretty much anything you need such as special orders, updates on orders, shipment confirmation, etc. You build great relationships with these people. Many of them even keep in touch with you throughout the year to make sure sales are looking up.

Our brand "reps" presented the new Fall 2016 collections while giving great detail on the different styles, structures and design for the shoes. After their presentation was complete, they gave us time to chose products we liked and thought would do well for The Shoe Hive. We took photographs and got product line sheets for each brand to assist us with our buy. After meetings on top of meetings, we packed up our belongings and headed back home. All of the photographs and data will be recorded and looked at closely to place product orders for Fall 2016.

My time at FFANY was so much fun and truly unforgettable. All of our showroom visits consisted of laughter, jokes and good vibes. The highlight of the trip was seeing and meeting some of the designers. Can you believe that we had the pleasure of meeting and chatting with Stuart Weitzman!

Elizabeth Todd, Stuart Weitzman, Christen Kinard, Me


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