The Style File Daily Cheat Sheet

(babble)Maternity Fashion For Teens

Forever 21 sells affordable fashion to a mostly under-21 demographic. However, they have dabbled  Menswear, Children's wear and now... Maternity!? Perhaps we can thank MTV shows like I'm 16 and Pregnant for this for this new market. Don't get us wrong, affordable fashion is important, but we just can't help but wonder if this is a new trend we will see in the near future- teen maternity lines:

"Youth-focused trend-purveyors Forever 21 are proving the point with a new maternity wear for their (largely teenaged) customers. Some people are wondering whether a clothing line that sells primarily to teens should be doing a maternity line at all. Is selling maternity clothes to teens marketing teen pregnancy? Or are we beyond that by now? As Heather at Kidglue jokes: “If you’re a pregnant teenager, no doubt the first thought that crosses your mind is, “Darn, if only I could get my hands on some trendy and affordable maternity clothes!”  (I mean, what else could you possibly have to worry about?)” She also points out that the in-store locations are conveniently located in the states with the highest teen pregnancy rates. The Love 21 Maternity line is fashion-forward and wallet-friendly, not unlike Forever 21’s other offerings. And like their other offerings, these clothes will probably be worn by women who are well over the under-21 target audience. (Forever 35 doesn’t have quite the same ring.) read more

(wwd)Levi’s Loss Expands in Second Quarter

"Levi Strauss & Co. said its second-quarter loss widened as financing costs erased the positive effects of higher sales and margins and advantageous currency swings. For the three months ended May 30, the net loss attributable to the San Francisco-based denim and sportswear firm rose to $14.4 million from $4.1 million in the year-ago period. Included in the bottom-line result was a $16.6 million pretax loss on the early extinguishment of debt. Operating income, exclusive of the debt effect, was up 23.4 percent to $69.2 million from $56.1 million a year ago. Sales rose 8.1 percent to $958 million, versus $886.5 million in the 2009 quarter, and licensing revenue grew 3.2 percent to $18.6 million from $18 million. Total revenues moved up 8 percent to $976.5 million from $904.5 million, and gross margin rose 522 basis points to 51.1 percent of sales against 45.9 percent in the year-ago period. The company said that the improvement reflected the increased contribution of the company’s stores and their higher margins compared to wholesale operations. In the Americas, sales were up 8 percent, to $558 million, and grew 6 percent on a constant currency basis. In Europe, sales increased 9 percent, to $240 million, and gained 7 percent at constant currency. Asia-Pacific sales hit $178 million, an 8 percent rise that, upon conversion for currency effects, translated into a 2 percent decline. “We continue to invest behind the brands,” John Anderson, president and chief executive officer, said on a conference call with analysts. “We believe we have a compelling consumer proposition. We selectively look to continue to invest in retail. It’s a battle.”  He said Japan continues to detract from results in the Asia-Pacific region, but added that he was somewhat encouraged by results in Europe: “If there’s good news, it is that there is no further deterioration.” read more

(wwd)EBay Ups Fashion Game With iPhone App

"The Web site, which revolutionized e-commerce in 1995 by connecting buyers and sellers in an auction format where price was set by the convergence of supply and demand, unveiled its first fashion app for the iPhone on Thursday. The company recently introduced an iPad fashion app, and an app for the BlackBerry mobile phone is due next. The new fashion app could have major consequences for eBay and its competitors, and for consumers as well. Users will have access to the 20 million fashion items offered through eBay’s Marketplace. The app can be used to browse, virtually try on and buy products at any time of the day, anywhere the iPhone gets a signal (airplanes, yes; subways, no.) It can be downloaded for free on iTunes. EBay’s core iPhone application has been downloaded 10 million times, the company said. A measure of the iPhone app’s potential: EBay expects to more than double its $600 million gross fashion merchandise volume of last year to $1.5 billion this year. “Over the past year, we have made significant investments in dramatically enhancing the way customers shop for fashion on eBay,” said Dinesh Lathi, eBay Inc.’s vice president of North America. “[We] feel that mobile offers a great medium to continue our innovation in delivering a personalized experience and connecting our buyers with the world’s largest online selection of branded, designer and vintage clothing, shoes and accessories. It also enables our sellers, regardless of their size, to participate in mobile commerce in groundbreaking ways.” With $5.45 billion in worldwide gross merchandise volume in apparel last year, eBay is the largest seller of clothing online. Apparel is also the company’s top mobile category in terms of items sold, and the second-largest after automobiles in terms of volume. Not content with merely selling more apparel online than any other company, eBay wants to offer more exclusive fashion to its client base of more than 90 million active users. For example, eBay this year introduced exclusive capsule collections by Narciso Rodriguez and Norma Kamali. Products are listed under the headings women’s, men’s, kids, baby and vintage, with the latter organized by decade." read more

(wwd)Burberry Buys Back China Operations

"Burberry has agreed to buy back its China operations for 70 million pounds, or $107.8 million at current exchange, in cash. The company said it would acquire the stores and “related assets” in China currently operated by its longstanding franchisees. Burberry said the transaction was in line with its strategy to unify and consolidate operations worldwide, and increase its exposure to high-growth luxury markets. “With a solid foundation of 50 stores across 30 cities, operational expertise and strong brand momentum, this is an optimal time for Burberry to integrate this business,” stated chief executive Angela Ahrendts. She said Burberry planned to “drive productivity” in existing stores and to open new stores, while rapidly implementing digital marketing initiatives. The transaction is expected to add up to 20 million pounds, or $30.8 million, to group operating profit in the fiscal year 2011/12."

(fibre2fashion)IMG, Japan Fashion Week Organization Reach Deal

IMG Fashion announced that it has signed a five year agreement to partner with the Japan Fashion Week Organization (JFWO), which organises and manages Tokyo Collection Week held biannually in Tokyo. IMG Fashion will act as JFWO’s sole and exclusive representative for the exploitation of sponsorship rights. IMG Fashion will help to maximise the efficiency of a series of industry and consumer events that make up Tokyo Collection Week staged by the JFWO. JFWO has been created to strengthen the competitive power of the Japanese textile and fashion industry, and to encourage growth. It is also designed to further increase Tokyo's reputation as a significant textile and fashion hub. The event brings together manufacturers in the textile and fashion industries, fashion designers and distributors from across Japan, greater South East Asia and the world. "This is a very exciting partnership," said Mr. Peter Levy, Senior Vice President and Managing Director of IMG Fashion, Worldwide. "Tokyo Collection Week is one of the more significant fashion events held annually and has reached a stage in its lifecycle where it is capable of achieving substantial growth. Our globally connected team at IMG Fashion is ready to take on this challenge and work closely with the JFWO to realize the event’s true potential."