Thursday, February 28, 2008

More on the fashion shows

A few weeks ago we had several clothing and related shows in our facility. For those of you unable to make it out here I thought I’d put up some pictures, so you can imagine yourselves walking the aisles.

Setup started with the arrival of carpets for the downstairs hall. There were several flatbed trucks filles with racks of blue carpet for down here.

Upstairs in the ‘hip’ show it was bare concrete and clear plastic booths.

There was a DJ overhead, and for the first day the volume level was almost painful. You could hear the deep base beats in the hall downstairs, even with two feet of concrete floor between the halls.

Upstairs the food was pretty good, especially if you got there right when they opened, otherwise it was over an hour wait. There were multiple stations making custom Chinese or Italian dishes. You went past something like a salad bar and picked out what veggies you wanted, on the Chinese side you also could pick chicken, beef or pork chunks, on the Italian side it was chicken, meatballs or sausage with the veggies. These were then put into a wok type frypan and cooked up. Chinese style could pick rice or noodles that looked a lot like spaghetti, and either sweet and sour or teriyaki sauce. Italian style was spaghetti or smaller pasta, with either tomato or cream sauce. I did Chinese, and had a nice vegetable assortment that came out pretty good.

One area upstairs had pink carpet down the center aisle, and sparkly things hanging from the ceiling.

I’ve previously related my interaction with the swimsuit models.

Next door was a show with fancier cloths paired with jewelry and purses and stuff. The atmosphere was a little quieter and classier.

I liked these purses, they had paintings and pictures on them, carried through in sets from large purse to small to coin to eyeglass case. I can see Deana with some of these.

There were also some really dedicated theme booths.

Tip for those of you attending these shows: go on the first day and walk around quickly, look at as much as you can and grab the free goodies. Then take a day off, and go back on the last day to do all of your more detailed investigations, knowing where to stop from your first pass. The pace is slower, and if you are a buyer then the people in the booths will be able to take more time with you. If the show hasn't been too good for them then you might be able to get some pretty good deals. What I see in these three or four day shows are very large crowds the first day, then the attendance drops off dramatically. I figure that people coming to the show go there on the first day, then start partying at night and sleeping in the next morning, then wandering the strip. Of course, their expense reports don’t exactly say what they did in Vegas for three or four days, and they do go home with literature, or with contracts and contacts.

These shows were the same, packed aisles on day one and almost empty on day three. The exhibitors know this, so have all their models and fancy stuff on the first day. The painted swimsuits were only there on the first day, three girls along with four in real swimsuits. On the second day there were no painted ladies, and five wearing real swimsuits. On day three there were no models at all. The volume of the music also decreased significantly, down to a comfortable level on the last day.

Over in the fancier area I didn’t see any buyers at all on the last day, the people manning the booths were wandering around looking at each other’s wares. There were some fancy gowns, and here there were models that worked the entire show. They were more than happy to show off what they were wearing and just have someone to talk to, as it got pretty boring as the day wore on. I spend some time with the lady with those picture bags above, B almost got some, but she doesn't really like that stuff. Sorry D, I figured Toonces would not appreciate my getting you any.

The lady in yellow above (sorry; buttercup; get the colors right Joe) was with a smaller manufacturer, and she was the only model in the booth. The models did not get to walk around like the booth owners, so they really got bored. If you look in the back ground you can see how crowded the aisles were, this was around 1 in the afternoon on the last day of the show. You can also see the models in the booth across the aisle; this was a much larger booth, with three or four models. At least they could talk to each other. Most of the time they were sitting at a small table watching movies on some laptop computers, here they were just talking.

And since it's the last day, many of the booths over here were willing to give some pretty good deals on their display models, better than having to pack it all up. Downstairs in the less expensive stuff people were selling whole booths of clothes for just a few hundred dollars.

Oh – just noticed – yesterday was my fourth anniversary. I started this blog back when I was enjoying some time off, this is my 731st posting. (happy birthday to me . . .)

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