Archive | October, 2011

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A Great Escape ~ P.J.Salvage

October 31, 2011

Eat your hearts out fellow northeasterners: I flew out of New York Saturday in front of a surprise snowstorm that dropped 8+ inches of snow on our autumn landscape.   I am very happy to have escaped to my favorite getaway, Los Cabos, Mexico; where I am relaxing in the sun enjoying the comfort of the balmy sunshine and light ocean breezes. The temperatures at home were precipitous, edging down to the freezing mark for the entire week before this unexpected pre winter onslaught.  Is this a harbinger for an extremely cold winter season? I don’t know, but there are two ways to deal with this chilly weather.  Get away from it or wrap yourself in the warmth of a plush PJ Salvage waffle robe.

The P.J. Salvage brand, known for its chic, casual luxury at affordable prices, does not disappoint with this sumptuous style, shown here in charcoal and  offered in a multitude of additional colors.    Constructed in a cozy, ultra-soft polyester microfiber , it is an airy light offering of personal comfort and well being available in sizes S – XL.  The holidays are imminent and no matter how you celebrate, receiving a useful but indulgent gift is always a reprieve.  In fact, because my experience has proven that 75% of the robe business is generated from November through December, this item could be just the perfect present for not only a savvy consumer but also any astute retailer in a frigid economy. Everybody can find solace from the storm.

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“There’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing”                                   …Alfred Wainwright

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inquiries: amelias@pjsalvage.com

Girlfriends:  East Norwich, New York

Joesph W. Sayers:  Lake Placid, New York

Jill Scherer LTD:  Roslyn, New York

The Pink Slip:  New York City, New York

Stella E. Luna:  Pleasant Point Beach, New Jersey

Sylene of Washington:  Chevy Chase, Maryland

The Hope Chest:  Haverford, Pennsylvnia

Freudian Slip:  Eugene, Oregon

Details Fine Apparel and Acc:  Eau Claire, Wisconsin

Ketchum Bed and Bath:  Ketchum, Idaho

The Lingerie Store:  Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Belladonna:  New Orleans, Louisiana

Jolie Femme Boutique:  Del Mar, California

Fanny Wrapper:  San Luis Obispo, California

Hip and Humble: Salt Lake City, Utah

Zappos.com:  Henderson, Nevada

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MINI BRIEF ~Intimate Affair:  Linda Becker hosted a Breast Cancer Awareness event at her Murray Hill NYC store on Thursday, October 27, 2011.  Linda and her staff are all trained in mastectomy bra and prostheses fittings.  The intimate affair provided free fittings for all  who have battled breast cancer (or other breast diseases) and require post-surgical solutions,  but the event was open to all women looking for a bra fitting and some education about breast health.  To read the full event report, click on www.BraLaMode.com

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BRIEF ALERT! A La Mode Intimates

October 27, 2011

This Week’s Intimate Discovery:  A big risk pays off for a Maryland lingerie entrepreneur

Location, Location, Location; The first lesson I learned as a merchant is that nothing is as important to the success of a retail operation as its location.  It’s not only where you position product in the store, it’s also all about where the store is situated.  That is why when I spoke with partners Patti Platt and Sharon Borland, owners of A La Mode Intimates in Annapolis, Maryland about the current success of their new store I was very impressed with their courage, particularly in this economy.  In January 2011, they took the leap and moved their 7 year old boutique from its downtown historic location focused on tourism to a new venue in an outside shopping center replete with businesses that nurture like-minded consumers. Only a 5 minute drive from the old site, their business has completely turned around realizing healthy volume increases. It was not an easy decision, “quite scary” I was told, but now this upscale bra fitting shop has just won a small business owner’s award for the extra consumer value it has contributed to the retail environment.  And A La Mode is reaping the rewards!

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“Leap And A Net Will Appear” . . . John Burroughs

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inquiries:  patti@alamodeintimates.com

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Indulgence ~ Empreinte

October 24, 2011

I am not a chocolate snob.  Anyone who knows me knows about my compulsion for M & M’s.  In fact, when I was at Macy’s, my staff gave me a gumball machine filled with these mini treats, hoping that the penny requirement for satisfaction would control my obsession while I was pregnant with my son.  Frankly, I am surprised that I did not give birth to a chocolate covered peanut.  I still have to practice a “not even one” policy when it comes to these addictive sweets, but now, as I have matured, my taste has ripened.  My current chocolate passion is for Vosge Haut Chocolate, the exceptional confectionary infused with exotic scents and spices that induce a sensual tasting experience worthy of art.  Never mind that each piece cost more than an entire jar of M & M’s.  There is a time and place for every kind of luxury.

This is why, despite the premium cost of an Empreinte bra, I have found it necessary to own several in my foundations wardrobe.  My newest addition, The Kaela low neck underwire bra (1808) in muscade, reminded me of the first time I splurged on my first Vosges ginger and wasabi truffles.  Designed with the Empreinte exclusive molded rigid deep lace cup, this style is created with contemporary taste and engineered with the brand’s trademark construction.   Available in 30 – 42, C – G cups, it looks amazing under every type of apparel, smooth, with enduring and comfortable lift.  It makes me feel lighter and every time I wear it, someone asks if I lost weight.  It is well worth the indulgence.  Oh yes, and maybe a “few” extra M & M’s won’t really show!

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“Every Once and Awhile A Girl Has To Indulge Herself”  . . . Sarah Jessica Parker

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inquiries: tdfamerica@hotmail.com

Available At:

Intimacy:  All Locations Nationwide

Town Shop:  New York City, New York

La Petite Coquette:  New York City, New York

Bits of Lace:  Charleston, South Carolina

Jenette Bras: Los Angeles,California

Sara’s Lingerie:  Studio City, California

Footsie:  Santa Monica, California

Top Drawer:  Houston, Texas

La Mode Lingerie:  Houston, Texas

Diva Lingerie: Winnipeg, Manitoba

Diane’s Lingerie: Vancouver, British Columbia

Bare Basics Lingerie:  Vancouver, British Columbia

Ogilvy:  Montreal, Quebec

Lyla Collection:    Montreal, Quebec

Knickers and Lace:  Calgary, Alberta

Lily’s Lingerie:     Halifax, Nova Scotia

Secrets From Your Sister:  Toronto, Ontario

Melmira:   Toronto, Ontario

Linea Intima:  All Stores,   Ontario

Legs and Lace: Aurora, Ontario

Brachic:  Ottawa, Ontario

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MINI BRIEF ~ Intimate Affair: Bergorf Goodman Hosted a  Bra Fit Event on Sunday 10/23 in collaboration with Intimate Apparel Site ILOVEAGOOD.  Merchandise coordinators from Commando, Hanro, Spanx, La Perla and Myla were available for fittings, styling, and to answer any questions the shoppers may have had concerning their intimate apparel needs.  For the full Event Report, visit www.BraLaMode.com

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BRIEF ALERT! Bettie Page

October 20, 2011

This Week’s Intimate Discovery:  Secrets In Lace reveals an Iconic Collection

For several years now I have been an admirer of the Secrets In Lace e-commerce site.  It’s not only that I am impressed with the clear merchandising message, but also the methodical approach to building a niche identity that owner, Dan Whitsett has achieved.  Founded as the go to site for authentic 100% nylon stockings, Secrets In Lace has expanded into a retro-haven for lingerie collections imbued with a seductive and sophisticated pin up aesthetic.  Based on stellar on-line sales, their exclusively designed Bettie Page Collection is now available at wholesale for any interested vintage inspired entrepreneur.  This sexy homage to a cultural icon is highlighted by Secrets In Laces signature products; full fashion stockings, the bullet bra and fully functioning state of the art garter styles.  The past never looked so ripe.

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“I was never the girl next door” . . . Bettie Page

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inquiries:  djwhitsett@secretsinlace.com

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A Star Is Born ~ Curvy Kate

October 17, 2011

Time has a way of teaching us.  In my 20’s my definition of success was to have my picture on the cover of Time Magazine.  I wanted recognition and I equated it with fame.  The idea of being the center of attention in a room full of strangers was a lustful objective.  In my youthful naivety, I did not understand that true fortune was not born from noisy laurels, but rather from instructive council.  However, I did have some remarkable mentors whose patience and appreciation for my curiosity and hard work nurtured my ego.  From them, I learned that if one challenges and supports those with less experience, victory will result.  I finally realized that reaching the limelight was a team effort.  A superior product requires many channels of creative input. Nothing blooms in a vacuum.

I am always cautious with new merchandise, analyzing its position, fit, function, and infrastructure.  I am interested in substance.  For a while now, I have heard rumblings about the 2 year young British based brand, Curvy Kate.   Recently recognized in the UK as the “Fuller Bust Brand of the Year”, this line, dedicated to sizes 28 – 44, D – K cups, is conceived with a bubbly feminine attitude.  Based on their extraordinary growth rate at retail, I have to also believe they really fit.   But what entices me about Curvy Kate is their focus on developing new talent.  In partnership with England’s De Montfort University, they have launched a design mentoring initiative “Create a Curvy Kate”, to source new talent for the lingerie industry.  The winning concept is highlighted as an integral part of the actual collection.  This season’s winner, The Lottie Bra (1601), has already garnered applause.  Featured here it will be continued for spring 2012 in basic colors.  It’s easy to reach the spotlight when you cultivate talent.

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“Hitch Your Wagon To A Star” . . . Ralph Waldo Emerson

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inquiries: carolinea@sbcclothing.com

Available At:

Bra La Vie:  Hammond, Louisiana

Old.New.Blue:  New Orleans, Louisiana

Zoe & Co:  Concord, New Hampshire & Westerly, Rhode Island

A Sophisticated Pair:  Burlington, North Carolina

Bra-Vo Intimates:   Royal Oak, Michigan

Clair De Lune:  Overland Park, Kansas

Hush Fine Lingerie: Richmond, Virginia

Sara’s Fine Lingerie:  Encino, California

Scarlet Label:  La Mesa, California

At Last Bra & Lingerie:  West Sacramento, California

The Enchantress:  San Diego, California

Creative Woman:  Monrovia, California

Bare Necessities:  Lutherville, Maryland

Lingerie Vanessa:  Mont-Laurier, Quebec

Lingerie Farouche:  La Sarre, Quebec

BraChic:  Ottawa, Ontario

Coquetta: – Kingston, Ontario

Coup De Foudre :Richmond Hill, Ontario

Envie Intimates:  Cambridge, Ontario

Kathryn’s Lingerie:   Toronto, Ontario

Tres Jolie:  Toronto, Ontario

Tryst Lingerie:  Toronto, Ontario

Pert Lingerie:  Toronto, Ontario

Rosalind’s:  Cambridge, Ontario

Scented Drawer:  Orangeville, Ontario

My Top Drawer:   Simcoe, Ontario

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MINI BRIEF ~ Intimate Affair:  The Underfashion Club hosted a panel discussion entitled “Eye on Trends” on Thursday, October 13, 2011 at The St. Giles Hotel in NYC.  Moderated by Guido Campello, Cosabella’s vice president of sales, branding, and innovation and member of the Underfashion Club’s board of directors. The panel was comprised of trend experts David Wolfe, creative director of The Doneger Group, Sharon Graubard, senior vice president of trend analysis at Stylesight, and Danielle Black, co-founder and chic operating officer of I LOVE A GOOD.    For a full report on the Intimate Affair, log on to www.BraLaMode.com

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BRIEF ALERT! Flirt Boutique

October 13, 2011

This Week’s Intimate Discovery:  Savvy Midwest Shop Zeros in on Soft Cup Bras

I had a great discussion with Jessica Gerard, owner of Flirt Boutique in St. Paul, Minnesota yesterday.  She emailed me to report the surge in her soft cup bra business.  She says that every new soft cup bra she receives “comes in and is gone”.  Sales of this category have escalated from 4 a month to 4 a week.  Flirt is a haven for those ladies with a pin up aesthetic. The shop stocks many sizes but, it’s the A cup customer looking for pretty, feminine, soft underpinnings that are not enhanced with padding and feel like a “prosthetic” that are coming in from the cold. These women want to look and feel sexy with their natural shapes She continues to sell Eberjey, Hanky Panky and Cosabella, but has now focused on gorgeous styles she discovered at Curve, including Playful Promises, Sexy Panties and Naughty Knickers, and O.E. from Paris. She also mentioned Rosie and Lisa’s Folly.  One thing for sure, Flirt Boutique is listening to their customers.  I call this excellent merchandising.

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“Customers Buy For Their Reasons, Not Yours” . . .   Orvel Ray Wilson

inquiries:  flirtboutique@gmail.com

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Note: Speaking of fabulous soft bras (and other gorgeous lingerie) Fleur of England is offering a contest that is right up my alley, “The lost art of Love Letters”. To celebrate the arrival of their new Darling Collection, they invite you to rediscover poetry and prose.  Forget texts and tweets and write a love letter to your darling to win ₤500 of lingerie.  There are only a few days left to participate. Click  to learn how:

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Just Relax ~ P.J. Harlow Loungewear

October 10, 2011

Honestly, I truly hope that what they say about events happening in threes is true, because after this week-end, I have had enough!  First, the airline lost my baggage, which is unbelievable since it was a carry on that I door checked and watched being ferried down the jet way.  It’s still not back, 2 days later.  Then, I drafted this week’s Brief on Saturday, but on Sunday morning, when I turned on my laptop, the computer refused all coaxing; the screen remaining blank.  After a lengthy phone journey to India and back I received the feared diagnosis; motherboard meltdown.  Guess what, my 3 year warranty expired last month.  I decided to escape the trauma in my mini cooper and lo and behold, the check engine light was on.  My Solution: Go inside, put on my P.J. Harlow loungewear, open a bottle of wine and turn on Netflix to continue my marathon obsession with “Lost”.  I don’t care if it’s only 2 PM on Sunday.

Loungewear is the comfort food of Intimate Apparel and no other brand salves the psyche quite like P. J. Harlow‘s sumptuous casual separates.  Designed in luxurious supima cotton/ micro-modal knit and P.J. Harlow’s signature poly satin faille blend, this line is a retailer’s dream.  11 simple styles in 9 precious colors are available in 8 sizes, XS – 3X.  It’s a perfect key item multiplier.  Customers buy one set and come back for more.  The collection, anchored by the bestselling satin “Jolie” drawstring pant pictured here with the knit “Gracie” snap front satin lined hoodie, is a sell-out in every store I contacted.    It’s evening now.  I  don’t have my luggage, I am using my husbands desk-top and the auto service center is closed tomorrow. But, I am very comfortable.

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“Cure Sometimes, Treat Often, Comfort Always” . . . Hippocrates

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inquiries: tina@pjharlow.com

Available At:

Shades of Sleep:  Calgary, Alberta,  Canada

Victorias Attic:  Grande Prairie, Alberta, Canada

Cloud Nine Pajamas:  Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

The Lingerie Store:  Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Barbara Graves Intimate Fashions:  Little Rock, Arkansas

Jule Lingerie and Loungewear:  St. Louis, Missouri

Lacy Stuff Lingerie:  Aspen Colorado

Wendow Fine Living: Austin, Texas

The Trellis Spa:  Houston, Texas

MGM Grand Hotel:  Las Vegas, Nevada

Epitome:  Edina, Minnesota

Reverie Linens:  Santa Rosa, California

Fred Segal:  Los Angeles, California

Pebble Beach Company:  Pebble Beach, California

Hotel Del Coronado:  Coronado, California

Pebble Beach Company:  Pebble Beach, California

The Ritz Carlton:  Dallas,  Texas & New Orleans, Louisiana

The Spa at Marriot Grand:  Point Clear, Alabama

Longoria Collection:  Houston Texas

The Trellis Spa:  Houston, Texas

Michelle’s Beach House:  Orange Beach,  Alabama

Opulence: Southern Pines, North Carolina

Girlfriends:  East Norwich, New York


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MINI BRIEF: Margaret Shrum aka The Lingerie Goddess, hosted a Private Lingerie & Sleepwear Shopping Event featuring three NYC based Intimate Apparel designers on Thursday October 6, 2011.  The collections included Lola Haze by Laura Mehlinger, Ann Vogue by Asi Efros, and Ombrato by Masako Shirokawa.  The Event was “invitation only” and was held at the Doncaster showroom on 57th Street across from the famed Russian Tea Room.  It was a fabulous “girl’s night out” including a spread of wine, cheese, and other sophisticated snacks.  All of the guests were impressed with the collections and many walked out the door with shopping bags full of beautiful, unique, one-of-a-kind intimate apparel pieces which will be treasured for years to come.  I was delighted to learn that all three lines are manufactured right here in NYC’s garment district.  Apparently, our very own garment district is still alive and well!  For the full Event Report- log on to www.BraLaMode.com

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