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Shop Beats Victoria's Secret
Baby Boomers Targeted
Hoofing @ 95
Bon Ton's Up
Calida Narrows their Loss
Kellwood Shows Profit
The Intimate Apparel Salon
Burlesque hits Gotham
Jantzen sales strong
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Sara Lee, Eye's India & China
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March 15, 2003
Women's Wear Journal
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Lingerie Maker Van de Velde Enjoys Solid 2002
Belgian lingerie manufacturer Van de Velde on Monday reported a 19.1 per cent year-on-year jump in 2002 net profit to 15.6 million euros ($17.2m) on the back of lower costs and better productivity.
The company said that when its stake in women's clothing producer Top Form is included, its net profit grew almost 40 per cent last year to 18.4 million euros. It said Top Form sales climbed 11 per cent from 2001.
Van de Velde, whose brands include Marie Jo Lingerie, said turnover rose by at least 10 per cent in all countries except Germany where it slipped 1.5 per cent due to weak demand in a tough retail environment.
A Chinese man looks at a display of lingerie at an
exhibition to introduce the Shanghai Fashion Week in China's financial hub
March 7, 2003. Gone are the days when shopping for underwear was
considered an embarrassing chore for Chinese women.
Now, with bras and underpants in all cuts and colors displayed in shop
windows, buying lingerie is considered fashionable in China.
Underwear Maker Calida Narrows FY Loss
Intimate apparel manufacturer Calida Holding AG on Tuesday revealed it narrowed its full-year net loss to 6.4 million Swiss francs ($4.8m) from 40.3 million Swiss francs ($30.4m) in the year-ago period.
The company said in a statement sales slumped more than 20 per cent year-on-year to 153.2 million Swiss francs ($115.5m) and added it expects its results to improve in 2003.
Kellwood Swings To $8.4m Q4 Profit
A combination of organic growth and the acquisition of Gerber Childrenswear helped apparel maker Kellwood Co swung to a fourth-quarter profit of $8.4 million, or 33 cents per share, compared with a loss of $3.1 million, or 14 cents per share, in the same quarter last year.
Sales for the fourth quarter ended 31 January 2003 increased 14 per cent to $537 million, versus $470 million last year according to the company’s chairman, president and chief executive officer, Hal J Upbin. A 6 per cent rise in sales of men's sportswear and intimate apparel offset flat sales of women's sportswear.
Bon Ton Stores Says Q4 Profit Up
0Department store operator The Bon-Ton Stores Inc on Thursday posted a slight rise in fourth quarter net income to $15.2 million from $14.8m despite a 1.7 per cent slip in sales to $241.3m from $245.6m in 2002.
The Pennsylvania-based operator of more than 70 stores added its full profit jumped almost 50 per cent to $9.6m from $6.2m while sales fell 1.2 per cent to $713.2m from $721.8m in the year prior.
Separately, the company said February same-store sales fell 3.8 per cent amid wintry weather and said total sales decreased 4.4 per cent to $39.4m from $41.2m.
Saville 1300, Inc is the manufacturer and wholesale
distributor of the popular silicone Le'Breast
prosthetics/enhancers/Crossover forms, Ultralite, and Authentica
post-mastectomy augmentation breast forms/prosthetics. Wonderform &
SeaShells clear swim silicone breast forms are a huge success with the
Post Mastectomy market. We also continue to supply post-mastectomy stores
with the Ginny Rose bra line. Saville 1300, Inc. provides Le' Breast
silicone breast enhancers/prosthetics to the intimate apparel industry.
Saville 1300, Inc. is a distributor of ladies intimate accessories, which
include shoulder pads, breast prosthetics, breast pads, forms and
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Shop wins round in Victoria's Secret case
Five years ago, an Army colonel at Fort Knox, Ky., saw an ad for a nearby ''Victor's Secret'' lingerie and sex-toy store and alerted Victoria's Secret that its trademark was being used to promote tawdry goods.
Victoria's Secret sued shop owners Victor and Cathy Moseley for dilution'' of its famous mark after they agreed only to change to Victor's Little Secret. Lower federal courts ruled for the international lingerie company.
But in a decision Tuesday that raises the bar for companies
claiming trademark dilution, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously that companies must show ''actual'' dilution in the quality of their mark, not only that it likely would be weakened
The court also said the senior trademark user does not have to prove economic harm, such as lost sales or profits. But there has to be evidence that the ''capacity of a famous mark to identify and distinguish goods'' is reduced.
Lower courts were split over what evidence of ''harm'' is required under the Federal Trademark Dilution Act. It was designed to ensure that companies can clearly identify their goods and that consumers will not be misled by similar-sounding brands.
Overall, the high court took a middle-ground position. While Justice John Paul Stevens' opinion clarifies that actual dilution is required, it offers little guidance about what evidence is needed. Consumer surveys were one option mentioned.
The court sent the case back to a federal appeals court. Victoria's Secret might still be able to show that its brand has been tarnished.
In finding that the earlier record lacked sufficient evidence, Stevens noted that the colonel mentally linked the shop in Elizabethtown, Ky., with Victoria's Secret but did not necessarily change his impression of the store where his wife and daughter shopped.
There is a complete absence of evidence of any lessening of the capacity of the Victoria's Secret mark to identify and distinguish goods or services sold in Victoria's Secret stores or advertised in its catalogs,'' Stevens added.
Justice Anthony Kennedy said in a concurring opinion that the ruling does not bar Victoria's Secret from offering evidence of tarnishment.
But James Higgins, lawyer for the Moseleys, said he will argue that Victoria's Secret cannot add new evidence to the record. He said his clients hope to resume using the name Victor's Little Secret. The shop is now called Cathy's Little Secret.
Limited Brands, parent company of Victoria's Secret, said, ''We will continue to vigorously protect and defend the Victoria's Secret brand, and the court's decision allows us to do that.''
Dillards Swings To FY Loss On Charges
Fashion and furnishings chain Dillards Inc on Thursday posted a sharp fall in fourth quarter net profit to $72.3 million from $101.5m in the year-ago period amid a six per cent fall in sales to $2.4 billion from $2.5bn.
The Arkansas-based operator of more than 330 stores said in a statement it swung to a net loss of $398.4m for the full year from a year-ago profit of $71.8m as it was hit by charges related to store closings and write downs.
It added February same-store sales rose three per cent while total sales edged up two per cent to $610.2m from $599.1m in 2002.
An original Ziegfeld Girl
Still hoofing it at 95
The dress may not quite fit the way it used to. And "The Walk,'' while still done in heels, has a bit more wobble.
But Shirley Travis remains every inch a Ziegfeld Girl -- even if, by her own admission, age has claimed two of those inches.
Wearing a red-sequined sheath as tight as a swimsuit, she and about a dozen members of the Ziegfeld Girls of Florida line up outside a packed Boca Raton clubhouse room.
Years ago, full Ziegfeld Girl membership was reserved for those who had once performed in the famous Follies, which had their heyday from 1907 to 1929. But the rules relaxed as the
Ziegfeld Girls passed on. Today, the Deerfield Beach-based group that entertains at South Florida charity events and an occasional nursing home is open to any retired showgirl, dancer or singer over age 60.
Travis is their only member, now, who truly can claim the Ziegfeld title.
"And here she is, an original Ziegfeld Girl! Ninety-six years old!" crows singer and emcee Doug Crosley, as Travis emerges glowing like a sunrise from a cluster of her befeathered and jeweled sisters. Technically, she isn't 96 until later this month, but she doesn't seem to mind.
Blowing kisses to the assembled lunchers, she graciously accepts the attention as her due, as she did when she was Shirley Siegal from Brooklyn, 15 and entering every beauty contest in the metropolitan New York City area by lying about her age.
Being crowned Miss Bensonhurst 1923 was Travis' ticket to a Follies audition. Stage impresario Florenz Ziegfeld, who called himself the "glorifier of the American girl," loved her wide Myrna Loy eyes and her height. And so, still a teenager, she was hired to walk around between the comedy and singing acts with very little on, looking beautiful.
on Iraq Hits
While the world
Due to uncertainty of War
And at the U.N.
Iraqi will now chair the disarmament
Libya will now chair the Human Rights committee.
they for real?
Stores target baby boomers with stylish
By ANNE D'INNOCENZIO
When it comes to lingerie shopping, Andrea Pass, like many other baby boomers, shudders at the idea of a girdle. ``I love my mom, but I don't wear my mom's undergarments,'' the 41-year-old from Fair Lawn, N.J., said. ``Being comfortable is more important than sucking in my gut.''
Pass and her peers are part of a new target market for fashion companies and retailers which are coming up with lingerie that hides unbecoming bulges but is still comfortable and stylish.
The garments, which come in such ``breathable'' fabrics as DuPont's Tactel nylon and Lycra spandex blends, go way beyond basic briefs, and include leg slimmers that resemble footless pantyhose, body-hugging camisoles that smooth out that extra flab on the back and stomach and even control top thongs.
That's drastically different from those rigid girdles and long-line bras of the 1950s and '60s.
Over the past two to three years, department stores such as
Parisian and Saks Fifth Avenue have focused on this new category that the apparel industry calls shapewear and aggressively advertises as fashion in catalogs and newspapers.
Nobody says the g-word anymore,'' said Pam Simpson, divisional vice president of intimate apparel at Parisian, which has downplayed traditional undergarments in favor of the new sleek styles. The retailer has done well with such brands as Spanx, Bodyslimmers by Nancy Ganz and Wacoal. As for those control top thongs, Simpson reports they are very popular and have no age limit in their appeal.
Meanwhile, Sara Lee Corp., a leading maker of underwear and hosiery under labels such as Hanes and Bali, launched a retail concept called Inner Self, aimed at making boomers feel good about shopping for undergarments.
The stores, which currently number four but are expected to total 10 by June, are billed as sanctuaries, featuring soothing background music and waterfalls. Customers, who range from 30 to 55 years old, also get complimentary hand massages while they shop.
And while Inner Self might be seen as an alternative to Victoria's Secret, even the seller of sexy lingerie is seeing the need to appeal to boomers. The company has expanded its Body by Victoria line, form-fitting undergarments that offer various options for bulge control.
Marshal Cohen, president of NPD Group, Inc., a marketing research firm, estimated that the shapewear category, which also includes certain ultra control-top hosiery, has added 5 percent to 8 percent to total U.S. sales of intimate lingerie, an $8 billion business.
During the 12 months ended November 2002, overall sales of intimate apparel were down 3 percent, while shapewear alone was up about 3 percent, according to NPD.
Still, Cohen and others said a big problem is that stores still don't know how to market the merchandise and educate the consumer about the benefits of these new garments.
I think companies can do more to leapfrog the industry from where it is now,'' said Candace Corlett, a principle at WSL Strategic Ltd., a retail consultancy. ``They can do more to make a stronger fashion statement about body contouring.''
She praised lingerie designer Nancy Ganz, whose line called Bodyslimmers was one of the first in the late 1990s to ``take the concept of the corset and make it 21st century.''
Pass said she hasn't tried much of the new lingerie because many retailers' customer service is so poor; she wants to know more about which garments would be best for her, but tends to feel ignored.
If the sales help made you feel more welcomed and helped me, I would be open to trying more'' of the shapewear, she said.
Sue Nevded, general manager and director of Sara Lee's Inner Self believes the new concept, which first opened two year ago, fills a void in the industry.
Consumers are not getting that service level they need in the market,'' she said. ``Boomers are looking for body sculpting, but we also want to help women celebrate their body,'' she said.
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