Thursday, January 3, 2008

New Site!

In a few seconds, you will be automatically redirected to the new fashionCEO site!

Please visit the new fashionCEO blog at

Thank you!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Is it December already?

I told you the new fashionCEO site would be up the week of October 29th. Okay, so its a little behind schedule. Its taking a tad more time as we get the new format up and running. Thanks for your patience. Watch for an exciting new fashionCEO on January 1st.

If you are a designer, the new fashionCEO format is going to give you more exposure and opportunity to promote your line. If you run an online boutique and are looking for new, fabulous designers to feature in your store, keep an eye on the new format.

More to come very soon...

Happy Holidays to all!

Friday, October 19, 2007

New fashionCEO coming soon!

Hi Guys. Sorry for the lack of posts recently. I have been focusing on getting the new fashionCEO format up and going. I'm getting close! These things always take longer then you think. But its worth it! The new format will have new updated content on a daily basis. I'm personally excited about it. I hope you all will be too.

I'm off to Vegas tomorrow for 4 days, so look for the new fashionCEO the week of October 29th!!

Have a fashionable weekend!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Designer Shares Tradeshow Experience

One of fashionCEO's wonderful and talented members, Sheela (of Kuukivi jewelry line), recently experienced her first tradeshow. She had a booth at Accessories The Show in Las Vegas in August and has been generous enough to share her experience with the rest of us.

Overall impression of the show?

Sheela: The organization of the show was good. The booths were set up and things that were missing were fixed really quickly. The staff (like electrical etc) were really helpful and the service was good. This was my first show but I heard that most of the shows don't provide any lunch etc. Here, they gave breakfast, lunch and beverage coupons and had nice sandwiches and even cappuccino:) The organizing staff were around the whole 3 days stopping by at booths and asking how things were etc.

Sheela: The amount of foot traffic and diversity of buyers were not what I expected/hoped for. It was quite slow, at least in our row, and didn't see many buyers that were interested in the handmade unique jewelry (although got heaps of compliments). There were at least two other major shows going on in Las Vegas at the same time, namely Magic and Project. I don't know if that helped or affected the foot traffic.

Were the exhibitors mostly established companies or were there alot of emerging indie designers?

Sheela: It was a mixture. I did meet a few new indie designers and a few that came to the west coast for the first time to expand their business.

What was traffic like in your booth?

Sheela: It was in bursts but never more than 3 people at a time. It was quite slow in our row in general where there are more indie designers. More than half the people who came in to see my jewelry were "just looking" and there were quite a few people from outside US (like Thailand etc).

What type of buyers were there (boutique, dept store, etc)?

Sheela: Mostly boutiques, although I heard there were a few department stores too.

Had you set up appointments before the show?

Sheela: No. I sent out invitations to the boutiques I know about, mostly in the Bay area and LA but that's about it.

What did you feel buyers were looking for?

Sheela: The buyers who actually gave feedback before leaving (and after complimenting the designs) said that they were looking for low price items and hence gemstone handcrafted jewelry might not be the thing for them right now. We did see that the booths with mass produced goods had quite a few buyers in them. Within Indie designers, I saw more buyers at booths with jewelry that are much bigger in size than that of Kuukivi (like multiple strands of big pearls/corals/resin beads).

What tips did you learn from the other exhibitors?

Sheela: Since it was slow traffic for all of us in the aisle, I had the opportunity to talk to the neighbors and learn a thing or two. I learned that gift shows might be worth trying especially in the NY area. In one of the neighbors experience, the San Francisco gift show is way better than the California gift show. Shows in Florida also seem to be good for indie businesses.

Sheela: One of the main things I learned was about booth setup. Probably not a problem for most of them, but I felt I wasn't prepared enough for the show. I didn't even have a curtain to close the front (didn't know i needed one) and one of the neighbors lent me an extra they had. I learned different ways/techniques of setting up a booth and how to present the pieces to catch the buyers attention. One of the designers (fourth by and actually helped me with the setup on the second day. She also put a Kuukivi piece in her booth and when that sold, told me that its presentation and marketing that gets people's attention and the designs will sell themselves. Seeing the slow traffic on the first day, she hired her friends teenage son to wear her jewelry and walk around the show passing brochures and she said it paid off quite well.

Sheela: One of the booths had a TV with a slide show running about their jewelry and another had a small digital picture frame showing a slide show of her jewelry pictures. They said it helps catch the eye and make them look at a design or two which might trigger enough interest to stop at the booth to look at jewelry.

What were the biggest lessons you learned?

Sheela: That I/Kuukivi was not ready for a wholesale show. That I needed more designs and better display units to get attention. Although in this particular case, even people who have been doing shows for a long time weren't quite busy as they usually are at other shows. And that really new Indie designers might need some time to get the name out and can't expect instant sales in the first show. And that I need to learn to sell my designs and talk to the customers when they walk into the booth:) (yes, I know it seems so obvious but I feel like I am intruding on them while they are looking and I'm mostly nervous).

What would you do different next time (booth, appts, etc)?

Sheela: I would definitely have a better setup in the booth and would do one or two retail shows before going for wholesale. I would wait till products are in a few boutiques and expand it at the shows than start off with the show to get into boutiques.

Will you do another tradeshow?

Sheela: Yes. Can't decide not to based on one show although I would pick a retail show or a gift show to attend next. I would probably wait a while before going back to Las Vegas too.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

A Gift from Stephanie Johnson

If you read the main fashionCEO site, you know that we featured Stephanie Johnson in this month's "Behind the Brand". Stephanie is a really dynamic, smart, wonderful person. I love that she left a high paying executive job at MCI to start a line of cosmetic bags. Those stories are the ones that inspire me the most. After the interview, I sent Stephanie a little thank you gift for giving fashionCEO her time. Well, a few days later I got a huge box from Fedex. To my complete delight, it was a few bags from Stephanie's collection! I have to admit, I've never had a nice cosmetic or toiletry travel bag. When I travel, I put my hairspray and perfume in a ziploc bag (because I've had my perfume leak one too many times). And for makeup, well I always use the free bag with purchase at the Lancome counter.

Well, no longer will I be needing a Ziploc bag next time I travel. I am a converted woman now that I own Stephanie Johnson bags. They are so fabulous. I was like a little girl at Christmas when I opened the packages. I took some pictures so you can see why I'm so giddy with these gifts.


I love how you get 2 makeup bags in 1 with this beautiful little case. Its perfect for all of my makeup and hair accessories (and I have alot!).

This is a fabulous travel bag. I can now put my hairspray, mousse and perfume in these vinyl pockets. If they leak, no big deal...just wipe them clean! There are so many compartments and pockets...its wonderful!

She also sent me this large tote bag below. I love it...this bag will hold the other two bags while also fitting my hairdryer and curling iron (yes, I'm high maintenance and a girly-girl, so what?). All of my toiletries will be nicely contained in this tote bag. Now I won't be digging for my ziploc bags wrapped in Target plastic bags. I'll be in style with all of my goodies organized!! I recommend treating yourself or a friend or loved one to a Stephanie Johnson bag (or two). If they have the reaction I did, they will be one happy girl! SJ bags can be found at Nordstroms or at the Stephanie Johnson website.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

fashionCEO new format

It's been busy around the fashionCEO HQ. I am busy working on a new format for the main fashionCEO site. The new format is going to be great, I can't wait to show it to you all. But please bare with me as my posting has slowed down just a bit. But I'm not going anywhere, so planning some exciting new stuff for the main site and the fashionCEO blog! I'll keep you posted (pun intended!)

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Bottomless Closet Organization

If you are a designer and would like to make a donation to a worthy cause, I suggest donating one of your designs/products to the Bottomless Closet organization out of NYC. Bottomless Closet helps disadvantaged women get back into the workforce. They have an incredibly wonderful cause and have helped so many women improve their lives.

Here is their official mission statement:
"The mission of Bottomless Closet is to promote economic self–sufficiency by providing interview skills, business clothing, and ongoing career development and support programs to economically disadvantaged New York City women. By enhancing their self-confidence and self-sufficiency, we enable them to enter and succeed in the workforce and transform the vision for their lives."

They are always accepting donations of handbags, clothing, jewelry.

"To ensure that the contributions are meaningful to our clients, Bottomless Closet asks that clothing donations should be professional, clean, new or gently worn, and work appropriate. Acceptable items include suits, jackets, pants, skirts, blouses, and sweaters. In addition, larger sizes (14 and up) are always in demand and particularly appreciated.

We also gladly accept accessories, including gently worn shoes, scarves, belts, bags, jewelry, and new pantyhose; however, we are unable to accept undergarments, jeans, tee shirts, sneakers, or used make-up.

To encourage women to view this as an entirely new phase in their lives, Bottomless Closet provides women with head-to-toe outfits to reinforce the importance of overall appearance. Each client is assisted in selecting two outfits for their interview and three additional outfits once a job has been secured.

All clothing donations are tax-deductible. Bottomless Closet will supply a letter acknowledging each donation and a form for taxes."

If you would like to donate one of your designs, please send them to:

Bottomless Closet
545 Eighth Avenue, 12th Floor
New York, NY 10018