A CLASS act: Fashion recap of LA’s CLASS Trade Show

May 13, 2011, Los Angeles, CACLASS was in session at Siren Studios May 12-13, 2011 in Hollywood, CA as a smattering of apparel, lifestyle and beauty brands filled the multi-level space to show their latest wares. Foot traffic was somewhat slow during the day, and women’s wear brands were scarce for the most part.

The General Store made another successful appearance with their vintage wholesale concept featuring an attractive offering of gently used goods (clothing, shoes and a newly-designed jewelry line) handpicked by the founders. A sizable collection of Zodiac boots and platform shoes drew buyers, as did their latest label addition, Bandit Brand, which included cozy super soft worn-in t-shirts with graphic designs and cheeky sayings.

Shameless Jewelry by actress Shea Curry garnered considerable interest thanks to her chic baubles, which are all locally made and designed by Curry herself. Two-finger rings featuring flashy animal motifs including snakes, bumble bees and peacocks were big hits in particular.

Kat Von D showed her brand new spring and fall/holiday collections featuring two lines: White Label and Red Label. The L.A. rocker-inspired fall collection showed strong themes of dark romanticism and Victorian styling like tailored lace jackets, ornamented wool coats and thick sweaters; as well as sheepskin fur boots with flashy embellishments like studs, chains and crystals. The modestly priced line also included sexy body-conscious mini dresses with feather adornments and lace tie-up details, one-shoulder styles and plenty of stretch spandex in every variety for the Sunset Strip party hopper.

Initium Eyewear drew nods of approval for their two newest women’s sunglass designs, the Rapture and the 5two1. Designed in Southern California and manufactured in Italy, Initium focuses on quality manufacturing and chic styling for warding off UV rays.

Ksubi prided itself on reintroducing colored denim to the U.S. market and displayed boldly energetic jeans in shades of red, green, orange, plum, aged blue and more. The ostentatiously dyed denim seems to be attracting plenty of buyers (American Rag, among others) with re-orders already in. For fall, the line stays true to itself and offers colored denim in more muted shades.

Australian line Neuw clothing made an impression on west coast reps with their fine denim collection (just a little over a year old) created by former talents hailing from Lee and Wrangler. The quality denim featured nostalgic details like reinforced back pockets, key ring accessories on belt loops and non-functional darts at the hemline.

Spanish line SkunkFunk already has a strong presence in San Francisco, but set out to acquaint themselves with L.A. retailers at CLASS. The fresh, funky line features eccentric splashy colorful designs in mostly cotton variations, as well as plenty of eco materials like recycled polyester and cotton, and incorporating use of tencel, modal and lyocell. SkunkFunk also includes an extensive line of handbags, wallets, scarves, small accessories and more.

Lastly, GlamGlow set up shop at the pop-up spa/salon and pampered attendees with their highly coveted tingling and exfoliating green tea face mask. Barely a year old, the skin care miracle product has a cult-like following by celebrities and has impressively been picked up by Bliss Spas, Neiman Marcus, Planet Beauty, W Hotels, Fred Segal and more to come.

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