Colorful MAGIC Market Week

MAGIC Market Week is a business-to-business event. Here a representative from Request Jeans talks to buyers.
Photo by Diane Taylor

Twice a year when retail buyers from the fashion industry come to Las Vegas, they have their hands (and feet) full. MAGIC Market Week (actually three days of shows) is the country’s “most comprehensive global market for contemporary fashion and apparel” and is held each February and August in Las Vegas.

MAGIC, as most Las Vegans know, is an acronym for “Men’s Apparel Guild in California”. The MAGIC trade show debuted in 1933 and has now grown so large that three days is hardly enough time to see everything. MAGIC Market Week, organized by Advanstar Global LLC, is now comprised of ten different shows housed at the Las Vegas Convention Center, the Mandalay Bay Convention Center and the “Tents” at Mandalay Bay. If I wanted to see everything, I would have started at the Las Vegas Convention Center Monday August 19, and probably by sometime Tuesday August 20, I would have taken a shuttle to the Mandalay Bay Convention Center, and by Wednesday August 21, I would have cried “uncle” on behalf of my feet.

I would have seen shoes, women’s wear, men’s wear, children’s wear, fashion shows, sportswear, denim, jewelry, handbags, new designers and a number of celebrities who appeared with their fashion lines. Wynona Judd was here with a “Got Soul” shoe collection. Kristin Cavallari appeared with her own shoe line, and David Cassidy appeared at an event concert party on Monday night (and was picked up in New York for DUI two days later — must have been some party).

However, my actual visit to MAGIC was not a see-everything visit. My journey was limited by time, just two hours, so I opted to visit the Mandalay Bay Convention Center. I started by entering what is called the Pool Trade Show. No, “Pool” does not mean I was looking at bikinis. The Pool Trade Show is described as “where art, design and commerce intersect, connecting emerging brands with the most visionary retailers in fashion”. In other words, small companies and new designers exhibit at the Pool Trade Show, and some of these exhibitors even allow “cash and carry” purchases. (I left my credit card at home which was probaby a good thing.) I love the Pool Trade Show part of MAGIC because one sees new and interesting products on every aisle.

The clothes are the thing at MAGIC Market Week. As a result, most of the mannequins have blank faces or here, no heads at all!
Photo by Diane Taylor

From the Pool Trade Show, one can walk to other shows on Mandalay Bay’s first floor, which I did, — and every aisle is a shopper’s delight. Most of what I saw you will see on the accompanying video. You will also note, that fashion design comes to Las Vegas from throughout the world, and as I observed, just about anything goes these days, particularly among the young customers for today’s buyers . Color and layers and mixed textures seem to be on every mannequin.

Expected attendance at MAGIC was some 80,000 people. The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority said MAGIC has a non-gaming economic impact of $100.6 million Because of the large turnout for MAGIC, other fashion-related shows such as the OFFPRICE show and the new AGENDA show at the Sands Expo and Convention Center also peppered last week’s trade show calendar in Las Vegas. (When that has happened in the past, eventually MAGIC buys those shows and MAGIC becomes even larger…so watch out, OFFPRICE and AGENDA!)

Personally, I love MAGIC Market Week — lots of visitors in town — and lots of creative people crossing their fingers that buyers will want what they are offering.