Is cold weather gone, at last? Consumers
are definitely ready to get out and find something new that says Spring is
here. Nothing says it better than spring and summer hats that start popping
up like spring flowers in stores. Yes, there is plenty of demand for spring
hats and fortunately for you, the demand is far greater than the supply.
Here's a peek at what's new for spring this year.
Headwear for Church, Teas, Derbies, and
This is your season to excel
in this field because selection is better than ever while competition is
diminishing. There's still time to get inventory in your shop for Easter
and the frenzy for church hats continues till Mother's Day. Even then
church hats continue to have demand and you have even less competition.
This season sees fabulous designs in the traditional polypropylene and
sinamay hats that return every spring with innovations. This spring choices
range from more conservative short down-turned brims to lampshade shapes
and super wide brims. Pillboxes are back on the smaller end of ladies dress
hats and wide brims in sinamay and polypropylene deliver the stunning
statements with more lavish design. Color selections are also exciting with
something for every suit and outfit.
The new millinery creations
this season are organza dress hats. Organza is a sheer material that is
semi- transparent and has a sheen. Designer creativity delivers some
stunning designs in this material as well as composites that use organza
crowns and sinamay brims. Most unusual is lace patterns with floral designs
that are definitely spring.
Many of these same dress
hats will be in demand for teas, luncheons, and outdoor weddings, not
to mention derbies--the huge hat event every year. Super- widebrims always
excel here and they are even more in demand since Ralph Lauren showcased
them two seasons ago. Those spring fashion shows started a frenzy in
widebrims that seems like it will never quit. This season find super-
widebrims in untrimmed polypropylene that can be worn as is or decorated.
Trimmed sinamay and polypropylene are ready to go for everything from
church to derbies, and ribbon hats offer a very clean widebrim look that
flatters with simplicity. Think more serious than ever about having hats in
your line this season.
Summer means all kinds of
casual events--the beach, vacations, festivals, ball games, picnics, and
more. These are hat events and super widebrims excel again. Only the cowboy
hat beats out widebrim hats for summer (and we will cover cowboy hats
widebrim hats in straw are so classy that the demand is timeless. Count
on these summer hats to be back every year. Toyo is also very popular and
brings a wide selection of color. Toyo is very affordable and creates
stunning designs, but it is a paper derivative and so often doesn't do well
in the elements.
The last few years have seen more and more fabric hats with each
spring providing more innovations. Satin ribbon hats alternate narrow bands
of satin with mesh for a clean design that is very dressy. Grosgrain ribbon
uses wider bands sewn together and creates a more causal looking hat. Both
have the body to support 5 and 6 inch brims.
Widebrims are important, but not the only game in headwear. Kettles and
upbrims provide a cute look in summer hats that often suits conservative
customers better. Younger customers often pursue hats with personality
rather the practicality of sun protection. Ivy caps, fedoras, and newsboys
are big here because that is what the celebrities are wearing. So think
about your customer base and then put together a headwear selection to
match their taste because spring is just beginning and early indications
show there's a huge demand for hats.
The American Icon in Headwear
John B Stetson gets credit
for creating the first cowboy hat and the look is just too good to ever go
away. Over the years cowboy
hats slowly evolved to the looks we have today with pinch front a
cattlemen designs the most popular. A few years ago, Brittany Spears and J-
Lo wore straw roll-up cowboy hats and set off a craze for the hat. Ever
since then, wholesalers have been announcing every year that it's over and
every year they've been wrong. Our own calculations show that last summer
49% of hat sales were cowboy hats when we were six weeks into the summer.
This year is starting out even stronger.
Unless you are in the Northeast (where cowboy hat sales are slower), this
is the casual hat you need more than any other. Not only America, but the
world seems to have some romantic connection to our Wild West and cowboy
hats capture the personality. Natural straws, especially distressed designs
(the well-worn look) lead cowboy hat sales. Everything from plain and
rugged to fancy beaded bands sells here. Pinch front hats outsell cattleman
slightly, but both are worth stocking.
When wholesalers and fashion forecasters started writing the
obituary on cowboy hats, the first thing to become nearly extinct was
cowboy hats in color--even though demand continued. Be sure to stock these,
especially in white and black, because most likely, your competition
doesn't have them and customers want them.
Fresh designs this season use mainly the distressed straw look with rugged
designs in bands that add personality. We expect these to do very well, but
don't rule out any designs form previous years because it is hard to find
any cowboy hat in the selection that doesn't sell. Nearly every personality,
group, or special event can find a cowboy hat that fits the need--rugged
shapeable designs for every personality, sparkly hats for cheerleaders and
marching bands, colors for events or company picnics. You know your
clientele and if you have the customers for cowboy hats, include them
because here is an item that seems like it will sell forever.
We apologize for falling behind on our
newsletters. The surprising overload of orders on fleur-de-lis jewelry and
Mardi Gras along with the normal flow of orders was a pleasant surprise,
but caused us to fall behind on our newsletters. To catch up, our next
newsletter will follow shortly covering rhinestone and glitzy jewelry as
well as formal accessories. Many of you have proms approaching and need to
stock these items now so do so now and we will try to get the next
newsletter out on these items shortly.
Copyright © 2010 Accessory Wholesale Inc. Feel free to
reproduce the newsletter as long as the copyright notice is included and a
link to www.awnol.com
Questions or Comments? Promos@awnol.com