on the inside with tina barry

Spring 2004: New at the Children's Club August Show

Spring 2004 brought new energy and optimism to the ENK Children's Club show. More upstarts exhibited promising lines, and, while the attendance was down, buyers placed orders.

Last spring's hippie peasant looks have undergone a transformation. Ruffles are still the rage but they're subtle and used with discretion. In 12 months Vintage Boho became downtown Soho.



DESIGNER: Romona Mennillo

Romona Mennillo's Colors of Love collection of bracelets for children was the hottest new accessory at the show. Each light blue, pink, red, white, yellow or black band can be accessorized with a child's name. The letters are studded with pink or clear rhinestones, simple silver letters, 50's inspired white letters on red or blue ovals, or silver rectangles with the letter cut out.

Sizes: Bracelets fit infants through teens. Wholesale price: $194 buys a clear Lucite display case, 18 bracelets in assorted colors and 78 letters.


Outstanding Pieces: The light blue band with large, clear rhinestone letters. My tweenage daughter hasn't taken hers off.
240 S.W. 12th Avenue
Deerfield Beach, FL 33442
Tel: (800) 422-3323/(954) 422-9959
E-mail: lullterri1@aol.com




DESIGNER: Michele Keeler

In the 1970's fashionable hostesses served hors d'oeuvres in outfits like the lovely, gauzy embroidered pieces in Michele Keeler's Baby Ya Ya collection. The halter-tops are scattered with hand-worked roses and the skirts are long and drapey.

Sizes: Newborn to 14. Wholesale prices: $13-$30.


Outstanding Piece: The pink embroidered dress layered over the long skirt. Feminine yet not fussy. Bianca Jagger would approve.
6279 Ivarene Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90068
Tel: 323-461-2205
E-mail: wholesale@babyyaya.com



DESIGNER: Susana Monaco

This carefully edited collection of butter-soft knits and cashmere with its simple solids and clean-lined designs make dressing baby a snap. The knits are made of Supplex a nylon that feels like fine cotton but won't shrink in the washer or dryer.

Sizes: 3-24 months. Wholesale prices: $15-$70.


Outstanding Pieces: She'll have mom wrapped around her finger in this tiny wrap dress. Worn with matching boot cut leggings - it's a heart stopper.
263 West 38th Street
New York, NY 10018
Tel: 212-398-4243 X17
E-mail: sandrac@susanamonaco.com




Classic cottons in bright pink, lime green or lemon yellow are not for the feint of heart. This is the line for kids who swing a racquet before they take their first steps.

Sizes: 2T-14. Wholesale prices: $10-$32.


Outstanding Pieces: The sun dresses and camp shirts are as bracing as a good martini.
325 West 38th Street, Suite 802
New York, NY 10018
Tel: 212-279-8964
E-mail: amyb1224@aol.com



Tina Rodrigues of Children@Play, Jottum's U.S. importer, exhibited one of the hippest collections at the show. Jottum's Belgium-based designers had every trend working - layers, ruffles, vertical gathers - but each outfit looked understated. The color palette - beige, cream, a mauvy cocoa and a clean, light blue - makes mixing and matching child's play.

Sizes: 6 months-12 years. Wholesale prices: $17.50-$123.


Outstanding Piece: The mauvy cocoa knit, ruffle trimmed shrug over a vertically gathered skirt striped in beige, dusty blue and cocoa. The colors keep the details from being overpowering.
51 Shelley Avenue
Hartsdale, NY 10530
Tel: 914-686-7544
E-mail: info@childrenatplay.com



DESIGNER: Lourdes Paterna

This new collection from Spain features cotton dresses with a touch of whimsy.

Sizes: infant through toddler Wholesale prices: $15-$45.

Outstanding Piece: The pale pink cotton shift with a hand-screen floral pattern. The bit of detail adds punch to the design.
Kids Eurofashion
56 Flora Street
Milford, CT 06460
Tel: 203-874-5766
email: info@kidseurofashion.com



Brenda Weinberger of Bella Rose Imports, exhibited Lui & Lei a collection of simple linen pieces manufactured in Italy. Fine tailoring and discreet details give the collection a stylish edge.

Sizes:12 months-16 years. Wholesale prices: $18-$65 for a two-piece outfit.


Outstanding Piece: The blue linen dress with white detail on the bodice. The color is vibrant yet not harsh and the white piping adds just the right feminine sparkle.
206 Rutledge Street
Brooklyn, NY 11211
Tel: (718) 302-3810
E-mail: bellaroseimports@aol.com



DESIGNER: Lily Aldana

Tessutio Kids by Tessuto has a reputation for exhibiting junior dresses and separates with just the right flirty charm. This season they've added Pammie B. by Lily Aldana, a collection of dresses, tops and gorgeous skirts. The skirts are slim through the hips with generous skirts for a flattering fit. Touches such as a sheer ruffle peeking from under the hem and rickrack around the skirt's yoke add to this group's appeal.

Sizes: 7-16. Wholesale prices: $15-$55.


Outstanding Piece: The black linen halter-top with ribbon detail paired with a silky, white skirt printed with vivid polka dots. The look has a lot of spunk.
110 East Ninth Street, Suite A677
Los Angeles, CA 90079
Tel: 213-612-4485
E-mail: tessutio@aol.com



DESIGNER: Rufio design team

August marked the debut of this collection of better-coordinated sportswear. The shapes are unconstructed with baggy cuffed pants, loose tunics over wide leg pants and crinkled, multilayered linens. Colors like dusty blue, beige, cream and deep red are lightened by tiny floral prints.

Sizes: Wholesale prices: $8.50-$84.75.


Outstanding Pieces: The wrap sweater over a denim skirt with a ruffled bustle. Back interest at its best.
1 Westland Square
Pearse Street
Dublin 2
Tel: +353 1 881 4015
E-mail: info@rufiokids.com


DESIGNER: Rowan Mestecky
You can't walk past sales rep Janice Fidler's candy shop of a booth without smiling. Her collections are bright, playful and make irresistible gifts. Mestecky's new collection for Fidler features knits in simple shapes that flash rich, happy colors in off beat combinations. One glance at a child in an Eyespy sweater paired with Tamara Henriques polka dots boots and you can skip Prozac forever (or at least a week).
Sizes: NB-4 . Wholesale prices: $20-$48.
Outstanding Pieces: The sweater with horizontal stripes in cool blues and lime with a burnt orange collar. Only a confident colorist would add the warm accent.  
1 Green Place
Newport, RI 02840
Tel: 617-838-5279
E-mail: info@eyespystyle.com




DESIGNER: Chris Carter

Chris Carter made her debut with simple t-shirts sporting phrases like: Sleeping through the night; Eating solid food; and Crying is for babies. Wishful thinking, Chris.

Sizes: infant-6 months to 24 months; toddler-2T-6. Wholesale prices: $10-$12.


Outstanding Pieces: The his and her T-shirts that say Miss. Congeniality or Mr. Congeniality. You can't go wrong with this gift unless the kid's a real whiner.
11852 Gorham Ave., Ste. 3
Los Angeles, CA 90049
Email: info@chriscarterla.com




DESIGNER: Kashwere design team

Chenille robes are deliciously soft but they can be heavy. Kashwere - a new collection of robes, blankets, hats and jackets - uses a new microfiber called Kashwere. The fiber is lighter than standard chenille and won't pill, shrink or wrinkle. After a stint in the clothes dryer a Kashwere garment becomes softer and more luxurious.

Sizes: 3-12 months. Wholesale prices: $6-$27.


Outstanding pieces: The pretty pastels robes and jackets. They're light, warm, and soft enough to sleep in.
2908 Oregon Court I-5
Torrance, CA 90503
Tel: 310-328-8818
E-mail: allyn@kashwere.com




DESIGNER: Nancy Bunting 

Here's a two-for-one deal: Kiss My Feet sandals give a child's legs a work out and delight their eyes. Designers in the Kiss My Feet studio hand-paint brightly colored strawberries, stripes, sailboats and other happy motifs on the wooden bases of Dr. Scholl's sandals. Kids will love them.

Sizes: 12-4. Wholesale prices: $40.


Outstanding Piece: The sandals with cherries are delicious.
Cynthia O'Connor and Co.
141 West 36th, Suite 12A
New York, NY 10018
Tel: 212-594-4999




Topur has added another winning look to her collection: velvet embroidered slippers. Pointy toed and flat heeled the slip-ons are lined and soled with soft leather. Each design is made from one-of-a-kind embroidered velvet cut from old textiles. Very I Dream of Jeannie.

Sizes: children 12-4, adults 6-10. Wholesale prices: children $32; adults $52.


Outstanding Pieces: The slippers.
121 Lakeside Avenue, Suite 201
Seattle, WA 98122
Tel: 206-860-3100
E-mail: littleeda@attbi.com




DESIGNERS: Rebecca L. Cutler and Jennifer Krane

Where were Cutler and Krane when I was pregnant? The shapes of their cotton knits are simple, stretchable and suitable for life outside the tennis court. Did I mention they're chic and bit sexy too? But well designed clothing may not be an issue here. The packaging - hat boxes covered in lime, fuchsia and orange 50's-style graphics - could sell the outfits sight unseen.

Sizes: Small to Extra large. Wholesale prices: $54-$78 for two- and three-piece sets sold in the box.

Outstanding Pieces: The 3-piece yoga trio of black boot cut pants, camisole with a built in bra and hooded jacket sold in that great box. The "It" gift for pregnant moms to be.
60 Long Neck Point Road
Darien, CT 06820
Tel: 203-655-0210
E-mail: wholesale@raisingaracquet.com



Creators: Janet Longo and Kathy Mcilhinney

The skin care industry is a billion dollar business, but there's little out there to care for a child's delicate skin. Longo and Mcilhinney, founders of Young Skin, worked with Dr. Peter T. Pugliese, a skin care scientist to develop three products just for children:

Happy Cheeks is a gentle facial wash with nourishing ingredients like colloidal oatmeal and aloe; Love Me Dew is a moisturizer with oat protein, jojoba oil and Vitamins B and E; Fun in the Sun is a facial sun block for children with an SPF 15 that can be layered for more protection. The sun block is PABA free. Each product has a delicate, citrusy scent.

Happy Cheeks, 8 oz. $8.49; Love Me Dew, 4 oz. $6.99; Fun in the Sun 2 oz. $5.99; Box Set $21. (wholesale prices)

1 Frontier Lane
Jackson, NJ 08527
Tel: Janet Longo (732) 730-9499, Kathy Mcilhinney (732) 928-1312
Email: Mystclrs@aol.com


















Tina Barry has been involved in many facets of the fashion world. She has traveled domestically and to Europe to research color and design trends. For many years she styled textiles for the apparel and home furnishing industries. After designing her own line of children's wear she now freelances as a children's wear buyer and private label designer. Tina also teaches a marketing course at The Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City.