Our annual sidewalk sale signals the arrival of new merchandise. It's always fun to make room for new products coming in for the fall and holiday seasons, It's literally spring cleaning in July! In a normal year, I would be traveling to Los Angeles, New York, Dallas, Denver and Las Vegas to check out goods and put in orders for spring. Everything arriving now was ordered back in January and February. It's true, we ordered for holiday 2020 clear back in January!
I have such fun memories of going to market. The first time I went to Magic (one of the largest clothing shows in the country) I was completely overwhelmed. I had NO idea how to navigate the craziness of hundreds of vendors vying for the attendee's attention. I literally went back to my hotel room, ate the leftover peanut butter sandwich I'd packed with me the day before, and flew home the next morning. Since then, I've become more seasoned and know how to play the game a bit better.
Los Angeles is my favorite clothing market for children and for some women's lines as well. Dallas is my go-to for gifts - it's hard to beat that southern hospitality; Denver is very laid back and home to one of my favorite showrooms; and then there's Magic in Vegas - just plain crazy! It is HUGE, and crowded, and noisy, and over-the-top - like everything else in Vegas!
A few years ago I took my mom to Dallas. It was her first trip to that city and at 80 years old, probably her last. It was a chance to immerse her in my world and she now has a clear picture of this whole market scene when I talk about it. My daughter has often been my companion, but so have co-workers, my sisters, friends, and even my non-shopper husband went to the NY Toy Fair. Most of the time, they've all been great shopping companions and enjoy the "shopping on steroids" experience!
Truth be known, LA is my favorite place to go solo. I spend 12-hour days in showrooms, then crash at my hotel with take-out food and a good book. It's like my own mini vacation. The vendors have become dear friends and I look forward to our semi-annual visits. For the past five years, every time I've gone I have a new grandbaby or one on the way. They are so amused as their world consists of one, maybe two children, and those children have dogs - not babies!
Market season looks much different this year. Most shows have been cancelled and collections are being shown virtually. There is no "touch and feel" and I'm sure when goods start arriving for spring, we'll have some real hits as well as misses! In the meantime, I hope you find a few leftovers of some of our past favorites at this year's sidewalk sale. Here's to "out with the old to make room for the new."
Happy shopping friends!