Monthly Archives: February 2007
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SIA Tradeshow: “Gear and Clothing in Las Vegas with evo”
As for my second year at SIA, the largest Snow Sports Tradeshow in North America, i’ve been pretty much rendered speechless! 2007-2008 is going to be a rad year for outerwear and not to forget, innovations littered the hardgoods floor!
For those new to SIA, it’s the one time of year where the entire industry assembles in Las Vegas and unveils next season’s product to the world! Over 900 brands present their entire product line and it’s pretty much the one place to be if you want to be on top of industry!! Manufacturer reps, shop buyers, pros and their hos are all in one place for four days of either heaven or hell depending on which part of the industry you are on. The days are spent in the exhibit halls of the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino where buyers frantically slingshot from one side of the hall to the next going from meeting to meeting with manufacturer reps for their turn to check out what’s hot off the press. For those who make it out alive, it’s an evening of fanfare as the manufacturers throw down the biggest and baddest industry parties each night of the show!
More photos from Vegas here!!!
The evo posse staggered into Vegas and by Monday we were in full force. Our team consisted of some of the finest buyers this side of the Cascades. Batting for the hardgoods department we’ve got Matt “The Bully” Burdick and Gorio “The Gorio” Bustamante with Bryce Phillips, Brian Pratt and Sunny Fenton on cleanup. On the softer side of things, we’ve got the head of the buying department Christine Koller and Grace Kim with their sights on nothing but homeruns in softgoods and accessories! Our team was stacked and looking for a win this season!
The buyers navigated the labyrinth of some odd 900 + tradeshow booths scouting out new trends, styles, and how can we forget steez? If you’ve yet to venture to SIA, be forewarned, this isn’t your typical stuffy tradeshow, and the manufacturers don’t roll out your typical trade show booths. These elaborately designed and crafted booths are guaranteed to catch your eye and draw you in!
Bold colors, more patterns, plaids, new fabrics, stripes and buttons are the weapons of choice for next season in the outerwear category. Functional outerwear is taking a turn for the fashionable as well. With brands like Holden, Mission Six and Section leading the pack in the “oh that’s hot” category, don’t be surprised if the hills start to look a runway next season. “Section’s attention to detail is mind blowing” according to evo softgoods buyer Christine Koller. Definitely a show favorite!! The buyers really got the opportunity to get in there to poke, prod and try on all the outerwear to put it to the test before buying.
For those X Chromosomes (ladies) who’ve spent the better half of the last decade rocking threads for “Girls who Ride” prepare for Nikita to open up some new avenues for your boys who ride! Nikita clothing is going to be offering a men’s line of clothing called Atikin for the 2007-2008 season which will include pants, jackets and sweatshirts that will reflect a more masculine personality than their counterparts.
With all the new trends and styles from some of our current favorite brands we almost forgot to mention that there will be a ton of new brands entering the game next season.
There was a section of the tradeshow floor that was completely dedicated to 30+ emerging brands in the snow sports and apparel game complete with entertainment and guest appearances. Aside from new styles and brands coming at you left and right expect more collaborations. I would have to say I’m most excited at the Smith/Spacecraft collab as they team up to bring to you a line of special edition goggles and helmets… if you’re familiar with the outstanding quality of Smith and the unrivaled styles of Spacecraft that we’ve all grown to know and love, what more can we say, it’s going to be rad! K2 and Modern Amusement fuse tech and style and will be bringing to you a super collaboration next season as well. Overall the forecast is looking good for next season!
Every year we get to see the new technologies and gimmicks brought to the show floor. Buyers poke and prod skeptically while the rest of us “ooh and aah.” This year is no exception that’s for sure. While Marker unveiled the Duke, their new AT binding, on the snowboard side you’ll see K2 with their new binding system. An easy access system that lets you fasten both straps with one ratchet. Pretty slick! As far as snowboards go, the real star of the show had to be the reverse camber snowboards! Be watching out for the “Skate Banana” board from Lib Technologies.
If you thought Magnatraction was the wave of the future, hold the phone kids, cause “banana rocker” (reverse camber) is on its way! The built in rocker makes the board float naturally in powder and the firm nose and tail prevent the board from folding in chunky conditions. The “Skate Banana” will also feature magnatraction which we’ve all grown to know and love. And back from the dead, expect to see a similar technology in the new and improved K2 “Gyrator.”
Not to forget Burton, they have come out with yet another techno tweak to their binding and mounting system. They are calling it the E.S.T.™ board-to-binding interface. Opening a plethora of mounting options, limitless they say, but the real secret is the SensoryBED™ that replaces the old rigid baseplates of the past with a super cushioned base that is designed to transmit more power and information up to your boots while absorbing more impact from the snow before it ever reaches your body! Sounds too good to be true huh? Guess you’ll have to try it out for yourself!
Aside from all the new innovations in the snowboard category, expect things to be getting lighter and lighter. From boards to bindings to boots, expect hardgoods to be 13% lighter this season! Ride Snowboards unleashed the Ride Concept UL, their lightest and baddest high end board for the 2007-2008 season. Featuring “Intelligent Fibers” as they call them, a carbon arrangement that keeps the board light while also providing plenty of pop. This dope little package wouldn’t be complete without its textile topsheet! Also on the lighter side, expect good things from Union Bindings, and Ride is introducing their new super light binder that they’ve removed the disc from and you just simply screw it right down to the board.
Back on the ski front, be sure to keep your eyes open for Icelantic AT Boards A revolutionary ski design that basically reduces unnecessary length! Out of this world graphics and a great team of guys backing this product that is sure to take the ski world by storm….or at least the mountains! Be on the watch for K2’s “Hell Bent” ski and Line’s “EP Pro” ski, both are big fat reverse camber skis. Hard charging Volkl introduces the Katana a new powder ski 140-111-130 with the Power Channel, a swallow tail design with rubber integrated so you can ride switch. The list goes on and on… just know that it’s going to be tough picking out your new gear next season because it’s all looking good and there are so many choices for next season!
So most of you who think Vegas, think of 24/7 partying, debauchery and gambling… Pretty much every night during the show is laden with rep dinners, parties, and sleep becomes a thing of the past. But be careful, the saying really goes, “what happens in Vegas, never stays in Vegas.”
The event kicked off with the SIA Snow Fashion Show where eager guests were treated to cocktails, food, music and a tease of the fashion and hottest styles and trends that will be taking shop floors by storm next season. The highlight of the show certainly was our friend Mr. George Bean who made his way up on the boxes, during the show with the gogo dancers for a quick 1-2-step before getting kicked out by security…. Safe debauchery is always entertaining!
Over the next couple nights we dined with reps, found ourselves all wearing stripes at the same dinner table, and there was another fashion show, this one hosted by Burton where our pal Mr. Bean managed to crawl onto the runway sans pantalones (without pants) and this time the bandit was almost thrown into the can… hey, pants aren’t for everyone!
Hmmm…. What else? Oh yeah, for all you punks out there, Good Riddance graced the masses with their presence @ the Empire Ballroom for a one night appearance and the Ambassador of hip hop Biz Markie closed down the house with a late performance which speaks for itself. BAM and the MTV crew were onsite for a night for his big Bachelor Party Bash at the Hard Rock. Woo hoo.
So the whole week pretty much parades on with parties and after hours and then a couple hours of sleep then back to the Mandalay. Luckily we’ve got tight ship and an amazing team of buyers and support crew who take one for the team every year and make it down to Vegas for the show. Its men and women like these that deserve a long hiatus somewhere on a beach far, far away…. But NO! Most of the buyers will bounce back to Seattle for a short stint to start placing buys, working the shop floor or even to hop on another plane for yet another trade show! These guys rock wouldn’t you say?
Check out the full Photo Gallery from Vegas!!!
“The 2nd Annual Rain City Rail Jam went down this Saturday at Summit West and we couldn’t have done it without evo’s support. Only one word can describe it…epic. We blew away last year’s event, in fact at this point, I don’t even remember last year’s event. This was without a doubt the best event that I’ve ever put on.” – Ryan (National Burton Chill Coordinator)
Congrats to Chris who won a pair of skis from evo @ the event and we look forward to seeing you all out there next year!!!