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Fashion Meets Function at CURVExpo New York

CURVExpo New York (Aug. 3-5) opened the Spring ’15 intimate apparel and swimwear season with a coterie of new fabrications, trend stories and activewear-inspired collections. During the three-day event, buyers attended trend and fit seminars, and got a first peek at collections by Calvin Klein Underwear, Kate Spade and Felina Lingerie. The panel of new brands at this season’s show included, Kate Spade, Lucky Brand Nine West and The Muse Lingerie to name a few.

There was a strong Colombian presence on the show floor. Colombian trade association and partner, Proexport, showcased the country’s innovative sourcing technology and designs by brands like Siluet Shapewear, Salua Lingerie and Kirbys. Proexport hopes to position the country as an important ally for the U.S. market, highlighting its strategic location and flexible quantities.

Colombia-based shapewear brand Fajas Diseños D’Prada displayed smart fabric made with hypoallergenic and thermal qualities. The company’s regional sales director Katherine Cuero said she sees consumers’ perception of shapewear improving. “There’s a misconception that it isn’t safe, but we’ve made strides to make our garments have even compression for better blood flow, and we’ve worked to make the garments comfortable for all day wear,” she said, pointing out the brand’s double lined construction. She added, “It might look tough on the outside, but it is actually super soft against the skin.”

Co’Coon launched its first activewear line, integrating its soft, stretch fabrications into a new range of women’s leggings, shorts and sports bras. Janice Santiago, Co’Coon president and CEO, said the transition into activewear was seamless and enables the brand explore its more wild side with “fun prints and intense color.” Made with Invista’s Supplex fabric, the collection offers the comfort and breathability of cotton, with color and shape retaining qualities.

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Likewise, Colombian brand Suki Cohen, unveiled her contemporary range of lingerie intended to be worn as apparel. The new-to-the-U.S. collection of bras, panties and bodysuits makes a bold statement with cutouts and armor-like bands and straps, which designer Sarah Cohen noted could be worn exposed under tanks and dropped armhole tops.

Overall the show featured intricate Spring ’15 designs that rival ready-to-wear in beauty and innovation. Maria Teresa Sampedro, PromoStyl U.S. trend director, presented four key trend stories for the season–Block, Tenderness, Details and Animism–all of which she said looks at new ways to repurpose resources that already exists. Here’s a recap of the textures, colors and print stories on tap for next season and into Fall/Winter ’16.

Block: Industrial, tough and dark, this theme looks at architectural materials for inspiration. Lace with a digital engineered look–similar to the organic shapes 3D printers are known to make–toughen up the delicate material. Look for sporty stripes and ribbon-like cutouts on legwear. Mesh cutouts add visual interest, while quilting creates a structured, yet cozy feel to loungewear. Shades of green inspired by shipping containers, uniform blue and grey are foundation colors for accents of lacquered yellow and mango.

Tenderness: Woodland birds, nests, and twigs inspire this romantic and warm theme. Scalloped edges create a pillow top look. Sweater and fleece material that seem inside-out with frayed and pull threads captures bird nests’ chaotic but homey feeling. Crossover silhouettes replicate a warm embrace. Rustic versions of red, orange and peach are paired with mossy green and natural lamb-like yellows. Combined, the colors take on a fairytale-like story, especially on velvets and its iridescent pieces. Dark green will be an important color for hosiery.

Details: Drawing inspiration from raw gold dug out of the earth and Renaissance design, this story has a grand feel without being overly fussy. Jacquard fabrics and embroideries with lyrical curves are alternatives to traditional lace. Milky gem tones of garnet and jade, as well as marble grey and dark royal blues and purples add drama. The rich color group hark backs to stately frescos. Layered mesh adds depth, and helps lighten up the story’s heavy hues and materials.

Animism: This theme takes cues from the psychedelic world of spiritualism. In terms of color, think jungle brights, dried clay, stone quartz shades of blue and pink popped with sulfur green. Iridescents are still important, but expect to find more confetti-shaped smattering of sequins and layers of paillette sequins. Fringe and pompom accents capture a gypsy essence, and henna prints, stain glass-inspired panels of mesh and feathers add to the global feel.