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Beyond the Bale : Dec - Jan 08
In September AWI participated for the first time in Ideabiella, Italy's renowned and highly regarded woven-fabric fair, held alongside Milano Unica at the fairgrounds of Fiera in Milan. Ideabiella has been running for 58 years and presents the best in Italian and European textile production showcasing the collections of top weavers such as Lora Piana, Marzotto and Ermenegildo Zegna. This is an important debut for AWI, which also links in with its global program commemorating 200 years since the shipping of the first bale of wool to the UK for commercial sale. AWI's presence at Ideabiella highlights the important role that the Italian fashion industry plays in the trade of the finest Australian Merino wool. Italy represents the elite of the global textile industry. AWI launched the latest in Australian Merino wool developments at one of the most famous trading platforms in the textile industry -- the China (Dalang) International Woollen Knitwear Fair (WKF) -- in October. At the same time, a seminar was held in New Delhi to unveil the autumn/winter 2008-09 Merino wool collection to the Indian fashion industry. The government of Dalang began hosting the large- scale woollen knitwear expo in 2001. The annual event has now become a platform for woollen knitwear, knitting machinery, computer design systems, yarn and fibre, and woollen knitwear accessories. Dalang, situated in Dongguan City in Guangdong Province, is the base of China's woollen knitwear industry. AWI global product development manager Jimmy Merino on show in China and India AWI continues its marketing push into two of the world's most rapidly growing economies, showcasing the latest Merino wool products 19 GLOBAL BEYOND THE BALE Jackson says that this is the first time AWI has presented its range at this important event. "AWI used the event as an opportunity to educate the textile manufacturers in the Guangdong province about the benefits of the Australian Merino wool fibre as well as presenting AWI's resource of knowledge, product development and marketing concepts," Mr Jackson says. "It was an opportunity for AWI to meet with domestic brands, garment manufacturers, spinners and knitters to showcase its latest collection of Merino wool knitwear recently launched at the Spin Expo yarn trade fair in Shanghai." The Indian seminar attracted more than 200 guests, including Australia's Deputy High Commissioner to India David Holly. At each event the focus was the collection for autumn/winter based on three platforms: Merino Care, Merino Soft and Merino Visual. With more than 15 product developments, the showcase highlights the true versatility and durability of the Australian Merino wool fibre. The collection ranges from ultra-lightweight textiles through to aromatherapy-treated fabrics that make the wearer feel revived or relaxed. New knitting and spinning techniques play a large part in creating total-easy-care fabrics, vibrant new colours, and astounding visual textures. At the Indian event, AWI also launched products it has developed with Indian partners, including machine-washable suits created in partnership with Park Avenue and Raymond, woollen children's wear with Monte Carlo, Merino--linen Timothy Iu, product marketing manager for AWI Greater China, introduces the latest innovations in Australian Merino to the Chinese knitwear sector at the Dalang International Woollen Knitwear Fair. Merino debuts on Milan's main stage Ideabiella presents AWI with the opportunity to reinforce its presence within this important market and continue to build on its strong business relationships. One of AWI's key messages to the industry at Ideabiella was the recent merger with The Woolmark Company to create a single reference point in the world for Australian Merino wool. Fabrizio Servente, general manager of AWI Italy, defines this merger as strategic to marketing this prestigious fibre and its multiple qualities. "Our participation at Ideabiella was part of a broader picture of AWI initiatives on a global level for research, innovation and marketing strategies," Mr Servente says. "Among these is the Protégé Project where five prestigious names in the international world of fashion -- Karl Lagerfeld, Donatella Versace, Francisco Costa for Calvin Klein, Paul Smith and Franca Sozzani -- will present five promising and aspiring young designers, namely Jean Pierre Braganza, Kristian Aadnevik, Julian Louie, Ioannis Cholidis and Sandra Backlund. "The challenge for these five apprentices is to design a collection where Australian Merino wool is centre stage." The collections of the 'apprentices' starring Australian Merino will be celebrated with a fashion show and a gala event at Pitti Immagine Uomo -- the fashion trade fair in Florence, Italy, which showcases menswear trends -- in January 2008. ú More information: www.ideabiella.it suits with Jaya Shree Linen Club, and the wool/silk sari with Satya Paul. Debabrata Chakraborty, AWI's regional business development manager in India, says the new products attracted much attention from textile manufacturers and retailers. "As a result of our R&D activities in developing innovative fabric finishes and new applications we can now bring new products to the consumer more quickly and better represent the Australian woolgrowers," Mr Chakraborty says. ú More information: http://zjh.dalang.gov.cn; www.2456.com/dalang; www.merinoinnovation.com An outfit from the 'Rage' collection showcased in New Delhi, India.
Oct 07 - Nov 07
Feb - Mar 08 Supplement