The second day of Launch LA saw lighter foot traffic than the opening round, but the vibe was still running high as key retailers and a batch of fresh and refreshing brands kept the order writing and inspiration rocking.

“This is the best show we’ve ever had,” says Grover and Wellen Founder Matt Jung, whose brands were a highlight for many retailers. “Hands down it was the best response we’ve had from buyers.”

Indicative of the response we heard from many brands and retailers, Jung explains that while shops were familiar with the Wellen name, they had never seen the product first hand, and this opportunity to get a select group of brands in front of a select group of buyers is the niche that Launch has carved out with its first show.

“The advantage of a small show of select brands is everyone sees you and it’s much more approachable,” says Maui and Sons President James Demet. “It has a really  nice friendly feel and people can’t miss you.”

Here’s what we couldn’t help missing on the show’s second day including several new brands, new lines, and new accounts:

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Stay tuned for a full show wrap up and follow the jump for Wednesday’s highlights, news, and happenings…


Additional Reporting/Photos: Kailee Bradstreet, Alina Ofenreiter, Carly Myers

It was all systems go this morning for Launch LA’s inaugural show at the Barker Hangar at the Santa Monica Airport. Approximately 75 brands with their feet straddling the sand of the surf world and the pavement of street and lifestyle boutiques came out, bringing an eclectic mix of emerging lines that many visiting retailers were seeing for the first time.

As airplanes thundered overhead the historic building, which has hosted everything from Michael Jackson to the MTV Music Awards to South Park’s Christmas Party, the leit motif  was the deep story behind the brands. From domestic production, to sustainably sourced materials, to unique one-of-a-kind designs, Launch offered a well curated look at many brands that will be staples tomorrow, and gave retailers the chance to get a shot at getting in on them today.

“The show is great,” says Hobie Buyer Adrienne Collins. “The mix of brands is a huge highlight. Every booth is new and there are definitely brands I will write paper with. Every booth I go in, I know I won’t see the same thing down the aisle.”

The afternoon featured a look at Spring/Summer 2014 trends from Stylesight, a research and forecasting company for apparel brands with headquarters in New York , Los Angeles, London, and Hong Kong. Senior Editor Jeanine Pesce gave the audience a look at four overarching themes that her team is predicting for the upcoming seasons, including predictions of popular colorways, patterns, and textures. Stay tuned for a more in-depth analysis from the report.

Here’s a look at all of the first day’s action and an in depth look at some of the brands that caught our eyes, as well as thoughts from leading buyers.

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