It was standing room only in the Billabong Girls booth at Surf Expo as buyers surrounded the runway to preview the brand’s huge line of Juniors’ swimwear — the brand’s first-ever girls’ swim line — which debuted at ASR and Surf Expo.Besides gawking at the pretty girls showing the line (many of whom were Billabong teamriders — not models!), both men and women buyers were impressed with the vast array of suits.
In all there are 30 different pieces in the brand new swimwear line, which run the gamut from athletic-driven suits with Lycra tanks and full bottoms to high fashion suits like the Glitz, complete with detailed embroidery and rhinestones. “The line offers a little bit for everyone,” says Billabong Juniors’ Marketing Manager Jessica Trent, who’s a new addition to the staff. “It covers the bases well.”
Some suits are reversible, and the Angel Fish suit converts from a triangle top to bandeau top. Trent says teamriders played a big role in the launch of line, providing input on details such as stitching, materials, and silhouettes. A few pieces resulting from rider input are a reversible boardshort, a longer-inseam boardshort, and a sleeveless rashguard.
From the vibe within the booth, the response from retailers is positive.
On the other side of the spectrum, Billabong has launched a new men’s line of custom-made watches. The introductory series features five models, including the top-of-the-line Counter Clockwise SS, which, dare I say, is Nixon-esque, and features a date window, analog time movement, and a one-tenth second chronograph. There are three colorways: navy, light blue, and champagne. The watches will be available for the holidays, which was a surprise to some, considering the watches were all locked in a display and non-operating — they all read “10:10:35.”
Designer Terry Strumpf says Billabong will follow its initial release of watches next summer with a tide watch and a line of girls’ watches.