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Where to Shop for Activewear in Los Angeles

Los Angeles features the best activewear and Athlesiure in the world, capturing the trends of contemporary fashion that can be worn from the “studio to the street”. Activewear is technically constructed to enhance athletic performance.It should support you and let your body breathe. It should make you feel unstoppable!   Typical products in women activewear are: Leggings, bras, tank tops, crop tops, bodysuits, biker shorts, shorts, skorts, long/short sleeve tops, joggers, hoodies, windbreakers and running jackets.   Fashion Trends in Activewear   Performance and functionality. Digital prints, four way stretch and moisture-wicking materials, innovative support for sports bras and seamless silhouettes are all about this season. Spring/Summer season is all about the bodysuit.   New fabric trends in activewear include temperature control, moisture- wicking, odor control, and sustainability. lululemon’s world class fabrics, innovative design, and functional technology are what set them apart from the rest. Luon, Luxtreme, Nulu and Everlux are just some of their patented fabrics.   How to Pick the Right Product 1. Identify your activity i.e running, yoga, pilates, cross training, etc. 2. Select a breathable  moisture-wicking fabric. There are many sustainable options.  3. Choose support, again depending on workout. Running-Extra support Yoga- Light Support. That strappy top might be cute and perfect for yoga, but it might not hold everything in place well enough during a HIIT session. For higher-impact workouts that require more movement, look for workout clothes made with nylon or spandex– they’re stretchy enough to allow a full range of motion, while also providing support.  Common mistake people make is buying what they like. There are so many options, you can look good and have the right performance gear.                                                                   4. The effect that color has on mood, energy, productivity, and concentration has been proven in several studies across many industries, and it seems looking at and wearing a certain color can impact your workout. RED Crossfit/Boxing- Red is a powerful color and, as the longest wavelength in the spectrum, can ramp up your workout by increasing your heart rate. It’s perfect for boxing or crossfit. GREEN Running- Green provides a restorative experience. It’s why you love running outdoors in the summer. When you’re relegated indoors during the colder months, wearing green can mimic those effects and give you that extra boost you need on mile four. NEON Dance, Cardio, HIIT- Neons and fitness gear have always been a great pair. And that’s because a little jolt of fluorescence can stimulate the brain for those high-intensity workouts. BLUE Weightlifting- Blue has been shown to boost productivity and concentration levels. NEUTRALS Yoga, Pilates, Meditation- Sandwashed palettes of light pinks, pastels, and neutrals signal the brain to chill out. That's exactly what you need when your fitness and wellness coincide.   Best Places to Shop Activewear  Alo Yoga-Go from studio to street with fashion forward leggings, jackets, bras, bodysuits & accessories. Ultra-soft fabrics & studio essentials. Their Airlift fabric has a second skin fit and feel and sculps and smooths like no other. Alo began in Los Angeles in 2007 and has grown to 14 stores nationwide and is featured in select department stores: Bloomingdales, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Neiman Marcus. Alo is  all about keeping things kind and clean, from the way they make their clothes to the amount of daily waste they produce.   FableticsFabletics is an affordable activewear brand offering color-coordinated yoga gear, loungewear, streetwear, athletic clothes, and accessories that are as stylish as they are functional. Shop leggings, bras, and more at prices you'll feel good about in sizes ranging from XXS-4X. In 2013, Co-founder Kate Hudson, actress, author, mom, and workout fanatic launched Fabletics, a fitness-wear brand built on a flexible affordable membership model. They have now grown to over 70 brick-and-mortar stores. Fabletics is constantly launching eco-conscious styles designed to go easier on the environment and we will continue to champion sustainability and experiment with additional ways to become more responsible.   Free  People Movement-Owned by Urban Outfitters which opened their first store in the early 1970’s in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania called Free people. His second store was called Urban Outfitters. The Free People Movement collection is designed for your active, on-the-go life. Boho clothing for the creative spirit has always been Free Peoples philosophy.  Cut in flattering silhouettes that enhance mobility and motion-minded ease, the workout-ready wear features cutouts, mesh panels, and moisture-wicking technology for maximum breathability.        lululemon-lululemon athletica is a Canadian athletic apparel retailer headquartered in Vancouver. It was founded in 1998 as a retailer of yoga pants and other yoga wear, and has expanded to also sell athletic wear, lifestyle apparel, accessories, and personal care products. Based on the “Science of Feel”, Lululemon sets themselves apart from the rest in three major categories: signature fabrics, functional body-complementing fit, and brand recognition. Lululemon is adopting practices and creating solutions that enhance our products, minimize negative impact, and contribute to restoring the environment.   Vuori-Vuori was founded in 2015 by a San Diego-born Joe Kudla, a former Dolce & Gabbana model turned accountant. Vuori makes premium performance apparel inspired by the active coastal California lifestyle; an integration of fitness, surf, sport, and art. Vuori has taken the activewear  market by storm, growing a loyal customer base and retail stores that spans 13 locations across California, Colorado and Arizona. Vuori uses recycled and organic materials, they are carbon neutral and have removed 80% of plastics from the shipping and supply chain   Price Points Free People Movement and Fabletics offer affordable functional activewear Vuori California inspired styles at moderate prices Alo and lululemon offer higher quality performance fabrics that also come at a higher price point    What is Available in LA Los Angeles offers contemporary fashion forward activewear, leading the way in new trends and innovative fabrics. Abundant shopping locations with unique contemporary stores. Brands that are constantly on a path towards a sustainable future. Lululemon leads the way in substainabilty. They have just launced the world's first mushroom leather bags. The new Mylo products are part of Lululemon’s partnership with California-based Bolt Threads. Mylo is created from renewable mycelium, the root structure of mushrooms. The cruelty-free material is similar to traditional in feel and texture. Taking only two weeks to grow, it can be adapted to any kind of finishing, embossing, or color. This mycelium-based vegan leather helps eliminates the need for any animal or other  petroleum plastic-based synthetic leathers. The Lululemon Meditation and Yoga Mat Bag, and the Barrel Duffel Bag feature the Mylo material. From the woven handles to braided pulls, the company displays the material’s properties and functional uses.   Apart from these new yoga accessories, Lululemon unveiled a sustainable collection featuring dyes made from upcycled orange and beet waste. In addition, the company launched a “Lululemon Like New” re-commerce program. Through this initiative, customers can trade in their gently used clothes in exchange for an e-gift card. These products will be then cleaned to use again, and for those that can’t be reused, they will be sent for recycling.   Visional is a private shopping app for consumers to shop from local stores with the help of a real person and using live video.  We have a complete package of discovery, live shopping, e-commerce, delivery and customer service all in one place and a completely new and different way of shopping online. You can book your private time and get the attention of a product expert from a retail store real time who is going to help you find the best products and you can work with the same expert again if you like their work.  You can download the iOS app and start exploring now, and also check out Visional on Instagram for the latest products and deals.  

Tips on Shopping for Handbags, and local options in Los Angeles

A good handbag is a wardrobe essential. You might think the quickest way to get ready for the new season is to fill your closet with  the latest fashion trends. The savvy shoppers know the key to embracing the new season is all about the handbag. Handbags refresh your look in no time giving your everyday look a new boost. Choosing your bag depends on your personal taste. There are tons of chunky chains, hobos galore, and a slew of pillow-like, puffy, padded bags. If you like to have everything to hand, you'll be pleased to find that the popular tote bags this seasons have been supersized, offering plenty of room for all your essentials. Prefer to be hands-free?  Then you'll want to look for a cross-body bag. And it's not all just about designer handbags either. While the designers might set trends, straight-to-market brands have bags that mirror and reflect the key looks for a fraction of the price.  Tips on Buying a Handbag Choose your use; evening, day bag , work-to-gym, festival, travel Size-Think about the essentials you always keep in your bag and make sure that your handbag has enough room to accommodate them. Depending on whether you’re going to use the bag at work or when going out on the town can help you determine what size makes the most sense for you.  Color-When you buy a handbag, it’s important to find one that will match well with your wardrobe. Functionality-When buying a handbag be sure to take into consideration how secure your belongings will be held inside. If you’re a city gal, or just generally around hoards of people, a zipper or button top is a wise decision to avoid spillage or stolen goods. Comfortability-A handbag is meant to be carried around and it’s important you consider how you’re most comfortable carrying your purse. Do you prefer carrying your bag on your shoulder or on the crook of your arm? Consider the length of the handles and how they coincide with how you like carrying your bag.                                                      Trends 2022 Styles CRESCENT SHAPE Crescent bags are one of the key handbag trends to know about for the fall/winter 2022 season. Crescent shapes to half moons, this is undoubtedly the shape of the season. Cool and contemporary, this '90s inspired design will add instant polish to any outfit. The clean lines and smooth exterior makes it a go-to for the minimalist. The crescent bag will sharpen your look in an instant. XXL TOTE BAG-Go big or go home is the case with this handbag trend. This supersize bag will be able to stash all the essentials, your gym kit, and your wrap all in one accessory. Season after season, we've been seeing new takes on the big bag trend, including quilted totes, woven shoppers, and basket bags. It’s all about XXL totes for fall SHOULDER HOBOS-Hobo bags are back in a big way, and this go-'round,  the slouchier, the better. This mid-sized carryalls will reign supreme available in an array of colors and textures.   Utility and function will remain steady throughout this year. Doubled up bags with micro bags attached to larger It turns out that bags will have their own accessories this fall, whether it has a wallet attached by a chain or a coordinating micro bag intended to be worn together with a bigger style. FAUX FUR-Designers are into all things fuzzy for fall. playful takes on fall bags that infuse cool textures, unexpected colors, an element of lightheartedness.  Texture plays a key role with cute crochet and basket weaves making an appearance as well as embellished detailing and statement fringing.    Sustainability There is an increased interest in leather alternative handbags that have a reduced environmental impact. Stella McCartney’s mushroom leather bags have become a vegan alternative, and brands like Santos, makes bags from cactus leather, and Junes, which incorporates plastic waste into cute biodegradable mesh totes, prove sustainability is more than just a trend.                                                                                                          Lululemon has just launched the world's first mushroom leather bags. The new Mylo products are part of Lululemon’s partnership with California-based Bolt Threads. Mylo is created from renewable mycelium, the root structure of mushrooms. The cruelty-free material is similar to traditional in feel and texture. Taking only two weeks to grow, it can be adapted to any kind of finishing, embossing, or color. This mycelium-based vegan leather helps eliminates the need for any animal or other  petroleum plastic-based synthetic leathers. The Lululemon Meditation and Yoga Mat Bag, and the Barrel Duffel Bag feature the Mylo material. From the woven handles to braided pulls, the company displays the material’s properties and functional uses. Here are a few things to look for when buying a sustainable handbag: Recycled Materials: Recycled materials are a great material to look for while shopping for an eco-friendly wallet. This not only helps to reuse items found in the landfill but gives a second life to those materials. There are quite a few purses made from plastic bottles which tend to be durable. Vegan Leather: If you choose to look for a vegan leather wallet try to look for a plant-based leather alternative such as apple or cork and avoid synthetic vegan leathers that might have plastic. Natural Fibers: Natural fibers such as cotton are a good option especially organic natural fibers as these have less environmental impact. Designer Investment Bags Trends come and go, but there are definitely a few great, classic luxury handbags that are here to stay. Designer bags gain monetary value with time. When you decide to spend a certain amount on a beautiful bag, you want to know if it’s a good “investment”, an accessory capable not only to satisfyall the practical needs that a bag, even a designer handbag, must meet, but above all to make your outfits even more elegant and to last over the years. When buying an investment piece, opt for classic colors and silhouettes.                                                     RODEO DRIVE, BEVERLY HILLS-Rodeo Drive is one of the world’s most exclusive luxury destinations, from world-renowned fashion houses to unique local boutiques. Rodeo Drive’s three iconic, palm-lined blocks are home to more than 100 of the world’s leading luxury brands including Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Valentino, Hermes Chanel, Prada, Tory Burch, Marc Jacobs, Balenciaga. You can also find new and upcoming designers as well as staples like Kate Spade, MZ Wallace, All Saints, Stella McCartney, Coach. Beverly Hills is also home to iconic department stores featuring Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Ave and Bloomingdales.       WESTFIELD TOPANGA & THE VILLAGE Westfield Topanga & The Village at Westfield Topanga is L.A.'s world-class shopping destination. Westfield Topanga & The Village is a must see on any discerning shopper's list. From luxury fashion to LA’s finest food, tempered with a careful selection of boutiques, Westfield Topanga & The Village captures the L.A. essence like no other shopping destination. Balenciaga, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Saint Laurent and Versace are just a few of their many luxury shops. Westfield Topangs is also home to lucury department stores, Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom.     Visional is a private shopping app for consumers to shop from local stores with the help of a real person and using live video.  We have a complete package of discovery, live shopping, e-commerce, delivery and customer service all in one place and a completely new and different way of shopping online. You can book your private time and get the attention of a product expert from a retail store real time who is going to help you find the best products and you can work with the same expert again if you like their work. You can download the iOS app and start exploring now, and also check out Visional on Instagram for the latest products and deals.        

Announcing the new Visional plan for all non-profit animal advocacy organizations.

We love animals! pure and simple. And every day we try to take at least one action to help support better treatment and more appreciataion of the role they have in our lives and the life of our home, Earth. So what better way to extend this love by helping the organiztions that have the same purpose and vision. With this we are announcing a new plan for providing our software at NO CHARGE. How can Visional help your organization? Simply put we will help you spend less time using tools and more time helping the beautiful creatures we all love. - We make documenting and organizing information about every pet a snap - right from your smart phone. - We'll help you document everything with pictures and video - the best way to capture verifiable documentation and to share the emotions, the love and sometimes pain that is in the eyes of the animals you are helping. - We give you a live-disco, on demand channel to communicate and share any event with your office or coordinator and staff. "Nothing" replaces a live interactive conversation where the other side can SHOW you what you need to see, on the spot. - More coming soon (including a full commerce platform for fundraising and taking care of other necessities) It's a wonderful world and our animals deserve the best technology can do for them, let's do it.   Visional is a private shopping app for consumers to shop from local stores with the help of a real person and using live video.  We have a complete package of discovery, live shopping, e-commerce, delivery and customer service all in one place and a completely new and different way of shopping online. You can book your private time and get the attention of a product expert from a retail store real time who is going to help you find the best products and you can work with the same expert again if you like their work.  You can download the iOS app and start exploring now, and also check out Visional on Instagram for the latest products and deals.

Brick and mortar retailers should be online, but for the right reasons!

Even though online commerce or ecommerce has been getting all the attention in recent years 90% of all retail transactions are still local, in brick and mortar store across every town and every country. That said, key for local retailers is that ecommerce is growing 15% year over year vs. general retail's 3% increase. How will the rates and trends continue into the future is a matter of debate depending on whom you talk to but everyone agrees retail as an industry is changing. And of course everybody knows by now that online retailers are also moving offline, including Amazon. People like to shop from local businesses for multiple reasons while taking advantage of the convenience of online shopping when needed. This is more of a factor with Considered purchases - products which take more time to since and purchase and shoppers with higher incomes where traveling to the store will be a more costly proposition. For local offline retailers establishing an online presence or even selling online is becoming more urgent every day. However, without proper planning and the right expectations going online might end up being more of a cost than a benefit. Here are some tips and questions to ask before taking the plunge to invest in your online adventure: A. Why are you going online? This is a fundamental question you need to ask yourself honestly: - Is foot traffic at your store down? - Are sales falling consistently over the past 12 months? - Is your offline advertising ROI is coming down? - Are there specific changes in your local environment? The point here is that these same causes will most likely carry over to an online presence if not addressed. For example, if your sales staff are not trained or rewarded for performance, your store is not clean, organized or products not updated the additional foot traffic will NOT help, in fact it will be a negative because people will tell their friend about negative experiences 13 times more than positive ones. If customers are not treated well or paid attention to, if you don't have proper training for your sales staff - these are all things that will be negatives on your store and will drive traffic away. B. When you have the WHY addressed, the next step is deciding how to move online: Options are: 1. Start with an informative website which would be your central presence online: As you can see from the Local Population tool the majority (over 95%) of what is considered local population live outside a store's 1 mile radius, so you need to think of ways you can actually reach and serve your local population before thinking about going outside. the ways you can do this is to provide such enticing deals and value that your customers will take time out of their busy schedules to physically come to your store. This is a major challenge and one that is getting worse with time, not better. Or you can provide services to your local clients that eliminates the need for them to physically come to your store all the time, but still receive the personal service they love you for. Services like “salesperson assisted” remote sales which is available now, or augmented reality which will be available in the future will help in this case. Remember: designing and creating a website can be like building a house yourself and have a wide range from quick and simple to extensive and expensive. And, expensive does not always translate to better results for everyone. 2. Setup an online commerce site, which expands your sales to people outside your immediate reach, but is an entirely new business really requiring time and investment not the least of which is proper merchandising and marketing for the online customer. C. What are your products? The products and services your sell will have a significant role in if and how you setup your online presence, and which tools to select in your technology mix (stack). If you are selling a niche product you have a better chance of reaching and building relationships online, but you need to have tools and services to engage customers if you're selling products that are physically large, such as furniture, specific artwork, automobiles or that include a service aspect such as interior design your strategy and plan will have to be created for those. Ultimately, regardless of the type of online presence there are some common tasks (and investments) you need to make. Many of the below services also fit under the “Retail CRM” or customer relationship management realm. 1. Search engine marketing: consider the expenses of coming up on the first page of Google for your local market when people search online - not an easy or inexpensive undertaking but it is a must once you go online. As an option you can join local search companies such as Yelp but they are also not cheap and do take time to maintain. 2. Social media marketing: you don’t have to (actually should not) be on every social network but you need to have presence on a couple of networks where your target demographic spends most time. You can optimize using social sharing tools but consider the fact that people are smart and will know if your twitter feed is full of automated posts from your Facebook page. Consumers appreciate and reward original, honest engagement so focus on doing well in a couple of spots. (Facebook, Pinterest, Houzz, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Snapchat are some of the top options but you should look further to see where you customers hang out most) 3. Customer service: you have to respond quickly to people emailing or messaging you regarded of the bad or good nature. No response, or defensive comments will actually hurt your reputation and be negatives. And your customer service needs to be provided by informed people, preferably your sale people or yourself, not someone who knows nothing about your products or business or local scene. 4. Delivery: shoppers are expecting more and faster delivery options, even things such as Buy-Online-Pick-Up-in-store (BOPIS) or buy online return in store (BORIS) will help serve your clients better. 5. Email (and/or SMS) communications: whether for marketing or order management and other service notifications you need to have a well planned, and balanced approach to stay in touch with prospects and customers. Luckily there are a few well established players in this area. A solid email plan is usually a part of your retail CRM program. 6. Omni-channel: In today’s retail and definitely in the future you want a system in place which will be seamless across any touch point your customers want to do business with you so try to find solutions which will provide the most comprehensive reach across touch points, and increasingly most important MOBILE. Try to avoid building a hodge-podge of different tools which will be difficult to manage and maintain in the long term, even if each looks great right now. Your technology pieces will be updated by the vendors regularly, which is good, but each change in one tool will require checking compatibility with others and might add additional expenses you are not planning for. And all this takes time, and of course time is money, not to mention the pain and hassle! 7. How technical do I have to be? Pretty much all the tools and tactics require decisions and investment in some technology so you will have to have either some knowledge yourself on what would be the best technology stack for your store or need to have a trusted advisor helping you. Truth is that retail owners and managers already have their hands full with skills they need to have so expecting them to also be technically savvy is not reasonable. That said, you will be best positioned if you at least know the tools you'll be using from the consumer side And have some basic understanding on how things work in technology you are buying. Even with the best of intentions the vendors are communicating from the point of view of someone who has done the implementation many times as opposed to the customer who has never been thru this implementation. Focus, and ask question on the actual “Implementation” for your store, with existing technologies or even if all new.   Visional is a private shopping app for consumers to shop from local stores with the help of a real person and using live video.  We have a complete package of discovery, live shopping, e-commerce, delivery and customer service all in one place and a completely new and different way of shopping online. You can book your private time and get the attention of a product expert from a retail store real time who is going to help you find the best products and you can work with the same expert again if you like their work.  You can download the iOS app and start exploring now, and also check out Visional on Instagram for the latest products and deals.  



About

Bricks and Mortar retailers have a unique opportunity and advantage over online pure plays in serving local shoppers. And Visional was built to specifically address the local customer acquisition, engagement and retention challenges of the new world of retail, combined with a focus on increasing LTV (lifetime value). We help our customers improve on all these factors using our software and services.

Our team has over 50 years of experience building retail tech products for companies such as Amazon, Walmart, Verizon and more as well as multiple startups serving millions of customers.

Based in Southern CA Visional is ready to handle any size project and ensure a seamless integration into your technology and sales operation.

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