Any fashionista will agree – accessories are crucial to creating a successful ensemble. Possessing a flair for accessorizing is an art form and Krystyna Schexnayder is a true artist. The owner of Saints + Sirens Showroom located on the 5th Floor of the California Market Center, Krystyna represents a collection of various trend-setting accessory brands to wholesalers, buyers, and boutique owners. A FIDM graduate and Los Angeles native, Krystyna named her showroom Saints + Sirens to reflect conflicting female personas – virtuosity mixed with elegance, charm and a little mystery. In addition, the name of her showroom reflects who she is as a young entrepreneur, paving her way in a challenging and rewarding industry. The wholesale side of the fashion industry is exclusive. Often consumers are unaware of the hard work and preparation that goes into selecting a product assortment at department stores or specialty boutiques. Buyers are skilled observers of shopping patterns and statistics. Wholesale sales representatives are trend setters with an eye for selecting new, innovative designers to represent. Like Krystyna, showroom owners seek to create an overall experience for buyers who enter their showrooms. Creating a brand image and selecting lines that reflect that image is essential to establishing a successful showroom reputation in the marketplace. Buyers are repeat customers. They will continue to visit multi–line showrooms that present a lifestyle aesthetic that is similar to the shoppers that visit their stores. New designers looking to gain notoriety and exposure to consumers benefit from representation from showroom owners such as Krystyna. Krystyna offers the following services to the lines she hand selects -generating new business, sales account management, marketing and press relations, and product development. Krystyna described her most important function as a sales rep, “I act as the middle man between the buyer and the designer.My sole purpose is to build a brand and protect the integrity of that brand by making sure it is seen in the right stores.” And this fashionistas, is the essence of the wholesale fashion industry. The recession has taken a toll on the fashion industry. How have small business owners such as Krystyna been affected? Because Krystyna deals mostly with small specialty boutiques, boutique owners and buyers are proceeding with extreme caution when it comes to purchasing inventory for their stores. Boutique owners know that this is not a time for frivolous spending. In Krystyna’s business, accessories are typically considered less important to consumers than a new party dress. Krystyna describes the struggle: “These small business owners are fighting everyday to sustain the buying power that they once saw in their customers. So therefore, if the consumer is struggling, representatives can’t expect the store buyers to do much buying from us, if no one is shopping with them." During these tough times, the best and most innovative designers and sales reps will persevere. Krystyna confirms, “This is a time to get really creative and savvy with new ways of staying in the game, and that’s exactly what we plan to do!” Stay chic!