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The Shmata Business ©  
By Conrad David Brillantes 

All contents in this column are copyrighted. The Montreal Tribune and its publishers are not responsible for its contents. This column was created by Joshua Tanembaum, originally  published in the print edition of The Montreal

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Are you in the Fashion industry?

Hello World-wide manufacturers and suppliers!

We are now accepting interested parties to be listed in the Tribuneís International Garment and Textile Suppliers' List. Click here to send your request

So many restrictions has been amended on imports...sell your products and services directly to Canadian Buyers, hereís  our  Previous Issue of Canadian Fashion & Textile Buyers Guide, you can down load it for free but if you want  the NEW and  up-dated version  place your order now at a cost of US$50 per copy payable by money order or through PayPal, also donít forget to inquire about the Industry Textile Book known as The Shmata Business, used world-wide as reference information on textile by manufacturers, designers, teachers and students, price US$50 per copy. Click here to send your order

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Reader's Comment

Canadian Stock Lots

We need garments stock lot in big quantity for India. Please give details and price based on container load.


M/S Shri Krishna International

New Delhi, India, Ph - 0091-11-5543129, Fax - 0091-11-5573423, Mob - 0091-9810608000

The Bank Job - U.S. Dollars Only

I have told the same thing to so many of these people in the trade, but they  keep listening to their stupid accountants, and bankers. The bank is not interested to deal with Canadian Dollars because they cannot make more money with the exchange when they need to purchase the US$ from the outside market and make a mark up on this US$, when selling it to their customers. For your information, the cost of exchange in Hong Kong and China (i do not know about the other far east countries) the banks have an ample inventory of foreign currency, they have such a flow that the cost is minimal 6% to 7% per thousand charge. Also any T/T received at the Bank Of China does not cost anything to the beneficiary. Also I want to inform everyone of you there that most of your controllers or accountant do not know how the basics of a letter of credit. Rene Levary, Shanghai, China

Answer: Banks prefer U.S. dollars of course... Okay, if they are not interested accepting Canadian Dollars, what about opening L/Cs in their own currencies? I have opened L/Cs in Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysian dollars and Japanese yen and I didn't encounter any problem with that... In regard to Hong Kong, exporters (there) quote their prices in Hong Kong dollars, so why not pay them in Hong Kong dollars? Exchange rate fees turn goods more expensive, about 25% at the least.  Any more comments?   Banks makes lots of money on L/Cs alone, and I don't see any reason why they have to make extra bucks on exchange rate. The system has changed already, especially in Europe that the Euro is the norm of payment. 


From China:  What do you call human rights?

I have read few times what you have written to me.

I wish you can come to China, one day. Then you will be able to see for yourself what is going on here.

The western world is ill-informed about this country. What do you call human rights ?

The gang of Falong Gong are only a fake thing, especially when their leader have changed his legal birthday to be the same as Buddha. These people are very naive and they can only bad influence the children of this country. Did you know that churches in China are all over the country and flourishing, no one is stopping them and the number of Christians is growing by the hour in China and they are not bothered by the present government. This country today has more to offer than any other country in the world. Again I wish you can visit here one day.

One has to bear in mind that this is a country of 1,300 million people and law and order is the priority of the government.

Do you know that you can walk in the city of Shanghai which is home to 14 million people at anytime of the day or night without being bullied or harassed.

These government is not interfering with no other country business and they are promoting peace and friendship with all the country of the world. Look at President Zhan Je Ming traveling all over the world to promote peace and friendship.

Dave I am not here only for the business. This place is very good and Shanghai is a great city.

Taiwan issue ?? This question will be over in a matter of months. There are so many Taiwanese flocking down here, it is incredible, the rights they are given and how much money they are making here. Now Taiwan needs China.

I also predict that even Singapore one day will be part of China, surrounded by Moslem zealots ,Singapore may very well want to become part of this country. After all most of Singapore is Chinese and Putonghua is spoken by majority of the people.

If you want to know more I can write you every week about this country. Please come and visit, it is not at all what you are thinking. Furthermore all the newspapers and magazines of the world are sold very freely down here.

Rene Levary, Shanghai, China


Too bad you cannot come to China

It is pity you cannot make the time. Honestly speaking you could be the Canadian Ambassador to China and report what you see.

If you are talking about scam, yes it happened in Hong Kong as well during the time of the British ,it is happening all over the world and also in Canada. Thieves are all over the world and white collar crimes are abundant all over.

Come and see the building of infrastructure, highways, new buildings, factories and presently the government priority is to better the life of the farmers and country people. First class vegetables and food commodities are being harvested like never before. Did you know that China will have the first MAGLEV train in the world; it is being built presently and will be ready in a matter of Months. Also very important point: A surgeon from Canada called , Normand BETHUNE came to help during the revolution and died during the long march with Mao Tse Tung; Cut himself while operating a wounded soldier , got infected and died. Do you know that this man is being remembered by the Chinese just as Dr Jose P. RIZAL of the Philippines. Every child in school is being taught about this man.

Another point: Did you know that no street in China is named after a person ?All the squares, the roads and street are only named after cities, provinces, places etc.. and you will not find a street or place called after anybody.

You can also ask the many Canadians  from our milieu that have been traveling to China recently and they will tell you. They all come here now at least twice a year. You can publish everything I am telling you Dear Dave,It is the truth.

Rene Levary


Moved To Shanghai

I've been in Shanghai for 3 years.  three  very long years, or three very short years . It depends on how you look at it.  Over the three year hat I have been in this glorious city, I've picked up a few things about living in Shanghai.  As a rather sheltered Canadian , when I first came here I was either shocked or amused to be seeing the following things in public or experiencing them when I went out.  I shall know when I return to Canada  whether the experience has left me traumatized or not.  I frankly don't think it has.  Here are my observations.

 The first thing I noticed, I believe, is that nose picking is not viewed negatively.  In fact it is done by men, women and children.  I was not as outraged as you might think when I was learning this.  No, on the contrary, I was quite envious.  If I think that something's in my nose, I'd love to get the thing out.  Sigh.  Sometimes Western teachings aren't all correct.

 I noticed that it is not abnormal or unusual to see grown men peeing wherever or whenever they please.  I can obviously see the benefits of this practice - fertilization and a bathroom anywhere!  Alas, being a Gentleman, I cannot reap these benefits unless, of course, there's a large bush in the area.

 Whenever any kind of public event happens - especially in the case of a "Laowei" Foreigner (such as trying on clothes or bargaining in broken Chinese), it is at least 5 people's duty to stand around and watch what they are doing, as well as comment to each other.  I found this unnerving when I first came, but now, I just join the crowd.  I might as well go home with a story to tell.

Let's not forget the stories and joys of bargaining at Xiang Yang Market, (Famous open market in Shanghai, not far from my house )especially on a sunny Saturday afternoon (except today ,because I had to return few things at the supermarket and do other Xmas shopping for my friends)  When I compare prices to those in Canada or Europe, I feel that I'm getting a real bargain but when I compare prices with my more experienced friends, I find that real bargains can easily turn into real rip-offs.

When hunger calls, the first instinct is to get some grub.  Unfortunately, at KFC or McDonald's at lunchtime, getting food is not as easy as waiting in line.  This can prove to be a good thing if you are a football player or an experienced Shanghainese woman.  If you are like me, you must push and shove your way to the cashier.  This, fortunately, is not the only option.  Your other option, of course, is to let your friend do the shoving while you 'do them a favor' and try to find a seat.   

And lastly, and believe me, I've reaped the FULL benefits of this wonderful Shanghai attribute- whether it be a 6 lane highway or one lane street with any amount of traffic, one may freely jaywalk.  I learned that in order not to get run over, one must look for the little old lady next to you, and dodge cars, busses and bicycles when she does.  After all, she made it for so long, she must be experienced. 

There's my list.  Oh yes, I know, there are so many more charming attributes to this fine city.  Perhaps that's part of the reason why I like it so much here.  There's always something new to discover, whether it be death defying or just plain odd to see. With a city like this, you may never know what's around the corner, or worse yet, what's below your feet.

Answer: I think you are missing the point. It's how they do it. Improvement or getting rich from all of the above is not kosher according to our system.

As I was saying "We" are not the same as when we came here. You are Rene L'Evary, the Canadian, not the Tunisian or Algerian anymore . We are not talking about history's what thieves (there) are doing to foreign investments and the illegal production of copy right properties,  knock off goods and human smuggling that most of the time supported by their government is despicable.
So, no Normand BETHUNE or Jose Rizal could be given as an excuse to human rights violation and scamming other countries.
Me...? Ambassador to check on the development of China, at my expense? No way!!!  First, I did not declare war on China, they did... they banned the Tribune there, didn't they?  

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On Oriental Girls

You know me Dave, but I am not going to let you know my name... we used to travel together to Asia where you showed how I can get people there to trust doing business with me. That, I have done well... my question is not business... its personal. I have a girlfriend from one of the countries where I do my production, she's more than half my age and I feel she is really in love with me and now wants me to marry her.. What should I do?

Answer: Hey you old man!  If I am not mistaken you are about 65 years old or maybe older...what are you doing? ..too convinced this much younger woman is in-love with you? Get back here Harry, stay with your wife. I know that millions of these women are usually  in-love with guys like you, the ones with (the) money. Please don't waste my time.. By the way, I have seen that happened before... one of your associates left his wife for a (much) younger woman from there (Orient). And, you know what's happening now? The wife is now running his life... had all her family from where she came from moved in to his nice house and from time to time talk about whether he's got much to leave when he  enters kingdom come.


In our recent conversation you mentioned that if ever you were to manage a chain store you'd fire most of the people in the merchandising division including designers. What do mean you' would handle all the positions by yourself? Fat chance.! DM, Montreal

Answer: I would fire most of them. I would maintain an import manager and one chief merchandiser with a manager in each division and the others have to go, and yes, including all the designers. I won't need all these prima donnas because they are just waste of money and time. They duplicate works already done by the suppliers, whether they are importers or domestic or overseas manufacturers. It's all economics that could spell to at least 45% savings, including financing.


Dear Dave,

The column is great!!! Only shmata men, can have accurate information on whatís happening in the needle-trade. And only people like Joshua can speak about this business.

He is right the free trade agreement is for the Americans, but now it is too late and it is irreversible, they are now talking of implementing the free trade of the Americas, instead of 2005, they want it done in two years earlier (2003). Why are they are so in a hurry? Probably they have something to hide, of course, and why not?

When I was at the conference about this Free Trade of the Americas in Montreal two years ago, there were lots of representatives from the Latin American governments. They were trying to explain that the workers in Latin America will not accept for long working hours at the rate of 50 cents an hour at the Maquiladoras, name used to an area designated as free trade zone. But, they want to have the same minimum salary we have here in the US and Canada. Forget that. Liz Claiborne, the Gap and many others are not going to agree on what the guys from the Far South were asking, because with the present rate they make billions of dollars, with workers mostly women we are treated like slaves.

It is funny that your journalist was talking about the sweat shops, I recently wrote an article in French for my students concerning the sweat shops or the Maquiladoras, as soon as these companies are being criticized by the press, they cancel their contracts and move somewhere else. Now it is Vietnam (the Vietnamese are living with 20.00$ a month.)

The wonderful glamorous world of fashion is only dissimulation, exploitation, and lies, and I must admit that I do not feel completely comfortable to teach young peoples who are going to be like meat for the industry, I try to be honest that is why I show them movies about the sweat shops to tell them look, the wonderful Gap clothes that you all wear are made in a terrible context, be aware of that!

But being there (in school) is a kind of consolation because the students tell me that most of the teachers are also telling horror stories concerning the industry. So, I feel not alone with my concern.

Like the last agency I have worked for, Dell Zidel, who was asking me if I was protected. Protected? No!!! Exploited? Yes!!!. All they wanted was my knowledge without paying the value of my work. I wish them good luck for this season, because really the shmata people need French Canadians to attract customers, nobody want to see them, they are too pushy.

Continue the good work. I am fine but very tired. It must be February, but taking challenge after challenge is exhausting me. Right now, the course I am teaching is very badly structured and I know I have to teach it anyway because the school prepared the curriculum. Half of the courses the students are taking will never and ever used in the fashion business and I am not happy about that.

Have a good day; congratulate your journalist (Joshua) for me...







Stocklot of hosiery garment available here in  tirupur, india.interested persons can contact syed  rajack mobile no 098940 43007.all kinds of fabric
available at cheap price.



We are manufacturer and exporter of Fancy Laces, Saree borders, Satin ribbons, braids, webbings, and various other types of decorative trimmings.
We have mordern electronic automatic machine that are able to produce all type of laces and offer top
quality at lowest ever prices.

Your own specifications are most welcome, send us your sample. We'll give you exactly what you want.

Our contact information is as Follows :

Navinchandra P. Lalwala
3/2081, Vachalisheri,
Surat 395003.
Ph  : 0091 261 8325654
FAX : 0091 261 8327656


Palani Samy from India wrote:

We are exporters of knitted readymade garments from India/Tirupur globally famous for ready made  garmets.

Pls find our company profile herewith.
Expecting your valuable enquiries.


we are the stablized garments export buying house is Bangladesh. we haver sucessfully done export in diffrent country is the whole world . we are interested to do export business with you . furthermore we have a lot of good to export now which may make you satisfied . if you wish to get some goods form us on any kind of information please may  us . we will & send the copy  /photo to you

Thanking you.




159/1 Sultangong Road, Rayar Bazar Dhaka- 1209

Ph:88-02-9117091 Fax: 88-02-8113990


Its a great opportunity to get in touch with you. I/we are looking for SWEATER BUYER/IMPORTERS (MAINLY LADIES)  AND ALSO FOR THE STOCK LOTS BUYERS OF SWEATERS,  in Montreal/Toronto etc. Do you have clue, how and where we can have these ?

Thanks & best regards,

Zaman/mn, Enterprise QZ, Montreal, Canada, Tel: 514-973 2193, Fax: 514-389-5380


We would kindly appreciate if you include it in any lists of Fashion Houses?

Fashion Designer: Ol Grandeur

Web site:

Phone: (416) 7619843

City/Province/Country: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Ol Grandeur line is designed in an exquisite, contemporary European style. Ol Grandeur style, design and quality of production absolutely meet the demands, desires, ambitions and needs of the target group of consumers.

Ol Grandeur targets women who desire to achieve as much as possible.  They are strong in actions and feelings.  They are thirsty for real life and are never satisfied.  They always try to get more in their career, and love.  They are always striving, which provides them energy for living.  They are powerful and they want to influence.  They like the attention of men, as well as women.  They like to win recognition.  They enjoy challenges.  They are usually pretty charming and friendly.  They are good communicators and leaders.  They are managers, business owners or students with great ambitions.  

Targeting primarily women in business, these fashionable and tasteful clothes appeal to a consumer in need of elegance and sophistication. 

Thank you in advance,


Olga Kostrova,
Ol Grandeur Inc.


We are a manufacturer of Ladies lingerie with a factory based in Zhong Shan of China and 2 head offices 1 in Hong Kong and the other one is based in The Netherlands.

To expand our business to other parts of the world we are looking for Canadian Lingerie importers. Through the internet I could find your garment buyers list, but unfortunately I could not find out if there were any lingerie buyers included. Do you have any way that I can find that out?

Thanking you in advance

With best regards,

Nicolette de Pauw

On behalf of Nika Group Far East

Nika Group Europe, Madame Curieweg 3, 5482 TL Schijndel, The Netherlands

tel: +31-73 5470 199, fax: +31-73 5470 421,



We are from INDIA. We have stock lot of

ladies and Gents Garments according to CANADA Specification

I've attached our Company profile



Karuppiah Chidambaram



Contact: 09843012797 ( mobile Phone)


I am running my own Garment factory in TIRUPUR,INDIA.
Like to know the buyers in CANADA
Karuppiah Chidambaram, karuppiah chidambaram


Re Shmata buyers guide Would you have an email address for Marvin Katz at Klopman Fabrics (Burlington Mills)? Many thanks for your help.
Harvey Reinblatt <>

We are introducing our self as a Quality Ready Made Garments Exporter based in the Bangladesh. Please be informed that we have got your company address from web page & come to know that you are involved with ready made garments business. You might have known that, Bangladesh is an important source of ready-made garments for international valued buyers due to its low price & good quality. We are very much interested to sell ready-made garments products to your esteemed company.

The main focus of our company is to source ready-made garments for valued buyer's who have no office in the Bangladesh but required the good quality as well as in timely shipment.

Please note that our team consists of highly qualified and experienced personnel who are in the garments buying & sourcing trades for more than 10 years & have strong grass root contacts with the ready-made garments industries are also manufacturing / supplying to well known retail chain stores like JC Penny, Wal-Mart, GAP etc.

Our complete spectrum of services include:

Sourcing & Sampling: We help to source the best manufacturer who offers for required garments products in timely shipments as well as we will provide required garments samples as per valued buyer's sketch, measurement & fabric's composition.

Order Execution: Order's are closely monitored at all stages from sampling till dispatch. The valued buyer is kept informed about the progress made in execution of the order.

Quality Assurance: We will deliver high quality and defect free garments products in scheduled time.

Final Inspection: the consignment will be finally checked, packed under close supervision of our QC team according to US AQL Standard.

Please note our main products are given as below:

Men's Wear: Shirts, T-Shirts, Jackets, Shorts, Pant & Sweaters.

Ladies Wear: Tops, Blouses, T-Shirts, Skirts, Shorts, Trousers, Sweaters and Jackets

Toddler's Wear: Rompers, Jumpers, Playsuits, Shorts, Trousers, Tops, T-Shirts, Jacket and Sweat Shirts.

So please you are requested to send us your required garments sketch, measurement & fabrics composition. Upon received of your required garments sketch & measurement we will offer you very competitive price as well as will make samples for your kind evaluation.

Looking forward to hearing your favorable response.

In the mean time if you need any more information please feel free contact us.

Thank you for your time & co-operation.


M.S.A Shazzad. (C. E. O)

Bonded Fashion Wear
House # 463 (3rd Floor), Road # 31,
New D.O.H.S, Mohakhali,
Dhaka1206, Bangladesh.


From: "marilyn french"

Subject: marjorie hamilton Vancouver

Is Marjorie Hamilton still designing dresses and if so could you tell me what outlets  they being sold in.

M French.


We are greatly impressed of your reporting on Cohoes Fashions with regard, to their recent involvement in Shmata Trade. We want to have information whether they were indicted in a case registered against them by Royal Canadian Metropolitan Police. Recently they have started cheating a lot of their suppliers from Pakistan by dishonoring their commitments and through various blacking mailing tactics. We are very keen to receive

information on their state of operation such as :

1.    Addresses of their current stores and branches.

2.    Address and details of their Head Office operations.

3.    Any other information which can be helpful in starting criminal and civil proceeding against them.

Your help and assistance in this regard shall be highly appreciated.


T. TEX APPARELS, Karachi-Pakistan.

Regarding T-Tex complaining about Cohoes in the matter that happened 3 years ago. You must note that we are still doing business with him T. Tex (Javed Siddiqi) and what he wrote here is not accurate. I will not like to get into the details of this matter as I am now much more knowledgeable than I was 3 years ago on this subject. Please remove this from here as it comes back to me from new suppliers when they search the internet for Cohoes Fashions. If you want to speak to Javed of T-Tex he will also agree to remove it as this posting should have never been put on the Internet. Ron Kaminski, president, Cohoes Stores. Response from Paksitan:  Please remove our letter as we have already settled our dispute with Cohoes Fashions long time ago.

Tks./Rgds. Javed Siddiqi


Thank you Mr. Tanembaum. The column is quite fascinating.

In Addition, may I add that Mr. Zinman has opened few restaurants in Hong Kong situated in a very trendy area and all doing very well.

My friend Marco Bibo from the JAC Dale group is today living in China with his young Filipino wife and have a little daughter, he is doing very well and very happy.

Vive le Canada.


Hong Kong

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