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Lingerie & men's accessories Indicator, May 24 2014

What’s selling now in the world of lingerie & men’s accessories fashion?

Lingerie

  • Pam Slater Owner of Blush Lingerie in Macclesfield, Cheshire

“The Simone Pérèle Caressence bra priced at £55 is a top seller because the cup is a good fit and it’s comfortable. Our customers know what they want and we stay with what we know when it comes to buying.”

  • Marlene Lovett Owner of Bare Essentials in Loughborough, Leicestershire

Fantasie

Fantasie

“Fantasie (£27 to £43) and Triumph (£25 to £37) are our bestsellers. The basics always do well. The Elodie from Fantasie, which is an armourette underwire style priced at £34, is particularly popular. Today most people who came in bought three bras, so average spend is around £50. Having roadworks in the area since just before Christmas has affected business. We had a rate relief, but trade hasn’t picked up.”

“Marie Jo T-shirt bras, priced at £60 to £70, are in demand. They are popular because they are attractive, comfortable and practical. Business is improving - the average spend is approximately £80.”

  • Karen Holder Owner of Affair Lingerie in Pontefract, West Yorkshire
  • Sarah Connelly Owner of Odyssey Boutique in Edinburgh

“Stella McCartney (£70 to £100 for a set), Simone Pérèle and All Undone (both £100 for a set) are all selling at the moment. Stella McCartney’s bright neon sets at £70 to £80 are cheering people up. Last season the basic pieces were more popular, but now it’s nearly summer customers want something to show off. Trade is up 15% to 20% on last year, but then I find lingerie always
picks up towards summer. The average spend in store is about £130.”

  • Mercedes Lee Owner of Prohibido Lingerie in Cambridge

“I feel like the designs are a bit slow at the moment, which has been letting down sales and that’s why I’m looking elsewhere for something a bit different for Christmas. I found a new brand, Lascivious, which I introduced this season, with bras priced around the £100 mark. It’s a bit sexier.”

  • Kathryn Rolfe Owner of Kathryn Rolfe Lingerie in York

“Our best-selling brands are Marie Jo (£60 to £85 for a bra), Empreinte and Aubade (both £75 to £95 for a bra). In the summer customers look for something smoother and plainer, such as the Avero bra from Marie Jo (£64), which is simple and pretty. Business is OK. We recently did a mailout to our regulars with updated brochures, which gave us a sales boost. There was a big hoo-ha when a retail park - where there’s a John Lewis and a Marks & Spencer - opened nearby in early April, but it has not affected us so far.”

  • Heather Smith Owner of Elouise Lingerie in Buckden, Cambridgeshire

“Marie Jo’s Avero style has been going for 17 years and is always a success. The brand has brought in a new style, a padded balconette which we stock in café latte at £54.95, and it’s flying off the shelves. The Jane style at £79.95 has new shapes in the push-up, which have been a hit too.”

Men’s accessories

  • Andrew Wernham Buyer and manager of Room 26 in Carlisle

“The Paul Smith iPhone case in vintage multi-stripe, priced at £50, is really popular at the moment. Business is up compared with last year - it seems as if the customer has adjusted with cautious optimism to the economic climate.”

  • Gerry Weinstein Director of Woodies in Brighton

“Simon Carter, which we bought in four months ago, has been selling strongly. A range of cufflinks priced at £49.99 is our bestseller. Its agent came in to introduce the brand, it was a personal marketing approach and we liked the product. The price point is attractive and there is a mixture of styles from classic to bling. The Boss Black sporty weekend bag, priced at £230, always does well.”

  • Jonathan Chapple Manager of Hewetts of Marlow in Buckinghamshire

“The Mini Cooper-printed Paul Smith leather wallet at £130 is one of our most popular men’s accessories. Bellroy leather wallets priced between £65 and £70 are also doing well, particularly the smaller back-pocket styles in rusty brown. A John Lewis opened up three miles away in High Wycombe just over a year ago now, but it’s hard to tell if it’s affected business. I’ve started buying in lifestyle accessories as well, such as books, quirky gifts and cushions.”

“Paul Smith is offering good prices for branded accessories. The Paul Smith boxers at £25 are doing well. We introduce a new brand each year and customers tend to warm up to them quite quickly. Men are more conscious and serious about brands and accessories now.”

  • Duncan McKenzie Buyer at Aphrodite in Sunderland
  • Benjamin Tidd-Cooper Menswear buyer at Sefton in Islington, London

Ally Capellino

Ally Capellino

“Comme des Garçons wallets - the SA 2100 standard zip-around, the SA 3100 pocket style in black leather and also the Fluo models - are our best-performing items at £65 to £119. The brand has international recognition and is at an accessible price point. The Ally Capellino waxy bag range priced from £225 to £330 is also a strong seller. Accessories are a backbone for the shop and are important for consistency in sales.”

  • James Jones Co-owner of Robinsons of Bawtry in South Yorkshire

“Eton of Sweden ties (£65 to £70) and pocket squares (£40) are the bestsellers. The styles are more unusual with knitted textures and dots. Hugo Boss wallets in tan leather, priced at £100, are in demand too. Sales are up 20% from last year and I think the economy is looking up. We’ve built our social media presence, employing a writer, and also got involved with local events such as the Doncaster races, where we have sponsored events along with other retailers in the Bawtry Retailers Association.”

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