Buyers flying off to streetwear trade show Bread & Butter next week will be scouting out fresh brands offering strong margins, despite some buyers holding back more budget for in-season buying.
UK buyers told Drapers that Bread & Butter, which kicks off in Berlin on Wednesday (January 18), is still a key date in the diary.
Mark Bage, co-owner of York premium indie Sarah Coggles, said he was going to the show for the first time in five years because there were so many major brands and people at the show.
“There are quite a lot of levels to B&B nowadays, with premium brands that have secondary and tertiary tiers also showing the ranges,” he said.
Bage added that while in Berlin he would also visit trade shows Seek and Premium but would not reveal which brands he was eager to see. “People that run big chains go there and it’s interesting what you hear in the bars after hours,” he said.
David Weeks, buying director of Scottish mini-chain Xile, said: “I’m looking forward to having a good mooch around and seeing what’s out there. We’re always looking for small brands with good margins.”
Weeks said he would be on the lookout for Scandinavian brands in particular, as well as brands not stocked by others in the same region as his stores.
However, he added that budgets would be tight owing to the tough climate on the high street. Weeks said he would hold back some budget for in-season buying as he has previously done.
Darren Comerford, director and buyer at young fashion indie Fallen Hero in Scunthorpe, said he too would be holding back more budget for in-season buying as menswear moves towards being more trend-led. He said last autumn, Fallen Hero held back about 10% for short-order stock but for autumn 12 it would be around 25%.
He added: “We’re going to go [to B&B] and review our current brand portfolio but it’s also a case of seeing if we can find any fresh new brands.”