Womenswear brands sounded the death knell for the domination of the dress at womenswear show Pure London this week, after trouser sales for spring 11 soared for the first time in years.
Contemporary label InWear said trouser sales were up about 50% on last year after indies had strong sell-throughs for spring 10. InWear label manager Cynthia Parise said skirts were also doing well, as buyers moved back towards separates.
Steen Bjerregaard, marketing director of contemporary Danish brand Nü, said: “There’s a definite trend for trousers - but not jeans. People are sick of [seeing] nothing but dresses for so many seasons.”
Nü upped the number of trouser styles in its offer by 10% for spring 11 compared with spring 10.
Bjerregaard said the brand would increase the number again for autumn 11, when trousers traditionally sell best.
Marc O’Rourke, sales director at agency The Fashion House, which showed mainstream brand Peruzzi, said the brand was doing “amazingly well” with trousers, particularly shapewear styles, and added: “Shirts are also making a comeback for spring 11 to pair with the wider-legged trouser styles that can’t be layered with dresses.” Both chinos and skinny cargo shapes inspired by the success of J Brand’s spring 10 Houlihan style were widespread and a new addition for many brands at Pure London, while harem, wide-legged, and tapered, high-waisted shapes were also shown in force.
Joseph Szopa, sales manager of Only, part of young fashion group Bestseller, said sales of new trouser styles such as skinny cargo pants and chinos were growing faster than denim because branded denim was a “considered purchase” and “people don’t replace jeans as often”.