Drapers probe leading Independents to get their View From The Shop floor.
How is trade at the moment?
Trade is fantastic, sales are up. We’re in our third year of business and we’ve seen a steady climb. We offer a unique fashion concept of made to measure, bespoke clothing. We work directly with the designers from our showroom, and customers can also meet with them to discuss the pieces. We’re looking to more than double the size of our store to about 3,500 sq ft, we’ve got a location in mind and we’re discussing it at the moment.
Has your business been affected by tough market conditions seen on the high street?
No, but we offer something very different. When money is scarce, people will invest in a few special pieces that will last, as opposed to buying lots of throw away bits.
The high street’s going on Sale now, will you start discounting?
No, it wouldn’t fit in with our business concept. We have designers working on one-off pieces and going on sale would cheapen that. We also don’t have stock sitting around the shop floor, so wouldn’t need to go on a sale.
How is the Scottish market overall?
Glasgow is buoyant, people really like to dress up with lots of beautiful eveningwear and occassionwear pieces. Our bespoke jeans and jackets have also been amazing, especially with guys, along with our knit to measure pieces. A lot of our customers are involved in the art scene in Glasgow, which is huge, and are passionate people who are clear about the look they want. We looked to open in Edinburgh, but it’s a bit more conservative, Glasgow is much wilder.
Who do you see as your competitors?
It’s difficult because what we offer is quite unique, maybe a store like Cruise would be seen as our competitor.
What are your price points?
Made to measure jeans start at £200, and dresses range from about £200 to £500. We’ll charge customers for the work but the material is up to them, we don’t want to price ourselves out of the market. We have about 25 designers working for us at any one time across accessories, shoes, menswear and womenswear, but we constantly rotate them.
Are you going to any trade fairs?
Not yet, but we will probably do Paris Fashion Week and some of the smaller fairs.
What can we expect from you next year?
We are looking into producing our own textiles, we are keen on collaborations, and are working with the local government. We want to produce cutting edge pieces from locally produced materials.
Do you have transactional website?
Yes, it’s currently being rebuilt, the address is: www.checamille.com. We’re developing the new site with our designers, and are looking to feature one designer in detail at a time.
Are you expanding at all?
Alongside increasing the size of the store, I am looking to move into furniture with beautiful, bespoke retro pieces- this will be possible with the increased space.
To share your View From The Shop floor email: firstname.lastname@example.org.