The mood at the first morning of German footwear fair GDS was upbeat with exhibitors optimistic, despite the grey weather slow moving visitor traffic.
The sheer size of the fair meant that by midday exhibitors had yet to get an accurate feel for the visitor turnout, although most expected the show become busier over the weekend.
Talk from buyers and UK reps centred around the recent Stead & Simpson collapse and the subsequent fall out. Consumer confidence was also a hot topic with the government’s Budget on Wednesday thought to be unlikely to do retailers any favours where shoppers’ pockets are concerned.
Steven Patterson, managing director of Aberdeen-based independent Hamish Munro, said that the tough retail climate was a challenge. “It is always going to be tough but you’ve just got to focus and try harder,” he said.
Another retailer added:”The next twelve months is going to be very difficult. I think the government has scared the consumer.”
Trend-wise, the comfort brands are extremely unified this season, with pleated and crinkled leather on ankle boots, and wax-look full length riding boots being some of the most prolific styles on offer. Ballet flats are still strong and the sporty wedge has made its way into the comfort market’s trends this season.
For a full round up of the show see next week’s Drapers.