Optimism reigned on the opening day of mainstream trade show Moda as buyers searched for freshness and brands were upbeat about their busy schedules.
The show, which is taking place at the NEC in Birmingham from August 14 to 16, kicked off yesterday with brands including Joules, James Lakeland and Jackpot exhibiting.
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Many brands reported a busy start to the show on Sunday. Dev Sachdev, managing director of mainstream womenswear brand Adini, said: “It’s been a really good show so far, a very solid start. I haven’t even got off the stand yet because we’ve been that busy. We’ve had some really good orders and the buyers aren’t holding back this season. We’ve had some great new accounts open today which is what we came here for so it’s great.”
Ross Pickbourne, sales manager at footwear distributor Intershoe, said he had enjoyed a “really busy” morning. “This is always a good show for us. I think because it is such a big show with so many different sections you are always guaranteed the numbers.”
Ward Mann, country manager at menswear brand Cottonfields, said: “We have been busy today and have had lots of people on the stand. I would say though that buyers are buying far less forward order product this season and are more interested in short-order and in-season drops. I think this is a trend we are going to see more of as buyers become less and less inclined to commit so much of their budget six months in advance. It just doesn’t make good business sense in this climate.”
Also seeing a solid start to the show was Nigel Hughes, director of fashion agent APT Collections, which represents Gecko and Passport. “We’ve got a diary full of people who have said they are going to come and see us and they will. I think we are at the mercy of the trade in general but I think it stands to be a good show.”
Despite the tough trading conditions on the high street buyers were optimistic about the collections at Moda and were keen to pick up new brands.
Jillian Clark, owner of footwear indie Jilly Clark Shoes in Derbyshire, said: “It’s excellent, we’re having a great show.” She added: “I think it seems as busy as usual. We’ve made some great contacts.”
Stephen Murphy, director of premium etailer Londonplatinum.com, said he thought the first day of the show had been really successful. He added: “We’re looking for smaller independent [brands] that aren’t well known.” He singled out underwear brand Oiler and Boiler as a label to watch.
Anna Humphries, buyer at Lincolnshire department store Oldrids, said: “It’s been great looking around. We’ve picked up some new lines which is good. It seems very busy and there is a lot to see. There’s not a massive selection of jewellery but [there are] some gems.”