Steve Cochrane, owner of independent department store Psyche in Middlesbrough, said: “We will devote some hours of our trip to the show. But because our business is doing so much better on menswear at the moment, we will naturally bias our trip in that direction”.
Giulio Cinque, owner of two-store designer indie Giulio in Cambridge, said: “It’s certainly worth having a look. Pitti’s organisers are obviously trying to introduce womenswear into the package, but the concept itself is becoming tired. In the ever-changing fashion market the expectation is to inject energy into the collections we buy and I don’t think this is reflected by some shows including Pitti. Personally, I don’t go to buy, but to research trends.”
However, Cacharel spokeswoman Sibylle Jammes said: “January is important for Cacharel because it is the beginning of a new launch with design duo Eley Kishimoto. Pitti W_Woman is the first worldwide fair to show the autumn collections and it will attract the whole international press.”
The show will present 40 collections. Other brands that have signed up include Austrian designer Peter Pilotto, luxury bag and luggage designer Pauric Sweeney and London eyewear brand Linda Farrow Luxe. Show organiser Pitti Immagine said it was also inking deals with “other important names” yet to be confirmed.
The debut show will take place in the Dogana on Via Valfonda in Florence, across the road from the Fortezza da Basso where Pitti Uomo is tradition-ally held.