Production in a post-Brexit world was the hot topic at London trade show Pure today, as the spring 17 edition kicked off.
Exhibitors spoke of simplifying their designs or changing their prices in an attempt to absorb the growing costs associated with the weakness of the pound.
“Brexit has made things difficult for us, as we’ve had to keep costs down,” said Chloe Morgan, marketing director at accessories and womenswear brand LYDC. “The prices are becoming ridiculous. It’s impacting on the quality and function of the designs, and it’s more work for the designers because there’s a lot more back and forth, removing trims or bits that make the product too expensive for wholesale.”
Many were unsure of the right course of action. “We’re trying to just ride the wave at the moment, trying not to pass it on to consumers,” said Riz Rehman, director of womenswear brand Parisian.
Footfall gradually picked up in the light and airy Olympia London as the day went on. The theme for this season’s show is ‘live a life less ordinary’, taking South America as the inspiration. Samba dancers paraded through the aisles to the beat of drums.
Some brands in the young fashion area, Spirit, felt the show was quieter than usual, but elsewhere there was more of a buzz. Overall the feedback was positive and orders were being written.
Buyers praised the layout and mix of emerging and established brands. The menswear section, which launched last year to some initial scepticism, was again well received.
Pure London runs from July 24-26. Click here to read the news from day one at trade show Scoop, which coincides with Pure London this season.
The views from Pure
Tracey Mogard, creative director of Herald & Hart, which has stores in Rye and Fulham
“We’re here to buy accessories and what we have noticed is that there seems to be less to see. It looks like there are less stands, so we wonder if they have struggled to sell some of the spaces. However, it seems to be busy, so it certainly doesn’t feel like there are less buyers. We’ve liked what we’ve seen so far, product-wise.”
Karen Lake, owner of lifestyle retailer Moose Lifestyle in Woodbridge in Suffolk
“We haven’t been here long but we’ve already placed an order. The show is really well laid out and there is a great selection of brands, something for everyone. It’s great for us because as a lifestyle retailer because we have a more limited selection of clothing in store, so we need the choice when buying. There is a lot to see and it feels busy.”
Serena Francis, brand manager of men’s and women’s Fairtrade brand ArmedAngels
“I have to say this edition there are a lot more international buyers. We have seen people from Portugal and Spain, and in general I think it seems quite buzzing. I think that might be down to Bread & Butter not being around anymore.”
Jess Workman, sales manager, Neon Rose
“We find Pure is good for orders. On Sunday we tend to see more indies and then tomorrow we’ll see the bigger brands like Asos. We’ve set up a lot of appointments because it draws people in to you.”
Caroline Oriordan, who is on the verge of opening a womenswear indie called Corali in Cork
“I arrived about 10am and it has been good so far. It’s great for me because the shop is just starting so I can see some spring stock as well as autumn, and there’s a lot on short order. There’s a good mix between established and new brands as well.”
Francesca Millea, key account manager, Kacoo Fashions (Glamorous and True Decadence)
“The show is quieter in general, but we’ve been quite busy. Sundays are usually busier than this, but we had an idea that it might be quieter this year – it’s not cheap for people to stay in London, and a lot of people are away. And a lot of people don’t need to come. If you already stock the brands that are here, why would you come?”