It was a calm but steady start to Moda at the NEC in Birmingham, with most brands Drapers spoke to happy with the quality of buyers present on the first day although there were some quieter moments as the afternoon progressed.
The issues surrounding Brexit were on peoples’ minds but most exhibitors felt there was a renewed sense of positivity in the industry regarding buying for spring 17, following a difficult season of trading. “Getting on with it” seemed the order of the day.
The aisles felt a touch busier in the womenswear area than the menswear section and although the footwear area of the show looked relatively quiet at times, exhibitors reported buyers were there to place orders. Others praised the functionality of the show and commented how easy it was to work.
Some suggested the day’s sunshine got buyers in the mood for spring 17 product, while others said it may be a factor in a slower start.
As with other seasons, brands were expecting the larger independents, group buyers and multiples to attend on the second day of the show (Monday August 8).
Moda runs at the NEC until Tuesday August 9.
Views from Moda
Jenny Williams, owner of womenswear independent Club South in Eastbourne
”We come to Moda now they have started showing a lot more lifestyle brands such as Braintree and the like. Our customer is looking for a lot more contemporary and casual offerings now than they used to and we can find those here. We’ve seen a couple of new brands, too, which look good for us today already.”
Ben Haywood, director of womenswear brand Lily & Me
“It has been a good show for us and we’ve seen a steady stream of people today so far. We’re showing the majority spring 17 but a small selection of autumn 16 on short order and we’ve written a couple of orders for that too. The sun is shining, which gets buyers in the mood to think about spring 17.”
Alizee Lang, sales assistant at footwear brand Butterfly Twists
“We’ve had a good morning of meetings with both new and existing customers. We’ve had a good response to our recent marketing campaign so brand awareness is good at the moment. We’ve had enquiries from new online players and those opening second stores, which is encouraging.”
Russell White, director, Blue Tide
“It’s been quiet for us, it might be because it’s summer and it’s a nice day outside. We’re optimistic that it will pick up as the show goes on. It’s our first time here and we came because we’ve heard from other brands that its good show where people write orders. It’s definitely got a good reputation. I don’t think Brexit will have made any difference to how busy the show is – people still have shops to fill and customers want to buy.”
Daniel Richmond, sales manager, Superga
”The show hasn’t kicked off for us yet but it might pick up. The shows this season have been mixed, Pure was really busy on the Sunday and Monday but Tuesday was dead. At Moda, it’s been quiet but the people we have seen have been writing orders. I’d be more worried if it was quiet and people weren’t buying. We haven’t seen any big multiples – we tend to see them earlier in the season.”
Adrian Gell, sales manager at Barker Shoes
”It’s been a very good show for us. There’s been a steady stream of customers writing orders. We’ve seen three or four Irish buyers here today. I think the market is tough at the moment but it depends on where you are in the industry, I know some menswear indies who are having a fantastic season. I think young people are prepared to spend a bit more on something they really like and think is really high quality. Brexit will hurt us all eventually. We’ve already seen the price of leather rise. What’s important is that we continue to be able to trade with the rest of the world.”