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Take the ticks and crosses challenge

On a scale of one to 10 (one being the lowest), how do you rate this season’s buying?

Have you attended more, the same or fewer shows this season? Have you tried to find something new and exciting to tempt your customers? Or maybe you’ve stuck to old favourites because you don’t feel it is the right time to take risks? Have you cut your forward-order buying budget? Did any of the collections inspire you, or were you left feeling a bit bored?

Is it important to travel abroad to source new brands, or do you think if your customers have not heard of them they won’t be interested? How many brochures sent to you this season
resulted in you visiting the showroom and placing an order?

Do you feel as if the perfect collection keeps eluding you and that you could do better yourself?

I bet anyone reading this could relate to some, if not all of these questions. Of course, everyone has a different point of view and ultimately a different business, but in times like these I think it is timely to do your own checklist to analyse your performance.

From an inspiration point of view, I love to see new talent being given the opportunity to show their collections at commercial shows like Pure London. It has the effect of breathing new life
into an otherwise predictable showcase, when most of us are yearning for that feeling of ‘if I don’t order it now, I’ll miss the opportunity’.

However, checklists only offer answers on paper, and most of a buyer’s work is done on a mix of instinct tempered with reality. Not the easiest of formulas.

Still, I would say on a scale of one to 10 I’m hovering around at eight. How about you?

  • Pamela Shiffer owns contemporary womenswear indie Pamela Shiffer, which has two stores in London

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