It would take a half-blind Amish farmer not to be seduced by Bread & Butter’s charms.
Here is a trade fair basking in the Catalan sun, where the aisles are awash with potential extras from a Lynx ad, and the central area is more Ibiza beach party than fashion exhibition.
However, on the trend tip, Bread & Butter was flatter than a Pizza Express Romano base. The whirlwind of showroom appointments which have followed in its wake have underlined buyer suspicions that spring 09’s streetwear is a virtual rerun of the looks languishing on Sale rails.
The Drapers fashion team has been puzzling over which of these themes has enough stamina to carry it across next summer’s finish line. Sitting in Drapers Towers, surrounded by trend-hungry colleagues in a city overflowing with fashion freaks, it is easy to lose track of the real pace that consumers pick up on trends.
Checks, coloured jeans, lighter denim washes and tech-nylon blousons may be yesterday’s news for the trade, but for most Saturday night pub punters these remain tomorrow’s trends. Indie kid students on the summer festival circuit may be up to their Wayfarers in shrunken checked shirts and juicy coloured jeans, but beyond them neither trend has had much impact.
In many cases the high street has, if anything, been a shade too quick on the uptake. A good example are the 1980s-inspired light-washed jeans. These styles first reappeared in the more progressive denim collections for spring 08. With darker styles still commanding consumer sales, most branded UK buyers wisely took a wide berth. But some high street retailers backed the look and this week many of those very options are languishing on Sale rails.
Khabi Mirza is fashion and features editor of Drapers