Menswear show Stitch will go head to head with Pure London and Moda by adding womenswear to its line-up for its spring 14 edition.
The show, which will be rebranded as Stitch London from next season, plans to introduce womenswear and is looking to sign about 30 to 40 brands, predominantly from the young fashion and fast-fashion end of the market.
Stitch founder Brian Duffy said he was broadening the show’s scope after feedback suggested there was strong demand for womenswear.
“A lot of the labels that have been showing at Stitch asked us to look at womenswear, because they don’t show at other women’s shows and would find it much easier to show their whole range at Stitch,” he told Drapers.
Stitch will now compete with other womenswear trade shows including Pure London and Moda in Birmingham, although Duffy described the competition as “healthy”.
“We are competing all over the world, especially as brands have tight budgets,” he said. “We are aware of what Pure and Moda both do and we are looking to work with brands that don’t show at either.”
Duffy is also looking for more short-order brands, noting that “a lot of cash” is being put into this part of the market. “We want to mirror the buying trends we are seeing in the industry and give them a platform.”
The spring 14 edition on July 23 and 24 will also take place in a new venue, The Sorting Office on New Oxford Street, with the show relocating from the Business Design Centre in Islington after three seasons. Duffy said the new location would be more “urban and industrial”. The show organisers will now be offering space-only, instead of traditional shell-scheme packages.
Duffy said: “It will encourage brands to be more expressive with their representation. It will also be cheaper because we’ll offer basic space rate and they will then have a bit more budget to play with.”
Stitch London will be spread across the first two floors of The Sorting Office, both of which cover 37,674 sq ft, but could expand to the additional three floors if necessary.
The show will have four distinct sections: Menswear, Womenswear, Streetwear and Emerging.
The autumn 13 edition of Stitch is on February 12 and 13 at the Business Design Centre. More than 100 brands will be exhibiting.