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Style Council: What trade shows will you visit for the spring 16 season?

Drapers asks top menswear, womenswear and footwear buyers which UK and international trade shows they will be attending this summer.

Gerard Levy, owner and head of buying at footwear retailer Spice London, which has two stores in north London

We will be attending Micam [in Milan], Premiere Classe [in Paris] and Pure London.

As a shopkeeper and agent, Micam is always a must for me. It may have a lost a little bit of glamour over the years, but it’s still first on the calendar for me and the best overall picture for the coming season. Premiere Classe is still the best and most beautiful trade show; you just can’t help getting excited when you’re there. 

I am the curator and co-organiser for the new Premium section at Pure London. We have put together a brand-new exciting concept show that will put Pure on the map as the event for UK shoe buyers.

Nicholas Thorne, menswear buyer at menswear and womenswear indie Question Air, which has five stores in London and one in Chichester

This season we are going to Jacket Required in London, Capsule Men’s, Tranoï, Tranoï Homme and Premiere Classe in Paris, CIFF in Copenhagen and Coterie in New York. Generally, they have a good mix of emerging and established brands so we achieve a great balance. We go to trade shows to hopefully discover at least one or maybe two new brands to take on and also to catch up with existing suppliers, as well as to get a general feel of the direction for the coming season.  

William Coe, owner of menswear and womenswear store Coes in Ipswich

This season we will attend Panorama and Seek in Berlin, Jacket Required in London, Moda in Birmingham and the IMC show in Northampton.

Seek and Jacket Required will act as previews for those brands we buy for our branded contemporary departments. They will also give us a chance to see other collections we currently don’t stock and haven’t been able to commit to a showroom appointment. They are also really useful in giving us a general overview of trends and where things may be heading.

Panorama and Moda are always useful when it comes to our mainstream menswear buy. However, as a business, the IMC show is our most important as it is where we do the bulk of our seasonal menswear buying. 

For us, trade shows are about consolidating what we do, ensuring we have all our bases covered, making sure there are no nasty surprises, such as price hikes or distribution issues, and giving our buyers every opportunity to bring the best possible product mix back to Coes.

Debra McCann, director of contemporary womenswear store The Mercantile London in east London

We’re going to CIFF and Revolver in Copenhagen, Who’s Next in Paris, Scoop and Pure London, Tranoï and Premiere Classe in Paris and Premium in Berlin.

Some shows we always do; others we do in rotation. I haven’t been to Berlin for a few seasons as I felt I needed to give it a break. That way it keeps it fresh.

Going to Paris gives a good overview of the coming season. In Copenhagen we work productively in a focused period of time and we always find a new brand we may not see in showrooms. Finally, trade shows are a chance to gather inspiration and ideas, and buy in a conducive environment.

Joanne Wood, womenswear buyer at premium independent Accent in Leeds

We are planning to attend CIFF in Copenhagen, Scoop and Pure London.

The Copenhagen shows offer a point of difference. UK buyers are a minority there and in the past we have picked up a few interesting brands that our customers love. Scoop offers a diverse mix of medium to higher profile brands, while Pure London’s catwalk shows are always worth a visit.

We go to trade shows to get a point of difference from all our competitors, refresh and build future contacts.

Readers' comments (2)

  • Thierry Bayle

    How important is it for buyers to have at their disposal business seminars at the shows?
    Pure, Moda...?
    Whos Next is also offering 1-2-1 with 5 possible retail experts to cover all areas of retail.
    How is that important?

    What is missing from shows today?

    Thierry Bayle

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • I manage the seminar content at Pure London.

    In partial answer to your question, Thierry, we're finding that visitors are placing an increasing importance on it. We do a lot of research before deciding what to put on the catwalks and we're seeing an increasing appitite for information on how to conduct your brand online, so we have a whole seminar theatre dedicated to social, online marketing etc.

    We also have daily keynotes from WGSN who do in-depth analysis of upcoming trends, and big brands like All Saints, LK Bennet as well as indie retailers sharing their case-studies.

    A majority of retail buyers at Pure come to either the catwalks, the seminars or both. This wasn't always the case so I think free, top-notch advice and tutorials are increasingly desirable. It varies from person to person though of course.

    Sophy Searight
    Content Editor at Pure (and i2i's other retail events)

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