Industry insider’s share their thoughts.
Birgitte Majlund Mikkelsen
When we’re designing at the start of each season we’re mostly focusing on long-term trends and the more classical and key pieces which can run through the whole season. The styles and quality will cater for a colder climate going into spring, but not too light or seasonal. In general for pre-spring 14, there will be a lot of denim, canvas in all structures, sweat/sports luxe (Vila, pictured) and lightweight parkas.
The way we develop and design our range (Karen Millen, pictured) is much more about an evolution rather than dramatic seasonal shifts. We introduce new pieces early as our clients shop all year round for our brand in locations around the world and we’ve expanded our casualwear offer to include a strong range of trend-led denim alongside statement knitwear for layering.
Delivery times for stores such as Journal Standard and Isetan in Japan and Lane Crawford in Hong Kong, where our sales are particularly good, are much earlier, which has made us consider our design more carefully to fit this longer seasonal period. For the first time we are developing knitwear for spring. We’re also using more technical performance fabrics on jackets (Common People, pictured).
For spring 14 we’re continuing to design into our seasonal drops, making sure we have the right product (Ben Sherman, pictured) designed and delivered at the right time. This includes a good combo of mid-weight cotton-blended knitwear, balanced with lightly wadded nylons and the use of detachable liners in functional outerwear. The use of layering is also very important and will help support the trans-seasonal trend at retail.