Exhibitors reported high-quality buyers but lighter footfall at the spring 19 edition of London’s textile fair Texfusion.
A total of 150 exhibitors participated across Texfusion and the London Print Design Fair at Islington’s Business Design Centre on 20-21 March.
Some exhibitors had mixed opinions about the timing of the show, as it fell after the larger Intertextile show in Shanghai, which took place on 14-16 March.
James Arnold, textile agent at textile merchant Bulk Sudden, said: “I have noticed a lot of retailers such as River Island and Debenhams, but last week’s show in Shanghai drew a lot of people in, which has meant that this event was not as busy as it maybe could have been.”
Dean Marriott, sales office manager at Litmans Fabrics, agreed: “Things have been a little slow compared with previous years. I think it’s because designers are a bit undecided about what they want this year, and this year’s show has fallen after all of the other trade shows.”
However, Hazel Orton, studio manager at fabric design studio Baxter Fawcett, said there was a positive mood in the aisles: “It has been steady, and some foreign clients made an appearance. High street retailers seemed a little more positive. The prospect of reaching a conclusion for Brexit is adding to confidence.”
Event organiser John Kelley said: “London print designers are the most famous in the world, so people will travel to buy from them. Although it hasn’t been one of our busiest, we have had good-quality clientele visiting.”
Kelley said the new dedicated denim area which debuted at this season’s show had created interest and he plans to expand the area to include more exhibitors next season. He is also going to introduce an area with a sustainable focus.