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Mainstream Indicator, October 18 2014

What’s selling now in the world of Mainstream fashion?

Women’s

Tiffany Moore Owner of Renes Lapelle in Lancaster, Lancashire

“The store is getting very busy with people looking for coats. We have been pushing the coats collection online through Facebook and people are responding, with styles from Betty Barclay (£230 to £299) and Ted Baker (£299) performing well. Two Danes skirts are selling strongly (from £35).”

Irene Mackie Owner of Bentleys in Banchory, Aberdeenshire

“It’s been a really good start to the autumn season. Although the warm weather went on for quite some time, clients have started buying autumn pieces very quickly. Just White by SE shirts (from £95) are doing very well, as are tops from Betty Barclay (from £50) and Frank Lyman (£150 to £250).”

Mandy Newman Owner of Beauchamp Place in Honiton, Devon

“Pomodoro dresses always sell strongly (£70), as well as Amazing Woman Jeans (£100) and Tulchan jumpers (£50). The hot September didn’t help as people weren’t buying for autumn, although things are starting to pick up.”

Clare Ireland Owner of Sedici in Seaford, East Sussex

“Sales are quite steady at the moment as customers aren’t ready to trade in bright summer clothing. Masai Clothing Company tunics and dresses are selling very well (£70), as are the Adini Tuscany tunic (£49.50) and Oska trousers (£100 to £120).”

Joelle Elmhirst Owner of Boutique 28 in Barnstaple, Devon

“We are based by the seaside, so our customers are mainly holidaymakers and people with second homes. As the weather is still quite summery, customers are not ready to buy autumn clothes yet. That said, Joseph Ribkoff styles usually fly out of the door, especially the coats and short jackets (£200 to £249). Marc Cain faux fur coats are also proving popular (£389).”

Tanya Hardy Owner of Orchid in Skegness, Lincolnshire

“I am getting people who are happy to spend on new additions to their wardrobe, including pieces such as Monari knitwear (jumpers from £80, full-length cardigans from £200) and Frank Lyman dresses (from £180). People are still resistant to buy autumn 14 fashion because of
the warm September.”

Mary Le Poidevin Owner of Miss Nob in Guernsey

“We have had to cut down the number of higher-priced brands we stock, because clients are still very cautious due to the financial crash. T-shirts from Original Penguin (around £40), for example, are selling very well. People have got into the habit of not spending as much, unfortunately.”

Tiffany Ross Buyer at Cavells in Oakham, Rutland

“September has been a tricky month, because we haven’t sold much from the autumn 14 collection due to the Indian summer. We have, however, been selling transitional pieces like Cocoa Cashmere jumpers (£179) and skirts by Marc Cain (£125), which makes a difference. Weekend by Max Mara coats are selling well too (starting at £395).”

Men’s

Karen Hume Ecommerce and operations director of A Hume in Roxburghshire, Scotland

“Sales of autumn 14 stock have suffered somewhat, as it has been too warm.However, things have started to get better as temperatures have dropped this past week, with sales up on our Barbour jackets (from £149). People are coming to see us since we won the Independent Retailer of the Year title at the 2014 Drapers Independents Awards, so we are feeling positive.”

Philip Darlaston Owner of Philip James Menswear in Hinckley, Leicestershire

“Last week’s colder weather has helped to sell autumn 14 pieces like Fynch Hatton knitwear (£85 to £130). In the next few weeks, as the weather gets more chilly, we’ll be able to sell more coats and jackets, like Camel Active coats (£195 to £275) and Digel tweed jackets (£225 to £275). Compared to last year, clients are spending slightly more. I guess they’ve realised that buying cheap can mean poor quality.”

John Conran Menswear buyer at Anthony Ryans in Galway, Ireland

“Clients are reacting well to the autumn 14 collection, in particular combinations of suits, blazers and trousers. Our strongest-selling suits are from Douglas & Grahame, Carl Gross and Magee. These start at €199 (£157), but customers are opting for their most expensive ranges, which retail at €499 (£394).”

Darren Hoggett Co-owner of J&B Menswear in Norwich, Norfolk

“Our customers tend to layer up instead of buying statement pieces. Money is tight, so people are buying with their heads rather than their hearts, but staples like Remus Uomo shirts (£45 to £59), polos by Fred Perry (from £55) and Duck & Cover slim-fit denim (from £65) sell well.”

Neil Phillips Menswear buyer at Matthews Menswear in Haverfordwest, Dyfed

“Suits from Magee (from £300), Remus Uomo (mid-range around £200) and Scott International (£150) are always bestsellers. We are also selling lightweight cotton trousers, particularly by Meyer (from £80), which is unusual for October.”

Mathew Warnock Owner of Peddars in Sudbury, Suffolk

“With the very mild weather we have been selling transitional pieces, like Bruhl trousers and Fynch Hatton casual shirts (£60 to £70), rather than heavier winter pieces. We introduced a new range of leather jackets from Trapper that has been selling well. In fact, we only have one left in stock (from £250).”

David Hopper Store manager at Golding in Newmarket, Suffolk

“Gurteen trousers (£65 to £70) are selling very strongly, as well as Meyer trousers (£80 to £90), but overall sales are quite steady at the moment. Clients are showing an interest in chunky knitwear by Baileys and Giordano (both £90 to £100), but given the weather they are not buying yet.”

Sarah Alexander Managing director of Ahernes of Hellifield in Skipton, North Yorkshire

“We are excited to be stocking Aquascutum again - we haven’t had it in store since the 1970s - and the coats are being very well received (£650 to £1,400). Our clientele is happy to part with their money to invest in quality pieces, such as an Aquascutum coat or Atelier Gardeur trousers (from £79.95). Barbour shirts (from £54.95) and jackets (from £149) are some of our bestsellers.”

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