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Premium Indicator, November 29 2014

What is selling now in the world of Premium fashion?

Women’s

Saskia Lamche Womenswear buyer at Diverse in Islington

“Lightweight chiffon blouses (£160) and check-print dresses (£230) by Isabel Marant are strong sellers. Acne’s knitwear in navy, black and grey (£285), as well as its coats (£425), are also very popular. The lack of parking spaces around the area is a problem, but sales remain stable as people are looking for investment pieces.”

Jackie Abusin Owner of Olivia Grace in Wetherby, West Yorkshire

“Business is steady and we are profiting from the declining number of independents in Wetherby, as well as our variety of more than
10 brands. Our customers love soft merino and cashmere knitwear in neutral shades by Repeat (£125) and Brax’s casual trousers (£115).”

Helene Rapaport Owner of Bernard Boutique in Esher, Surrey

“The lace, satin and leather-trimmed sweater by Nº21 (£425) is definitely a bestseller. Helmut Lang knitwear (£290 to £345) and trousers (£180) always sell well because they’re very wearable throughout autumn. We sold lots of Moncler coats (£800 to £1,800) in the summer before people realised this winter was going to be mild.”

Emma Fletcher Assistant buyer at Cavells in Oakham, Rutland

“Marc Cain’s knee-length coat (£379) is one of our bestsellers and Hauber’s A-line wool skirt (£145) is also popular. In early December we’re hosting our sixth fashion morning of the autumn 14 season, which includes a style talk and mini fashion show. In the past these have proved successful by inspiring people to try new styles.”

Susan Nicolas Owner of Mosaique in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire

“Having been established for 30 years we have a loyal clientele, which keeps sales consistent. Weekend by MaxMara padded jackets (£375 to £500) sell well, as do multicoloured Missoni scarves (£150), plus colourful dresses (£450) and simple skirts (£195) by M Missoni.”

Nick Florry Co-owner of Changing Room in Tunbridge Wells, Kent

“We’ve noticed less footfall in store as customers are increasingly buying online. It has given us a boost selling our products via the Farfetch.com platform, which accounts for 40% to 50% of sales. In store, fur-trimmed Moncler coats (£1,000) and Isabel Marant print tops (£300) sell remarkably well.”

Jane Stanley Owner of Private Collection in Barnstaple, Devon

“Sales are up 15% on last year because premium brands are appealing to customers looking for quality and workmanship. Marella day dresses (£199), Pinko knitted sweaters (£299) and Dorothee Schumacher cashmere knitwear (£199 to £599)
are selling best.”

Beckie Kingsley Store manager of Ginger in Norwich

“Customers are buying heavily into Marella dress coats (£500) and classic dresses (£270 to £280), as well as Armani Jeans skinny denim (£130 to £140) and Diane von Furstenberg cocktail dresses (£350). Sales have been up and down as a nearby building site and roadworks in the city centre are preventing easy access to the shop.”

Men’s

Louis Copeland Director of Louis Copeland in Dublin

“The top sellers are Canali suits (£800), Eton shirts (£150) and Ted Baker formal jackets (£400). Our average mark-up is 2.7 to 3. Trading is going well in general and sales are up 5% on last year, I think because the economy is strengthening. We try to introduce one to two brands every year, like Ted Baker, which we launched for autumn 14.”

Giulio Cinque Owner of Giulio in Cambridge

“Casual coats and jackets from Moncler (£600 to £900), Ralph Lauren (from £300) and Hugo Boss (£300 to £500) are the strongest sellers. Trading is good, because we are working harder to offer great customer service, concentrating on visual merchandising and the general appearance of the store.”

Nigel Clare Owner of Nigel Clare in Chorley, Lancashire

“Armani Jeans in dark colours (£130) are proving popular, although Barbour jackets (around £200) and chunky knitwear in navy and olive (£110) are our current biggest sellers. However, sales are down because the mild weather is putting people off buying autumn fashion.”

Michael Hamilton Owner of The Bureau in Belfast

“Jackets by Engineered Garments are selling very well (around £400), as are casual Post O’alls blue shirts (around £160). Trading in general is much better than last year. We’ve made some adjustments to our website and are using Instagram more actively, which may be helping us grow sales.”

Tony Stuckes Managing director of John Anthony in Bath

“Sweatshirts and knitwear from Polo Ralph Lauren (£100) and Stone Island (£140 to £180) are the most popular products in black, navy or grey. Our ranges are becoming stronger as we are buying according to customer feedback, not based on assumptions of what they will want.”

Darren Pang Store manager of Hemingway in Guildford, Surrey

“Navy Stone Island chunky sweaters (£200) are selling well. Black slim Nudie Jeans (£110) and regular-fit indigo Armani Jeans are also popular at the moment (£100 to £150).”

Russell Jones Co-owner of Robinsons of Bawtry, South Yorkshire

“Boss Black suits (£750) and jackets (£500) are our bestsellers at the moment. Armani Collezioni
suits (£850) and jackets (£600) are very popular as well. We look for a 2.7 mark-up wherever possible. Generally customers have increased their spending as they are more confident about the economy.”

Lewis Yates Owner of Lewis Yates in Billericay, Essex

“Paul Smith formal wool jackets (£350) are selling best right now. Navy Eton shirts (£130) are also selling strongly. Trading is better than last year because people seem to be less cautious about spending money. We introduce new brands every season, such as Orlebar Brown, which we launched for autumn 14.”

 

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