Find out what’s selling now in the world of lingerie and men’s accessories
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Jane Mason, owner of Miss Demure in Dundee
The top-selling bras at Miss Demure are full-cup bras from Triumph, Charnos and Fantasie (all £26-34). When I bought the business last year, it was a traditional lingerie business with an old-fashioned store, which I’ve rebranded into a modern, quirky place to shop. We were nominated for a best shop award from Underlines magazine earlier this year, which was a proud moment. We’ve also recently started stocking nightwear from Cyberjammies and loungewear from DKNY.
Gwyneth Tooke, manager of Pure Mischief in Lancashire
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T-shirt bras have been a bestseller for all my top lingerie brands – Marie Jo (£65-£90) PrimaDonna (£67-£94) and Fantasie (£31-£46). Underwired and side-support bras are also proving to be a hit with the customers. Although trade has been smooth over the wintery months so far, the summer is always our busiest time, as we sell lots of swimwear. However, I am confident that there will be a shopping frenzy around Christmas.
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Aubade’s see-through lace balconette bras (£90-£100) are doing very well at the moment. Empreinte’s bras (£100) are a hit with customers with bigger busts. French brand Marjolaine is popular for its silk and lace long nightgowns (£200-£300). I’ve been working for Prohibido for six years and haven’t seen sales so low before – people aren’t buying multiple items or sets like they used to. Bigger retailers are also selling the same brands and starting to discount earlier, which is having an impact on independents who don’t take part in national discounting events like Black Friday.
Kathryn Rolfe, owner of Kathryn Rolfe Lingerie in York
My top selling brands are PrimaDonna full-cup bras (£77) and Marie Jo plunge bras. Empreinte is really popular for its balconette bras (£80). Trade has been really up and down. Some weeks you may have a very busy Saturday and a slow Monday – it does vary. We’ve moved our shop to a smaller unit and given our regular customers promotional vouchers. My clientele is a bit older, so if the weather’s bad, they’d probably rather stay at home cuddled up with a good book. However, I do love my customers as they are very loyal.
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Kiran Rayet, assistant manager of Diffusion in Wolverhampton
Wallets from Vivienne Westwood (£60-£80) and Hugo Boss (£100) are our top-selling accessories for men in our store, along with Versace belts (£150). We have also recently introduced Michael Kors wallets, which are also doing really well. Our Wolverhampton branch is the quieter branch compared with our other stores, like the one in the Intu Merry Hill shopping centre in Dudley. Despite this, sales have been quite good and we’ve already had quite a few Christmas shoppers.
Andy Hughes, manager of Pure Manshop in Aberdeen
Post & Co’s designer belts (£95) are a bestseller, along with ties (£60) from the British tailor Peckham Rye. Jeffery West belts (£85) are also popular with customers. Overall, trade has been going well. Sales are up in November compared with previous months and our forecasts are better than they were last year – there are no problems for customers reaching the store and parking is plentiful.
Adrian Toor, manager of Robinsons of Bawtry near Doncaster
Robert Charles embossed wallets (£65) are popular and customers also love tan Jeffery West shoes (£250-£300), which are unique to our store. Boss Green trainers (£120) are also a big seller. This year has been quiet generally – people seem to be waiting for payday before making purchases. We have sent out a £30 voucher to customers on our mailing list to spend in-store. Now that Black Friday is out of the way, trade should start picking up. Men don’t tend to shop ahead and plan like women do – they are very last minute.
Kevin Carew, owner of Redfords in Birmingham
Wallets and luggage from Mulberry (£175-£895), Paul Smith (£125-£650) and Hugo Boss (£90-£1,000) are selling very well. However, cufflinks and scarves haven’t sold as well as they normally do around this time of year. Trade has been fairly steady, and it’s definitely up on last year. The store has been open for 25 years and I’ve seen three generations of customers come through the doors.