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What's selling now: occasionwear and formalwear

Find out what’s selling now in the world of occasionwear and men’s formalwear


June Robson Owner of Norma & Junes in Peterlee, County Durham

Ispirato has sold well this season, especially the dress and jacket sets (£375-£700). Wedding season is here, so dresses from John Charles (£500-£1,000) has been popular, as have the dress and jacket sets from Veni Infantino (£399-£795). Generally, sales have been good but we are finding that customers are very price conscious. Trade is also very dependable on what’s happening in the local area and the businesses you have around you.

Marc cain ss18 smart jacket

Marc cain ss18 smart jacket

Smart jackets from Marc Cain 

Jenny Raeburn Co-owner of Lucindas in Purley, south London

Marc Cain separates have sold very well. When buying we look for special pieces that really stand out for us and Marc Cain always hits the nail on the head. The trousers (£232) and jackets (£250) are always exceptionally tailored, and the silk shirts (£222) have always been an easy buy for our customer. Carla Ruiz has been a great seller this season, especially the long jacket and dress sets (£350.) Dresses from John Charles (£495) have done well and attracted a younger customer looking for a dynamic and versatile piece. Lace detail has been popular and people are picking pashmina wraps over the typical bolero. Sales are constant and steady, and, if anything, we’ve had a better rate of trade with this heatwave. We have lots of people on the hunt for pieces for special occasions and events.





Gina Smart Owner of Gina Smart in Ayr, Ayrshire

Dress and jacket sets from Condici (£799-£899) have been very strong this season, as has Veni Infantino. The Veni one-pieces and two-piece sets  (£499-£699) have sold well in sand tones, pale blues and pale pinks. Ispirato dress and bolero sets (£499-£599) have been another top seller. When it comes to special occasionwear, style is very important and we have found that customers are prepared to spend to get the perfect outfit for their day. Business is steady. Things certainly have slowed down when it has been very warm but we are on target and trade is as expected. 



Kiera Bradley Sales Assistant at Fab Frocks in Westbourne, Bournemouth

Colourful pieces (£400-£700) from Cabotine & Zeila have been a good seller for us this year. Dress and jacket sets from Veni Infantino (£300-£800) continue to sell really well. White and blue dress and jacket sets from Condici (£780-£980) have also been in demand. Our busy period is between Christmas and June and peak trade is in February and April, so this time of year is naturally a bit quieter anyway – particularly with the heat. We do have our summer Sale on now, which has drawn people in anyway.  



Remus Uomo

Remus Uomo

John Lassetter Owner of Bone Clothing in Lewes, East Sussex

Gabicci boating jackets (£199) have performed really well this season. Smart casual shirts (£70) and smart shorts (£80) from Gant have been another strong contender. Remus Uomo linen jackets (£199) have also traded well this summer for us. Business-wise, the mixture of sun and football put a smile on faces in menswear, so we have been doing well. Men tend to be quite straightforward shoppers – they buy an umbrella when it rains and a pair of shorts when the sun comes out.







Peter Lupino Co-owner of Cox of Malvern in Worcestershire

Without Prejudice continues to be one of our strong performers because of the style and quality of the suits (£450), which are particularly popular in deep, rich blues at the moment. Digel suits (£375) are another good seller for us. Although they are a little higher in price point, Magee 1866 suits (£700-£1,000) have sold well. The made-to-measure tweed styles have been popular in green and brown. It was a difficult year in the colder months but the recent warm weather has certainly improved sales.





Phil Todd Partner at Murray Todd in Beverley, East Riding of Yorkshire

Our own label Campbell & Coutts has been very strong, and has been a fantastic seller ever since we introduced it four years ago. The polka-dot, gingham and striped shirts (£95) have flown off the shelves. Smart scarves (£45) have also done well and are currently sold out, although we have new stock on the way in October. Trade has been good, steady and constant. We are lucky because our local area seems to be booming. Last year and this year have been some of the best years we’ve had in the business. Around 60% of our trade comes from visitors to the area because the town itself is such a magnet and we are fortunately situated.



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