It's buying season again, this time for Spring Summer 2018. Buying for the boutique can sometimes be a tricky and trying process, and I don’t think there has ever been a buying trip which has gone exactly to plan! It might be that the collection you loved last season have produced a collection that would suit customers half your age, or that the colours are ones which you just know you can’t sell. Our golden rule is to buy with our hearts, if we don’t feel it, we don’t do it.
We travel to Paris, Milan, London and Berlin to visit showrooms and large trade fairs. The trade fairs are vast, unedited and usually extremely hot, not to mention crowded. From a selection of hundreds of brands we rarely choose more than three or four. Sometimes we like to just go with our instincts but more often than not we have done our homework or even followed the brand for a couple of seasons before deciding. Magpies like me could get very carried away by the incredible things on offer!
Buying in showrooms is much more civilised and calm. We try on every piece we order, and look at each piece to decide if it offers wearability, good value for money, versatility and a uniqueness that fits into our brand, and most importantly of all, customers’ wardrobes. Each item usually comes in a variety of colour options and sometimes four of five different fabrics.
After writing the order we photograph and log each piece, ready to be reviewed and amended before we finalise the orders, ensuring (as best we can!) that all of the collections work together and offer a balance of colours, textures and styles. Then we wait for six months for the deliveries to come in buy which time we have already started the next season!
The pic below was taken in Berlin at the Premium Show in January this year. We always try to make it to different shows so that we see new collections (always see what you’ve always seen, always do what you’ve always done!) We picked up a great new scarf brand, Rubicon, in Berlin. Find them here