E-tailer Zalando hosted the first “new” Bread & Butter in Berlin after BBB’s collapse as Europe’s dominant leisure-wear trade event. Around 25 leading sportswear brands such as Tommy Hilfiger, Levi’s, G-Star, Converse and others took brave initiative and substantial investment by creating impressive futuristic booths, offered visitors, who were end-consumers en large, possibilities to customize product and interact with the brands. Zalando did its best to entertain visitors by all means. However, if such big (and impressive) investments from brands will be seen in person by only 20,000 consumers (those were the officially reported visitor numbers), not industry professionals, the question arises, whether this justifies the costs. Of course, the goal was to reach consumers via all channels of the internet, but this will happen as well during B2B fairs.
Let’s for one moment take a step back and do the maths: compare the combined budgets present at trade-shows of global buyers from department-, multi-brand or bigger online store (like Zalando itself) and compare it to the effect of inviting 20,000 end consumers including their possible followers to an event. Where are guaranteed sales? What advances a brand globally?
It is clear, that there are marketing advantages. However, even using Gigi Hadid is short-term and relevant only for a certain market, and only substantially for the one brand using her, despite Tommy Hilfiger having done so very well.
Further, despite current efforts of many brands to desperately sell to consumers directly and cut middle-man to control all sales – do not forget, that such thinking got quite some big brands into existential trouble, such as the Sixty Group. Too many own stores, long leases for too much money, no more flexibility, not interesting enough by themselves to truly attract enough end consumers into the stores- to make it short: brands should concentrate on creating desirable and sellable fashion; Retailers should concentrate to market this fashion best and create environments of interest and pleasure, inspiring consumers to buy such products.
That is still the best working formula today, if done properly and adapted to today’s times with online-stores. Most major brick and mortar stores operate also an online store today and generate more online sales than offline sales in their traditional stores. But they need both to be successful and there is no way around these influential retailers in order to position a brand globally and long-term.
I do not have to remind this industry that the multiplier effect of the big retailers marketing a brand and a product correctly is substantial. Not only brands can use the power of digital influencers.
Don't make the mistake, some have done before, to put all eggs into one basked, but use this power retailers have and are curently inventing models to use this even more efficiently.
A further feature of this industry is to give smaller brands a chance, to advance those that bring varieties to the big ones and really make fashion a creative industry. Those do not have even a close shot at either building huge booths, nor paying digital influencers or even reaching a critical mass of end consumers. They still need retailers.
Don’t get me wrong: Zalando invested heavily, did a great job, but aimed clearly and solely to reach consumers. This Bread & Butter had nothing to do with the old one, a typical B2B fair, connecting and inspiring the industry.
How will Bread & Butter evolve? Zalando already said they will continue it. Brands do not have results yet to comment how happy they will be to return again.
In my mind, unless the concept will change into a B2B/ B2C event, Karl Heinz Müller’s correctly assumed but wrongly executed route, this will not be the perfect answer to today’s question how to market a brand successfully to consumers on a global level whilst generating the necessary sales. Don't forget – marketing and sales is not only B2C or B2B – it is all about the correctly balanced mix.
Publisher & Editor
WeAr Global Magazine
Inspired by 18th century court dress worn by Louis XV’s mistress, Madame de Pompadour, the ISKO Commission was made for the Love Thy Denim exhibition using fabrics supplied by the exhibition’s sponsor ISKO, global leader in denim manufacturing and textile innovation. The concept behind the ISKO Commission is to show the versatility and beauty of denim.
The ISKO Commission will be just one of many pieces in this fashion exhibition exploring the origins and versatility of denim from its workwear heritage in the Wild West through to its adoption into mainstream fashion and becoming the fabric of our everyday lives. Alongside the Commission, will be a jacket and trousers from Vivienne Westwood’s 1991 Cut, Slash and Pull collection, a Jean Paul Gaultier men’s ensemble on loan from the Fashion Museum Bath and a piece from Maison Margiela’s S/S 09 Artisanal Collection. Also on display will be 19th century denim artefacts dug up from US silver mines, iconic denim advertising images, denim accessories including sunglasses and denim art.
Love Thy Denim will be open in The Gallery, Winchester Discovery Centre until Sunday 23 October. It then opens at Gallery @ Gosport Discovery Centre on Saturday 29 October. Admission to both venues is free of charge, donations are welcome.
TISSUE' is not just a new brand, it is also a different approach to style: a unisex, precise, unconventional language. For S/S 2017, the outfits reveal a sober, timeless, conscious elegance. A strong reference is made to the logic of uniforms, but also an intense desire to get away from the past and explore new idioms. Sharp silhouettes and wide volumes are dismantled and influenced from a number of different points of view. The choice of fabrics marks out the creative project from its roots, but with a renewed consciousness of style.
The collection allows the masculine and feminine to share aesthetical principles and values, whilst still keeping their absolute identity.
CORDURA brand has announced its collaboration with TENCEL from Lenzing, showcasing the softer side of durability with the next generation of soft-comfort performance fabrics. First in the collaboration line-up are new softened strength denims featured in the latest CORDURA Denim ‘Infinity’ Collection, with more innovations across the CORDURA fabric family forthcoming. The Denim ‘Infinity’ Collection, part of the "Authentic Alchemie” Collection portfolio, presents latest generation performance denims crafted to integrate the “best of both worlds” – softness with strength, fashion with function and durability with definition.
“Our latest fabrics incorporating Tencel fibre go beyond traditional denims, migrating to lightweight and comfortable denims that can travel effortlessly with you throughout the day – wherever you may go,” said Cindy McNaull, global CORDURA brand and marketing director.
According to Tricia Carey, director of global business development at Lenzing Fibers Inc., “As denim takes on modern evolution, we’re able to use our denim fabrics in ways that address our lifestyle. CORDURA brand brings the long-lasting durability and strength, and we help enhance it with comfort and softness.”
Products from the collaboration can be seen at MUNICH FABRIC START on the LENZING TENCEL stand (H3 | C15), as well at the Artistic Milliners stand (H7 | B24) within BLUEZONE, an independent concept for the denim and sportswear community.
Fashion Forward Dubai, a biannual fashion showcase has named the designers who will be showcasing their Spring collections at the event. The event is supported by the Dubai Design and Fashion Council and will be held from October 20th till 23rd 2016, at the Dubai Design District.
"We are pleased to extend our support to Fashion Forward. Now in its eighth season, Fashion Forward has established itself as an important platform to celebrate creativity and fashion, and to showcase the work of our designers from the region. The event continues to gain momentum each season and we look forward to witnessing the breadth of talent on display during this edition." — Nez Gebreel, CEO, Dubai Design and Fashion Council
Catwalk and Presentations designers:
Amato by Furne One, Amira Haroon, Arwa Al Banawi, Bedouin, Bouguessa, Amal Al Raisi, Dima Ayad, Ezra, Michael Cinco, Mira Hayek, Mrs. Keepa, Orkalia, Said Mahrouf, Salta, Sotra, Starch Foundation, Salim Azzam, Timi Hayek, Tair, Zaid Farouki, Varoin Marwah, Zareena, Zena Presley, Alessa Jewelry, Bleuis Bags, Exocet, Rula Galayini, Madiso, Myriam Sos, Nathalie Trad, Ns by Noof, Vanina, and Vinita Michael.
Jason Wu has signed on as an ambassador for the Woolmark Company. His role will be to implement ideas on how Australian merino wool can be incorporated into his own designs. Wu’s Fall collection already features several pieces of certified Woolmark, but for Spring, Wu will be implementing ‘cool wool’ into his collection.
“Merino wool has always played an integral role in my designs,” explained Wu. “Yet partnering with The Woolmark Company really allowed me to further explore and develop wool for summer. What my Spring/Summer 17 collection does is push the boundaries with conventional seasons, creating year-round luxurious pieces, which I could achieve by working with wool.”
Tommy Hilfiger has announced that together with supermodel Gigi Hadid, they will launch their collaborative TommyXGigi collection at Bread & Butter by Zalando in Berlin on the 2nd of September 2016.
The collection is currently seen on Tommy.com and available from September 1 there and on Zalando.com.
GEN ART FRESH FACES IN FASHION returned to Los Angeles with their signature runway show, highlighting a notable group of West Coast designers including, womenswear brand 34N118W, menswear brands Bristol and Elliott Evan, and accessories brands Rafa and Legier. Each designer showcased a curated collection of looks that will be featured in a shoppable experience in partnership with online retailer, Spring on August 11, 2016. As an extension of the Fresh Faces in Fashion program, Gen Art is launching their first concept shop at Bloomingdales SoHo during September 2016 New York Fashion Week. The shop will feature collections from select designers of their fashion roster in a unique and engaging in-store experience.
Toronto-based design studio Sonya Lee will present the S.L.02 Collection at Capsule New York Women’s Accessories for S/S17, taking place from September 17th till 19th 2016. The distinctive ten-piece offering of handmade bags and accessories represents a physical concept in practice.
Through designer and co-founder Stephanie Ibbitson’s multifaceted approach to industrial design, architecture and contemporary perception, Sonya Lee selects the highest quality vegetable tanned leather as its preferred medium for creativity. Revealing the marks of time and decay throughout its history, the expressive nature of this organic material shapes the singular identity of each silhouette.
Mavi, along with Orta Anadolu, have announced their continued advocacy to protect endangered sea turtles by supporting the Ecological Research Society’s (EKAD) Indigo Turtles project for 2016.
The Indigo Turtles project, which was launched in 2014 and saves nearly fifteen thousand hatchlings every year, aims to protect two species of sea turtles native to the Mediterranean, Caretta caretta and Chelonia mydas, each of which has navigated the earth for 110 million years. By helping sea turtles reach the sea, the Indigo Turtles project raises awareness of volunteering while making a difference. The project resounds not only in Turkey but also around the world.
Kicking off the second annual Indigo Turtle project, Mavi and Orta have introduced children’s T-shirts to their existing line of men’s and women’s T-shirts, encouraging support at a younger age. Every purchase of a Mavi Indigo Turtle T-shirt safeguards the lives of 10 baby sea turtles and makes a contribution to the Mediterranean basin.