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3 Buying Tips for AW17 from Trendwatcher David Shah

By Vivian Hendriksz

26 Jan 2017

Retail |INTERVIEW

Amsterdam - Figuring out and satisfying the customers changing needs is becoming increasingly difficult for retailers, says trend watcher David Shah. "We are seeing radical differences between age groups," explains Shah during his trend seminar at ModeFabriek on Boomers and Millennials , the old generation and the new generation of shoppers. Although the former generation had very different values and norms when it comes to consumption, the latter generation has taken on a whole new way of shopping, and that it not just due to rise of ecommerce, notes Shah.

"Millennials are not as patience as Boomers," explains the trend watcher. "They want to buy the clothes shown on the catwalk right after fashion week, they want everything straight away." This growing trend, which sees larger brands such as Burberry, Tommy Hilfiger and Tom Ford participating, can cause problems for some labels, in particular for smaller retailers who are unable to shift their production schedules forward. "What are these retailers to do in order to keep serving the older generation as well as the new?" Shah believes that retailers should seek out a balance between delivering new collection quickly to store and continuously offering their customers quality. "Because this problem will not disappear on a short-term basis."

Although the whole concept and notion of trends within the fashion industry is no longer valid according to Shah, he shares three buying tips for autumn/winter 2017-2018 exclusively with FashionUnited.

#1 Functionality

"An important trend for the autumn/winter 2017 season is actually very typical for the Dutch market," says Shah with a smile. "Consumers long for functional and practical clothing. But that does not mean it only limited to trends such as camouflage, military and workwear, but rather a combination of all three. In addition, earthy tones such as khaki and wooden tones will be very important. We already saw a lot of ocher and similar neural wooden shares last summer and they are set to return again this year. The colour khaki will be especially prominent, as it represents the functionality of camouflage and military.

#2 Bright Colours

"Opposite the pragmatic khaki colour this coming autumn and winter season stands something totally different. Millennials no longer only long to be authentic, they also aim to stand out in the crowd by choosing something completely different. Which is why we are going to see a lot of colour for AW17, especially bright colours which will become a key driver. I believe very much in green. Not khaki green mind you, we already covered that, but deeper and brights shades of green. You will not go wrong with pink as well this coming AW17. So we will continue to see the cosmetic pink from last winter return again. So if you are unsure what to do with your styling, go in the direction of colour."

#3 The New Normal

"One last tip to meet the needs of millennials, is to do something else. Otherwise known as the new normal in the new fashion season, because we have already spent too attention much on 'normal' recently. I advise retailers to be brave and dare to offer something unique. That means transforming your stores into a destination where consumers are able to experience something unique. Talk to your customers, help them and make them feel welcome. They want to feel special."

Photos: Myrthe de Graaf for FashionUnited