“Blink” Retail: Open Letter to the Fashion Industry

Dearest colleagues across all levels of British fashion retail,

I have been a dedicated member of this wonderful fashion industry for over 20 years now and so I hope you all take these comments with the love and respect with which they are intended- BUT YOU ARE ALL MAD!

Season upon season we have been pulling the launches of new collections forward, and this season I just can’t keep my grumblings and mumblings to myself any longer. Last week I was out doing our regular retail research and I spotted ‘New Season Collection’ signs in many high end department stores, signaling that the Cruise Collections, full of bright new colours in Springy shapes have arrived and ready to be snapped up. It is mid November…

I know that the Cruise collections traditionally drop at around this time delivering exciting full price stock to serve the privileged elite as they stock up their Globetrotter suitcases with new looks to hang about in when sunning themselves in tropical climes, but it just made me realize how speedy we are in this industry,  forcing the customer out of the moment and not giving her what she needs right now.

This speeding up seems to have happened particularly forcefully with the economic melt down. Stores were filled with stock that wasn’t shifting as everyone had to think more carefully about how they spent their hard earned cash. This meant that sales targets weren’t being met. So then product was discounted earlier than ideal to try and stimulate sales, and then new collections were pulled forward to fill the gaps created by those fabulous discounts. And we got caught up in this whirlwind of  ‘Give her newness to make her shop’  and suddenly Spring product is dropping in store in December and Autumn product is dropping in July. Mid season sales are starting before the actual true season (as in weather, you know, nature and climate and all that) has even begun.

I buy Summer clothes in actual Summer (which here is about late May if we’re lucky) and for the past few season’s that has meant that I have been able to buy many of my new looks on sale. This year I decided it was time to think about a new coat in late October (it was just getting a little chilly by then) and I could have brought it in the mid season sales. Mid of what season?? We had only just started the leaves changing for Autumn in real life, in the real world, where people wear actual clothes.

I just want the industry to consider reality rather than just chasing it’s tail, because all of that tail chasing is leading us up the garden path into an untenable and un-commercial situation. The climate is a phenomenon which impacts us all emotionally and physically, and aside from the natural fashion urge to want to look current, the main stimulus to sales is surely the impact of the change in temperature. Stop pushing us forward, and then wondering why your Spring stock isn’t selling in February (uhm, could it be the Nordic temperatures, the black ice or the flurries of snow perhaps?).

I’m in this industry and also a client of this industry, and I think that on this point we have utterly stopped making sense. Could someone please be brave and start the process of getting us back in step with the real world?

yours with love, respect and some frustration now vented,


Founder and Creative Director of “Blink London”

“Blink” Reports: A frighteningly good offer for Halloween!

If you’d like to find out more about our reports, just take a look here. If you’d like to see a copy and place an order, just contact us on info@blinklondon.com, or have a look here to see who is your nearest agent.

Thanks to Pinterest where we swiped this gorgeous cat image from. If we had tried to put this hat on Bobby the ‘Blink” cat, to get our own picture, then that would have truly been a Halloween bloodbath!

“Blink” Reports: Introducing Menswear

We’re very excited about our new monthly report title. Yes. we have entered the world of menswear!

By popular demand, we have added a monthly retail report featuring over 150 images per month, covering all aspects of trend-driven men’s fashion from ultra formal to super casual, plus all the accompanying key accessories too. The majority of our business is still very much womenswear focused, but this really adds a new level of interest, excitement and diversity to the information that we are collating, reviewing and analyzing.

Here’s a snapshot of the most recent colour review that we published, from the May’13 report. We really love this pink toned palette for menswear. It’s actually really pretty close the the prevailing colour trend in this month’s womenswear too.

"Blink" menswear report, May'13, colour analysis

"Blink" menswear report, May'13, colour analysis

For more on our reporting service, have a look here. If you’d like to get your hands on a copy, why not contact us, or your nearest agent?

“Blink” Reports: May’13 Jersey Design Inspiration

So, we hope that you loved yesterday’s insight into our knitwear and soft wovens retail reports. Well, today you get a chance to get a peak inside our jersey report with an exclusive look at the original design work that we create for our subscribers.

"Blink" Jersey report, May'13

"Blink" Jersey report, May'13

"Blink" Jersey report, May'13

"Blink" Jersey report, May'13

For more on our reports, just click here. If you’d like to get a proper look and find out about subscribing, why not contact us or your nearest agent?

“Blink” Reports: May’13 Soft Woven Design Inspiration

We hope that you liked our knitwear design inspiration. Next is an insight into the original design work that can be found in our Soft Wovens report. If you’re not familiar with that term, ‘soft wovens’ are essentially formal or dressy styles in woven materials that are softly structured, but not as constructed as tailoring would be. So now you know!

"Blink" Soft Wovens report, May'13

"Blink" Soft Wovens report, May'13

"Blink" Soft Wovens report, May'13

"Blink" Soft Wovens report, May'13

If you’d like to see more of our reports, why not contact us or your nearest agent? You can also have a look here for a deeper insight into what we offer.

“Blink” Reports: May’13 Knitwear Design Inspiration

We’ve decided to give you an insider peak at the design work that we add to our monthly womenswear reports. This is part of the services that we supply to the global fashion industry, sharing the brilliance that is the British fashion market. If you work in the industry and would like to know more about our reporting and consultancy services, why not contact us or your nearest agent?

We are kicking things off with the fashion illustrations and ‘flats’ from our Knitwear report, all drawn by our Creative Director…

"Blink" Knitwear report, May '13

"Blink" Knitwear report, May '13

"Blink" Knitwear report, May '13

"Blink" Knitwear report, May '13

If you’re interested in seeing more about our reports, just click here.

“Blink” reports- ‘The Overview’

Here’s your bonus post to finish off a week of showcasing our beautiful and brilliant reports (yes, these are my words, but I’m sure you’ll all agree). For the past few days, and earlier today, we have shared with you some highlights from our product focused womenswear retail reports. Here we have a look at our biggest report, running at 110 gorgeously glossy pages. This report is the most recent addition to our offer, and contains highlights from all of our other reports. Its the perfect tool for brand managers, retailers, designs, buyers and manufacturers who deal with multiple product types.

If you’d like to know more about our reports and consultancy services, why not have a look here and either contact us directly or get in touch with your nearest agent. We’re looking forward to hearing from you. Enjoy!

“Blink” reports- ‘Soft Wovens’

Today we welcome you to the wonderful world of ‘Soft Wovens’. This is an increasingly important category, playing host to most of this season’s hottest styles. This has been the story since around this time last year when we saw a surge in interest in soft, light weight, diaphanous maxi’s, the pussy bow blouse and 70’s inspired evening jumpsuits. This Autumn Winter this category plays host to all of the brilliant midi skirts, from full and swishy to hobbling pencils.This is also where you find all of the brilliant shirt variations, translated into silky base cloths and worked in colour blocked beauty. Want to know what has happened to the perfect T shirt? Well, it’s now to be found in the ‘Soft Wovens’ department, made of a refined woven base cloth instead of jersey.

So, from that summary, we’re sure that you are either, as a retailer, dedicating lots of creativity and floor space to this section of your range, and as a shopper, we’re pretty confident that you are buying into this department on a regular basis. It’s an easy report to fill every month at the moment, with a constant influx of inspirational creativity hitting the high street. Have a look at a few of the pages from the last report that we published, but please do note that these are just the tip of the report iceberg as there were over 45 pages in this report in total, all packed with fantastic product shots, colour palettes, streetstyle and even a little vintage.

If you’d like to see more on this report, or the others in our offer, why not sneak a peek at the full portfolio by clicking here, or contact us or your nearest agent to see the whole of each report in their impressive printed form. You can find all the relevant contact details by clicking here. Enjoy!


The Reports: April’11 Denim

So, this week we have updated ‘The Reports’ tab with the April reports. These were issued at the end of March and feature lots of wonderful Spring Summer product. As they are the life-blood of our business, we decided to dedicate a week of posts to them, to share a little of each report with you all. We hope that you’ve enjoyed the posts this week, and you can look at them all together by clicking on ‘The Reports’ tab any time you like too.

Last but certainly not least is the ‘Denim’ report. It’s always a really interesting one to pull together as its a mixture of huge amounts of continuity and then some really fabulous, swift and speedy micro trends on colour, hardware or treatments. It also covers a pretty diverse product group, hence the name of ‘Denim plus’. This season, so far, we’ve seen n explosion of colour, the continuation and development of heavy metal hardware as well as some great new silhouette updates.

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If you’d like to see more of the reports (the attached gallery is just a preview of the first few pages. There are about 40 pages in each report) then take a look at our list of agents and contact your nearest one- or of course you can contact us directly.