22 Jul 2022

Pure London Sets Out a New Vision for the Future of Fashion

Pure London, the UK’s leading fashion buying show, ended yesterday afternoon following three days of brisk business with Event Director Gloria Sandrucci setting out the vision for the future of fashion at the show revolving around three key pillars that differentiate it; international; sustainability; and trend-led, inspiring, and educative content.

While temperatures soared outside, Olympia remained cool and offered a welcome refuge for buyers to do business. Feedback from across the show indicated a positive return to face to face buying and a genuine joy to be back at Pure London for its unique mix of new and established global brands, inspirational content, catwalk shows and trend presentations.

With the successful introduction of Pure Jewel, created to respond to the changing requirements of fashion retailers looking to boost their jewellery offering to incorporate more fine jewellery, Pure London now offers an enticing mix of fashion and fine jewellery and access to fashion, accessory and lifestyle retailers.

Looking ahead to February 2023 and beyond, Pure London announced the launches of Purely Sustainable, Pure Edge, and Source Fashion, as well as a development of the subsectors within the Womenswear destination to include Premium, Gen Z, and Pure Body.

Pure London’s Event Director, Gloria Sandrucci is positive about the future vision for the show and delighted to have welcomed so many retailers back to Olympia; “Everyone we’ve spoken to across the three days has been positive. Of course, the weather conditions weren’t ideal, but our VIP buyers programme has been incredibly successful, and we’ve made buyer journeys and their time at the show as easy and cool as possible. Our vision for the future of Pure London is extremely exciting, we have so many new launches to follow the success of Pure Jewel, including Purely Sustainable, Pure Edge, Source Fashion, and our developing sub-sectors for Womenswear alongside the ever-growing international presence. We offer the most comprehensive global fashion offering for retailers – Pure London’s future is global, educative, and inspiring, and myself and the Pure London team feel honoured to be a part of its journey. This is just the beginning.”

The show’s international proposition has been very well-received, and sustainability continues to build as a top priority for retailers and brands. The show guide provided an easy way to discover brands with sustainable credentials by featuring the SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) icon in their exhibitor listing.

Sophi Pickard, Founder of The White Room Company said: “The happiness of being back! There’s nothing like buying in the flesh, meeting people, making connections and investing in the brand. I’ve been really impressed with the brands here, especially, D.E.C.K and One Hundred Stars. I’m so happy about the orders I’ve placed today. The completeness of Pure London sets it apart from any other trade show. 80% of our stock is clothing and having it all under one roof makes discovery easy.”

She added: “Sustainability is our number one priority. More and more of our customers are asking “Where was it made? How was it made? What is it made of?” It’s really important for us to source ethically and sustainably now.”

Emma Brockbank from Along Came She in Lewes said: "It is so great to be back at Pure London. We’re focused on colour and sustainability, so it’s really important to be able to see sustainable and ethical exhibitors in one place.”

Rebecca and Cathay Mackay from Becca Mac in Dornoch said: “We always come to look at Rino en Pelle and Vilagallo. We really liked Neon Star. There are a lot of new, international brands here.”

Sinead Bradford from British based exhibitor Jayley said: “It’s been a really successful show for us and it’s really great to see more people engaging with the sustainable part of the show. It’s been busier than normal considering the weather. We’ve opened a lot of new accounts, probably because of the bold colours that we’re exhibiting, it’s attracting new buyers. The catwalk’s been a huge success for us, we’ve had over forty pieces on the catwalk this year and as soon as it’s done, people flock over to us because our stand is right next to it.”

Adrianna Poncu from Polish brand NISSA, who also showcased their collections on the catwalk said: “We’ve had lots of new visitors as well as current clients, and a good number of new accounts. We’re really pleased with the mix of buyers. We’ve seen sustainability appear as a top consideration for them, and their customers - everyone’s interested in the sustainability of the garments.”

Dominika Kowalska from another Polish brand Eco Leinen adds: “This is our first time exhibiting. The diversity is amazing, people are wonderful, it’s great that a lot of brands are eco-friendly and sustainable and we’re raising awareness around that. I didn’t know what to expect from Pure, I’m stunned. The designers exhibiting are great, I was so inspired by the catwalk, as a designer it’s been a great experience. We’ve made some great connections with buyers. Our expectations of trade shows are very high now – we have to come back next season!”

Located alongside Pure London and bringing exhibitors from 20 countries, Pure Origin has broadened and diversified the choice for visitors looking to source from new destinations.

Lori Johnson and Charlotte Webster from ASOS said: “It’s great to be back at Pure. We loved seeing all the manufacturers in Pure Origin and combining it with visiting Pure, so handy having them both under one roof. I managed to catch up with some old contacts in Pure Origin which was great.”

One Pure Origin exhibitor from Bangladesh, Benefit Enterprise said: “During the show I’ve met many people interested in my products so we will get good business from Pure Origin. I believe Pure Origin is very important for my business. When I started my business in 2004 I had a lot of UK buyers but since the pandemic I’ve lost a lot of them so this has been the place for me to make new connections. I’ll definitely come again in February 2023.”

Suzanne Ellingham, Head of Pure Origin and the newly launched Source Fashion, said: “The feedback from visitors and exhibitors at Pure Origin is that they’ve been able to do transformative business, making connections that have changed their business. As we look forward to February 23 and evolving Pure Origin into Source Fashion alongside partners and our advisory board we will build a show that reflects our values and the experience our buyers and exhibitors want to have with us. The reaction to the launch has been very encouraging so far. There is a huge need in the UK and Europe for a sustainable sourcing show offering responsibly sourced materials accredited by organisations like Sedex.”

On The Catwalk, trend presentations from Promostyl and BDA London informed visitors of the upcoming trends in Loungewear and AW23/4 trends respectively.

Sebastian Renault, artistic director of Promostyl said: “I bet you thought when restrictions lifted, we would all go back to wearing our old wardrobes? The data suggests otherwise.”  Loungewear-inspired pieces were up 12% in fashion collections and 61% of female consumers say they are allocating more budget to loungewear.  The loungewear trend has been driven by the rise of working from home and the number of people who took up fitness activities such as yoga over lockdown and have continued to enjoy them.

However, Renault also said, “Loungewear is migrating into the street and is being worn outside.” Consumers are mixing loungewear with sportswear and more formal pieces to create comfortable outfits that still look chic. “There is a casualisation of the dress codes,” he said.

As such, tracksuits are being updates with more tailored details such as darts, tapered legs and more structured waistbands. Soft, seamless underwear and “pillow slippers” made from rubber are the perfect accompaniment. Natural fibres, organic cotton and soft ribbed knits imbue this timeless look with sustainable credentials. “Comfort is the backbone of fashion now,” concluded Renault.

Terrie Isaac, Head of Creative at BDA London introduced the audience to the AW23/4 trends with emotion and escapism driving consumer decision making. The in-depth overview took visitors through essential catwalk trends and the overarching ideas that are shaping Autumn/Winter 2023. Escapism covered the exploration different worlds through immersive experiences and augmented tech; Nature’s Embrace acts as an antidote to this trend, a tactile grounded restoration from the everyday grind and our symbiotic relationship with nature; and Consciously Creative follows the consumer drive for purchase with meaning, a renewed appreciation for local produce and craftsmanship.

Colour stories included Saturated Brights, driven by the current trend of dopamine dressing, this palette is an evolution of rainbow brights into a more tonal saturated colour trend. Toasted Earth brings a warmer, earthen element to neutrals think warm clays and stone hues. Tapestry Tones are a nod to the nostalgia, think historical and heritage with a fresh modern update. Fabric trends are cemented in the recycled and reclaimed. Newness in fibres include natural hemp, and nettle to recycled polyester and nylon.

Priding itself on continual evolution and pushing boundaries to ensure the buying experience meets the  needs  of  the  ever-changing customer and audience, Pure London will return to Olympia on the 12th – 14th February 2023, serving up even more innovations; diverse, new, sustainable, and international brands; the latest trends and creative presentations; as well as the industry’s leaders and changemakers – delivering an exclusive showcase that cannot be found elsewhere.

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