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When do you get excited about new knickers?

  • By Catherine Clavering
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When do you get excited about new knickers?

So here's a thing; we're currently under pressure by retailers to just focus on continuity styles - the Vargas and Van Doren, basically, in black, forever and ever and ever.

Not going to happen.

There's good financial reasons - though standard black 6 straps and longlines are nice sellers for us, without the limited editions, their sales slack off, dwindle and eventually die. Our big sellers are when we get a serious hit on the limited editions. Plus the retailers might well put in orders regularly for them, but they'd be small orders for mixed styles, which means there's no or almost no margin (profit) in them. So, I'm sitting it out and waiting for a less risk averse market.

But possibly even more importantly, I'd just be so damn BORED.  Time for a badly drawn graph!

 

 

As far as I can tell I'm not the only person whose graph runs this way, but maybe some of the other brands will chime in, you never know.

At the start I'm all whoooo I've had an idea!

And then we get the first sample back and honestly? That can often be a bust. Sometimes it just doesn't work, sometimes it works but it doesn't fit in our price range, sometime it works but is inexplicably not the right size, but mostly, it just won't have the level of care taken that the full production will. Last year, all our swimwear samples came with a peppermint green lining because that was what the factory had to hand, and it clashed horribly with the red, petrol blue, plum and vintage pink we'd used. Things that in production would be properly dyed? Yeah, they get done in a little tin cup and kinda . . . vaguely match . . .

The first sample for this was um, problematic. Nothing was quite the right colour.

The second sample is usually better, hurrah!

Then we drag it round trade shows for oh, about a year, and do pictures, and send it to magazines, while it gets tattier and tattier . . . . and people ask about black suspender belts, because there is literally no-one else in the world who makes those ;)

Then pre-prod. If we're making thing in China actually that's not that bad, just worrying. If it's on the other side of Europe then it's wildly variable - currently it's doing my head in, but that's a whole other blog post. In the UK, it can run into extremely random problems, possibly including dinosaurs. So usually around that time I seriously lose enthusiasm . . . but then it arrives! wheee! and it's lovely and we can send it out and everyones happy and occasionally it looks amazing even in its boxes! When we did the teal Delacroix I had to stop myself from rolling around in it. I have a teal problem. I try and keep it under control.

And then . . . boredom sets in. I'm off chasing the new shiny things. Been there, done that, so over it, not feeling it anymore. If there's anything left of a new style after 6 months or longer? I am so bored I will start doing giveaways because I just don't want to see it anymore!

Happily, that does often mean now that we get a bunch of messages and pictures from people whose excitement level is up there at the height of shiny newness, and though I haven't put that on the badly drawn graph, I do love those. At the moment, I'm feeling more love for last years swimwear than I have for ages, because we just sent out some of it as free gifts and when you're happy? I'm happy :)

I'm also happy when you have really cool hair and say it's the first time you went in a pool in years :)

If you're interested in fashion, creativity and boredom, then I enjoyed this talk by Isaac Mizrahi.

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