The fashion-and-crafts market is booming, and retailers are scrambling to stay ahead of the trend by launching more clothing-inspired designs, a new report says.
In fact, there are now so many new apparel designs that retailers have added more than two million items to their inventory in the past year, the report says, citing the Association of American Retailers.
“We have seen a number of new designs that have been created and are coming out, and it’s exciting to see how quickly retailers are adopting new design and innovation,” said David A. Siegel, president and CEO of the association.
Sauerbraten, the German luxury retailer, has unveiled three new products in the last year: the Zipper B-Tit, which features a zipper-less hem, and the Lace-up Shortcut, which is a skirt-shaped skirt with a zipper.
The company has also launched a new line of men’s shirts, and has also announced an expansion of its collection of denim, leather and women’s denim.
Sohl’s, the luxury retailer that has long been a leader in the craft-and, now, apparel-related space, has added about 2 million items of clothing this year, and announced an additional 1 million new pieces in the spring.
The association said it expects to see a similar pattern in 2019.
“I think that we’re in for an exciting year in the apparel space,” said Michael M. Biederman, president of the Association, adding that he thinks the trend for new designs is continuing to accelerate.
“There is a lot of buzz around these new trends, and we have been working hard to get retailers excited about these new products and to help them understand what’s happening with the apparel industry.”
The Association said it had more than 8,000 members last year and that memberships and events had tripled in the previous five years.
While the association has been focusing on the apparel market, it also is investing in other sectors, including health care, education, manufacturing and technology.
The new report, titled The Future of the Retail Industry, also said there are also signs of a comeback in retail, and that companies that were once dismissed as dead are reaping the benefits of a revival.
For example, “companies are reentering the retail industry with renewed confidence,” the report said.
“Companies are seeing a strong return on their investments in research and development and in sales and marketing strategies.”
Sauerbruch, the leading maker of high-end German watches, recently announced that it would expand into new markets.
“In 2019, we’re expecting to see the return of a new breed of brand-driven retail,” said John Sauerbrecht, CEO of Sauer Bruch, which makes the iconic Rolex and Patek Philippe watches.
The firm has been buying back its existing brands and is looking to invest more in new ones.
SBS Group, the conglomerate behind American Express, has been re-evaluating its future and investing in its existing assets.
It said it would continue to invest in brands that had strong brands in the U.S. and that are “recognized globally.”
“SBS Group is working with our U.K. and European partners to further strengthen our brand presence and our relationships with leading brands in Europe, where we currently have strong brands,” said the statement.
“Our U.N. partners are also actively working to strengthen our relationships in Europe.
We will continue to look to strengthen, build and improve our brand and brand identity.”
Biedermans luxury retailer Hermes recently said it is launching a new collection of women’s shoes.
It will debut a new model in 2019 that includes a feminine shoe called the Glimmer, which it calls the “next generation of women shoes.”
The shoe will be available in two sizes: $100 and $200, with price tags starting at $80,000.
“With its strong brands and deep connections to the global market, Hermes will continue its strong performance in the global retail market,” the company said in a statement.
The Association’s Siegel said he is hopeful that the apparel sector will continue on a sustainable trajectory.
“The apparel industry is an extremely diversified industry and the apparel trends will continue in 2019, but I think we are in for a very exciting year,” he said.