Retailer of the Week
15 Mar. 2011
SANDRO BALDI, BLOCK 60, RICCIONEEmotional buying is moving the market today, according to Sandro Baldi, co-owner of Block 60. Soft knitwear, skinny jeans, leather jackets and biker boots are as hot as every shade of blue - from indigo to irregular dyeing effects. Men opt for clean products with a good quality while women prefer ‘bon-ton meets rock 'n' roll’. By Maria Cristina Pavarini
“This is a sort of transition moment for us since we are already offering s/s 2011, although the weather is still cold here. Despite all this and the present moment’s uncertainties, people are willing to buy. What we are selling most is, for instance, knitwear, especially lightweight pieces, loose in their knitted structure and in comfy silhouettes. Less static and soft products are mostly looked for. People look for washed-out, irregularly washed and treated items; indigo or any shade of blue pieces are mostly requested right now. Moreover, stripes and Saint Tropez-inspired things are hot; blue and red, blue and white, reinterpreted most differently are a selling topic. Detailing is also very important for knitwear since it adds that special touch that makes anything desirable. In general, people buy more because they look for emotions, rather than for simply satisfying a need. Our bestselling knitwear brands are Roberto Collina and Nicolas & Mark.
Also t-shirts and long-sleeved t-shirts with buttons are very popular at the moment. The silhouette is always loose and relaxed and each item is made out of loose structure jerseys. They rather buy styles in solid colors or items carrying clean decors - be them letters, images or essential graphic motives.
Women love easy dresses in silk and in colorful hues - men seem not to be interested in wearing colors, instead. Girls love plain color dresses - especially browns, yellows, and, in general, retro shades. They also like printed ones, though they opt for geometric prints, abstract or flowery, better if essential and clean - and, as I already said, blue is a must-have right now.
Speaking about menswear, Watanabe is one of my bestselling brands. Its approach is right for our market and for this moment. It offers a good quality and products which are not adorned. The collection mostly focuses on great outer jackets that are modern though reinterpreted in terms of a modern and contemporary approach to men's fashion.
Denim is selling well, especially by Cheap Monday and skinny models. Also successful brands are Edwin, Cycle and Two Men in the World. Moreover, Ralph Lauren is doing a great job and my customers appreciate that. They offer beautiful jeans made out of loosely woven Japanese ‘toiles’, often decorated with a US flag, which Italians never disdain.
When it comes to fits, a slight change is noticeable. Customers tend to look for slightly wider legs, though the trend is still so subtle and very hard to value. I'm also selling trousers well. I don't mean chinos, but smarter models. In general, people look for clean models, soft though close to the body. And Golden Goose is one of my bestsellers.
Leather jackets are also selling well - both for men and women - with the biker models being most popular. HTC and, again, Golden Goose are among the bestselling brands.
Regarding footwear and accessories, it's hard to say what sells best since we have a Fango shop-in-shop where tough ankle-length biker boots - with or without studs - are mostly looked for, and many of our female customers love to wear them with Chanel-like jackets, white t-shirts and skinny Cheap Monday jeans. Bon-ton meets rock 'n' roll is an absolute must.”
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