Retailer of the Week
12 Apr. 2011
SCHWITTENBERG, MUNICHThe last months must have been really hard for Munich’s fashion fans. After having some difficulties with their former partners, Christopher Romberg and Sandra Schwittau had closed down their famous boutique “Serie A” in July of 2010, they fortunately now opened their new store “Schwittenberg” in the same location. The shop with 200sqm offers carefully selected collections that range from Scandinavian simplicity to Parisian chic, international brands to local design icons. Sportswear International had a look behind the 12-meters-wide panorama window – as well as the thoughts of the owners. By Lena Elster
“Our current bestseller labels are Acne, Vanessa Bruno, APC and Adam Kimmel. Personally, we think independent brands from England are really interesting, like Folk, Oliver Spencer and, of course, Margaret Howell. Regarding denim, we just sell Acne and APC at the moment, but we will extend this segment with the beginning of next season. Especially jeans by Acne are running really well. People explicitly ask for them. Raw denim is not that popular right now, rather washings in blue and light blue. Oh, and we sell chinos very well.
We buy about 70% of our products in Paris, 20% in New York and 10% in London. In the meantime, we do research about trends through blogs and magazines, but the most important source of inspiration remain people on the streets, not only in Paris or New York, but everywhere we travel to.
At the moment, our clients really love to dress up. They buy blazers instead of pullovers or tops made out of silk instead of jersey. We like Common Projects, which is a shoe brand from New York with a wonderful “understated” collection for men and women, produced in Italy. The trend to dress up will definitely intensify in winter.
We try to present the most interesting labels from around the world in a relaxed, personal and pleasant environment, without any fashion hysteria or boundaries. It’s nice that we satisfy a niche for many people from Munich. We love our regular customers. But it’s also fun to deal with international people. It’s important for us to create an open and familiar atmosphere in the store - that was the base for our interior and design concept.
Schwittenberg in Munich
Every store needs an online shop today. That’s part of the service for the regular customers, but also to reach a larger international target group. We think that in the future brick and mortar stores have a chance if they go with the time. For many people they have a social importance, to create affiliation. That’s a big basic need brick and mortar stores have to satisfy to be successful.
There are many stores that inspire us. Not only fashion stores, but also smaller ones managed by the owner with special characters, love and passion for details. A shop like “Merci” in Paris impresses us, but we really love stores like Ladage or Ölke in Hamburg, the 120-years-old hunting equipment specialist in Bad Ischl, the traditional bakery in Bad Aibling, the leather manufacturer on Ibiza or the old fabric factory in Barcelona.”
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