Best of: Background articles in 2019

The year is
coming to an end again, which means that FashionUnited takes a look back on
the best article from the past year. This time we’ve collected some of the
more important background articles published in 2019.

From oldest to newest, from the archive:

March 2019 – The Middle East is a profitable market, but that is not the
only reason why The Modist is so attractive to investors. Luxury “modest
fashion” is growing rapidly in Western countries such as the United States
and the United Kingdom — about 45 percent of The Modist’s sales come from
those two countries. According to retail data analysis agency Edited,
fashion shops in the countries mentioned above have expanded their range of
‘modest’ garments by 15 percent since 2017. The increase is easy to
understand: in the US alone, Google receives an average of 8,000 searches
per month for the term ‘modest clothing’.

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Best of: Background articles in 2019
Photo: Cruise collection Dior 2019: owned by Dior, of
photographers Estelle Hanania and Adrien Dirand


May 2019 – Cruise and resort collections were once exclusively intended
to dress the elite who went on holiday at the end of the year. At this time
of year, department stores mainly hung parkas and winter stuff on the
shelves, and lacked summer fabrics, swimwear and a holiday wardrobe.
However, in the current era of affordable, commercial air travel, these
holidays are no longer exclusively for the jetset. And online
shopping has made it possible to buy bikinis at winter temperatures and
snowboots in the middle of summer. In short, you can buy anything,
anywhere, anytime.

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Best of: Background articles in 2019
Photo: Heist

June 2019 – Where there is a dissatisfied consumer, there are business
perspectives. A number of startups have been set up in recent years with
the aim of solving consumer complaints about tights. They want to disrupt
the tights market because most brands, according to them, have brought
little innovation. “It’s 2019 and people are still wearing the same tights
as in the 60s,” says Fiona Fairhurst, vice president of innovation
at the British brand Heist Studios, a digital, direct-to-consumer
brand established in the UK in 2015. Thanks to the complaints of 67 women,
Heist has designed tights that they believe are both comfortable and
durable. “Don’t roll, don’t t twist, don’t sand”, the brand promises on its
website. Heist is so proud of their product that they call it “the best
tights you’ll ever wear”.

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Best of: Background articles in 2019
Silhouettes ©Sonia Rykiel spring/summer 2020 collection by
Julie de Libran.

July 2019 – On Thursday 25 July, when the judge of Paris decided on
immediate liquidation, the grief was twofold. No prolongation, but
definitive closure of the ten outlets on 26 July, workers suddenly on the
street, waiting for negotiations on their severance pay, but above all,
worst of all, the end of Sonia Rykiel, a fashion brand that has been part
of the French heritage since 1968. “Despite the industry’s support for the
brand’s employees, we are extremely surprised at the virtual absence of
reactions from the board of directors,” confesses a former employee of the
fashion house to FashionUnited. “At previous ceremonies and also at the
fashion shows, the celebrities and dignitaries were at the forefront, now
that the end is in sight, we can’t hear or see anyone. Not even the
Minister of Culture.”

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Best of: Background articles in 2019
Photo: Stella McCartney Facebook

August 2019 – Stella McCartney is, according to LVMH’s owner Bernard
Arnault, one of the most important people in the new, environmentally
conscious luxury market. Commenting on the brand’s appeal to LVMH, he says:
“The decisive factor is that Stella was the first to put sustainability and
ethical issues at the forefront at a very early stage. Melania Grippo, a
luxury goods analyst at Exane BNP Paribas and quoted by the ‘Financial
Times’, estimates that the Stella McCartney brand has annual sales of
between EUR 280 million and EUR 300 million. According to Grippo, the new
acquisition has “a marginal impact” on LVMH’s annual sales and is not
financially driven, but it confirms the Group’s ability to attract, nurture
and develop brands”.

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Best of: Background articles in 2019
Photo: Lajos-Eric Balogh / picture alliance / dpa
Picture-Alliance / AFP

August 2019 – Chanel, one of the most prestigious French luxury fashion
houses in the world, continues to create a mystery around itself and this
certainly contributes to the allure of the brand. Chanel is not part of the
two largest fashion conglomerates in the world, LVMH and Kering. Founded by
the legendary Coco Chanel in 1910, Chanel has always been shielded from
this power struggle and is not dependent on foreign capital to continue to
dictate global trends. And although the company enjoys considerable
financial support, it has been run by the Wertheimer family for three

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Best of: Background articles in 2019
Photo: Dr. Martens FW19 – Vegan

August 2019 – Over the years the shoe has had a number of different
owners and the production location has also changed. In the late 1990s, the
parent company of Dr. Martens, the Griggs Group Limited, had to relocate
most of its production due to financial difficulties. To this day, a team
still works in Wollaston with old machines from England that maintain the
original production process. In 2013 the brand was acquired for £300
million by the Permira investment fund, then owner of Hugo Boss and New
Look. Permira has worked miracles with the brand. Since the takeover, the
shoe company has reported excellent growth; both sales and operating
profits have increased. Also this year the profit of the British brand
increased by 70 percent. What happened?

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Best of: Background articles in 2019
Photo: Mao Mart SS19 | credit: Mao Mart

October 2019 – Continued efforts for a new “Made in China” come at the
same time as the relocation of production abroad as a result of rising
labour costs and suppliers’ attempts to get more return from the supply
chain. “The labor component shows a downward trend; every season buyers
demand discounts and after years of the same behavior is the cake on,” said
Edwin Key, CEO of Hong Kong Research Institute of Textiles and Apparel, in
Shanghai. “It seems like a natural development to then climb up the supply
chain to become an importer, provide more services and eventually become a
brand owner”. Around half of the exhibitors at the September edition of
Chic are working on their own brand. In March, this number is historically
even higher, at 80 percent. Most companies are still dependent on
production for others as they build their own brands, but companies that
only sell their own designs are on the rise.

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Read more on the subject:

Best of: Background articles in 2019
Photo: Izmir Factory | via Hugo


November 2019 – The ready-to-wear clothing industry is still heavily
dependent on human sewing, a process that has not yet been automated;
brands are still outsourcing large parts of production, and rely on cheap
external labor instead of the more expensive alternative of advanced
technology. Hugo Boss’ Izmir factory, which covers 65,000 square feet, also
uses manual sewing, but devises new ways for people and machines to work
together. The factory produces as many as 900,000 suits a year, as well as
two million shirts and 550,000 pieces of women’s clothing, according to the
company’s website. According to Joachim Hensch, managing director at Hugo
Boss Textile Industries Ltd., the factory has also started delivering
orders for single pieces to pilot stores in Asia.

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This article was originally published on FashionUnited.NL,
translated and edited by Kelly Press

Main photo: The Modist Facebook


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