Editor’s letter: why not deliver seasonal fashion in-season?

by Karen Alberg Grossman
Boyds
Boyd’s Philadelphia

Among the issues fashion industry experts argue about, it seems there’s general consensus on only one: the need for seasonal apparel to be delivered closer to season. MR has been writing about this problem for 30 years (why should heavy down outerwear hit selling floors in June?) but nothing changes; more recently, Giorgio Armani wrote an excellent open letter to the industry suggesting this, and this week, Kent Gushner from Boyd’s Philadelphia posted his own petition on change.org.

We at MR agree with Gushner’s petition and urge retailers and manufacturers to read and sign it. From crisis comes opportunity so I’m hoping that this horrible pandemic will inadvertently inspire a universal agreement to ship spring/summer goods in warm weather, fall/winter goods in cool weather and to hold off on spring/summer markdowns until after July 4th, fall/winter markdowns until after New Year’s. This simple change would extend selling seasons, reduce the need for early markdowns, and add to profit margins for both retailers and brands.

Gushner’s petition also mentions other business reasons for the change; personally, I’m just hoping I can someday find a swimsuit in June from unbroken assortments where tops still match bottoms.

To read Kent’s petition, and to sign it, click here.

16 Replies to “EDITOR’S LETTER: WHY NOT DELIVER SEASONAL FASHION IN-SEASON?”

  1. I completely agree with this proposal. It’s been a long time coming frankly. Spreading out timely deliveries provides better cashflow, better margins, and creates newness and excitement.
    I advocate twice annual sales instead of the constant promotions. Combining this with truly unique and exciting merchandise and great service will drive business to be more meaningful for our valued clients.

      1. AMEN!!
        If one positive result from this craziness, is thinking like the client: Shop “in season”…
        The climate has changed:
        September, October, November are warmer and March, April & May are cooler.
        Thirty Plus Years overdue for factories to allow wholesalers to allow retailers to sell during the season and when the temperatures reflect what clothes should be worn.

        1. We always had 2 sales a year; beginning the day after Christmas and After July 4. Worked for us nicely.

      2. I totally agree. After 57 years in men’s wear on both sides. As a wholesaler and retailer – I wear my customers out with delivery windows that create too many mark downs and blown size runs before the true weather season arrives. Congrats on the push. I’m in favor and support the idea.

    1. We have been showing and delivering fashion goods in season for 30 years. I don’t think today retailers know what there neck wear and formal wear needs are 6 months in advance.

  2. I’ve been complaining about this for the past 10-15 years. As a consumer you never need to buy until first markdown.
    It’s ridiculous.Sign the petition!

    1. Buy now wear now is definitely the way to go. I agree whole heartedly about the article and I know the DLS group of stores have wanted this for years.

  3. When retail was a successful , profitable and rewarding business selling seasons were Aug – Dec with a Jan. clearance sale and Feb. – June with a July 4th clearance sale. Please note that both selling seasons had FIVE (5) months to sell the
    fashion and basic apparel at full price……..Maybe this cannot be totally replicated today but some version must be implemented in order to save the merchants and their stores. The On Sale All the Time model has been disgraced and
    trashed and maybe its time to get back to the fundamentals of the fashion business

  4. Sign me up for this…..this is a big opportunity to align deliveries with when the consumer wants to buy. After being a Merchant for over 25 years, if always surprises me, that we try to deliver seasonal good earlier and earlier…..and them down at the sweet spot of the selling season, when we could be getting full price, or close to full price.

    As Merchants and Retailers, we are an inpatient bunch…..but it is costing us profit dollars through unnecessary markdowns.

  5. This is a long time coming. In order to better serve customers, it is beneficial (and logical) to think like a customer. When I am out shopping for myself, I am never looking for summer clothes in January, February nor heavy coats in June-July. Fully support this.

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