by Fashion Bloc

We all knew (the ones that voted ‘leave’, the ones who voted ‘stay’ and the ones who didn’t (have a right) to vote) that Britain leaving the European Union was going to affect us all. ‘I hope you’re happy. If you’re not, you just ruined it for everyone, including yourself’ – that’s my message for the ‘leavers’. However, the mess is done and now we have to live with it. That’s, more or less, was a topic of the fashion industry panel discussion during the Pure London trade show in Kensington Olympia.

The real title of the panel including WGSN editor Petah Marian, Planet Retail’s Nick Everitt and DeHavilland’s Michael Clarke, was ‘The Pure Brexit Briefing’. The discussion, moderated by the Drapers editor Keely Stocker, was aiming to tackle short-term tactics and opportunities in the fashion industry after the Brexit.

The panel discussion was more or less evolving about the uncertainty that the industry (and the fashion customers) are feeling. As Petah Marian pointed out, ‘consumer confidence is not in your control’ (great, thanks!), but it is more important to understand things customers care about. Mr Nick Everitt backed Marian by emphasising that value is key and creating communities is more important now than ever before.

The speakers were talking about an agile approach to the business, efficiency, flexibility, and emerging markets as opportunities (such as China or Russia). And all I could think about was the word that was mentioned a lot – ‘communities’. It is not at all easy to build a community; it’s quite easy to destroy one. So, after destroying a big one (aka Britain), we are now trying to build new, smaller ones. As if starting from the scratch, this time, carefully selecting our community members and making sure they DO WANT to stay with us.

It could be used as a perfect opportunity for the brands to connect more closely with their customers or target customers. In the times of uncertainty, we all need some support and empathy. Fashion is a great escape, especially if it makes you look good and do good. Do you want to support fair trade fashion? Join fashion Bloc community!

Cover photo: Confashion