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[Dr. LZ Series] How will the fashion industry in Singapore cope with 2017 recession?
[Image: women_fw13.jpg]

Fashion is a unique and subjective topic. You have fashion for the fat, the thin, the black, the white, the Chinese, children, teenager, adult and so on. One man trash can be another man's treasure - you cannot say a fashion is good or bad, instead is it suitable for you or not. Because of its uniqueness, you will need to have a lot of variation or have very high end and niche fashion in order to meet the market demand.

When you have a lot of variations, for example in the western country fashion retailer have seasonal clothes to cater for the different requirements. During winter you have thick clothes and during summer you sell a lot of swimwear. The good thing about western country is the people will not want to have the same fashion as the previous year so chances are they will buy a new one every year. Little did the realise the retailers are recycling 3 - 5 years of fashion and that is why every year fashion looks new. What the retailer need is to have a big warehouse space at the back of their shop and remember why they keep the different clothing. This will not happen in Singapore because our warehouse space is expensive, let alone a warehouse in a retail area. Therefore in the western country clothes cost cheaper than Singapore partly because of the logistic convenience.

To have high end fashion you will need way more resources and expensive celebrities' endorsement. High end fashion will never be seasonal or have expiry because of their price tag. Most people wear expensive clothes is to reassure their social status and design become secondary. You have can a design where a honest 5 years old will call it ugly but who cares when it cost a bomb? Premium clothing will continue to shine for the next 5 - 10 years because the rich will continue to find ways to be different from the "commoner".

In Singapore, fashion retailer are faced with strong oversea competition. Oversea companies with online presence are receiving more sales than the physical retailer. Last year alone statistic shows online purchase have accumulated more than 30 billion. Clothing is a necessity, lavishly dressing up is auxiliary. In good or bad times, cheap clothing is going to do well. However in bad time, medium and above range clothing will start facing problem. It is normal for clothes to last 5 years and above so think of a better way than to keep up fashion to sell your clothes in the upcoming year.

Traditional retail shops are declining in Singapore and fashion trade takes up a significant chunk of it. If you choose to stay in this industry, try something unique like organising fashion event, competition, recycling, resale channel to developing countries and so on.
Really a good post....!!
Great collections...
As you said Fashion is a unique and subjective topic.
It is also about how you comfortable to wear a fashionable dress .......

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