Retail data: The rising importance of the blazer as outerwear this fall

Rock a blazer this fall

The Blazer is back

Call it the youth effect, last summer we saw the bomber jacket as a key item for outerwear, driven by the youth market. Bomber jackets were spotted on street style, and as the ubiquitous item at music festivals. But as we head into autumn, there is a change in the air. Stores have moved to stock more blazers, taking their inspiration from the catwalk, which is pushing for a smarter look. The blazer is the lead silhouette and the range of interpretations from tuxedos to oversized proportions continue to bring new relevancy.

October 2016 New York Street style

Clockenflap Festival 2016 – Young Women Apparel

According to WGSN Instock retail data, jacket new-ins grew 4.8% to hold 5.6% of the new-in apparel mix, on a month-on-month (MoM) basis. Following its success in 2016, the bomber has definitely peaked and is now on the decline, reducing its share of the new-in mix by 11.9pp year-on-year (YoY).

While blazers have reduced their share of the new-in mix by 4.9pp YoY, they are increasingly being pushed by directional retailers as a fashion item, with Zara, Mango and Missguided increasing volumes YoY.

Asos.com appears to have missed a trick, blazers only constitute 10% of its new-in mix (compared to Zara’s 43% and Mango’s 23%). It had the highest volume of new-ins showing SKUs OOS, indicating high demand for blazers that it could have capitalised on more with a broader range.

And what does the future hold for this key item? More FaceTime. The blazer will continue to gain traction as a fashion item for contemporary and 35+ ranges well into A/W17/18. Slightly oversize and long-line renditions offer a more accessible alternative to the broad-shoulder styles seen on the S/S 17 catwalks. Working particularly well for hi-lo styling, blazers are paired with jeans, casual dresses and sneakers, offering a sartorial alternative to bombers and cardigans.

Mango blazer

Zara blazer

Topshop blazer

Warehouse blazer

Warehouse blazer

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