The upcoming autumn/winter 2019 collection of Pepe Jeans India focuses on making customers feel cozy. The collection through its cappuccino, forest green, ochre, pops of orange, blue and grey tones offers a feeling of warmth. “The menswear, a mix of urban and countryside clothing, features tactile chunky knits, hoodies, plaid shirts and archive logo T-shirts, duffle coats and bright outdoors-techwear. The folksy womens wear collection offers fringed jackets and bright knits in decorative and graphic patterns, colourful fuzzy jackets, hoodies and overcoats in 70s and 80s style. Its tech-puffa jackets add a layer of warmth to the entire collection,” notes Neha Shah, Assistant General Manager-Marketing of the brand.
Celebrating brand heritage through logos, motifs
The kids’ wear collection celebrates both the iconic heritage of Pepe Jeans brand through its archive logos and motifs beside adding a sense of adventure through a colorful mix of knits and puffa jackets, plaid shirts and hoodies, zip-up tops and folksy-fun pieces for the girls. “The outerwear staples of this collection include fleece zip-up tops - that tap into a retro charm but always make sure the Pepe Jeans kids are toasty warm,” adds Shah.
Shah points out that the T-shirt segment is the fastest growing categories in India. “The segment is currently is undergoing a lot of changes due to dynamic western trends that have led to the growth of slogan tees, graphic design tees and tees with strong and quirky messages. Of the total market, branded retail is expected to change more in the next five years,” she says. Entry of international brands and growing exposure amongst Indians, especially the youth have created a higher purchasing power not only in top metros but also in Tier II and III cities as well.
The rise of the ‘fit’ customer has fueled the demand for athleisure and activewear. There is a cultural shift towards sports including running as a part of growing emphasis on fitness, especially among the urban population. “This has led us to introduce a special athleisure line that combines comfort, functionality and style,” adds Shah. .
A huge trend that has created waves in is T-shirts focused on social issues or statements that talk about equality. “Much of this trend comes from the rise of feminism in the last few years,” notes Shah. “These tees have a psychological impact and help one stand out for what they truly believe in. T-shirts sometimes act as a medium to communicate as your views about a certain issue. Lastly, T-shirts are preferred because of their light material,” she adds.
Penetrating the smaller cities
Big and small brands are now heading to smaller cities with multiple formats. These markets allow brands to expand their customer base, feels Shah. “Their marketing strategies target customers in these cities besides creating awareness for the brand. It is essential for brands to be aware of these cities that are gaining momentum because of real estate development. It’s only a matter of time till investors understand the market dynamics and returns they generate, thereby making them the future of retail,” adds Shah.