Stock up on those great sweater sales now because knit prices are expected to skyrocket by as much as 20% by next fall!
According to WWD, between
higher commodity and labor costs, an ever-weakening dollar and greater
shipping expenses thanks to record-high oil prices, knit manufacturers
are facing a perfect storm of supply costs, aggravated by the troubled
retail climate. Now vendors must make the difficult decision of how
much of the additional costs to pass on in their wholesale prices.
ago, the retailer would have absorbed the cost, but they can’t now, so
the retail is higher," said Roseanne Morrison, fashion director for The
Doneger Group, the fashion merchandising consulting firm. "Higher
prices don’t bode well for business, particularly when people are so
worried about their money."
As yarn and labor prices each increase by about 20
percent, some companies, like bridge brand Magaschoni and contemporary
knit label Inhabit, have chosen less expensive yarns to cut costs.
This hike in prices didn’t emerge overnight, noted Lou Breuning,
president of HMS Productions Inc. For the $140 million better knit
vendor, costs have steadily increased 15 percent over the last year
and, in turn, wholesale prices for its Cable & Gauge line have gone
from the $15 to $29 range to $19 to 34.
the beginning, we absorbed the costs, but past 5 or 6 percent, it’s
impossible to absorb the whole thing," Breuning said. "In some cases,
you absorb costs and hope volume will make up for losses in margins,
but when you think there’s enough perceived value, you can pass the
costs along, so we’re putting more pressure on the design team. In the
better zone, we’ll have to see if the customer will accept that extra
Stock up now!
Top 10 Fall 2008 Knit Trends
|– "Completers" — sweater jackets, blazers, motorcycle jackets and cardigans.|
|– Saturated colors, including plums and greens.|
|– Grays continue.|
|– Less embellishment.|
|– Large-gauge textures, including waffles and cables.|
|– Cocoon, oval and boxy-shaped coats.|
|– Novelty pieces over basics.|
|– Knitted accessories to complement lines.|