IFLS+IBD Columbia Autumn-Winter 2018/19 season


From 20 to 22 February at Fieramilano Rho, Lineapelle94 brought total innovation to the meaning of its international leadership, confirming its role as the benchmark business experience for global fashion & luxury, a sector constantly seeking innovative, style stimuli.

THE EVENT Lineapelle94 hosted 1,254 exhibitors (5% up on February, from 45 countries) and welcoming over 20,000 visitors from 109 countries. This last figure is in line with that for the February 2017 edition and reiterates synergy with Simac Tanning Tech, the tanning, footwear and leather goods technologies trade fair held in the same venue on the same dates. As highlighted by many exhibitors, this result shows “an obvious high level of clients, who include, as well as established names from luxury labels to the most important brands, continual new arrivals in the form of SMEs, at Lineapelle looking for reliable partners in terms of product quality, guaranteed service and innovation.” Worthy of note is the 6% increase in French buyers and, in contrast the expected drop in their Chinese counterparts, who were down by 30% due to New Year celebrations.

THE MARKET Performance by Lineapelle94 mirrors an economic period generally characterised by extreme caution and, in particular, by clientele who choose their suppliers extremely carefully. Stands that brought evolved, innovative samples, stylistically coherent with trends for summer 2019 to the fair were very busy. They were also aggressive in their variety and desire to show visitors tangible inspiration and the opportunity to develop big personality accessories. Leather goods was again very active, from luxury to lower segments, leveraging frenetic differentiation in collections, imposing constant upgrading on suppliers to ensure flexibility and speed. Footwear confirms its uncertainties and the prevalence of sneakers, rewarding suppliers of materials for premium lines featuring accessible prices and creative added value. After a few stalled seasons, leather clothing showed interesting signals.

INNOVATION  “Tanning and Chemicals”, the conference organised by UNIC (the Italian tanners’ association) and COTANCE (the Confederation of National Associations of Tanners and Dressers of the European Community) was a sell-out. It engaged tanners, research institutes, chemists and brands on the topic, seeking new directions for research and new tools.

STYLE Lineapelle94 celebrated the theme Empathy, the reference trend developed by its Fashion Committee for summer 2019 and interpreted by its exhibitors, who expressed extraordinary, illuminating creativity. Glitter, laminates, iridescence, prints, beads and mirrors: a huge foray into light, dazzle and fantasy. Plus shimmering sparkly finishes, screen-printed leathers, pearly in bright yet not exaggerated shades. All, according to the stands, studied to “meet a big market request for sporting, casual solutions: soft leathers and materials in versatile colours that provide the bases for plotters, lasers, applications, and metallic glitter.” Room also for innovative combinations with leather backed in fabrics, synthetics and techno materials in unusual forms that emphasise its pliability.