Womenswear trade fair Pure London returns to the English capital this week for its SS24 edition.
The event, running from Sunday 16 July to Tuesday 18 July at Olympia London, will feature a mix of new and established domestic and international fashion, footwear, and accessory brands.
It will also host trend-led catwalk shows, a keynote talk from industry veteran George Davies, and a Circular Fashion Panel covering topics like regenerative design, resale, and recycling.
For the first time, the British trade show has also teamed up with Graduate Fashion Week to showcase the work of a selection of this year’s winners, including Bath Spa University’s Erika Roznyte, Arts University Bournemouth’s Lucy James, and Edinburgh College of Art’s Phoebe Potter.
Ahead of the show, FashionUnited spoke to Pure London event director Gloria Sandrucci about what to expect from this summer’s edition, and what sets Pure apart from other trade fairs.
Could you tell me a bit about what we can expect from this season’s Pure London?
This season is all about newness and we have a number of exciting new brands attending, including Desigual, NKN, Surkana, Chie Mihara, Sahi London, and Glamorous. We’re also seeing the return of British lifestyle brand Joules, which has been away for nearly a decade.
And aside from brands, what type of new content can we expect to see?
We've got a new destination, Pop, which is launching this season and is inspired by pop culture, offering a diverse selection of streetwear, alternative gender-neutral collections, vintage labels, festival wear, and tech-inspired fashion. So it's really bringing together a variety of styles.
Is the Pop section your way of enticing younger generations to Pure?
Yes. We’ve seen a huge trend recently in brands championing inclusivity and diversity. We’re also seeing an incredible increase in unisex styles and streetwear, and we have to, as a dynamic trade fair, embrace these changes.
We are also partnering for the first time with Graduate Fashion Week and will be showcasing some of the graduate winners’ designs as part of the Pure London catwalk. So we’re really trying to show our support for new talents and designers.
As well as the graduate collections on the catwalk, we also expect more widely to see other collections that have evolved from being - let’s say - the ‘classic style’, to be a bit more versatile and inclusive.
What is the theme of this season and why did you choose it?
This season we've chosen 'Nature-Verse' as our theme and we selected this from two trends that are very popular for the summer: nature and technology-inspired fashion. It's really a fusion between technology and preserving the natural world and therefore all the colours will reflect that, so we have a fresh, luminous colour palette with metallic and iridescent shades.
Will there be any changes at your sustainability section?
The sustainable destination remains a core part of Pure and it will present a carefully curated edit of conscious exhibitors who really lead the way in addressing their environmental and social impact. They are highly curated and vetted based on their efforts in tackling the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We will have some new and exciting brands attending like Pink Lemon, Mirla Beane, Nila Rubia, Line Planet, Eno Echo, and Ubere Mama.
What direction do you think things will go in concerning casual versus formal wear?
I think after the pandemic it's fair to say that we have all adjusted the way we dress. We are seeing more versatile styles and outfits that can be repurposed and adjusted for all types of activities, whether it be a simple dress or a combination of shirt and trousers.
I think it will all be about versatility moving forward - the ability to combine a comfortable and relaxed style but also being ‘dressed up’ enough for if you want to go out for dinner or have an evening at the theatre.
How do you think the trade fair has changed post-pandemic?
Aside from the trend changes already mentioned, on a personal level I'm just so happy and excited to see the positivity and energy coming back. So far we’ve had buyers pre-registering from a record breaking number of international countries, so we are seeing that everyone is very much keen to buy face to face.
And finally, what do you think Pure has to offer that other competing trade fairs don't?
In terms of the UK, we are the only show with a trend partner. We also have a catwalk, which is our unique feature, our trademark, and a very strong content program, which also provides that educational side which is crucial for the industry to evolve.
Then if I look at the European landscape, we are known as a womenswear show. So that is really our speciality, and we showcase a variety of categories within that, from premium brands to more casual wear, street wear, and also gender fluid brands as we see the trend moving in that direction.