Marks & Spencer clothing sales rise ahead of suede skirt releaseFashion & LifestyleNews & Features
Knee-length with a front split, large pockets and white stitching, Marks & Spencer’s suede skirt has already been named item of the season – despite its £199 price tag.
Crucial celebrities Alexa Chung and Olivia Palermo have duly been photographed wearing the tan-coloured skirt, which will be available to the public from 14th May. The resulting social media hype helped drive more shoppers to the Marks & Spencer website and the chain posted its best clothing sales performance in nearly four years: a 0.7 per cent increase after 14 consecutive quarterly declines. This, in turn, saw the M&S share price rise by 20p on the London Stock Exchange, taking it above £5.50.
“The moment Olivia Palermo stepped out in our Autograph suede skirt at New York Fashion Week, we knew it was going to be one of this season’s most in-demand pieces,” said M&S. “When Alexa Chung also wore it a few days later, we knew something really special was about to happen.”
Not since the famed pink coat of 2013 has the company had such a fashion insider hit on its hands. Such has been the excitement ahead of the skirt’s launch that the store produced a copycat faux-suede version, which has already sold out online. It is also part of a collection channelling this season’s 1970s mum vibe, comprising a sweater with side ties, cropped jackets, silky jumpsuits and era-appropriate floral prints.
The iconic piece will only be available in the top 100 M&S stores across the UK. Some 3,500 potential buyers have already registered on a waiting list, ensuring it will most definitely be a sell-out.
Can this skirt prompt a long-term return to fashion success for M&S? We shall see.