The Fashion Buyers’ Guide to Copenhagen Fashion Week

Twice a year Copenhagen Fashion Week attracts thousands of visitors, making it the biggest Fashion Week in the Nordics. CFW consists of a 3 day show calendar, where the best Scandinavian Fashion Brands show their new styles, and is also home to the two fairs CIFF and Revolver.

CFW future dates

  • SS21: August 9 – 12, 2020
  • FW21: February 3 – 5, 2021

Meet the buyers

For retail fashion buyers in the region Copenhagen Fashion Week CPHFW is critical to their success, as this is where the majority of business for the year is done. Deals have to be struck and new brands discovered in a short period of time, so it goes without saying that being prepared and organized is key.

To help you prepare for Copenhagen Fashion Week, we have talked to three experienced buyers in Copenhagen and asked them to share their tried and tested tips for a successful fashion week. They are:

  • Karina Wærum Dar, owner & buyer, Porte à Gauche, Copenhagen
  • Laura Tømming, Buyer, Noun, Copenhagen
  • Annette Finseth, Owner & Buyer, Rue 153, Copenhagen

How do you prepare?

Karina: I review the brands I already have in the store and decide which I want to keep. Then I note the different shows and make a plan for what I want to get done during the days.  It’s important for me to connect with the international agents, who are only in town during Copenhagen Fashion Week. I can always connect with the local brands after Fashion Week, if I don’t get the opportunity during.

Anette: I look at my existing brands and evaluate how they’ve performed. And then I look at trends. I put together a small team of 8th and 9th graders, who are customers in the store. They join me at the fair and show me what they like from the different brands. Their choices, combined with my knowledge of trends and the market at all, help me make good choices when I order.

How do you buy?

Karina: My way of buying has changed completely. My pictures were previously mixed in with my private pictures on the phone. At the same time, I had to remember if I had written any notes, and where the notes were. Now I can just look in the FAVES app to see if I have bought a green blazer. Before I used Excel and I would bring a print-out to the show. I would forget to update the excel sheet after buying, and sometimes I lost it, because I left it behind at some booth or showroom I had visited. With the app, I’m able to stick to my budget better than ever.

Anette: I always take many pictures when I’m out. It gives me an overview of my collection. For example, I can see how many sweats I have already bought. It’s the first season with the FAVES app, and I can already see that I keep my budget in the right place. The app helps me to become more and more sustainable in my way of ordering goods so I only buy what I need – and that what I buy is sold. It is important for me to help put an end to overproduction. In the store, I use the app in my dialogue with the customers. If they ask something specific, I can quickly check if it is coming and when.

Laura: Previously we noted our purchases on paper. Now we have a complete overview of our purchases and our budget, so we don’t buy blind. I want it all, but we know we must limit ourselves. The app helps us keep an overview. It’s easy for me to share the collection with the others in the store so we all know what’s going on. And very important – the shopping pictures are no longer mixed with my private holiday pictures.

What do you wear?

Laura: I always plan to wear clothes that are easy to take on and off. It must be easy for me to try the clothes at the show. Practical shoes are a must. It usually ends with sneakers.

Karina: I choose something that expresses the identity of my store. When I meet new collaborators, brands and agents, my outfit shows them what I stand for, and also what type of store I have. I rarely choose the latest styles, instead I use Fashion Week as an opportunity to rediscover old favorites.

I often choose to wear flats. But if I’m feeling up for it, I choose a pair of high heels from the Danish brand “Roccamore.” They create heals that you can wear all day long.

Anette: I try to radiate the image of my store – in one way or another. Maybe I have bought a pair of new shoes. I NEVER think practical, I’d rather bite my teeth together. This year I’ll wear my Valentino shoes.