Fashion in the lockdown: so many clothes, so little money

In Lockdown, fashion stores stay closed and winter merchandise piles up – to the annoyance of the operators. What can be done about it?

Who’s going to buy it when the lockdown is extended into spring Photo: Eibner/imago

Things are starting to get tough. So the one with Corona; and yes, not for everyone to the same extent, not by a long shot. While some continue to expose themselves to the virus in customer contact, the others miss just that: to bring their goods to the buyers.

There will be 80 to 90 percent discounts "so that the piled up goods can still be sold," said the chief executive at the Federal Association of the Textile Retail Trade, Rolf Pangels, to the Rheinische Post on the weekend. Industry insiders, i.e. the association itself, have been expecting "discount battles" for a long time, with half a billion fashion items piled up in the stores. For the most part, these are winter goods that are losing value day by day in view of the approaching spring.

Now, it is clear that those whose clothing was burned in the major fire in the Lipa camp near Bihac in Bosnia at the end of last year would gladly accept this loss in value; and the poor and frozen-looking people in Berlin who now board at practically every subway station would gladly wear the ski underwear from this year’s collection not only in an emergency, but also next winter, provided a donation is made.

But experience teaches that people who are losing their livelihood are not very willing to donate. On the contrary, they are furious, which is why Rolf Pangels already announces: "If the lockdown is extended, we’ll pack unsold goods into large trucks and dump the contents in front of the Chancellor’s Office." And Rolf Pangels himself knows, of course, that this will not impress the virus.

Chic next winter

Still in the last ski socks are currently just the big questions: Who produces what why at what cost to the general public? Who wins, who loses? And in concrete terms: When will the Corona solidarity surcharge finally be introduced – and from what income will it be levied?

Until these questions are resolved, let’s at least offer a pleasant view: Back in the days when we weren’t all lounging around in hoodies in our home offices, who wouldn’t have thought of one or two of our colleagues (and of themselves)? Well, they could do with some new clothes, too? In this respect, we want to take the positive out of the upcoming discount battles: Next winter, when everyone takes their super-cheap merino sweaters to the office, will be chic!

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