Everyone knows the names of the biggest fashion brands, but who is
it exactly that discovers them and helps them to be commercially
successful? One of those people is menswear buyer Joseph Brunner, who
focuses on next-gen brands at British luxury department store chain
FashionUnited spoke with Brunner about how he discovers new brands and
how important their vision of the future is for him. He also reveals
how his own style influences his work and what the spring/summer 2022
season has to offer.
As a next-gen menswear buyer, how has the department grown over
the past few seasons?
There is an abundance of brands in the industry at the moment and
with that comes exciting, emerging designers. Just look at the
graduate shows, season on season, where students have a platform to
create collections with such a raw, unfiltered vision. This is greatly
appealing to customers and retailers alike. Last season, despite the
pandemic, most of our next-gen brands had their best season yet,
further highlighting an increased demand for unique products.
What do you look for in a next-gen brand for them to become
stocked at Browns?
I factor in three things when looking at a new brand. Firstly, if
the Browns customer will like it – in other words, if it will sell.
Secondly, if the brand fits in with the vision of the department. And
lastly, whether or not I like it. The brand can hit one or all three
of the criteria and there are a lot of brands we don’t currently buy