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Weddingwear - UK - January 2009

With the UK heading into a recession, the challenge for weddingwear retailers is to adapt their trading strategies to cope with the ‘double whammy’ of falling wedding numbers and a likely drop in average amount spent.

Groom wear is an under-developed part of the market for specialist retailers, which tend to focus almost exclusively on the female participants. Men often hire a full all-singing, all-dancing outfit or simply buy a suit that they are able to wear in the future, as well as on their big day. Waistcoats are an important way for grooms to express their individuality and this, along with upmarket ties, cufflinks etc, is an area that specialists should consider for greater product development.

Middle-aged brides remarrying often need something different from younger, first time brides. There is further scope to develop ranges for this group, who are likely to be looking for something different to the traditional white gown and who may also have a fuller figure.

Main themes

  • The credit crunch does not yet appear to have had any impact on the weddingwear market, but as weddings are planned around a year in advance, could we see it hit in 2010 and beyond?

  • Extravagant bridal dresses are more insulated from cutbacks than mainstream/budget dresses, especially for first time weddings. However, brides are looking for good deals, while attendants’ outfits are coming under the budgetary spotlight. Could these be at risk from a downturn in spending?

  • Dresses inspired by celebrities are still important, as they are ‘icons’. But celebrities marrying in 2008 have been choosing more sophisticated styles. One of the challenges for suppliers is predicting fashion for up to two years ahead, as brides are now choosing their dresses for 2010. Could this have an impact on the ‘meringue fairytale’ style, and will it become less popular?

  • The whole ‘wedding experience’ is important at retail level, and independent specialists are the most popular destinations, as they cater for all needs and save time for busy people. What growth opportunities are there for other retail channels?

  • Weddingwear for men lacks innovation and is the slowest-growing sector within this market. What opportunities are there for encouraging growth?

  • Will the weddingwear hire sector thrive in a recession?

  • Has the trend in overseas weddings impacted this market?

  • How has the growth in civil partnerships affected sales of weddingwear?

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Table of contents

  1. Issues in the Market

      • Main themes
        • Definition
          • Abbreviations
          • Future Opportunities

            • One-stop shopping
              • Opportunity for the older market
                • Need for something more original
                  • Me in Media
                    • Never Say Die
                      • No credit crunch impact yet
                      • Market in Brief

                        • Sales growing … but fewer marriages
                          • Recessionary storms ahead
                            • Trust in specialists
                              • …but not for men
                                • Repeating the fairytale?
                                  • Outlook
                                  • Internal Market Environment

                                    • Key points
                                      • Lifestyle statements
                                          • Figure 1: Lifestyle statements, July 2007-June 2008
                                        • Fashion trends – style
                                          • Fashion trends – colour
                                            • Fashion trends – celebrities
                                              • Indian weddings
                                                • Getting married abroad
                                                  • Civil or religious
                                                    • Figure 2: Religious and civil wedding ceremonies, 2002-06
                                                  • First or second wedding
                                                    • Same-sex weddings
                                                      • Financial considerations – impact of credit crunch
                                                        • Financial considerations: taking out a loan
                                                          • Number of weddings
                                                            • Figure 3: Total number of weddings, 2002-08
                                                          • Life events: Recently married/getting married
                                                            • Figure 4: Percentage of adults recently married/getting married, 2007 and 2008
                                                          • Age of brides
                                                            • Age trends
                                                              • Figure 5: Wedding age trends, 2006, 2007 and 2008
                                                            • Second-hand/recycling
                                                              • Internet
                                                                • Winter weddings
                                                                • Broader Market Environment

                                                                  • Key points
                                                                    • Change in law
                                                                      • Church of England to act on market share loss
                                                                        • Increasing affluence
                                                                          • Figure 6: Forecast adult population trends, by socio-economic group, 2002-13
                                                                        • Trading up
                                                                          • Demographic change
                                                                            • Figure 7: Structure of the UK population, by age, 2006-31
                                                                            • Figure 8: Changes to age structure of UK population, 2006-31
                                                                          • Working women
                                                                            • Figure 9: Working population of women, 2002-12
                                                                        • Competitive Context

                                                                          • Key points
                                                                            • Less money in the pot
                                                                              • Turning away from white with all the trimmings
                                                                                • Opportunities for hire
                                                                                  • How far to honeymoon?
                                                                                  • Strengths and Weaknesses in the Market

                                                                                    • Strengths
                                                                                      • Weaknesses
                                                                                      • Market Value and Forecast

                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                          • Figure 10: Breakdown of weddingwear market, 2003-08
                                                                                        • A home-grown clothing sector
                                                                                          • Men are more modest weddingwear consumers
                                                                                            • Hire not buy
                                                                                              • Forecast
                                                                                                • Figure 11: Forecast of the weddingwear market, by segment, at current prices, 2003-13
                                                                                              • Bridalwear to show resilience
                                                                                                • Inflation set to impact the market
                                                                                                  • Figure 12: Forecast of the weddingwear market, by segment, at 2008 prices, 2003-13
                                                                                              • Segment Performance

                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                  • Figure 13: Breakdown of weddingwear market, 2003-08
                                                                                                • Less spend on bridesmaids
                                                                                                  • For rent
                                                                                                  • Who’s Innovating?

                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                      • Communicating with customers
                                                                                                        • Larger sizes
                                                                                                          • Two in one
                                                                                                            • A dress for two
                                                                                                              • For busy men
                                                                                                              • Brand Communication and Promotion

                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                  • Advertising spend tracking downwards
                                                                                                                    • Figure 14: Monitored media spend on weddingwear, 2004-08
                                                                                                                  • Many hands make light work
                                                                                                                    • Figure 15: Leading weddingwear advertisers, 2004-08
                                                                                                                • Channels to Market

                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                    • The retail experience
                                                                                                                      • The attendants’ outfits
                                                                                                                        • Retail channels
                                                                                                                          • Figure 16: Weddingwear retail channels, 2004-08
                                                                                                                        • Independents’ day
                                                                                                                          • Multiple weddingwear specialists
                                                                                                                            • Department stores
                                                                                                                              • Home shopping
                                                                                                                                • Hire
                                                                                                                                  • Other retailers
                                                                                                                                    • Second-hand
                                                                                                                                      • Oxfam
                                                                                                                                        • Selling events
                                                                                                                                          • The Wedding Sale
                                                                                                                                            • Wedding shows/fairs
                                                                                                                                            • Companies and Products

                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                • Specialists
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 17: Leading bridalwear suppliers, UK market, 2008
                                                                                                                                                • Alfred Angelo
                                                                                                                                                  • Belbourne House/Caroline Castigliano
                                                                                                                                                    • Benjamin Roberts
                                                                                                                                                      • Berketex
                                                                                                                                                        • Ellis
                                                                                                                                                          • Ian Stuart
                                                                                                                                                            • New developments
                                                                                                                                                              • Maggie Sottero
                                                                                                                                                                • Mon Cheri
                                                                                                                                                                  • Mori Lee
                                                                                                                                                                    • Pronovias
                                                                                                                                                                      • Pronuptia
                                                                                                                                                                        • Romantica
                                                                                                                                                                          • Ronald Joyce
                                                                                                                                                                            • Sincerity
                                                                                                                                                                              • Special Day
                                                                                                                                                                                • Veromia
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Designers
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 18: Selected bridal designers, 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Online specialists
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 19: Online weddingwear specialists, 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Non-specialists
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Bhs
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Debenhams
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Evans
                                                                                                                                                                                          • George at Asda
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Marks & Spencer
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Monsoon
                                                                                                                                                                                                • Moss Bros
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Speciality Retail Group
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Mail order – Littlewoods Direct
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • The Consumer – Where they Bought/will buy Weddingwear

                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 20: Where they bought/will buy weddingwear, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Independent specialists most popular
                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Bargains on the internet?
                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Men and older adults favour department stores
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 21: Where they buy/have bought weddingwear, by wedding status, gender, age and socio-economic group, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • How many places consumers buy weddingwear
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Independent specialist shops are the favourites
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • The Consumer – How Much they Spent/Are Going to Spend on Weddingwear

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Key findings – how much spent/spending
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 22: How much they spent/are going to spend on weddingwear, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • No sign of credit crunch impact
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Affluence is a factor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 23: How much they spent or are spending on wedding wear, by wedding status, gender, age and socio-economic group, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • The Consumer – How They View Shopping for Weddingwear

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 24: How they view shopping for weddingwear, Nov ember 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Women think prices are too high
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Too much stress
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Opportunity for menswear innovation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 25: How they view weddingwear, by wedding status, gender, age and socio-economic group, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Shopping around
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 26: Number of sources used, by statements, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Consumer groups
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 27: Consumer groups, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – Where they Bought/Will Buy Weddingwear

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 28: Where they buy/have bought weddingwear, by region, supermarket used and daily newspapers read, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – How Much They Spent/Are Going to Spend on Weddingwear

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 29: How much they spent or are spending on wedding wear, by region, supermarket used and daily newspapers read, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – How They View Shopping For Weddingwear

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 30: How they view weddingwear, by region, supermarket used and daily newspapers read, nov ember 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 31: Number of wedding wear sources, by retailers used, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 32: Number of sources used, by wedding status, gender and age, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 33: Number of sources used, by wedding status, gender, age, region, socio-economic group, supermarket used and daily newspapers read, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 34: Experience, by statements, November 2008
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 35: Experience, by wedding status, gender, age, region, socio-economic group and supermarket used, November 2008

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Alan Hannah Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Alfred Angelo
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Amanda Wyatt Bridalwear Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Asda Group Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Bellbourne House Ltd (Retail)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Benjamin Roberts Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Berkertex Bride
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Bhs Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • BMB Clothing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Burton old
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Co-operative Group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Confetti
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Cymbeline
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Debenhams Total (GTV)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Elizabeth Arden, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Elizabeth Emmanuel
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Ellis Bridals
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Evans old
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Facebook, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Giorgio Armani S.p.A.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Harrods Group Total
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Hello! Limited
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Hugo Boss
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Ian Stuart International
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • J. Sainsbury
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Jasper Conran
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Jenny Packham London Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Maggie Sottero Bridal (UK) Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Marks & Spencer
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Meadowhall Shopping Centre
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Mon Cheri Couture
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Monsoon Accessorize Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Mori Lee Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Moss Bros Group Plc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • OXFAM
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Pronuptia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Romantica of Devon Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Selfridges Retail Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Shop Direct Group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Simon Carter
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Sincerity Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Stevies Gowns
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Swarovski
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Tesco Plc
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • The NEC Group
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • TripAdvisor LLC
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Vera Wang
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Waitrose
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Wm Morrison Supermarkets

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Weddingwear - UK - January 2009

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      US $2,583.33 (Excl.Tax)