Ladies, very exciting news: I was invited last week by the lovely Victoria to visit the shoes showroom she works for in Milan. It was a fantastic opportunity for me to understand once for all what are these famous showrooms about, how they work… and learn a few interesting facts re the shoes industry! Interested? Follow me..
The showroom Victoria works for is Spazio2. It was created by a former buyer and a former sales manager. Together with their happy team, they now represent several niche shoes brands which they sell to retail businesses a bit everywhere in Europe.
The showroom is the place where they expose the various shoes collections they represent and where they receive their (retail) clients. Their office are amazing: very spacious, full of light and a little industrial style which reminded me a bit of downtown NYC. Lucky girl to work in such an office!
The shoes models that they receive usually come in with a little leaflet showing all the different sort of leathers or materials the models can be ordered in. Personally, I loved this model.. and would have wanted it in absolutely every single colours/materials.. not you?
Then depending on their clients’ order, the showroom place the order to the factories for such and such models. Talking about factories, I also learnt that it can totally happen that factories produce the same models but for different brands.. so at the end, the leather/model/realisation is absolutely the same.. the only difference is the brand (and hence price!).
I also learnt that the margin that retailers make on a pair of shoes seemed to me quite high compared to the margin that the designer, factory and showroom are making.. but I guess the retailers are the ones who pay for the models in advance.. so cover the risks of not selling them.. so I guess there is a reason why..
Anyway, going back to the sales process, it happens sometimes that it is the showroom that comes to their client’s office to present the models (instead of them coming to visit the showroom). In that case, here is the shoes case they use.. So cutissimo, I am dreaming of a mini-model of it for my holidays ;)
I was also very interested in this other object: a board representing all the (most common) shoes form that exist! I never saw shoes from this perspective.. so interesting!
And just in case you were (like me) wondering: yes, they can potentially get to keep the models of the shoes at the end of the season (you just have to be lucky and fit into a size 37.. cause this is the size models come in). Dream job, no?