Of the 31,500 visitors to GDS, about 25% came to the premiere of GLS – the International Event for Leather Goods & More from 35 nations. GLS in Düsseldorf ran concurrently with GDS – The Premier Shoe Event – and presented the trade audience with a first-class, international range of leathergoods from all segments. Commenting on the event Armin Stader, Project Head at GLS, said: ‘We are satisfied with the GLS premiere which posted a solid result. Even during the fair renowned exhibitors, international visitor delegations as well as members from manufacturers’ and retailers’ associations announced their participation at the next GLS.’

161 international exhibitors and collections of established brands from 16 nations as well as creative young designers showcased their ranges here. These included 90% first-time exhibitors not featured over the past few years in the leathergoods segment at GDS. The large majority of exhibitors were satisfied with the number of new customers they were able to enlist and confirmed GLS as a key basis for canvassing new customers.

Commenting on this Joachim Vogt, Owner and Managing Director of Vogt of Florence said: ‘We were satisfied both with the start of the GLS premiere and the way it went overall and we were able to conclude some good deals. We welcome this new GLS platform with its leathergoods range running concurrently with GDS and we are extremely satisfied with the high number and good quality of visitors at our stand. We welcomed international visitors, amongst others from Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Germany and Poland including buyers from shoe and leathergoods stores as well as interior design stores. In addition to our regular customers, we were able to forge very many new contacts, 80% of whom we were immediately able to enlist as new customers. We appreciate the service and the organisation provided by Messe Düsseldorf and will definitely be on board at the next GLS.’

80% of the GLS trade audience were decision-makers from upper and middle management coming from over 15 different business sectors. After buyers from the shoe retail trade, representatives from the leather goods retail trade accounted for the second largest group of visitors (17.6%).

The high proportion of international visitors (standing at a total of 41%) was seen in a positive light. Generating particular interest were bags, small leathergoods and belts, closely followed by luggage and travel accessories. Leisure and sports bags as well as gloves were also in demand.

The trends for next winter

The colour brown, especially dark brown, will be an absolutely key theme in the Autumn/Winter 06/07 season. Though interestingly translated, black nuances will also be in great demand. The trend is moving generally towards dark, muted tones and is now focusing more heavily on an unusual, tactile feel for bag styles. Whether oiled, greased, crushed, brushed or featuring a vintage finish, surface properties play a key role here. Fur variations are also indispensable in the coming season. Crocodile skin embossing is as in demand as ever. Metallic elements create additional accents and add that special depth of detail. Shapes focus on voluminous, oblong styles, 60s style classics like Kelly bags as well as soft, pouch-type bags. Short-handled handbags are also very much in evidence. Soft shells are still around and are now also being complemented by more rigid ones. Matt gold fasteners, rings or chain handles are highlights for all trendsetters. The folklore look continues in the decorative segment.

Next Dates:

GLS – International Event for Leather Goods & More from 10/09/2006 – 12/09/2006