You’ve seen the hashtags, #followthebuyer and #fashionbuyer, on social media, but do you know what they really mean? You may have noticed that they are peppered through social media feeds during prime buying seasons: February and July (at least in a ‘normal’ year) when retailers hit up the fashion trade shows to buy for Autumn Winter (AW or Fall Winter (FW) if you are speaking American…..) and Spring Summer (SS) respectively.

In a cheeky behind-the-scenes moment, we thought it would help you to understand how WE do it (other retailers’ will have their own methods) but this is all about us and you, right?

Five things that we think about when buying for Five Six Blue Boutique:

  1. WHY - Will it sell? Simple question, complicated answer!
    • Do we need it, love it, and even if the answer to those is yes, do we think that you will need it and love it?
    • How does the money stack up? Can we sell what we need to cover our expenses, including making a profit?
    • What are the minimum quantities that the fashion designer/agency will expect us to buy? Can we still sell that amount? 

  1. WHAT - Does this designer brand share our values?
    • Where is this stock made? Who has made it and how much are they getting paid? Are their working conditions acceptable? Does the designer brand/fashion agency know the answers to this? If not, why not?
    • Will this stock fit in with other designers within the Five Six Blue Boutique collections?
    • How well made are the samples? Are these pieces true to size or rushed? What are the terms and conditions if the manufacturer changes the fabric between sample buying and stock arriving? This happens and is the biggest reason why we have dropped a brand or two along the way…….


  1. WHERE - Is this a designer brand sold prolifically online on marketplace platforms and bigger warehouse driven sites?
    • Will marketplace sites undercut us by discounting all the time thereby undermining us as an independent boutique?
    • Are there too many other outlets to buy this brand?
    • Is this designer brand everywhere, and therefore not boutique enough for us?


  1. WHEN - What’s our budget and what are their buying terms?
    • Is this an agent that we already know and trust?
    • If something goes wrong in the manufacture or delivery process, how much support will we get from them?
    • Are we being promised exclusivity for the stock and if so, what are the terms?


  1. HOW - Is this likely to be a long-term relationship for us or a seasonal one?
    • Some brands lend themselves to one season (AW or SS) rather than all year.
    • How do we feel about the service that we are getting from the designer/agency?
    • Who else has this relationship, where are they and what is their USP?

There you go, a glimpse into the heady world of selecting stock to buy for our independent Scandi-inspired fashion boutique. Shop our latest collection here.

Shout out any questions that you have and we will try and answer them!



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