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Style Q&A – Red Herring Assistant Buyer, Lydia Newman



Ever eager to stay ahead of the style curve we caught up with Lydia Newman, from the Red Herring team, to put some fashion focus on the Red Herring brand and hear all about a day in the life of an Assistant Buyer…

Did you always want to be a fashion buyer?
I always knew that I wanted to work in fashion, as I have always been creative and come from a creative background. When I was in my young teens I fell in love with clothes and shopping and ever since then it’s always been a passion of mine. It’s great to be working with clothing on a daily basis and I’m loving it so far!

How did you get started?
After doing art and design for A-levels I took an art foundation course specialising in fashion and textiles. From that I did a fashion business course at Nottingham Trent which I loved! This course offered a placement year as part of the course which I would strongly recommend. It’s all about gaining work experience too, which I did during the summer holidays whenever I could. It’s such a competitive industry to get into so everything helps.

Tell us about an average day for you in the office?
Every day is different! It’s hard to describe a normal day in the office… We are always looking for inspiration so constantly reviewing the catwalks and going out to the shops as much as possible – we work really closely with our design teams to ensure we are buying the right pieces for the right time. Building supplier relationships is key so we go to a lot of supplier meetings on a weekly basis. General daily jobs include approving fabrics/trims, negotiating cost prices with suppliers, communicating with our merchandisers to build the range, fitting garments and internal meetings with our design teams/QA.

How long have you been working with Red Herring?
I’ve been working on Red Herring for about a year and a half – the team are lovely and it’s really exciting as the product is young and on-trend. It’s fast paced, always busy and forever changing but it’s worth all of the hard work!

How would you define the Red Herring brand?
The Red Herring brand is targeted at the more fashion conscious customer, with a broad age range. We focus on key trends and tailor them to our customer, keeping styles feminine, pretty and affordable. We provide something for every occasion whether casual fashion, or for that special occasion. We also have a maternity range which is looking really exciting at the moment. Each season sees the launch of new key trends which are influenced by the catwalks.

What’s the most exciting thing you’re working on that you can tell us about?
We are currently buying for Christmas which looks really exciting. We have been on a few trips recently, one to Ibiza to see what people are wearing and looking at key trends out there, which was really exciting. We also went to Ascot races last week to spot key looks/trends which was a great day out and we saw some fabulous outfits – lots of lovely ladies wearing Red Herring too!

Who would you pick out as the ultimate Red Herring style icon?
Cheryl Cole. With her versatile outfits, ranging from her casual look in a cute tee and jeans to that special occasion dress, she always looks fab and on-trend. She has recently been supporting the printed trouser which is a key trend on Red Herring right now.

What should we pop on our wishlist from the current season collection?
Embellished collars, mirror prints, sleeveless shirts and monochrome.

Can you give us any sneaky info about what we can look forward to from AW12 at Red Herring?
There is lots to look forward to! It’s all about the texture; embellishment, studs, jaquards and gorgeous prints on simple silhouettes, and the peplum shape is still looking strong for us.

Do you have a question for Lydia? Pop a comment below and we’ll get back to you…

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