Instead of appealing to the mass, Peter Landa decided to approach the odd and non-conformist fashion members of society when starting the Black Sheep Road store in 2008, firstly as an online business. “I was selling brands that pretty much nobody ever heard of in Holland” remembers Landa. A brick-and-mortar shop in Amsterdam followed in 2010. Black Sheep Road wisely mixes streetwear and high fashion by labels such as Our Legacy, Brosbi, Howlin’, La Paz or Delikatessen. Basically, the store stands for those consumers who don’t like to be boxed in one category - just like Lande himself, who previously ran a distribution company importing brands, but wanted to do something that is closer to his personality. In this conversation, we try to get juicy advice on good store service and ways of staying up-to-date in the fast-paced fashion business. Interview by Lorenzo Molina

What brands are your bestsellers for womenswear and menswear?
Womens by far Sessùn. For men Our Legacy, Delikatessen and Et AL, a new exiting brand form Denmark.

How do you inform yourself about trends?
Mostly fairs I would say: Capsule, Pitti Uomo and Man. Of course, I also read magazines and online blogs.

Which features do you think are key for a good store service these days?
Flexibility and know-how.

What exactly do you mean with this?
Customers these days are quite demanding since the opening of internet and availability of brands so they are well-informed and often know where to get what so knowing this you need to cater to this as a shop: know what is going on in the market, which brands are upcoming… By flexibility I mean that you have to be able to move fast to meet the demands of these kind of customers. Also in regard to service, easy returns, refunds, store credits etc.

What are the most important womenswear trends right now?
Women’s trends I am not so keen on I have a fairly independent minded clientele. They know what they want and I buy pure on intuition not so much by trends.

In this case, what does your intuition tell you to buy for the next spring/summer 2016 season?
Technical outerwear by Welter Shelter. Functional coats that still look fashionable.

Have you added any new labels to your assortment recently? Why?
Yes all the time. I do this to keep it interesting for the customers. They need to be surprised all the time not only by the choices we make in collections, but also by brands. Welter Shelter and Et AL are new additions.

How important is the interior, the atmosphere and the whole package?
Some stores talk about routing and tactical set ups right oriented etc. I just want to feel good when I walk in somewhere and this is what I tried to create. Clean spacious without being cold.

Where do you order your products? Do you visit any trade shows?
Mostly on trade shows. Brands that have representation are rarely exclusive so I try to order always through the brand itself.

What piece of advice would you give to someone willing to start their own fashion store?
Never buy too much when you start. I know in your enthusiasm you want this brand and that brand… But in the end you will have to sell it too and you know this better after 1 or 2 seasons.

Black sheep road
Herenstraat 6
1015 CA Amsterdam