This years ILM, the international fair for leather goods, surpassed all expectations. With 5900 visitors the fair had 2% more than the previous year. There was also a slight increase of foreign visitors, hailing from over 40 countries. There was however a decline of German visitors. On the 138th edition of ILM 261 companies from 16 countries presented their winter collections from 9th till 11th of March.

The new fair exhibition hall C1 was finished just in time for the winter edition of the fair. “We are happy to be in the new hall, but some of our customers were coming late because they didn’t find our stand” said Lars Föll from Bogner. “Therefore, I guess, Sunday was the best day.” Sandra Rodighieao from Timberland has another explanation: “We heard about the horrible weather situation in the north of Germany. I think that’s why some of our customers were not coming.”

But all that was not a hindrance for the fair. Exhibitors are satisfied by frequenz and orders. “The best day was Saturday. For about three hours our stand was full of people” said Sven Scheurer from Aunts&Uncles. The label is representative for the counter-trend. Vintage garments need fine textiles with slight fading, and shouldn’t be run-down anymore, but natural. Soft leather is still the most important material. The main trends are trapezoid styles, satchels, shopper and cross body styles. The most important model is a casual slouch bag, which everyone is talking about.

Colours are getting darker and stronger such as bottle green, grape, magenta, royal blue and mandarin. Omnipresent is burgundy in every shade.

Animal prints such as leopard are declining and can be seen on the inside of bags as lining or just as a part of the bag, and ostrich, water snake and crocodile leather are growing more important. Colour-blocking is not that striking anymore. It comes in different shades of one colour or different materials from one colour family. Fur is decreasing and mostly seen as pony or pony-look-a-like out of cow. Metallics are not that clean anymore, their surfaces are broken-looking. Patent leather is still present, but is getting more and more into details.

The next ILM in Offenbach takes place from 21st until 23rd of September.