November 25, 2022
Our very own head buyer Emma Tucknott gets to experience the fashion world with an inside scoop. We asked her about her fascinating start in the industry and where her love of fashion began.
Q: Can you tell me about your background and how you started working for Morgan Clare?
A: I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do at Uni, but I knew I wanted to go. It was one of my career advisors that suggested fashion. I loved the idea, but I just didn’t want to do design. She proposed a course at Manchester University, where I ended up studying Fashion and Textile Retailing.
In my final year of university, circumstances meant I was coming back home often and decided I needed to get a Saturday job. So naturally, I thought of Morgan Clare. I got a Saturday job here and when I was due to finish University, they offered me a junior buying position in the denim department. At that time, denim was something the directors were wanting to expand because fashion was gradually becoming more casual, which then had to translate in-store. It was given to me as a project to make a full denim department. I was excited to take on the challenge and it turned out to be something that was a great success for the store.
I then took a sabbatical and went travelling for four months. But before I went away, I was offered a position I couldn’t turn down: leading the whole buying team. Obviously, I accepted and now I’m Head Buyer. That’s my MC journey so far.
Q: What’s your favourite aspect of working in buying?
A: I love finding new brands and exciting things to introduce into store. I love putting edits together from the major brand collections that I think would work well for our customers, the positive environment I work in that embraces women, there are so many things I love about my job it’s hard to list them all!
Q: What are some of your favourite brands that we stock?
A: Definitely some new ones that or on the way, I’m loving Sea New York this season too. I love Ulla Johnson, they’re just a favourite for customers and staff. But then I love the brands like Vince and Theory, for those classic tailored pieces. My style is a mix of the feminine and high fashion brands and the demurer brands that provide the staple wardrobe items we all need. Queene and Belle is a firm favourite too, their knitwear is so unique and just exceptionally well made, we’ve had a special relationship with them for over 20 years.
Q: Do you think luxury fashion has changed since you started?
A: I think the major change in luxury fashion resulted from COVID because people have had to re-evaluate. Some of the major brands had to really consider how they would survive for two years because no one could go to events, the work environment changed, and no one was socializing. Which meant we saw some of our dressier brands doing more ready-to-wear casual pieces. There’s been a focus more on eco dressing too – investing in a piece and curating a capsule wardrobe has definitely become more the norm.
Q: You recently attended Paris Fashion week, were there any brands that really stood out to you?
A: Ulla Johnson is an obvious one for me. This fashion week it was really tough to stick to our budgets! Next season is amazing and so exciting. Make some space in your wardrobe now because you’re going to want it all.
Q: Is there a new brand coming to MC you’re particularly excited about?
A: We’ve got more brands next season than we’ve had for a while. Alemais is amazing for next season, that’s an Australian brand that is ultra-feminine and pretty. Also, Magali Pascal, she’s a French Bali-based designer – think florals and ruffles. We are also introducing Veronica Beard, a brand that specialise in classic staple pieces, Autry the vintage-sports inspired trainer brand and Mother Denim.
Q: What do you think makes independent stores like MC so special?
A: No question, our exceptional customer service and our unique brand mix. The level of service we can offer is just unmatched anywhere else and the relationship we have with our customers is so special. We know exactly what they like, which means we are in constant communication with people about what is coming in to store which is completely special. For the size of the store and being placed outside of London, I think the brands we have to offer are utterly amazing.
Q: Do you have any absolute fashion no nos?
A: It’s all about balance. I think if you are wearing a really statement piece on top for example, a demurer bottom half is perhaps a good styling choice. Or if you’re going to wear really standout accessories then maybe toning down your outfit is best. Oh, but the worst fashion faux pas has to be unfitted, baggy jersey leggings!
Q: Do you think there’s certain trends that never go out of style?
A: Definitely tailoring. If you buy well into tailoring, for example classic blazer jackets and well-cut trousers, you just can’t go wrong because they will never go out of fashion.
Q: What trends do you think we need to look out for next season?
A: There’s lots of bright colours and interestingly cut trousers. Combat is going to be a strongly represented trend in the industry, wether that be trousers or jackets, we are already starting to see that pull through now. There is a big pyjama trend too, co-ord silk sets are featured in pretty much every collection we have bought for SS23. And of course, the oversized blazer isn’t going anywhere either.
There are lots of exciting new things to look out for in the upcoming seasons. Watch this space…
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