Apparel on the move

The Trendy Sports Agency are currently travelling the UK and Ireland with a pop-up showroom that all within the golf trade are welcome to attend. We caught up with Louis Wolcott from the agency to find out more.

What’s the idea behind the roadshow?

None of our brands that we look after compete with each other and doing the roadshow means that whereas people might have had to do a lot of travelling to see all the brands they can now see and buy them in one place with one appointment. We are going from Urban Golf in London to Wentworth, Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds, Turnberry, St Andrews, Inverness and Ireland with a pop up showroom. We finish mid-September, so it will be a busy time! It’s a shop in shop experience and each brand will be presented correctly – we want to create a proper buying environment rather than seeing it all crammed on a rail.

Has the fashion element come more into golf recently?

Yes, definitely. J.Lindeberg (JL) pioneered a lot of the early trends and now the clothes have become cool. You even have mainstream brands like Nike, Under Armour and adidas doing high tops and collarless shirts and then you have the premium brands who are very much into the fashion side. Back in the old days JL was the odd one out, but now it is normal because of how much it has changed. The boundaries have been broken and I think it will continue to develop and change and golf needs to change with the times. If you are playing golf in hot countries then why shouldn’t Tour players be allowed to wear shorts?

IMG_7177Golf clothes now seem to be for on and off the course now.

Goodwood and The Grove are two of the most forward-thinking courses and if you turn up wearing silly golf clothing they would probably not be happy but if you are wearing a cool hoody and a nice pair of jeans then they are OK. It is the understanding that a professional who earns good money doesn’t necessarily want to wear what we used to classify as golf clothes in their spare time. A lot of clubs are starting to change their dress codes, which is good.

What do you think could be the new hot brand?

With G/FORE you have Bubba Watson wearing the shoe and the glove and if you look at the way that they do their packaging, the logo, everything around the product then you can see that it could be the next JL and really take off. It’s great to have someone like them who pushes the boundaries and creates a talking point.

What are the most popular colour combinations?

I think five years ago the clothes went a bit wacky and more colour-driven but people are getting bored of this. I think what we are going to see is core colours like black, white, grey and navy with a pop colour or a highlight, so it is sophisticated with a bit of an edge rather than full- blown bright colour.

Are you still seeing that some pro shops don’t properly display their apparel?

Yes, and it drives you mad when you see it! We do go to places where someone in a pro shop is on their phone and their shop doesn’t look good – if you go to somewhere like Sunningdale where it is a well-oiled machine there is nothing out of place, it is immaculate and that has been bred into all the professionals who work there. Little things like having all the same hangers are important – if you go to a fashion store they don’t have different hangers from brands, everything is the same. It’s about a pro creating an environment that someone wants to shop in.

It seems some pros are stepping away from retailing, but the ones doing it are becoming more switched on – would you agree?

Yes, but I think the biggest thing is that some people are scared. With the internet and the pricing that you can get some people are thinking that it’s not worth trying to compete. Some of the forward-thinking guys are trying to do brands that aren’t as common and if you do more high-end then you have to sell less to make the same margin. Wherever you are, you can find some way of making it work and this is often by stocking different equipment and apparel to what everyone else around you is doing. If it comes down to price and it is much cheaper online then the customer will go there, but if it is around customer service, detail, follow up and loyalty then it can still work for the pro.

 

The Trendy Sports Agency look after Wolsey, G/FORE, Dunhill Links, Dunning, Royal Albartross, Flexfit Caps and Jones Golf Bags. The showrooms will be across the country and anyone is welcome within the trade to come and have a look. For more information email louis@trendysports.com