Fashion Merchandising, which assumes the planning needed to be in sync with the fashion and be well equipped with

the latest merchandise at the right time, plac e and with the right price. Sales promotion can also be used as a medium to enco urage merchandising. A particular fashion trend that is accepted and used by any number of people during a particular period of time, is considered Merchandisin g. High waist skirts or trousers and peep toe pumps are among the latest fashion s. Fashion trends can be divided into those groups to which they appeal the most: High Fashion: This kind of fashion refers to those styles or designs that are ac cepted by a limited group of people who are the first to adapt to the changes in fashion. High fashion is usually appreciated by socialites, entertainers and fa shion innovators and are sold at relatively high prices. Mass Fashion or Volume Fashion: These fashion trends are accepted by a huge grou p of people. Such fashion styles are produced in large quantities and their pric es are slightly lesser. These styles are directed to the large majority of fashi on-conscious people. What determines merchandising? Style: In apparels, style is considered the distinctive appearance of the garmen t, the different features that set it aside from other types of garments, such a s skirts, jackets and pants are all different kinds of apparels. Design: A design is a specific type of a fashion trend, for instance a skirt or a dress. Taste: It is the opinion of a person regarding what is and what is not fascinati ng or appealing for a particular occasion. So a good taste in fashion, not only refers to knowing what is artistic but also to what is appropriate for a particu lar event. Classic: A classic is a fashion style that remains accepted by many people over a long period of time. The time that a particular design has stayed in fashion a nd the simplicity of the design are features of a Classic. For instance, the Lit tle Black Dress has been a style accepted by everyone for decades now. A Fad: A fashion trend that swoops in suddenly, accepted by a few people but dis appears really fast is known as a Fad. Fad styles are usually exaggerated by peo ple. For instance, "The Urban Lowboy" Fashion design involves the combination of six basic elements: Silhouette: The silhouette of a costume is it's overly shape and size. For examp le, the triangle shape of the 1930's came back into fashion as the wide shoulder and narrow hip silhouette in the late 1970's occurring approximately every 100 years and lasting for just about 35 years. Details: The separate components that give a silhouette it's shape and size are known as it's details. These consist of trimmings. The length of skirts and trou sers, and the treatment of the waist and shoulders. Texture: This is one of the most important components of a silhouette. It refers to the look and feel of the material used. Colour: Using the right type of colours for a silhouette is a major consideratio

n. It's a key factor in choosing clothing for either of the sexes. It helps in p ackaging and advertising for the product. Customer: A customer is a potential buyer of the goods. He/she is the one who ev entually purchases the product for use. Like the manufacturer is a customer of a fabric producer. Consumer: He/she is the final user of the product. They determine for themselves what they like or don't like and what types of fashion trends appeal to them. The activities of merchandising: All business enterprise's would want to maximize their profits. Therefore, Fashi on Merchandising, too, has the same goal. In order to maintain profitability, th ese three functions must be followed: 1. Planning or estimating 2. Buying or procuring 3. Selling or promoting In order to maintain an equilibrium between the sales and the stock of a busines s, planning is essential while adhering to the guidelines laid down by the manag ement. Goods bought should be in accordance to the market demand for the product . There should be adequate variety of all products and they must meet the needs of the customers as and when they're ready to buy. Selling and promoting helps i n the transfer of goods from the seller to the buyer. What is bought, how it is bought, when it is bought, and how it is to be sold, a re all related ot the philosophy of the store. In order to figure out your targe t audience, proper sale strategies are required. In all cases of merchandising, regardless of the product being sold, the goal is to have the right product, at the right time and in the right quantity. Knowing exactly what your customers would like and in what quantities is known a s customer orientation. Merchandising and Retailing are often used interchangeably. But they both have d ifferent meanings. Merchandising is a small part of Retailing. Retailing is the process of buying goods in wholesale and selling them at retail prices and ensur ing that they reach the customers. Some of the functions of retailing are: - Selection of location - Setting up interior design and fixtures - Credit extension - Receiving of goods - Delivery of goods - Public relations - Personnel relations The uniqueness of fashion merchandising: Since Fashion is constantly changing, there are reasons why there are certain pr oblems pertaining to merchandising: Obsolescence factor Higher markdowns Faster turnover Seasonal factors Sales promotion

Consumer's have a tendency to practice obsolescence, and this makes the job of a

merchandiser very challenging. If a consumer is not happy with a particular sty le or trend, then it loses its value quite rapidly. The intrinsic value of the p roduct may not be relevant to the price at which the goods are sold. Due to this , a merchandiser can face high markdowns, and thus to rescue this situation, a h ealthy stock position must be maintained. One of the causes of aging is the seas onal considerations. At the beginning of the season, the trend is young. It is l ater referred to as middle aged and lastly, old aged. Since there are five fashi on seasons a year, fashion merchandising is constantly becoming obsolete. Accept ance of a fashion trend depends on the thought process of the consumer. Selling apparels must have far more emotional values than while selling consumer product s. Fashion merchandising is on a whole other level- forever changing. Conclusion: Thus, merchandising can be defined as synonymous to acceptance and also includes elements like time, place and change. These conditions are also related to the activities of a buyer, like planning the budget, predicting the future fashion t rends and also the techniques of purchasing the fashion products.