John Lewis: Menswear Design & Retailing

Creating a capsule menswear collection designed for the shop floor.

Students across four first-year foundation degree courses were briefed and mentored by the John Lewis buying and merchandising teams, to devise and create capsule menswear collections inspired by Sherlock Holmes.

The entries had to encompass and consider design, marketing, promotion, buying and visual merchandising. Pooling the talents and specialisms of so many different courses, made for a dynamic, forward thinking exploration of menswear retail in UK department stores.

John Lewis were open about hoping to become more of a ‘fashion’ retailer and accessing students as early as this in their fashion training has given both retailer and students a great insight. For John Lewis it has provided inspirational, cutting edge trend-driven research, and for the students a much greater understanding of how buying, merchandising and promotion influences design. John Lewis were so pleased with the result, they have continued the partnership and this year gave a much wider brief allowing the students more creative freedom. This is what LCF students really excel at.

LCF have provided John Lewis with fresh, design-led ideas that are relevant to their brand, but also eye opening in their creative innovation. The student response was fantastic with 30 students out of 150 participants going on to seek out work experience with John Lewis, an employer they may have previously not considered. 

What stood out, was that the groups started out with what the customer was going to see at the end, with the shop floor in mind, and out of that we saw a very focused range of products which, from our point of view, we would sell in stores."

Matthew McCormack, Head of Buying, Menswear