In word association games, the word ‘fashion’ is rather unlikely to be followed by the word ‘Lidl’. But could that be about to change? As part of its tag-team takeover of the British high street with fellow discounter Aldi, the German supermarket is launching its own fashion range on August 25th.
The women’s line will include leather jackets for £14.99, shirts for £5.99 and jeans for £6.99. Never mind Asda and Tesco – Primark had better watch out when the discounters come calling. The sales model will be very much be the same as always – low prices, limited choice and available only while stocks last.
Lidl has sold limited clothing in the UK before, such as underwear and vests, but this is the first time they have attempted to compete with the likes of Asda’s George, Sainsbury’s Tu and Tesco’s F&F lines.
The news is likely to be met with groans from the beleaguered big four of the supermarket world (although Morrisons doesn’t sell much clothing, it still needs to give customers more reasons to shop there than anywhere else). It's also another nail in Marks and Spencer's coffin, which has yet to come up with a strategy to compete with cheap high street fashion.
But the grandes dames of fashion have little to fear. If your idea of an autumn outfit involves double-puffed sleeves, broderie anglaise and a huge-hooded wisteria cape, chances are you’re not looking to buy your clothes at German discount stores anyway.
Lidl’s menswear collection will come out in November. It remains to be seen whether they’ll undercut Primark on the price of cravats.