Sober and cautious: M&S spring style mirrors mood in the boardroom

Next season’s long sleeves, midi lengths and muted tones showcase prudent aesthetic in challenging times for retailer

The Marks & Spencer fashion showcase operates on three levels. It is a sneak peek of the choice pieces which will be on sale next season. It is a litmus test as to which catwalk trends will break out of the high-fashion bubble and make it big on the high street. Lastly – and this is why it is viewed with interest beyond the fashion world – it is a biannual insight into the self-image and strategy of a retail giant. Twice a year the mood in the M&S boardroom – bullish or timid, experimental or nostalgic – is spelt out in hemlines, price points and colour combinations.

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