Overall sales were broadly level with last year at John Lewis last week (to March 7).
The department store group’s buying director for home Christine Kasoulis described the result as “a good achievement considering we were up against price-matching activity from last year, which came a week earlier this year”.
At a directorate level, it was Home that led the way with a 3.1% year-on-year gain. Home Accessories and Gifts performed particularly well at 16% up on last year.
Mother’s Day was the big story with Gift Food & Seasonal up 32% and Stationery up 11%, driven by cards at 19% up. Outdoor Living continued its “incredible early run” with Outdoor Buildings up 600% on last year.
It was a tougher week for EHT (Electrical and Home Technology) with sales just behind last year. However, within Small Electrical was up 9% on last year, supported by John Lewis’ exclusive launch of the new Dyson dehumidifier.
Branch-wise, johnlewis.com had “another very good week” at 11.3% up. Within the physical estate Ipswich, Exeter and Chester continued their strong starts to the year, up 16.7%, 5.0% and 3.9% respectively.
She concluded: “With the weekend’s good weather prompting spring purchases and Mothering Sunday and Easter around the corner, there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about the weeks ahead.”