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The Duchess of Sussex and Sir David Attenborough drive shopping trends in latest figures from John Lewis

PUBLISHED: 09:02 23 October 2018 | UPDATED: 09:22 23 October 2018

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in April 2018. Picture: PA Wire/PA Images

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in April 2018. Picture: PA Wire/PA Images

PA Wire/PA Images

Alarm clocks are falling out of fashion while reusable coffee cups and Mulberry bags are on the rise thanks to Sir David Attenborough and the Duchess of Sussex respectively.

John Lewis has released its annual rundown of sales trends for the year so far, with major events encouraging consumers to keep spending. This started with the football World Cup, when sales of 60in televisions soared by 249%, corner sofas were up 87% and John Lewis sold 40% more barbecues between June 24 and July 14 than usual.

Sales of the Mulberry Darley bag saw a 327% spike after the Duchess of Sussex was pictured carrying one, while her choice of a bright yellow dress for a Your Commonwealth reception in July resulted in sales of yellow dresses quadrupling.

In the four months after the final episode of Blue Planet II, sales of reusable coffee cups, travel cups and flasks were up 71% on last year.

The Love Island show also made its presence felt at the high street stalwart, spurring a rush of sales of inflatables and water bottles similar to those featured in the programme.

The department store has also reduced its range of alarm clocks by 30% after sales fell by 16% over the last year, as people turn to mobile phones for their wake-up call.

Sales of traditional door knockers have fallen by 9% as homeowners invest in smart doorbells with features such as live video streaming and wi-fi-enabled apps.

The store said sales are up 367% since it started selling them in July last year.

The days of small televisions and DVD players also seem to be numbered, with the most commonly sold screen size doubling to 70in from 2010’s 36in and the rise of streaming services sending sales of DVD players tumbling by 40%.

John Lewis said the year was “one of the toughest retailers have seen” - the partnership reported a 98.8% profits crash for the first half of the year - as uncertainty around Brexit and difficult trading conditions dominated the high street.

However, the “biggest surprise” for the retailer was a resurgence in popularity of the thong after years of declining sales, with sales up 72% alongside suspenders, which were up 132%.

Meanwhile, for the first time the majority of online shoppers (42%) visited the John Lewis website via their smartphone, while the number of orders placed on mobile phones increased by 35%.

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