Textile View #126

TO HOLD & TO KEEP

We have already talked about the return of the 1960s mini and the Mary Quant exhibition at the V&A London. Vintage is in vogue – literally so, since UK Vogue asked in its May issue: “Does your dress look vintage?”. Kim Kardashian wore second-hand Azzedine Alaïa to the Paris fashion week, while pre-natal Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, wore 1960s Dior to a christening. High street stores H&M, Arket and &Other Stories have announced they would trial vintage and second-hand clothes sales on their websites. High-end boutique Browns has also just launched the label One Vintage, which uses antique textiles to create new garments. Farfetch is launching a new pilot program, Second Life, that will allow customers to trade in their old designer handbags.

Young designers continue to mine nostalgia as a source of inspiration, thereby adding credo to wearing second-hand. Vintage also suits current Instagram trends where authenticity and originality are key. After all, when you wear second-hand, the chances of others have the same garment are hugely reduced.

But, of course, it’s not just about looks. Sustainability is the hottest topic in fashion at the moment. A study shows that, last year, 64% of women were willing to buy pre-owned pieces compared with 45% in 2016 – and it is thought that by 2028, 13% of the clothes in women’s wardrobes are likely to be second-hand. Fashion circularity, a new term referring to the recycled life of a garment, is projected to reach $51bn in five years, up from the current $24bn, according to ThredUp’s annual resale report.

Pundits might argues about what actually the difference between second-hand and vintage. For some, vintage means pre-1980s, others more than 20 years old, still others speculate about what will be collectable in 10 years time. There are drawbacks about sizing, holes and moths. Yet, according to the ThredUp 2019 resale report, resale has grown 21 times faster than apparel retail in the past three years. More important, it all reduces waste!

Publisher’s view

Wellbeing is an industry that is growing twice as fast as the global economy. The problem is that it does exactly what fashion used to do, sell you a dream version of you.

Design and lifestyle

There is an increasing awareness of environmental catastrophe and the urgency to prevent it, inspiring designers to rethink the lifecycles of products. Circularity and eradicating plastic remain the centre of attention.

Womenswear designer messages

Gone is the emphasis on athleisure and grungy casualwear and in its place is a renewed respect for beautiful, traditional cloths or conversely technical nylons.

Menswear designer messages

After years of active wear supremacy the word on the street is ‘dress properly’. However, the way in which fabrics are combined presents a fresh and forward facing attitude.  

Womenswear fabrics: the pick of the best

Every season the fabric industry seems to be faced with a new conundrum: speed to market, number of collections per season, 14-day-turnarounds, personalization, upgraded service, smaller orders… The latest mandate is sustainability and recycling.

Menswear fabric orientations

Structurally, flat and smooth contrast with a rustic charm in tailored sets, while bold jersey sports use iconic, emblematic colours that have a new immediacy.

Womenswear fabric and colour forecast

There will be an astonishing variety of textures, colours and patterns in the AW 20/21 textile collections. This will range from the quieter, understated cashmere and wool blends in muted tones to the dramatic, large-scale checks in shades of reds, black and white.

Menswear colours, styling and fabrics

A/W 20/21 brings a season of diverse and surprising colour ranges in menswear. For the most part, there is a distinguished focus on nature, from authentic earthen neutrals to palettes of intense volcanic tones inspired by alien landscapes.

Accessories & trimmings forecast and inspirations

Excessively sensual, apparent fragility, rebelliously glamorous, techno, neither austere nor radical, the feminine revolution is on its way.

Womenswear knitwear colours, yarns and styling

The balance is shifting: a desire to connect with something meaningful alongside the smart use of resources is gradually nudging out the frivolous and trashy

Menswear knitwear styling concepts

We push perceptions to create something familiar but that is actually quite strange after the first glance – the familiarity brings a sense of ease, while the unexpected stimulates. 

Knitwear Forecast Spring/Summer 2021

Designers are researching ways to undo the normal rules of making knitwear. They are either pushing construction to the almost non-existent or developing a more aggressive, sports inspired robustness.

City view

London, New York and city of the moment, Birmingham. Diversity is celebrated within Birmingham and, as one of the most inclusive cities within the UK, there is a strong sense of community here. The city continues to develop itself as a city of culture and a key European retail destination.

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The Netherlands

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Textile View #125

Rent a life
 
Renting clothes is not a new concept: high-priced, designer items worn for a single occasion, such as a wedding, awards ceremony etc, have long been available for hire. Services that cater to high profile careerwear or short term situations like pregnancy also have their raison d’être. But now subscription services, which offer long-term borrowing on everyday items are mushrooming as well. Mall companies and retailers such as Ann Taylor, Express and New York & Company have all launched monthly subscription services with monthly fees ranging from US$50-95 as a complement to their sales model. Meanwhile, Westfield shopping centre in Stratford, east London, launched it first streetwear hire pop- up store last December. But does the rental model really work at mass consumption level.
According to Allied Market Research, the online clothing rental market will only reach US$1.8 billion by 2023 still a minnow compared to the trillion-dollar total fashion retail market. But are the figures right? According to research by Westfield, 7 out of 10 UK shoppers would pay to rent the hottest fashion/Instagram item of the moment. For 33% of them, the appeal lay in saving money, while 1 in 8 were motivated by the desire to shop in a more sustainable way.
And if renting did take off with consumers, it could help medium priced clothing chains fight off a stave of problems from declining traffic through to continuous markdowns and excess inventory. It could even provide a route to finding a new customer base. But then again, ownership is a powerful thing. Perhaps the biggest fashion question of the future will be how to differentiate between designing for renting and designing for keeps.
The Future of Making
From cyclical design to socially aware timeless aesthetics, from grown to engineered scenarios, these six themes are set to make and shape fashion in seasons and years to come.

 

Lifestyle
A softer world by OvN. Take a step back and relax! Be thankful for what you have, connect to the lightness of being, and enjoy life as it is!
Menswear r-t-w designers
It is clear that the future is very much on the designers’ minds – seen either through flashes of the past, techno rave or sci-fi. The season is utopian in colour for many, dystopian in layers of retro-futurism for others.
Womenswear inspirations
Attitude is everything, be it quiet and noiselessly resolute or fierce, provocative and strident. So many things are worth fighting for and our modern woman is determined to stand for all of them.

 

Womenswear key looks
In a cross gender/cross cultural world, casual disorderly clashes are welcomed. We see this code mixing with the drive for regenerating, recycling and a desire for responsible products.
Womenswear fabrics
The initial goal might be to manufacture more quickly, efficiently and sustainably, but we must continue to invest in textile technology to achieve more interesting and desirable product development.
Womenswear trimmings and accessories
From forceful and architectural empowerment to super smooth sensuality and assertive seduction, from the mythical goddesses of ancient times to the pussy power collective of our new modern world: feel free to celebrate female fashion.
Casualwear colours and styling
For S/S 2020, we look into developing consumer lifestyles: what drives their thinking, their choices and their vision of the future.
Menswear colours, styling and fabrics
S/S 2020 presents a season of diverse colour ranges, from dark and moody looks that reflect this uncertain time to fresh, nature inspired harmonies and flamboyant palettes that celebrate optimism and omni-culture.
Women’s and menswear fabric and colour forecast
For A/W 20/21, we present nine fabric inspirations born out of a love for textiles and an eagerness to trigger and inspire desirable garment concepts.
Women’s and menswear fabric and colour forecast
For A/W 20/21, we present nine fabric inspirations born out of a love for textiles and an eagerness to trigger and inspire desirable garment concepts.
Print design forecast
The A/W 20/21 season is about sisterhood, enchantment and magic – celebrating wild women through stories of folklore and colourful ritual.

 

Textile View #124

ARE WE REALLY CHANGING?

The environmental impact of production and consumption systems is central to any contemporary conversation about fashion and design. After more than 25 years of debate, suspicion and indecision, companies are slowly rising to the challenge of creating sustainable products. The question is: why did it take so long to arrive at this point and can the industry really get it to work right through the textile platform?

 

The reason behind this change of heart lies in the combination of a top-down approach by governments across the world, enforcing an environmental agenda embracing everything from plastic drinking straws to air and water pollution, with a groundswell of public opinion demanding and taking action on everything from fracking to fur. The anvil of consumer pressure is reflected not just in demands for transparency but also in the rise of veganism, company boycotts, interest in ethical indexes and, most significantly, in the past few months, decelerated consumption, the reasons for which go far beyond questions of austerity and economy.

 

And this pressure will only grow as Generation Z joins the ranks of the Millennials in the push for ‘responsible’ living. Their heroes are not high-street multiples or status-laden brands but change leaders such as Stella McCartney, who have placed ‘guilt-free’ principles at the heart of their brands. But, McCartney is not alone. More and more companies are seeing that sustainability and environmental awareness make sense not only morally but also economically. That’s not just because of possible savings in energy, water and processing costs, but also because sustainability is an asset to long-term corporate image and market value.

Lifestyle: principles of progress
 
We live in times of rapid change: this can be at once exhilarating and frightening. Wonderful new things happen, but we also see that resistance against anything new can take on extreme forms.
Dressing the Soul
 
While we seek the new and reject the aging in today’s society, Birgitta de�Vos invites us on an armchair journey embracing aging and discovering ageless beauty with her latest book Dressing the Soul | Ageless Beauty.

 

Womenswear designer colours
 
Designers in all four fashion capitals embracing women and gender-fluidity of every colour, age, size and creed in a celebration of diverse femininity.
Womenswear designer fabrics, silhouettes and styling details
 
A new elegance is emerging on the catwalk: free of restraint, women can show their power without dressing like warriors.

 

The latest additions to womenswear collections with pointers to S/S 2020
 
Textiles is echoing the world in its topsy-turvy rush from confidence and optimism to uncertainty and pessimism. And that’s a shame, because fabric manufacturers continue to be alchemists.
Womenswear fabric and colour forecast
 
Exquisite butterflies with their unusual colourways and striking patterns that adorn their wings are pure inspiration for textile design.

 

Menswear colours, styling and fabrics
 
Dark and moody palettes reflect an anxious age where in the face of ongoing social and political unrest and uncertainty, confrontational angst has become the norm.

 

Accessories & trimmings forecast and inspirations
 
A duality that mirrors slow industry and is manifestly anti-consumerist, a duality that plays between hand-craftsmanship and technical functionality, a game of minimal and abrupt decorative contradictions.
Womenswear knitwear colours, yarns and styling
 
A lightness and buoyancy permeates our thinking for the summer season. We look with fresh eyes at the issues that are fundamental going forward: things that matter to us and indeed the planet.

 

Knitwear yarn, structure and colour forecasts
 
A frazzled fashion for alternative ways to dress plays with textures spun out of a gilded sparkle.
 
City view: London, Paris, NY and Seattle

Textile View #123

AUTUMN 2018 COMPOSED

After 25 years of trying, the fashion world has suddenly woken up to the imperatives of sustainability, environmental control, wastage and recycling. Technology and synthetics were seen as the enemy, the propagators of stuffocation and fast obsolescence. But not anymore! If we are to really confront the terrible impact of consumption, then we not only have to tackle sustainability and recycling issues in the processing and manufacturing stages but combine them with winning aesthetics at the design stage. To do this, we need to believe in innovation and technology as much as reduction and recyclability as the ways forward to what we most love and aspire to, to fabrics that are desirable, inclusive and serviceable and garments that make us look beautiful. As we say in our Fabric Preview S/S 2020, where we list nine ways to achieve this, we should never forget that its aesthetics that really enable us to connect with what we wear. Technology provides the freedom to create anything we want: our values set the boundaries to make it human and sustainable. It’s a wonderful new combination, as we set out to show in our Lifestyle pages,‘The Next Phase in Making and Creating’.

Publisher’s view

Luxury that is democratic and open to all is quite a step away from the scenario where elitism and exclusivity were its very raison d’être. Who will manage the change?

City view

We look at Frome, a multi-award winning, culturally vibrant market town in Somerset that prides itself on its independence, its strong spirit of community, innovation and enterprise.

Season highs & lows

What were the real winners S/S 2018 in retail and how will that influence S/S 2019

Menswear r-t-w designer styling & colours

There is a contemporary lexicon of menswear that defines a new establishment: it features the tracksuit at its core. The tracksuit is not a suit, but is the sharpest way for men to dress right now.

Menswear r-t-w designer fabric analysis

Designers are rejecting the old norms and tired categorization of clothing and, instead, looking to think intelligently about new material choices that are lifting menswear into other realms.

Womenswear inspirations

A new assertiveness is emerging that shines a light on our future direction. Young people are embracing the immense difficulties facing humanity with courage and mettle.

Womenswear colours

We power down and take a brush and some paints and rediscover how colours really sit together and how each hue gradates and flows from deep intensity to softer tints.

Womenswear key looks

Fashion is responding to the ever-increasing multidisciplinary approach within creative trainings, where boundaries are blurred between art, science and product.

Womenswear fabrics

Autumn/Winter 19/20 is a season of contradictions, a season when fashion takes on new meanings to reflect the changes in the world around us.

Womenswear trimmings and accessories

A new freedom of independence, optimism and personalization is in the air, creating a disorderly burst of energy, creativity and vitality. Fashion is liberating itself, stepping firmly ahead into a promising future.

Casualwear colours and styling

Fashion and design is at the forefront of the fight to save the planet, as we embrace accountability and preservation. Research, technology and design are the keys to change.

Menswear orientations

Men’s fabrication this winter leant heavily towards multi-styles of design, scale and pattern making, with the check holding pole position: patterned clean or hazy, pure tech and raspy or luxe-soft and relaxed.

Womenswear and menswear fabric and colour forecast

We came up with the following nine textile design strategies for positive change within in the industry. 

Print design forecast

Start to influence the world with your imagination not with your nightmares. Dream of beauty! Dream of tolerance! Dream of art! Dream…

Lifestyle trends

New ways of making and creating bring unlimited freedom in design. Do the unexpected, be wild, unique and rebellious.

The future of making

This overview presents meaningful developments focusing mainly on young designers and recent graduates as symbols of progression, opportunity and potential.

Textile View #122

SUMMER 2018: PRONOUNCED


Luxury Street

The most talked-about collaboration of the moment is the appointment of Virgil Abloh, the founder of streetwear sensation Off-White, as men’s artistic director of Louis Vuitton. This encapsulates the massive change taking place in fashion at the moment and shows how luxury brands are looking to the cultural energy and business model of streetwear to stay relevant.

The question everyone is asking is whether all this truly heralds a new age of luxury streetwear, permanently changing our understanding of clothes. Certainly a ‘Millennial mindset’ is taking hold across the luxury market. Generations Y and Z are now the main growth engine of that market, driving 85% of luxury expansion last year, according to Bain & Company. By 2025, they are expected to account for 45% of total luxury goods spending. Each generation has its cultural touchstones and Millennials are clearly more in tune with hip hop than red-carpet glamour. They want brands that reflect what they consider more authentic cultural associations.

What’s more, these generations were brought up on the internet; they live a socially networked life which streetwear, with its graphic visual approach and irony, can so much better reflect than formal fashion. We are also living in the age of drop marketing, with its constant flow of new product releases: street and athleisure are much better at providing a stream of novelty at Instagram speed than traditional luxury fashion. Most important of all, streetwear exists within a culture of collaboration, and collaboration models are one of the biggest factors driving innovation at the moment.

City view
We look at Lisbon, which has undergone somewhat of a cultural emergence over recent years, with international visitor numbers having risen by 12% year on year and creatives citing the city as ‘the new Berlin’. Updates, as ever, on London, Paris and NY.
Season in review
Autumn/Winter 18/19
Womenswear designer colours 
The designer colour choice for A/W18/19 delivered strong amplified messages with vivid colour reinforcing a powerful “Don’t-Mess-With-Me” attitude.
Menswear designer messages 
When a designer steps off the wheel and bravely presents a focused collection that is relevant and stands apart from the masses, we welcome it with open arms.  
Season in focus
Spring/Summer 2019
The latest additions to womenswear fabric collections 
Manufacturers have been working hard to combine the two talking points of the season – sustainability and relevance. In a way, they are polarised objectives, but by using new technology to find natural solutions, the results are surprisingly good!
Menswear fabric orientations 
The summer fabric mood took two directions: the sporting life – an active leisure or athletic style with tech performance at its heart or a more subtle game of smooth refinement in gentler colourations for fluid, sensual satins and filament silky looks.
Forward view
Autumn/Winter 19/20
Womenswear fabric and colour forecast 
As the feminist climate intensifies, the merging of men’s and womenswear collections escalates. Textiles will range from classic, non-gender specific designs to ultra-feminine florals.
Menswear colours, styling and fabrics 
A/W 19/20 remains colour intense from the deepest tinted darks, through warmly filtered reds and ochres, updated flat primaries to hyper-fantastical pastels.
Accessories & trimmings forecast
This season offers eclectic inspiration, turning around accepted codes and blurring still further different market segments.
Womenswear knitwear colours, yarns and styling 
The intertwining of radical technical advancements and the natural order of things points the way forward.
Menswear knitwear styling concepts 
Now we see what we have done to our planet, we are reflecting on our mistakes and, seeking redemption; we look for action aided by technology and natural resources.
Knit forecast
For S/S 2020, materials break boundaries and combine to create new tensions where an eco smart sustainable edge is at its invisible heart.
Design and lifestyle – fashion meets furniture 
In a year overshadowed by the #metoo discussion, data protection issues and political distress, designers and brands appear to be avoiding moral, social and political issues focusing instead on pollution, future cities and new branding opportunities.

Textile View #121

PARTICULAR

We have crossed the frontier. 2018 will see major growth in the use of Artificial Intelligence as a tool to re-shape the fashion business with major AI innovations to be expected in predictive forecasting, capacity planning, merchandising, automated production and delivery. However, the possibilities with AI go much further than that as developments move its potential way beyond the mechanical into the creative. For example, Amazon is on the verge of creating the first AI designer, with the development of an algorithm that designs clothes by analysing images, copying popular styles and using them to build completely new designs. Meanwhile, enriched data will allow for new opportunities in customer relationship management, improving customer insights and, last but not least, much more reliable demand projection thereby reducing forecasting errors. Twenty percent of executives who took part in the Business of Fashion-McKinsey Global Fashion Survey believe that the use of AI to reinvent design, merchandising and marketing” will be an important trend. However, there is still a significant number who remain dubious about AI’s lack of flexibility and intuition for it to be a major player in fashion’s deep creative process. This division of thinking is at the forefront of our A/W 19/20 forecasts where we ask the question: Should the fashion industry be led by algorithms?” and make a strong case for accidental fashion. Above all, we look at fabrics as tools serving fashion as a whole, enabling designers as well as users to mash up looks, to create their own interpretation of garments.

City view A/W 17/18
Our city of the moment is Vancouver. This city, associated with an outdoor lifestyle and the launch of athleisure-wear the world over, is undergoing somewhat of a luxury boom.
 
Womenswear inspirations: Spring/Summer 2019
The season sees a strengthening of the movement towards responsible design, marking out a transparent production trail and asking ethical questions along the way.
Womenswear colours: Spring/Summer 2019
Our new summer colours continue to echo the mood of change in fashion and offer a palette that can explore different aesthetics and is adaptable and fluid enough to meet differing needs.
Womenswear Key Looks: Spring/Summer 2019
There remains an atmosphere of change and the fashion industry needs to be watchful of peripheral influences. Our attention for S/S 19 is drawn to both high and low stimuli at opposite ends of the design spectrum.
Casualwear colours and styling: Spring/Summer 2019
How do you feel? Really. How do your emotions affect your daily interactions, your choices, your life?
Menswear styling, colours and fabrics: Spring/Summer 2019
We explore themes that range from the melancholy and sensual, the nostalgic and child-like to untold tales found in historic interior references. We end with a vibrant and joyful theme that is indicative of hope.
Womenswear and menswear fabric and colour forecast: Autumn/Winter 19/20
Should the fashion industry be led by algorithms? We make a strong case for accidental design, wherein a designer wishes his or her work to achieve a specific goal, but ends up achieving another.
Print design forecast: Autumn/Winter 19/20
Design is the essence of fashion. Colour is the expression�of Sein”. The capital of beauty should not be scraped o the floor of social media, but whole heartedly embraced and invested in. Felt, smelt, touched and heard…
Knitwear forecast: Autumn/Winter 19/20
Forms follow structures and natural shapes emerge from an interplay of ribs, and multi textured stripings re-delineate classics.