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What will be fashion trends in the future?

Updated: Jan 6

After this Covid-19 pandemic, the fashion industry will never be the same again.

Consumer shopping habits are already changing… People are now interested in knowing from what materials the clothes are made, how they are made, and in what conditions. People will rather spend more on classic items that can be worn all year round or on high-end luxury items that will last a long time or there will be more people buying second-hand clothing.

The fashion industry has done too much damage to the environment over the years: It’s one of the largest consumers of the global water supply and produces 10% of all humanity’s carbon emissions, the millions of liters of dye polluting the world’s waterways and all the synthetic textiles used to pollute the oceans with microplastics, ending up in a landfill.

Production of clothing is so cost-effective that brands rather over manufacture products rather than being in fear that they run out of stock. Imagine that overproduction is about 30-40% each season, more than half of the clothes end up in a landfill and many clothes are barely worn and even more rarely recycled. I also learned that many luxury brands still burn unsold products, luckily at least Burberry stopped. Hope others will do the same.

Many designers, for example, Giorgio Armani, want things to change. He wants customers to buy clothes full price and put summer items, like sandals and dresses, on sale at the end of the season in late September, rather than June like now.

It will take time to adapt. Right now it works like this: fashion collections are presented six months before they arrive in stores. Fast fashion brands take inspiration from these collections and sell them to consumers before designers do. By the time the designer items are in the stores, many people already have this type of clothes and don’t buy the original item full price… they either wait for the sale to start or don’t buy it at all.

Since 2016 Burberry wants to have a “see now, buy now” approach, meaning that fashion shows should take place right before the season starts and collections reach the stores.

One of the very good examples is Tommy Hilfigers’ this year collection TommyNow. The collection was available straight away, all around the world, in-store and online, as soon as they hit the runway. This means that the items were in store stores three times faster than normal collections… in just six months from product design and release.

What else is in the future?

Digital clothing is the future and it’s an exciting method to experiment with technology… for example, Gucci has let customers “try” Ace sneakers through augmented reality, and Tommy Hilfiger has digital showrooms just to name a couple.

In the future, it will be popular to share designs on Instagram before being produced, for example, the Scandinavian brand, Carlings, created and sold a T-shirt whose designs can be changed digitally using Instagram filters.

Also, Amazon is another great example of how augmented reality can be used in fashion. It has been patenting a virtual mirror where the user can try products in the comfort of their home. Imagine trying on clothes without ordering many and returning the ones you don’t like.

3D Printing

Boston- based Ministry of Supply (a performance professional apparel brand) unveiled an in-store 3D printer that creates customized knitwear… imagine that it can produce a customized blazer in just 90 minutes! There’s no waste!

Also, Adidas is a good example in 3D -printing, it has partnered with Carbon to create 3D -printed sneakers and shoe parts.

Sustainable materials

You can notice the shift to sustainability especially in the shoe industry:

Allbirds, a New Zealand-American footwear company, is designing environment-friendly footwear. Their first shoe was made from New Zealand superfine merino wool, called the Wool Runner. Now they started offering footwear made with eucalyptus tree fiber and also released a flip-flop collection made of bioplastic foam from sugar cane.

Plus, if you didn’t know yet, Adidas, is making sneakers with recycled ocean plastic. How cool is that!?

In the clothing industry there are a couple of examples:

H&M’s Conscious Collection has a leather jacket and cowboy boots made using Piñatex, which is a leather-like material made from pineapple leaves that are usually discarded in pineapple production. H&M’s goal is to increase the use of sustainable materials to 100% by the year 2030.

Levi’s is using hemp in their new line of sustainable clothing to make them more easily recyclable in their Wellthread x Outerknown collection. The company’s Water<Less(R) Denim line was created to reduce the amount of water used in producing some of the brand’s most popular styles and fits.

Hope many other brands will make good decisions in the future, so we leave a better world to live in for our children. We can’t erase the mistakes and huge errors that we made until now but we can all change, step by step, making little, but different decisions in our lives.

I, for example, try to buy as many as possible second-hand clothes for myself and for the kids, especially now that they grow so fast. For me, it’s a waste to spend nearly 100€ on shoes which are worn in a perfect scenario for six months. Imagine doing that for all of my three kids just for shoes. Then this year, I had a good look into my closets to see what I have and what I actually wear. Some of the clothes I donated and some I sold. Many of them I actually started to wear again... you can actually find “new” clothes in your closet! 😊

Hope you enjoyed reading this article, feel free to comment or ask any questions.

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All the best,