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Grasping fashion, trend forecasting with WGSN

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Fashion and trend forecasting is the prediction of mood, behaviour and buying habits of the consumer at a particular time or season. It is no longer a question of finding your markets or consumers by age, geography or income, but looking into their purchase propensity, based on their culture, mood, beliefs, occasion and geographic locations. It is also dependent on fashion cycle and plays a major role in introductory phase of recurring fashion cycles. In this article, we illustrate the four key influential fashion trends derived from in-depth research and analysis by WGSN: Digital Wave, Edge Lands, Encounter Culture and Pause.
WGSN is the global trend authority for fashion and the creative industries.
Senior Editor – Street Style and Trend Specialist from Hong Kong, Anupreet Bhui, elaborates on different fashion trends forecasted, while unfolding the different sources of inspiration, mood boards, colour palettes and range plan – both for men’s and women’s wear.
Digital Wave’s vision is to blend global environment with India. “The last couple of seasons have seen re-emergence of old eras, mostly the 80s. Bright colours, CDs, VCR’s, Batman games, walkman have a sense of nostalgia associated with them and these elements aff ect the trends,” she said. Colour palettes inspired from the theme will have loud and vibrant colours, be it bright red, sunshine yellow, deep magenta or black.
The digital wave theme had three different aspects to it — Eastern girl, which comprised of power suit dressing for women; Armani Classics – quintessential Armani suits from the 80s; and Ship Shape which focuses on traditional stripe prints and mix match of stripes. Women’s wear would see a huge trend of duster jackets, double breasted jackets, crop top and pleated voluminous pants. This suggested that next season trend would be more about relaxed and minimalistic clothing.
The range for men’s wear is probably going to be more about angles, but with soft edges, deconstructed checks, breaking or splicing patterns. Anupreet also mentioned two more themes – Cyber Nights and Pattern Interference, both inspirations for casual as well as formal wear designs.
The second vision elaborated on by Anupreet was Edge Lands. The background of this vision revolves around areas where cities end and farms and open land starts. Bhui highlighted the suburban areas, abandoned buildings, and factories, all of which work as a source of inspiration for the theme. It was also about being nostalgic and returning back to the drawing board, to the old times. “The designs from these stories will probably be the new cool,” she said.
Colours drawn from this story are homespun feel palette with more muted colours. The different patterns or designs which can be adapted are Urban Folk — with more of embroideries, pearls, laces, cutworks; Worn with Love — little texture, fl oral and rustic at the same time; Pretty Brutal — bringing masculinity to the designs, especially for women’s sportswear; Tough Love — giving a tomboyish look to the attire, like denims. Bhui also emphasized on sportswear, jumpsuits and wide leg pants, the latter two being the key trends of the season. Men’s wear leaned more towards weekend styling, comfortable and relaxed outfits. Chintzy floral, large military style buttons, loose oversized jacket with rolled up shorts, all these are forecasted trends. While mentioning about these range, she pointed out the blurring lines between various categories, be it casual or formals.
Talking about culture, Anupreet mentioned India and its diversity, which plays an important role in trends. The urban influx and increase in globalisation of trends allows innovation of ideas and creation of new trends. At this time of the world, lot of sharing of information happens through social media and through different mediums, which allows access to different trends. Using things that are handcrafted and recycled could also be one of the trends.
Pause focused on relaxing and experiencing things. The core of this theme was real time experience and not the virtual or technology driven world. Coming to the colour palette, metallic, deep corals, apricots were the colours which radiate a more peaceful sort of feeling. In terms of fabrics, more of fragile and breathable fabrics are expected to be in trend. The women’s wear range mood revolves around lounge wear. Even drapes and ruffles could be utilised skillfully.
For men’s wear, the theme is Zen lounge — quiet and meditative. Sporty and modern take on easy and everyday tailoring. In short, easy, relaxed and hybrid styling could be the new thing, as per Bhui.
Rajan Verma: Images Business of Fashion
Amrutha Madhusudanan & Priyanka Kabra: Pearl Academy, Mumbai
Divyani Marwah & Kavina Mehta: Nift, Mumbai

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