Fashion trends have always been at the forefront of change, innovation, and modernisation. It is pushed on by individuals and societies seeking change, new developments in science and technology and new materials become available and ready for use. With so many industry commentators suggesting where fashion will go next, we looked at three key fashion changes that are predicted to become a reality in the near future.
Sustainable – Shifting to Slow Fashion
It is no shock to learn that fashion is one of the biggest problems when it comes to climate change, with it being responsible for around a tenth of all emissions each year! This is because consumers are constantly looking for new and cheap items that can be worn for a season and thrown away, but this fast fashion is slowly losing appeal as demands now focus on more sustainable choices and more eco-friendly manufacturing methods. Although there is a generational gap reported, as Generation Z reportedly struggle to find ethical, sustainable clothes that they like, despite a desire to fight climate change.
In fact, nearly half of fast fashion producers now report that they see a decline in consumer purchasing as people move forward to a more sustainable life. This demand from consumers is resulting in the rise of sustainable brands on the high street as well as new and innovative ways of making and designing pieces becoming more mainstream. Big-name brands are following suit and offering new pieces that have been sustainably made, helping to push the narrative of sustainability forwards.
The other major shift seen in purchasing patterns is that the pre-owned and vintage market has seen a surge in sales as people look to reuse more and buy new less. From online charity shops to pre-owned social media groups, the internet is helping individuals find the items they want at a low price and helping to reduce the number of fast fashion items that are used every year. It is clear that sustainability has an important role to play as fashion moves forward.
Data Led Decisions
Fashion has moved from being an industry that dictates a look that consumers follow to one that seeks to understand consumer needs and desires. To do this successfully, the industry is making use of data to understand what consumers want as well as analysing their spending trends to help them create items that more likely to sell because they meet the customer’s needs.
The data that is being collated includes information such as colours that are popular, social media trends that are amassing a large following, popular opinions on issues such as climate change and even the current political landscape. Collating all of this and analysing it allows brands to produce collections that resonate with the consumer and are more likely to sell well.
The result is an industry that can use data to reduce waste, improve efficiency and understand consumers better than ever before. Therefore, as more data is collated and analysed, the fashion industry can hone its offerings to really appeal to its target consumer group.
Embracing the Digital Experience
When you consider that the world has gone through a monumental change with the COVID pandemic, it is no shock to learn that the online world has seen a surge in the number of fashion lovers who have started to buy more online. With convenience, speed and delivery to your door, consumers are enjoying being able to control their retail experience from the comfort of their own homes.
The only downside is that trying items on before you buy is not possible, and this means lots of returns being sent back and forth all over the country. This issue has given fashion brands the challenge of creating a sales platform that offers an immersive experience so that individuals can be more certain of their purchase before they checkout.
Some of the key digital tools we expect to become the new norm include virtual advisors, virtual sizing support, virtual showrooms and even a VR or AR trying on experience. These tools, when combined, should reduce a significant load of returns being sent and will allow consumers to feel happier and more confident about the purchases they have made.
Interestingly, the digital revolution is also set to support customers who still want to head to stores to shop. Displaying digital designs inside a shop will help consumers to see everything that is on offer, and with technology working toward haptic sensor experiences that allow you to feel an item digitally, you can even work out if you like the feel of it before you try it on!
Is the Future of Fashion Bright?
There are many new and innovative ways to keep fashion at the forefront of society without destroying the planet. Consumers want to enjoy the innovation that fashion offers, and it is this continual demand that means the industry needs to revolutionise to move ahead. These three changes have the potential to results in a sustainable industry that focuses on consumer demands as well as efficient production – we cannot wait for it to be delivered!