The Truth Behind Trends

As trends come and go, many of us don’t take the time to think just how those trends came to be. Why are we suddenly buying anything and everything in millennial pink? And who decided that denim skirts from our middle school days are socially acceptable again? I briefly mentioned the notable forecasting firm, Doneger, in a previous article (click here to read!), but they are only one of many in the industry who have perfected the art of fashion forecasting.

It’s so much more than simply deciding “fringe is in this season”. Forecasting takes into account our society’s economic status, technological innovations, societal uproars as well as the art, music and fashion that we find beautiful and inspiring at that moment in time.

Every company from retail giants to fashion magazines to homeware brands practice the art of trend forecasting. Quite honestly, it could be considered the basis of the business operation. Companies analyze these macrotrends and apply them to their personal business models to fit their consumer. Without it, editors would not know what’s best to feature in fashion spreads and designers couldn’t produce pieces that are marketable.

Success in utilizing a forecast is in the analyzation and familiarity with your target market. They are called macrotrends for a reason; they’re broad. The key is to take these findings and transform them into something tangible. Every macrotrend can be interpreted in a thousand different ways depending on who this trend is being analyzed for. Do they take risks or do they like innovation in small doses? Are they looking for a comfortable or cutting edge wardrobe?

As an example, I took the recently released Doneger macrotrends for Autumn Winter 2018/2019 (Yes, you read that right. Fashion really does work that far in advance.) and condensed their extensive report into a simple concept mood board and street style inspiration board.

Origins: Say hello to nature for this season. Doneger describes this as “Medieval meets mountain living.” In this trend, you’ll find rich, earthy tones and dreary neutrals. Think thick fabrics, like wool, furs and a focus on sustainability.

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Revival: On the contrary to Origin’s Medieval essence, Revival is the new Renaissance. It’s the appreciation for art, beauty and innovation in a world that can seem so dark. Fashion romances with delicate and art inspired silhouettes as well as features intricacy in details. Revival-DonegerAW18

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Imperial: This trend is where luxury meets power. I can already picture the ultra-fierce women of New York strutting the streets in these bold tones, lavish fabrics and opulent prints. 
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Infusion: This trend quite honestly has a little bit of everything. Doneger literally uses “granny chic” to describe this trend’s whimsical florals and kitschy graphics. It is reminiscent on all things retro- but with a modern twist. This prediction also shows us the oversized silhouettes and bright colors of the 90’s and 80’s aren’t going anywhere.
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Doneger Presentation: Processing Progress

Without question, Doneger is one of the leading forces in fashion, and David Wolfe is at the forefront. Doneger probably decided why you’re wearing cropped, frayed jeans right now or have the sudden urge to purchase all things millennial pink. It’s a common misconception that Doneger tells retailers what to produce. What they’re really doing is interpreting trends, art, economics, technology, etc. and translating their findings to the language of fashion.

David Wolfe is the head Creative Director of the firm focusing on all things fashion, technology and color. He is actually an Ohio native himself and was more than welcoming to our class as we listened in on one of his notorious presentations titled Processing Progress. His presentation started by including big-picture ideas, like the soon reality of hover cars and pioneering efforts in sustainability, then continuing on to more concrete trends. I can’t spill all of the industry secrets; but I can say that we’ll be seeing a lot more of color, innovative menswear, utility in fashion and no doubt that athleisure is here to stay.

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Country to City Chic

From capes to ponchos, the oversized sweaters have been making a huge come back. They’re a fun way to change up the silhouettes in your wardrobe. To make it even better, they’re unbelievably comfortable! A/W 2014/15 has taken much influence from western pioneer culture and given it an updated, modern twist. My style is far from country chic, but I’ve incorporated the silhouette and wore it in a way that’s consistent with my sense of style. I paired it with form fitting black pants and knee high leather boots for a more sleek, urban vibe.

FullSizeRender FullSizeRender_2 IMG_7189Cape Sweater: $35 H&M/ Pants: $20 (sale) H&M/Boots: $70 (sale) DSW