"Leading trend forecasting companies Fashion Snoops and WGSN hosted seminars at the CENTRSTAGE fashion event in Hong Kong. The discussions centered around trends for the Asia-Pacific fashion market. While Fashion Snoops led ‘The Key Summary of Retail Trends for 2017’ seminar on September 7, WGSN led the ‘Retail Destinations of the Future’ seminar on September 8. The seminars were part of the CENTRESTAGE fashion event held from September 7-10, organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC)."
Leading trend forecasting companies Fashion Snoops and WGSN hosted seminars at the CENTRSTAGE fashion event in Hong Kong. The discussions centered around trends for the Asia-Pacific fashion market. While Fashion Snoops led ‘The Key Summary of Retail Trends for 2017’ seminar on September 7, WGSN led the ‘Retail Destinations of the Future’ seminar on September 8. The seminars were part of the CENTRESTAGE fashion event held from September 7-10, organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC).
Trendspotting for Asia-Pacific fashion
For Fashion Snoops, Michael Leow, Asia-Pacific Sales & Marketing Head, presented an analysis of key trends impacting fashion retail for the upcoming year. Leow said ahead of each season, his company works to map and analyses cultural shifts and new ideas that will impact consumer demand and fashion decisions. Talking about mapping macro-trends, Leow said there are 10 macro-trend stories that will impact fashion over the next year. He presented five of these key macro-trend stories.
First trend was ‘Nowstalgia’, defined as the trend story of looking at the past through the lens of today. Consumers are showing a tendency to seek out brands that embrace their glory days with the convenience of today’s technology. He said this trend will also showcase the blurring of digital and analogue elements citing the example of classical jewellery designs incorporating emoji imagery.
‘Beaux Arts’ the second trend is the rise of the artist as an intellectual in response to several seasons of athletic wear. Leow said people are on the lookout for a more intellectual and bookish feel. This trend story will be particularly impactful during the Autumn/Winter 2017-2018 season and feature an eclectic mix of 70’s inspired colours, such as burnt orange, patterns such as the classic chevron, and textiles including denim.
The third trend, is the awakening of the global spirit as people are seeking out new and meaningful travel experiences. For Spring/Summer 2017, this trend story will feature the micro-trend of ‘Raw Coast’ which is a surf aesthetic that features minimalistic but rustic designs. For Autumn/Winter 2017-18, this trend story will feature the micro-trend of ‘Indo’ exemplified by Vietnamese nature and culture. Leow said that this trend will feature colours inspired by the Vietnamese jungle incorporated into local cultural and military designs.
The fourth is ‘New Luxury’ that represents modern desire for genuine quality and natural materials which he said was a luxury aspiration accessible to all. For Fall/Winter 2017-18, he detailed the micro-trend of “Iliad”, an ancient Greek inspired trend story. In terms of colour, this micro-trend will feature a sumptuous range of neoclassical hues such as garnets and milky marbles.
And finally it’s ‘Action’ that represents the cultural shift of masses rebelling against the upper echelons of society while impacted design work will be the crystalizing of discontent. For Autumn/Winter 2017-18, this trend story will be seen in the micro-trend of ‘Re: Volution’ that features military aspects in an urban setting. He explained that designs will have hip-hop attitudes mixed with brash, punk sensibilities and feature materials such as scorched denim, rugged canvas and mesh.
Focus on Millennial consumer
For WGSN Erica Ng, Senior Editor Retail Intelligence Specialising in the Asia Pacific region explored changing consumer expectations and behaviour of the millennial generation that is fuelling the creation of new retail destinations. Understanding shifting gears of the millennial consumers for the upcoming trends impacting fashion designs, Erica examined how the evolution of consumers is fuelling the upcoming trends that will impact retail destinations of the future. Focusing on the millennial consumer generation, Erica explained that this generation is maturing and reaching their peak purchasing years and should be a key target market for retailers. She explained how millennials have an increasingly ambiguous relationship with ownership and prefer experiences over simply purchasing and owning things.
With 68 per cent of consumers now willing to rent their personal belongings for profit, she defined millennials as generation rent. In terms of fashion retail, she said that this generation treats clothes as assets rather than personal goods with sentimental value and that retailers need to cater to this lifestyle in new ways. With this in mind, Erica suggested that trend-forward retailers can capture market share by offering subscription-style services and curated selections to cater to this group that is often inundated with too many options and too little time.
On of retail synergies holding the key with regards to this new style of consumer, the lady discussed how the millennial lifestyle would disrupt traditional retail and shared her insights on upcoming retail destination trends. She explained that successful retailers will need to find synergies between mobile apps, online shopping, physical retail and social media to effectively capture and maintain market share with this generation.
Focusing on digital retail innovations, she identified third party retail platforms and conversational commerce as key retail destinations of the future. She further explained that third party retailing removes the brand away from centre of the retail experience but has the potential to create value for both retailers and consumers. Third party retailing platforms can draw customers by offering the convenience of curating and selling multiple brands on a single platform.
She said these new platforms are also particularly effective when combined with conversational commerce to leverage endorsements from social influencers such as celebrities. She also added that established brands can partner with these new types of platforms in order to expose themselves to new customers even if it means they have to relinquish control of the retail experience.