Research point 3.2

This research point is concerning trend forecasting for the textile and fashion industry – the print, patterns and colours that are predicted up to 2 years in advance.

Now I confess to knowing very little about this area of the textile industry and have not been an avid  follower of fashion but rather a gentle one watching the trends as they come in and deciding what I like at the time rather than looking ahead and hence I feel I come into this research point a little blind!  I obviously enjoy textiles tremendously but like to work with what I know I can use at the time but also do understand now the importance of the necessity of style forecasting.

Having read the course notes and also now done the research I understand how these trends define moods or colours and themes and also the teams of people that are involved in each company – the main teams predicting the fashions and fabrics work up to two years in advance but apparently the colour team work up to 3 years in advance whilst the teams concerning fabric and material development are even further due to the fact that obviously it needs to be made into the clothing or any other items in the textile industry.  There are obviously also specific teams or individuals who research trends for specific markets such as the sports, teenage or older markets  or indeed furnishings of any genre – each has its own requirements regarding colours or fabrics and it goes without question themes and trends are also seasonal.

I have found it quite difficult to research style forecasting companies online due to the fact that many requirement payment for reports or subscriptions and consequentially find that I can discover trends for the current 2017 spring/summer season and looking ahead to 2018 but very little beyond that – this is a frustration but perhaps it is now time I started getting some of the fashion or home magazines!

The course notes ask me to note down any trends that catch my eye and elaborate on what I think of those trends and the first one that does is the floral trend that is apparently going to be very strong this summer.  I am a serious lover of flowers and this floral trend really grabs my attention – a soft feminine trend that embraces the flowers of spring and summer in  pale pinks,  rose, blue and soft muted  pastel tones – exactly my favourite personal colours that quietly I love painting or doing embroidery in.  Two stronger colours that are forecast to be trends are vibrant candy pink and sunshine yellow – again summer colours but much more vivacious and energetic.  There are two watchwords for this coming summer – colour and light – and this strikes me as colour being very important and the mainstay of the textile and fashion industry.

Regarding patterns and structure in fashion and textiles it seems there is an emphasis on geometric patterns and strong exaggerated lines which strikes as an almost sculptural effect but this contrasts with the soft ruffles and long skirts of the floral trend – there seems to be two opposing styles. Personally the incoming and current aforesaid  floral theme is the most appealing particularly when it is paired with khaki coloured skirts or trousers in cottons and natural fabrics which effectively replaces denim – for me this two trends are in harmony and work together as they would in nature.  An upcoming theme that also holds strong appeals is the colour palette of natural yellows, reds and browns which is predicted for spring 2018 – these strikes as more autumnal based colours and so the exact tones will be interesting to see whether they air on the lighter softer side of the natural spectrum or are more earthy.

I am at this point finding it somewhat difficult to find information on exact fabrics that are forecasted although cotton and other natural fabrics seem to be strongly apparent for mainstream clothing and I hope that is the case as I do prefer to work with them as opposed to man-made – however I will state that man-made fabrics really come into their own in sports and leisure wear and this is a whole new area to understand due to the specific and differing requirements that need to be considered.

I do understand, as stated above, the need for the forecasting companies and understand why the need for subscriptions or payment for reports but also find that aspect frustrating if you are, like me, not an avid follower of the fashion magazines or maybe that you just cannot afford them regularly …. sorry but art or textile magazines are much more appealing!  However I do think that forecasting of trends and themes is very much needed due to the fact that the major fashion houses work  on their collections a year to two years in advance and those collections provide the inspiration for the fashions and textiles seen on the high street including the patterns and fabrics myself and other students may require as part of our studies or that will form part of our practices in the future.  I fully appreciate that I may in time use recycled fabrics, dye or over-dye fabrics and clothing found in charity shops or from my own stash but it will still be important for me to understand the fashion trends that are forecast or the colours, patterns and fabrics and this could become even more important in the future.


I have come back to this research point having decided to have a look on Pinterest and discovered this is where it really comes into its own for research purposes.  I have discovered numerous boards and pins devoted to trend forecasting of different genres, seasons or colours etc and can really see some different colour palettes that could prove inspirational as well as loving how Pinterest can really be beneficial for finding latest trends or forecasts.

The overall trend regarding colours that is strongly apparent is a soft muted range of blush or rose pinks, muted soft violets purples and deep reds, olive or khaki style soft greens in varying tones, taupes, beige or greys along with petrol or Prussian blues – these are what I associate with faded cinemas or old country houses particularly when combined with the floral trend.  I love the fact that there is also an emphasis on different global cultures with the differing influences that also inject much brighter colours in the aforementioned candy pinks, brighter blues and golden yellows.  There is evidence as I have previously mentioned of two styles of women’s clothing from soft and feminine with ruffles and long skirts or stronger structural almost architectural style.

I will be adding some pins to my board of mens forecasting styles and colours and also furnishing and other textile trends but this initial selection has given me firstly a good basis of inspiration and ideas to work from plus also a way of following and learning of the different trends coming through if I don’t wish to regularly buy fashion or home magazines.  I can certainly also now see how these forecasting companies can help the differing industries in terms of colour, theme and mood for each season – Pinterest almost gives a wider viewpoint that has enabled me to see this clearer as well as providing potential companies or ideas to bear in mind for further research.

My Pinterest board for Mood boards/trends/styles can be seen at:


ISPO Textrends (date unknown).  5 Textile Trends for Spring/Summer 2018 [online].  [Date Accessed:  1 April 2017].  Available from:

Lau, S (2017).  Style Bubble [online].  [Date accessed:  1 April 2017].  Available from

Observer (date unknown).  A trend forecaster explains what to expect in spring 2018 [online].  [Date Accessed:  1 April 2017].  Available from:

Textile Network (date unknown).  The new trend board Spring/Summer 2018 [online].  [Date Accessed:  1 April 2017].  Available from:

Style Caster (date unknown).  The Top 10 Trends from Fashion Week Spring 2017 [online].  [Date Accessed:  1 April 2017].  Available from:

Vogue Paris (date unknown).  28 Spring/Summer 2017 Trends [online].  [Date Accessed:  1 April 2017].  Available from:

Vogue (date unknown).  Meet the people, trends, and items that will rule fashion in 2017 [online].  [Date Accessed:  1 April 2017].  Available from:

We Connect Fashion (2017).  Collaborative Trend Forecast Mood Boards, Women’s Spring 2017 Preview [online].  [Date Accessed:  1 April 2017].  Available from:

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