The fashion industry is constantly looking ahead, and right now forecasters and buyers are mapping out their future trend predictions. We have seen some exciting new trends popping up in the recent spring 2023 ready-to-wear collections at fashion week, so let’s dissect the theory behind some of these key trends for 2023.
Many trends expected to occur remain influenced by the pandemic and the changes in consumer behaviour that took place during this period.
Firstly, Comfort. This trend follows on from lockdowns when many of us lived in loungewear. As we transition back into ‘normal’ life some aspects of this lifestyle have continued, such as flexible working, creating a need for transitional clothing. Designers will have to consider the versatility of their garments, prioritising comfort yet elevating designs to become wearable for multiple settings. This concept has been labelled Hybrid dressing, and will consist of garments that are not confined to occasion, gender or season.
When translated into a visual trend, we can expect to see soft materials and shapes, gender fluid garments with multi-functional purposes. There will be a rise in ‘easy’ dressing through simplified silhouettes, elasticated waists and calming, minimalist colours.
The second trend set for 2023 is Dopamine Dressing, this stems from the lack of experimental dressing that took place during lockdowns. Only recently have we begun to push boundaries again with new colours, shapes and textures. It is known that colours can impact our moods. Many colours have universal connotations with feelings and emotions, for example; Pink with love, Orange with Warmth, Yellow with Happiness. Mood-boosting colours will instil an optimistic, carefree attitude across 2023, particularly during Spring/Summer.
As well as vibrant blues, reds, pinks, oranges, greens and yellows, we will see the return of bold geometrics and maximalist prints. Bold colour and print will be seen a lot in accessories, and colour clashing will continue to grow as a trend.
The third tend, Conscious Creativity, comes from the rise in craftsmanship and localism that followed the pandemic. With more time on our hands, many of us spent our days learning a new craft or hobby. Alongside this came a growing focus on sustainability, people buying less and buying better. Confined to our homes, towns and countries, we learnt to take advantage of the resources around us and support and invest in local businesses.
This will transcend into designs that incorporate a crafted aesthetic such as embroidery, crochet, dystopian washes, tie dye and distressed finishes. These styles are individual and unique due to their hand-made nature, and create a comforting sense of nostalgia through their human quality. These garments also contribute to both ethical and sustainable fashion by supporting small businesses over fast fashion chains.
The next trend is Embracing Nature, which comes from the need for escapism after the pandemic. People are reaping the benefits of nature’s effect on our mental and physical health. Becoming more in-tune with nature also comes from our growing care for protecting the environment.
Recent developments in biophilic fabrics and low impact production have led to an increase in the use of natural materials, dyes and processes. Consumers will want to wear their beliefs on their sleeves, whether ethical, political or sustainable, in order to express the movements they support.
On a practical level, the lines between walking gear and day to day fashion will be blurred and garments will need to offer more to the wearer in terms of utility.
Utility will be shown through both practicality and the ability to wear the same garment in multiple ways and therefore environments and weather conditions. We will be seeing more pockets, zips and detachable components on garments and accessories.
Visually, natural colourings and finishes will be abundant, with the use of materials like hemp and fair-trade cotton as well as natural dyes. Textures will be a large aspect of this trend with the use of crinkled materials and rusticity, embracing natures imperfections. We will see innovatively repurposed garments and saturated earth tones pared with toned down pallets.
Finally the Escapism trend, this trend is a natural response to the time we’ve spent indoors over the past few years. Whilst some have reacted by spending more time in nature, others are choosing to escape through VR and gaming, which can be expected when 62% of adults played video games during the pandemic.
With the Metaverse in sight, gaming culture is growing and becoming more experimental and advanced. To some, unwinding after a long day will soon include putting on an oculus headset, transforming into your avatar and exploring a different world.
As digital and natural merge we can expect to see trends that include earthy pastel hues alongside metallic finishes, liquified drapes and fabrics with glossy finishes and otherworldly shapes. These trends will also be prevalent in AR clothing, which we will be seeing a lot more of in 2023.
Share this article