New York Fashion Week was a study in extremes. In the midst of record-breaking heat and humidity, Tommy Hilfiger staged a full-scale carnival to launch his immediately shoppable collection designed with supermodel Gigi Hadid, Rebecca Minkoff held a see-now-buy-now show on the sidewalk in front of her SoHo shop, and Kanye West held guests captive on Roosevelt Island for two hours before allowing them to view his latest highly controversial collection. But along with the spectacle and hype, some clear trends emerged that are worth noting.
'See Now, Shop Now' is Happening
Consumers aren’t reinventing themselves with each new season—they’re building on to themes they already love and adding in pieces that reflect them in the present. They don’t want to wait to wear the latest runway trends and that’s prompted designers to add shoppable elements to their shows via social media. Even Google is getting in on the act with a search feature that helps mobile users access fashion show schedules, view images from each collection, get behind-the-scenes content supplied by the designers, and shop the looks from current and new collections. And it appears to be working—Burberry, Tipshop, Minkoff, and Hilfiger reported sales spikes immedately after their shoppable runway shows.
Consumer Driven Design
Several of 2016’s biggest fashion trends—bomber jackets, shoulder-baring tops, and flirty lingerie details, made their way into almost every show and at all price points from Altuzarra to J.Crew. But were these designs inspired by consumer interest rather than the designer’s imagination? Interestingly, Google revealed that in April 2016, searches for bomber jackets increased 612%, and between December 2015 and May 2016, searches for off-the shoulder tops increased by 347%, indicating that demand may be influencing design trends. The challenge for retailers will be keeping the consumer interested after the trend has peaked.
The Influence of Streetwear
It’s saying something when a track suit is considered the pinnacle of fashion, as Alexander Wang demonstrated in collaboration with Adidas. But a luxe makeover isn’t what’s making streetwear hot. Streetwear brands represent a connection to a particular mindset and lifestyle—there’s a certain realism and authenticity to these brands that represent a counterpoint to the fantasy high-fashion has long aspired to. Although high-end designers are attempting to ascribe to the notion of streetwear and borrowing elements such as track pants and sweatshirts for their collections, it remains to be seen if consumers will buy into the idea—especially if it strikes them as inauthentic.
Predicting the latest fashion trends has never been easy. But understanding what consumers are searching for and how they perceive brands can reveal opportunity. Women’s Marketing offers brands insight into their consumer and how to reach her when she’s most receptive to your message.Contact us today to learn how our strategic media planning and buying and marketing services can help your brand stay on-trend.
Sources: Think With Google Fashion Trends 2016 Google Data Shows What Shoppers Want, Edited New York’s Big Spring 2016 Trends, Los Angeles Times How Google Is Making Street Style Shoppable at New York Fashion Week, Business of Fashion Are See Now, Buy Now Shows Driving Sales?