6 Leading Fashion Trends for 2018

London - With the end of 2017 a few weeks away, retailers and brands are already busy planning their future stock. 2017 may have seen its fair share of trends emerge, but what will the year 2018 have in store for the fashion industry? With the start of a fresh new year just around the corner, FashionUnited has joined forces with retail analytics company Edited to share its top trend predictions for 2018.

“2017 was one of the most polarizing and fragmented years on record - whether you look at politics, current affairs or entertainment," says Katie Smith, Retail Analysis & Insights Director at Edited. "This trend will continue in 2018 into the fashion industry. Whether it’s extravagant, over-the-top silhouettes of the ‘80s offering escapism or dressing functionally to reinforce our desire for comfort, what we’ll wear will span the extremes of the fashion spectrum.”

6 Leading Fashion Trends for 2018

#1 Enhanced functionality - apparel for every day, every situation

Consumers today continue to travel further and further from home more frequently, for work and for leisure, while living in increasingly busy and crowded cities. At the same time, they also have more varied and flexible work lives which makes it easier to balance their social lives. While there is more interest in the growing athleisure category, apparel, in general, will begin to take on more enhanced technical properties, as consumers become more aware of their bodies needs.

"In 2018 we’ll see more brands tackle the pressures of modern lives, incorporating fit and performance properties into apparel beyond activewear," says Smith to FashionUnited. "That will result in clothing that responds better to the weather, that travels well and is hyper-versatile. This could also impact convenience services for the post-purchase care of apparel." Brands such as Dockers, Levi's and Uniqlo have all expanded their current collections over the year to include more versatile and functional items, which can be worn from the office to the gym and even to happy hour.

6 Leading Fashion Trends for 2018

# 2 More sustainable, eco-friendly brands - who say no to fur

An increasing number of consumers are showing interest in how and where their products are made, pressuring retailers and brands to produce more responsibly and take on an ethical outlook. Brands which take on an authentic position concerning social and environmental issues will stand out, and connect easier with millennials and Generation Z consumers than those which do not. In particular, new brands which address hot topics such as fur and leather are likely to become increasingly popular next year.

For example, when luxury fashion house Gucci, one of the industry's most influential brands, announced it was going fur-free from Spring 2018 this October, many applauded them and followed in suit. "In a climate where social media campaigns can go viral, brands will be thinking incredibly carefully about the environmental and social impact of the products they create," notes Smith, who expects more luxury brands to follow Gucci's lead next year. "Consumers will also become more clued up about sustainable down, vegan leather and lab silk."

6 Leading Fashion Trends for 2018

#3 All attention on the bust area

It is no secret that 'dare-to-bare' areas of flesh have become a trend in their own right in women' wear. Over the past year, we have seen new, cropped styles emerging which place more emphasis on abs as well as the shift from cold-shoulder styles to exposed, Bardot-inspired shoulders. The bust area is set to take the spotlight next year, as autumn 2017 has already seen the return of the corset as a belt detail, in addition to slogan t-shirts which use motifs such as watermelons or winking faces on the breast area.

This increased focus on this particular area of the female form is set to grow to Spring 2018, as fashion houses including Alexander Wang, Helmut Lang and Fendi all presented designed which incorporated bras as outerwear on tops and dresses. Other leading designer brands, such as Prada, Versace, Louis Vuitton and Dolce & Gabbana paired the popular bralette over t-shirts and dresses or presented it alone with high-waisted skirts.

"External seams, corset details, and sheers will add to the buzz around the breast! This will be done in an inclusive way," adds Smith. "Gone are the years of everyone seeking a plumped-up shape, as declines in the push-up bra showed."

6 Leading Fashion Trends for 2018

#4 A return of occasionwear, inspired by the Royal-Wedding

The upcoming wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in 2018 is set to lead to another trend concerning summer occasionwear on both sides of the pond. "You can expect retailers and the magazine industry to go all-in on content in the lead up to May, with much scrutiny on the bride’s and attendees outfits after the event," notes Smith to FashionUnited.

Some of the key trends for Summer 2018 for occasion wear include dresses with asymmetric one-shoulder, higher necklines, as well as strapless dresses and puffballs hems. Ruffles on the other hand, which were big for occasion wear and formal wear this summer, are likely to shift from being chaotic and haphazardly thrown on many dresses to columned tiers on sleeves or skirts. Evening jumpsuits will also be big next summer but are likely to be more formal and tailored.

Key colours for wedding season will be bubblegum pink, lavender, sunshine yellow and metallic. Bold earrings are also set to make a comeback next year and will complete any look.

6 Leading Fashion Trends for 2018

#5 Yellow free-for-all

Millennial pink may have been the 'it colour' of 2017, but in 2018 everything will be about the color yellow. The main tone will be a lighter hue of neon yellow, as consumers seek out brighter and vibrant clothes to help combat global concerns in these politically and socially charged times. Retailers would be wise to take on strong color stories for merchandising, as consumers seek out statement colours to make their wardrobes more bright and cheerful.

"This trend is directly influenced by the impact of street and workwear," says Smith. "Hot brands like Off-White and Gosha Rubchinskiy have used iconography of street signage in their prints and apparel and Kanye West’s Yeezy line and Nike have picked up on the references. We’ll see a wider range of women’s and men’s apparel picking up the lead on yellow in 2018, as well as the shade being referenced in branding and campaigns, just as we saw with millennial pink."

6 Leading Fashion Trends for 2018

#6 '80s/'90s-style - the new 'must-have' accessory: fanny packs

The key trends from the '80s have been having a strong comeback in fashion as of late as a throwback to a time when fashion and lifestyles where both fast and frivolous. As the global political climate remains fractious, consumers seek out a certain level of comfort from a more simple era. "With Millennials delaying home purchases and starting families, they have high disposable incomes which revisits some of that 80’s hedonism," notes Smith. "The 80’s is somewhat akin to pure escapism from the harsh realities of life."

While key trends set to continue next year include oversized checks on power suits, extreme sleeve detailing, asymmetric hems one of the 'must-have' accessories will be the super-functional fanny pack. The fanny pack was spotted all over the Spring/Summer 2018 runways, in both formal and casual variations. Casual styles took inspiration from the classic '80s fanny pack, as seen at Kenzo, Marc Jacobs and Balenciaga, worn across the hips or slung cross-body.

More formal and dressy fanny-pack styles were seen at Gucci, Givenchy and Kate Spade. These designer brands gave the fanny-pack an updated shape, and use higher-end materials such as leather to give it a more polished look. "Chain embellishment, metal fastenings and brand logos ramp up the luxe factor."

Photos credits: Homepage: Balenciaga, Prada and Alexander Wang, Catwalkpictures

Dockers AW17, Facebook - Uniqlo, own website

Shrimps AW17, Stylebop - Stella McCartney AW17, Mytheresa.com

D&G SS18, Catwalkpictures - Prada SS18, Catwalkpcitures - Alexander Wang AW17, Catwalkpictures

No21 Pre-Spring 18, Stylebop - Sies Marjan, Spring 18, Browns

Adam Lippes SS18, Farfetch - MadeME, Urban Outfitters - Alice Mccall SS18, Farfetch

Tommy Hilfiger AW17, Zalando - Prada AW17, own website

Chambre Synicale announces additions to Paris Men's Fashion Week

While dates and times are still being figured out, the Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode has released the latest additions to the calendar for Paris Men's Fashion Week. Earlier FashionUnited announced : that Vetements would be added to the calendar, but numerous more additions have been made.

France’s Nïuku, Germany’s GmbH and Britain’s Dunhill London will all be joining the calendar for Paris Men's Fashion Week. Dunhill previously showed on their home turf of London under new creative director Mark Weston, but now they are flexing their muscle in other markets.

Palomo Spain, the brand known for their genderless apparel and dressing Beyoncé for the reveal photo of her twins, will also be showing at Paris Men's Fashion Week. Virgil Abloh's Off-White will be returning to the calendar after showing in Florence last June as part of Pitti Uomo. In addition, Acne Studios will be making a return.

Many up-and-coming brands and designers will be opting for a presentation format. Those include Myar, Takahiromiyashita the Soloist, Arthur Avellano, Ambush, Amiri, Editions M.R, Nicolas Andreas Taralis, Sadak, Undercover and Yang Li.

Paris Men's Fashion Week will run from January 17 to 21. The official calendar will be released in the coming weeks.

Photo: via Alfred Dunhill Facebook page

Karl Lagerfeld renews eyewear license with Marchon

Karl Lagerfeld will be renewing his eyewear license for his eponymous label with Marchon until 2023. The partnership will cover the design, development, production and distribution of both the sunglass and ophthalmic collections. Lagerfeld's original license with the company began in 2007.

In 2013 after he relaunched his eponymous line, the designer inked a deal with Marchon set to expire this year. Lagerfeld is proud to continue his relationship with Marchon.

“Over the past 10 years, Marchon has proved to be a trusted partner that shares our passion for premium quality product and cutting-edge design innovation,” said Pier Paolo Righi, chief executive officer of Karl Lagerfeld. “As we continue to grow our overall business, we look forward to further expanding our iconic eyewear across the globe.”

Currently, Karl Lagerfeld has over 80 points of sale worldwide. In 2015, Lagerfeld began expanding his namesake label after partnering with G-III Apparel Group. Since then, he's expanded the brand's offerings of women's apparel and handbags. The line has also become available at notable department stores like Lord & Taylor.

photo:via Karl Lagerfeld Facebook page
Global luxury: Western retailers can learn from China's younger shoppers

As Western retailers and luxury brands look to attract the next generation of shoppers, they need only look to China, who’s younger consumers and millenials are snapping up luxury products faster than one can say ‘Gucci’.

According to a report by Deloitte in association with Chinese companies, Secoo and Tencent, Generation Z and Millenials will be responsible for 50 percent of luxury sales by 2025. This will largely be driven by young Chinese consumers' love of shopping online, something that western brands will have to embrace to target this demographic.

The report attributes China’s rising luxury-consuming class to several reasons

"The first reason may economic with the Chinese government introducing policies to stimulate demand for domestic luxury consumption by reducing import duties on categories, such as cosmetics, luggage and apparel," Secoo Luxe's Mr. Chan said. "The second reason is that young consumers, even though their total amount of wealth is much smaller than their parents’, have more disposable income and are more willing to spend money.

"The third reason is because the young consumers understands the true meaning of luxury," he said. "Their purchasing of one luxury product is no longer to show off, but to treat themselves."

Western brands must learn to speak the ‘Millenial’ language

"One major suggestion for western brands is to embrace online shopping," said Eric Chan, CEO of Secoo Luxe, Beijing. "This doesn't mean that the western brands should quickly start to sell their products online, but means that they should know the language the young generation is talking."

According to Luxury Daily, 48 percent of China’s luxury buyers are under 30 years old. These young consumers are fully embedded in the digital space and do a large majority of their shopping online.

Data for the "Chinese Luxury Ecommerce Whitebook" was collected between Oct. 1, 2016 and Sept. 30, 2017 and features a combination of Chinese luxury retailer Secoo's real shopping data, mapped against Tencent's digital and social media data from consumers, including videos they have been watching. Tencent is the parent company of China's popular social messaging application WeChat.

But while China is showing the greatest consecutive growth in luxury sales, the U.S. remains the largest luxury market in the world, accounting for 22 percent of sales. China comes in at a close second at 21 percent.

Global luxury: Western retailers can learn from China's younger shoppers

How do young Chinese consumers differ from other countries?

Chinese millennials discover trends from brand websites not social media. Surprisingly, when millennials look for the latest trends, social media is the most cited channel in all countries except China, states Jing Daily. For Chinese millennials, fashion magazines and a brand’s own website are the most important. It shows that even though Chinese millennials live and breathe social media, when it comes to the authority of fashion, brands and publications still hold sway.

Quality over quantity

Quality is the No.1 listed factor that draws millennials to luxury brands across the board. According to Deloitte, quality is the “one attribute likely to push a consumer to buy luxury when they could buy utility,” and “extensive data” from social media empowers them to judge a product’s quality.

Surprisingly, Chinese millennials ranked higher for favoring “uniqueness” when buying an item, compared to millennials in the West. They also like intangible factors such as “the stories it tells.”

Industry observation

According to the conclusion of the report, the luxury spending level of young Chinese consumers may not be as diverse as expected. Since their choices and influence are still very authoritative, brands have plenty of room to research how they’d like to be recognized, rewarded and engaged with. More than 50 percent of those surveyed said they use loyalty program apps, an area that merits further research.

Photo credit: Tiffany, Resonance China, Deloitte "Bling it on" Report; Article source: Jing Daily, “5 Surprising Facts About the Luxury Shopping Habits of Chinese Millennials;” Luxury Daily, “Almost half of all Chinese luxury buyers are under 30: report”

The latest update to all the Fashion Month schedule changes comes from Vetements. The luxury label designed by Demna Gvasalia, also artistic director of Balenciaga, has announced it will be joining the Paris Men's Fashion Week calendar next year.

Gvasalia has become notorious for shaking up the Fashion Month calendar, having shown Vetements at Paris ready-to-wear and couture in the past. Balenciaga also recently announced they will be combining their men's and women's shows.

Their unisex show will take place on January 19, during Paris Men's Fashion Week fall/winter 2018. The time slot and venue have yet to be revealed.

Last season, Vetements opted to skip the runway entirely and have showroom appointments.

Gvasalia is known for being a disruptor of the fashion industry. The designer has taken a very digital and authentically raw approach to debuting his collection, and has worked to find ways to streamline production of his collections. The brand is known for having a high full-price sell through rate due to Gvasalia's strict approach to supply and demand.

His popularity among street style stars certainly doesn't hurt either. Not a single Fashion Week has gone by in several years where someone wasn't caught wearing a statement making Vetements piece. He's certainly managed to turn the industry on its head.

Gucci to host Cruise 2019 show at ancient site of Alyscamps

London - Gucci has secured yet another historical venue to serve as the backdrop for its Cruise 2019 fashion show, namely the ancient site of Les Alyscamps, in France.

Gucci’s Cruise 2019 collection presentation, set to take place on May 30, 2018, will take place at the Unesco World Heritage site, which is home to one of the world’s Mose renowned Roman necropolis. Alessandro Michele, Gucci’s creative director, is known for seeking out remarkable locations to serve as the backdrop for his collections.

Gucci to show Cruise 2019 collection at Alyscamps in Arles

The show location follows on from previous cruise collections shows at historical venues, such as the cloisters in London’s Westminster Abbey, the Palatina Gallery at Florence’s Palazzi Pitti and the DIA-Art Foundation in New York City.

Although the Italian fashion house has received commentary in the past concerning its choice of show location, Gucci stresses that it is set to work alongside the city of Arles for its upcoming Cruise 2019 show, to ensure the site is protected and respected.

“The city of Arles, also consistently involved in cultural initiatives, is happy to collaborate with a luxury brand such as Gucci,” said the luxury fashion house in a statement. “This will be the first time that the ancient site of Alyscamps will host an event of this caliber.”

Homepage photo: Courtesy of Getty Images via Gucci

It’s Time to Retire the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

OP-ED> New York - As 2017 draws to a close, and the objectification of women has contributed to the downfall of giants of Hollywood and politics, the Victoria’s Secret fall we’ve been hearing about is that of Chinese model Ming Xi who took a tumble on the 2017 runway when her floor-grazing gauze train met the towering heel of her gladiator sandal. “The Great Fall of China,” blared Page Six, while other slavering media outlets, disappointed perhaps there was no nip slip for a two-for-one photo op, heaped praise on the “smiling” model for how “gracefully” she handled her "epic" and "scandalous" mishap as she staggered upright under the weight of the cherry blossom trellis strapped to her back. This ‘superbowl of fashion’ as Victoria’s Secret fashion show has often been labeled has never seemed less super or more out-of-fashion.

It’s Time to Retire the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Take the hint

This year’s visa denials by the Chinese government for Gigi Hadid and a handful of other models due to, among other issues, perceived racism, and the cancellation of Katy Perry’s appearance following her offensive sunflower dress and Taiwanese headscarf last year were examples of highly documented snafus leading up to the Shanghai show. But what if this was really the universe subtly saying, “Come on Victoria’s Secret, your time is up”? Obviously, they didn’t get the hint because subtlety doesn’t count for much in this retrograde Vegas-style panty parade where native American regalia, Orientalism and Maasai beadwork were still heaped onto this year’s confetti-sized garments despite annual outrage around the brand’s belligerent cultural appropriation. Just last year one angel was wrapped in a dragon, a cultural symbol of China, so perhaps it’s not surprising that the country’s government pushed back this year. To compensate the brand did use six Chinese models on the runway. That’s two more than last year.

The mark of an angel

Otherwise, the tried and tested formula of mostly white girls with ample chests and slim hips was still the prevailing ideal for getting one’s wings in 2017. And the brand is taking its neon-lit carnival of non-inclusivity farther afield. Victoria’s Secret opened its first flagship store in Shanghai in March. The booming Chinese market will be extremely appealing to them, and that traditionally conservative climate might also find Victoria Secret’s cartoon boudoir image new and risqué. But in Trump’s America, as empowerment goes, the narrative that these trussed-up Barbies boasting of Olympic athlete-level training regimes of squats and kickboxing to slip into gilt wings and 600-carat crystal-coated fantasy bra for a two-minute turn on the runway rings hollow. It’s not the elevation of females into goddesses, but diminishment; the show promotes female Icaruses who daren’t dive too low (we are angels, after all) nor soar too high or we’ll get burned. Now there’s a message.

It’s Time to Retire the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Out of step, out of mind

Refinery29 cites 2016 television viewership figures at 1.4 billion, which equates to about 19 percent of the world’s population across 196 countries, leading us to deduce there are still many who buy into this patriarch-sanctioned notion of female empowerment, at least for entertainment value. But the growing number of those who don’t are making themselves heard where it counts. L Brands which owns Victoria’s Secret has struggled throughout 2017 with lagging sales and stock prices down 6 percent for November, losing market share to competitors like Aerie who hit the headlines for their diverse and female-friendly Aerie Real ad campaign. Victoria’s Secret reported an 11 percent slip on sales from this time last year. While college-age students used to flock to Victoria’s Secret for fun, affordable decadence, today’s comfort-seeking Millennial is not finding her preferred item, the bralette, among the brand’s heavily constructed underwired and padded offerings. Victoria’s Secret is not only out of step with the culture but out of step with the customer.

It’s Time to Retire the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Frozen in time

Exalted by entertainment media channels as “the most-anticipated fashion show of the year” but having little to do with trends, innovation or experimentation, one can even pull the brand’s fashion credentials to pieces, especially as they killed their apparel collection last year. The same small triangles of fabric are riveted, feathered, ribboned, tasseled, sequined and accessorized with over-the-knee-superhero boots in a formula so repetitive that one year could be layered on top of the next. On a “happening” level, the show can hardly be compared with Raf Simons’s debut at Calvin Klein for example––now that was anticipation. One could say it has about as much to do with fashion as the swimwear portion of Miss Universe, and its taste level is often on a par with a night-before-Halloween raid on Ricky’s. And when the need for diversity has reached critical peak on the runways of New York Fashion Week, Victoria’s Secret appears to have stopped evolving past 2009. At a time when honest depictions of women in the media are what’s resonating, angels look flighty, ephemeral and weak.

Because it turns out women don’t need wings, and it’s no longer a secret.

By contributing guest editor Jackie Mallon, who is on the teaching faculty of several NYC fashion programmes and is the author of Silk for the Feed Dogs, a novel set in the international fashion industry.

All photos author’s own except header image: Jewel Samad / AFP

'The Leaders in Khaki': Dockers goes back to its roots for new campaign

VIDEO Amsterdam - The Dockers brand launched its first pair of khaki pants back in 1986 in San Francisco, looking to disrupt the strict formal business dress code held by corporate offices. The menswear brand, owned by Levi Strauss & Co, sought to offer men an alternative way of dressing by offering them something more comfortable than the suit they wore five days a week, but also a little more formal than the jeans they wore on the weekends. Enter Dockers iconic khakis. “We basically introduced the whole casual Friday business wear category,” says Karen Riley-Grant, Vice President of Global Marketing for Dockers to FashionUnited during a breakfast discussing the brand's latest campaign.

Dockers unveils its latest campaign as it establishes itself as 'The Leaders in Khaki'

Dockers khakis became so popular that they went on to change how men dressed for work for good, helping pave the way for more casual dress codes in the office. However, now more than thirty years after Dockers first launched dress codes at work have changed once more. “It’s like they are going in the opposite direction now, with people wearing athleisure and jeans to work,” notes Janine Chilton-Faust, Vice President of Global Design for Dockers. And Dockers aims to be among the forefront of this shift by launching new products that align with consumers busy and active lifestyles. “We got comfortable and we played it a little too safe for too long,” admits Riley-Grant, who notes the brand had become somewhat of a ‘Dad’ brand.

Which is why the brand is going back to its disruptive, Californian roots and looking to shake up the menswear market once more to establish its position as ‘the Leaders in Khaki.’ To learn more about Dockers brand repositioning, its latest campaign as well its newest khakis, the Smart 360 Flex, FashionUnited spoke to Riley-Grant and Chilton-Faust.

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It’s latest khakis, the Smart 360 Flex, which launched this autumn, are made with all the needs of the modern day-man in mind as Dockers looks to reconnect with the younger generation. Made from four-way stretch fabric, which stretches both horizontally and vertically, the new style aims to offer its wearer comfort as well as style which can be worn from work straight into the weekend. In new style comes in a range of fits, with such as slim tapered fit and a jogger style for younger men, as well as more traditional relaxed fits for the older generation. “We are looking to reconnect with that younger generation and not just be known as ‘the Dad brand,’” adds Riley-Grant.

'The Leaders in Khaki': Dockers goes back to its roots for new campaign

In order to underline its new brand position, Dockers launched its first global campaign in nearly a decade, which features an array of diverse models showcasing the functionality of the collection. In addition, Dockers also launched a new brand platform under its new slogan “Always On,” which offers tips and advice on how to be ready for anything, while sharing the Dockers brand with new and loyal fans around the world. The launch of its new campaign comes as the brand continues to focus on strengthening its position in its key markets, which include the US, Spain, France, and Italy while setting its sights on growing in new markets.

Photos: Dockers, AW 17/18 Campaign

Color Solutions International unveils 2018 colours

Color Solutions International, a member of the DyStar Group the provider of colour standards for design industries, has unveiled its must-have colours for 2018, with softer shades of purple sitting alongside classic blue hues.

For 2018, blues remain classic, expanding into cobalt blues from indigo to bright bold accents with a red cast, states Color Solutions International, giving blue a new “perspective against relevant workwear blues seen as washed down mid-tones".

While softer shades of purple are “becoming more sophisticated” by evolving into a redder casted tone seen in lilac and mauve and warm muted blush tones to rich copper oranges, the report notes, giving a “modern twist to deep reds”.

In addition, tinted neutrals have emerged as trending colours, becoming a solid foundation to the palette, while greens are complex, with “nature’s influence giving a renewed interest in rich saturated emerald greens to dark forest pine with levels of youthful acidic tones crossing into gold yellows”.

Color Solutions International, colour and trend director Heather Sandwall explains: "There is a delicate balance with these colours. They are inspired by urban dwelling and nature’s forest, bringing our environment into our mindset and lifestyle.”

The Color Solutions International manages seasonal colour palettes for more than 100 brands and retailers on an annual basis, its colours are selected from CSI’s Color Wall, Color Library or created through custom dyeing which represents over 10,000 colours. Its colour management process has created an extensive database of historical colour usage information. This year, Color Solutions International supported the development of approximately 900 colour palettes. Utilising their historical colour data and launched a proprietary colour validation process called relative colour popularity (RCP) index in their seasonal trends.

DyStar Group vice president Americas. Ron Pedemonte, added: “Our Colour Insights 2018 report is a unique colour forecast based on market research, historical colour data and our RCP index. We decided that our customers would benefit from receiving a palette of must-have colours for creating their 2018 seasonal colour palettes rather than an individual colour.”

Last week, Pantone named Ultra Violet as its 2018 Colour of the Year.

Image: courtesy of Color Solutions International

Lidewij Edelkoort: 'Goddesses will be the female archetypes in fashion'

Amsterdam - The role of women in our modern day society is shifting, as numerous high-profile sexual harassment scandals, continue to make the headlines. Women are joining forces and taking a stand together against society’s gendered prejudices, which is set to impact how we dress, according to Dutch trend forecaster Lidewij Edelkoort.

"Since the emancipation season, women have been struggling to find their place, who they are. Now we have to rediscover what the status quo of the women is, how we will define ourselves in the future as well as how we will dress in the future," said Edelkoort during her trend presentation for Spring/Summer 2019, prudently named Goddesses, in Amsterdam. "But the psychological aspect here is even more important. That has become evident in the emergence of the #Metoo, where you see women who have were silent for years about their sexual abuse now speaking about it together - men as well. We see a new world being formed where they share their power."

Lidewij Edelkoort: 'Goddesses will be the female archetypes in fashion'

Lidewij Edelkoort: 'There is a goddess in everyone'

Power-dressing and messages of female empowerment are becoming predominant within the fashion industry, as women look to strong and independent female role models with goddess-like traits for inspiration on how to express their newfound strength while carving out a new future for themselves. Rather than looking for their 'prince charming', who does not exist anymore, according to Edelkoort, women should look to their inner goddess or goddesses as there can be many female archetypes in a single woman, and nurture them instead. "Women can identify with Hestia and Aphrodite and be both maternal and sexual."

Goddesses from a number of different cultures and backgrounds were the main focus of Edelkoort presentation for leading trends for Spring/Summer 2019, although she believes this movement has the potential to last 20 to 30 years in fashion. Iconic greek goddesses such as Athena, Artemis, and Aphrodite were highlighted as some of the main female archetypes for tomorrow, in addition to other key goddesses from different cultures around the world such as Mama Ocllo from Peru folklore and Saraswati from Hinduism. "I also wanted to include key figures from the Southern hemisphere."

Lidewij Edelkoort: 'Goddesses will be the female archetypes in fashion'

Pleating, Draping and Folding - Goddesses inspired trends for SS '19

In particular, styles associated with the ancient Greek goddesses, such as draping, folding and pleating is set to become very popular next summer as women seek out luxurious styles to express their own inner goddess, according to Edelkoort. "It's funny how we are still doing the same thing after all these centuries," she noted when discussing pleated skirts. Long flowing dresses, tunics, and skirts which allow freedom of movement, rather than restriction, will also be a key trend for summer 2019.

Another trend highlight was golden embroidery and embellishments on luxurious and elegant fabrics, which was linked to the feline archetype, based on the Egyptian goddess Bastet, as designers are set to return to their artisan roots and create intricate, beautiful designs. "Diane von Furstenberg is a feline archetype," added Edelkoort. "I met her in New York and she folds herself up, with her feet under her body just like a cat and almost purrs when she goes to sit on a sofa. She attended our trend seminar there and talked about what felt like being a goddess. She's a very special woman."

Lidewij Edelkoort: 'Goddesses will be the female archetypes in fashion'

Throughout the trend presentation, organized by Appletizer at the KIT Institute, it became evident that there is a common thread between all the goddesses highlighted."One thing I noticed all these goddesses from different cultures had in common is that they all want to be very independent and not be dependent on their partners, which is what we have conceived to be the norm in our society over the last century." The trend forecaster foresees the rise of a matriarchy, where women will be in control and live in many different ways according to whichever partnership they chose - whether it be in sisterhood with each other, with one or multiple partners, with a beloved, furry four-legged friend or alone in solitude. "All forms of these partnerships are good and it is great to see that in all goddesses."

Lidewij Edelkoort: 'Goddesses will be the female archetypes in fashion'

Men are not completely excluded from this trend, she added, as men will have the chance to identify with their own inner goddesses and nurture them as well while admiring the strong female archetypes emerging in the world around them.

Homepage photo: Master of Flora [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons, Gucci SS'18 by Dan Lecca

Photo 1: Steven Alan Pre-spring '17, Fae [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Photo 2: Sonia Rykiel SS'18, via Catwalk Pictures, RomanM82 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Photo 3: Vivienne Westwood SS'18 via Catwalk Pictures, Cuzco School [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Photo 4: Shuishouyue [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons, Ann Demeulemeester SS'18 via Catwalk Pictures