The Shifting Landscape of the Fashion Industry
The identification with particular fashion brands or a distinct style seems to have given way today to more independent buying decisions. This is not so much the deliberate seeking of a ‘personal’ style but rather a reflection of casual individualistic preference.
Because this casual preference is not a traditional ‘style’ it can be quite dynamic; in other words it can vary from purchase to purchase. The question for those of us in the industry is how to understand and in a sense ‘predict’ these dynamics.
The fashion industry is almost always dynamic and today is no exception. We can no longer debate whether or not the mobile and online environments are relevant. Consumer demand is increasingly expressed and met through devices. This brings an immediacy which permeates from initial casual consumer browsing through fulfilment and backend process of warehousing and manufacture. Old (and often persistent) methods of trend analysis are also challenged by this immediacy which can be (wrongly in my view) interpreted as ‘fickleness’ when not understood in social dynamic terms.
My own view is to follow the well known adage that ‘marketing is a battle for the mind’ and accept that we now must take a more sociological lens to our assessment of trends and recognise that the trend is simply dynamic. This view leads to a different approach to wholesale purchasing decisions and marketing and distribution.
I’m writing on this more fully now and will post soon. In the meantime your thoughts on this ‘dynamic trend’ as I call it, would be appreciated.
Lalita Lowe Personal Fashion Curator