Whether you sell skirts or stationery, flowers or fascinators, cushions or candles…. Covering the top trends in your product area is an absolute must for most trendy retailers. Offering products in the latest colours, patterns, fabrics, style or fragrance means you are always offering up to the minute, bang on products, and ensures your product range is constantly evolving.
So how do we find out about such new trends?
For homeware (and non clothing e.g. gift, Christmas decorations, décor, stationery etc ) trends follow from fashion (clothing) . So if you’re wondering why we suddenly have neon or animal print on our cushions and notebooks, its because those trends emerged on the catwalks around 18 months ago! So it’s always useful to keep abreast of fashion trends if you are a retailer, because those wacky prints or new colour combos will very soon be appearing on our own products.
If we want to see what is available to us to buy for our shops, and which trends have made it into product, and WHEN then visiting a trade show is a must. This is where lots of suppliers in your market will be displaying their best stuff, mood boards, room sets and product displays will be aplenty at a trade show, and you don’t have to travel internationally to visit one. There are trade shows in London, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Birmingham, Manchester, Harrogate…. And on a regular basis too. The big trade shows such as Spring Fair, Brand Licensing, Top Drawer, Pure are all hosted twice a year (usually), so you can visit and get a really good look at new trends emerging in your product sector. This is a great a starting point if you are a new business, or are thinking f starting a retail business. For more information on trade shows… have a read of my blog with plenty of tips HERE
The other way that trends “happen” is they are imported from overseas… mainly America, who we have to thank for Halloween growth into a mega event, Black Friday, Christmas jumpers, milkshakes & smoothies, whilst we have the Scandinavians to thank for the minimalist look, hygge products and plenty of texture on our fabrics ….
So what are my top trends for this Autumn Winter….
Whether this is zebra, leopard, Giraffe or Cheetah there are very few products that haven’t been touched by this trend. Prints are coming through now in non traditional (animal) colours, so purples, pinks, greys. I am waiting for an animal print themed Christmas tree… and I’m certain I will see one this Christmas.
Space / metallics
With the 50th anniversary of the moon landing this year, this has led (perhaps subconsciously) to an increase in metallics. This is easy for the customer to work into the home as it can be a super shiny gold or silver (and even brass) or a matt metallic print on a cushion. I have already spotted some Christmas baubles shaped like planets and spaceships… in homage to the moon landing.
This one is HUGE. Any business selling eco friendly, vegan, recycled, chemical free products should be absolutely flying as this is a huge trend that is sure to stay, and grow year on year. The key point here is to educate your audience, guide them with product suggestions, share info on how the product will help the planet / customer / environment. Wayfair.com has reported a 115% increase in searches on their site for eco friendly / eco sourced products. Garden centres are also experiencing a surge in demand for house plants and gardening products (for the novice) as consumers look at sustainable products and growing their own produce. The nature / eco trend is also coming through on prints – patterned leaves, tree designs, coral designs and plenty of green / brown colours and tones.
If you search fashion trends for AW19 you’ll see Cosmo, Grazia etc talking about colour splash – neons, brights shoes, bags etc . This will come through stronger on non clothing next year, but for now, we are experimenting with bold(er) colours as accessories… bright and bold cushions, rugs, candles, frames… as well as throwing in a few jewel coloured Christmas decorations on our silver / white trees. Look out for this trend to grow next year.
Soft colour palette
A nice safety net colour scheme for lots of consumers… we are loving the muted tones of pinks, mauves, grey, taupes… and mixing an assortment of texture too. This can be adding using knitted, shaggy hair, velour or textured ceramic materials to create interest and depth in this subtle colour palette.
So as we embark on the “silly season”, the Golden Quarter, you may want to check you have covered one or all of the trends, and are you promoting and marketing this to your audience?