It’s all about Personality

Current trends in fashion, interior and illustration

Words Christina Faaborg

Most trends tend to grow and grow only to peak and then slowly fade out again and disappear. Sometimes, however, they return after a number of decades. The secret is to seize current trends and comprehend which ones mostly function as pieces of art on the catwalk but will be gone tomorrow, and which ones that will actually develop into a completely new trend. That it is not always easy to assess, which trends will endure. Therefore, we often rely on trend-spotting experts within various fields in order to avoid major confusion about what works well and what does not. Or in order to avoid copying everyone else without considering what is suitable for you or your brand.

More Individuality

The way in which trends develop has changed. Previously, only a small group of experts dictated what would be hot future trends – while today our sources include numerous blogs, films and TV series as well as what we see on the street.

Trends have become much more individual and there are several concurrent trends going on at the same time. Therefore, when you hire a stylist, for instance, for a fashion series, it is the matter of somebody’s personal taste. Often this results in a specific style being combined with current catwalk themes of hot designers rather than an actual trend in itself as we have seen in the past.

A lot of factors come into play in relation to new trends and which ones will last. Are you, for instance, able to adapt a new trend without having to completely alter your style? Where did the trend begin? And another important factor is insider knowledge. Knowing the industry inside out, knowing where the hot trends are generated right now – and in which way. Because these experts work with trends every single day, they are still highly significant trend spotters. It is their job to recognise which trends will last and which will not.

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CINDIE DAHL HIORT, stylist and creative director at Tomorrow’s Journal

“Today, everything changes much faster because everyone can see the pictures just seconds after a model has stepped onto the catwalk. This way, a trend is available much sooner at the high-street stores after it has hit the podium – as well as it allows for immediate inspiration and adaptation.

Consequently, more and more fashion houses focus on pre-collections, capsule collections and creative collaborations in order to constantly be able to offer something new. But – at the same time – the industry is currently making an effort to deliver durable styles where quality is the difference that you pay for,” says stylist Cindie Dahl Hiort. She often travels the world to watch shows or exclusive presentations of the latest collections. For the past ten years she has worked as a stylist and fashion editor, both freelance and full-time with magazines such as Danish ELLE and now she is also using her knowledge for PR purposes as Creative Director & Head of Noise PR Fashion at Danish Noise PR.

Hiort makes a living from knowing what happens in the fashion industry and spotting what works and what does not. “When I style a fashion series or a campaign, I’m obviously inspired by the new major tendencies combined with trends from other areas such as art or politics. But it’s very different depending on which market it’s intended for. Some parts of the world are not exposed to the same freezing winters as here in the North where – in return – we don’t experiment as much with bright colours, for instance, as in southern Europe,” she says. She mainly wears just grey and black herself and describes her own style as quite minimalistic with a few raw elements. “I’ve just bought some dark blue items, however, right now I also wear a lot of white, which is totally wild.” To Hiort it is a question of not drowning in her own style and the toned-down look helps her being objective and focus on her job.

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Space Age and Eighties Elements

One of the major tendencies this winter is a high fashion take on street wear and especially sweatshirts are hot. “Balenciaga has defined the style with its futuristic, almost high-tech, sweatshirt with Star Wars inspired print and oversize cut.” Focus is on the right materials as well as the details. Hiort emphasises that buying a simple copy of the sweatshirt will not do: “If you can’t get hold of or afford the real deal, jump into a plain-coloured sweatshirt instead, or find one where the inspiration is visible without being too obvious.”

Another brand that has asserted itself this winter is Kenzo. The arrival of design duo Humberto Leon and Carol Lim – who are also behind US-based Opening Ceremony – has made the brand one of the hottest in two seasons. The duo has revived Kenzo’s old DNA and given the collection a younger and renewed look while focusing on the functionality of the clothes. In particular, the Kenzo sweatshirt with the lion head has really obtained must-have status.

“It’s the materials, the cut and the arrangement of, for instance, a dress with silver details and softened colours combined with an electric blue as we see with Balenciaga, who created this season’s spacy mid-eighties New York look. But the technological advances have made the quality completely different and far prettier than the original slightly worn look of the 80s.”

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Think Quality and Minimalism

Another major tendency is found with the likes of Alexander Wang and Proenza Schouler who are inspired by Asia and has presented collections with an almost Samurai-like expression featuring some floral elements in between while the play with leather provides an armor effect.

Céline is characterised by a soft minimalism in which the overall elements are still stringent but where the materials and the cut almost seem to come to life when the clothes are moving.

“Minimalism is, in general, also a major hit this season. It has really caught on. With Stella McCartney the waist is marked and the hips are accentuated. The designer has made both dresses and knitwear that appear to have been cast for the female body – but in a very aesthetic and buttoned-up fashion. When you go shopping for your winter wardrobe, you should therefore think of a moderate oversize with focus on the forms, and futurism meets sporty – all without overdoing it. You should consider long-term investments combined with more trend based styles. And buying vintage is no longer that cool unless you manage to find a genuine seventies Kenzo blouse. Your items must appear new and you should think high quality and classic looks in the style of MaxMara’s iconic coats. Economically speaking, the good news is that the division between daywear and eveningwear is no longer as distinct – now, clothes should be functional for both occasions just by changing accessories.” (…)

Read more in Tomorrow’s Journal | Issue 5

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