The coronavirus outbreak has had a huge impact on almost every industry around the world. Businesses and individuals alike have had to make huge adjustments as our lifestyles are uprooted and normal routines are interrupted.
It is safe to say that the pandemic on such a global scale will have an unprecedented impact on the economy, but it is important to begin looking forward and how industries can begin to rebuild.
The fashion industry in particular is one that will have to fight to become relevant again, as so many fashion brands struggle to sell anything that isn’t loungewear in the current climate. Whispering Smith offers some insights into how the fashion industry might look in a post-lockdown era.
What impact will there be on fashion?
Fashion is a representation of the times, as trends follow the decades and the incidents that occur. For example, after the Great War, women began to adopt a fashion with a boyish flair and playfulness as the world became more liberal.
However, we’re not sure any fashion designers will willingly incorporate the trend of masks, gloves and overalls. Instead, brands must find styles that bring value to their customers and offer comfort and cheerfulness.
As the major fashion houses transform their production lines to create protective equipment and clothing, it is important that they also look to the future and what collections for the rest of 2020 and 2021 will look like.
As the whole world is becoming more cautious and PPE dominates the headlines, the fashion companies will have to rethink styles and materials. Protection is the new trend of the moment, and may continue for some time.
For instance, there may be an increase in developments in fabrics that can be washed better or have antibacterial properties. While masks are becoming an essential, it is probable that fashion brands will think of how they can incorporate this concept into their collections in a fashionable but still relevant way.
Concise, capsule collections
For many fashion brands, the two large collection releases in spring and autumn were a huge selling point, and an opportunity to offer a huge choice of new trends and designs. Post-lockdown, this is most likely set to change.
Collections are likely to become more concise, with styles that have a much longer life that can even transcend seasons. This has been cemented even further by Gucci’s latest announcement, claiming that their rota is no longer sticking to the spring/summer, autumn/winter calendar. Instead, they are interested in presenting ‘seasonless’ collections that supports a less wasteful approach.
So many fashion brands have struggled to sell their SS20 collections due to lockdown and buyer demand falling. It will likely result in brands overproducing, instead sticking to smaller and more thoughtful creations.
The rise of the use of technology within the fashion industry is nothing new, but it will take on a new meaning post-lockdown. London Fashion Week is going ahead in June but with a digital platform, which just shows how retailers, brands and designers will have to get involved in new ways to engage their audiences.
The likes of digital marketing will become even more important for many brands too, as customers may wish to shop online more than ever while cautiousness plays a part.