Why fashion brands use the same colour palette at the same time

Tuesday, October 06, 2020

Remember our blog about colour a couple of months ago. Well, here's a hot tip for you. The key colour in 2021 in Europe will be called 'Raison d'Etre' - a warm neutral with a red undertone.

How do we know?

This is one of four world key colours predicted for 2021 by the Color Marketing Group (CMG); the others are 'Mist', a pale blue (North America), 'Renacer', violet with a touch of black (Latin America) and 'Uni Coral', vibrant red (Asia Pacific). Don't be too surprised if you don't hear those actual names used though, the colours will still be there in the forefront of design for fashion, homeware, paints and indeed anything that uses colour to sell the product.

And this colour prediction is the first step towards answering the question: why do fashion brands use similar colours, fabrics, textures and structures in their catwalk shows each season?

Each year companies such as CMG spend their time exploring trends, analysing results and predicting the future for colours. You won't see what they are currently working on but you will experience it in a couple of years time.

At the same time companies such as WGSN forecast fashion trends for the next few years which set the boundaries for fabric manufacturers, such as Fibre2Fashion, to start designing the fabrics based on all the previous research, analysis and predictions.

The final step comes when the fabric and yarn manufacturers exhibit their latest materials to fashion designers who choose which fabrics will be the basis of the hot fashion pieces each season. In Europe that tends to take place in Italy or Germany, the hotspots of the European fashion industry. Very rarely but it has happened, buyers from two different brands choose the same fabric for part of their collections, which can be fun!

Last year the hero piece was the gilet; this year the structured jacket has made a come back, in pattern or print fabrics, many designs using black and white as the core colours. In fact, black and white are very strong colours for the Autumn and Winter 2020 seasons.

The fashion houses didn't all have a brainwave and come up with the same idea at the same time. Their design departments will have consulted predicted colour palettes, read all the pertinent fashion trend forecasts and visited the same fabric and yarn exhibitions to produce the fabulous clothes that make their brand.

So will we all be wearing clothes in 'Raison d'Etre' next spring and summer? I'm looking forward to finding out. How about you?

White LabelRabe


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