Art and TikTok drive top fashion trends at Bluezone – Sourcing Journal
Fine art and the art of imitation are behind two of the four trends presented at the Bluezone in Munich last week.
The two-day show showcased garments from factories, laundries and manufacturers that show the gap between consumers’ growing appreciation for form, skill and process, and Gen Z’s grassroots approach to face to trends that are changing at a breakneck pace,” said Tilman Wröbel, creative director of Monsieur-T and curator of trends at Bluezone.
In “Modern Art Emporium”, the clothes reflect the presence of art in fashion and retail and vice versa.
“It goes beyond a designer saying something is a Mondrian dress,” Wröbel said.
From Uniqlo sponsorship events at the Tate Modern to Gucci using street art as billboards to towering installations at Louis Vuitton stores around the world to promote its second collaboration with Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama, art is the new immersive experience.
“Since fashion trends have become so fast, so superficial, we now see brands going for something extremely high,” he said, adding that art is an investment “that moves our company”.
Or at least that’s what it should be. Wröbel warned against brands asking factories to splatter paint on jeans. “Do it seriously… not everyone can make art,” he said. “If you go into art, do it with a real artist.”
An artist’s touch can make a garment more special, a quality that is key to Bluezone’s second trend story, “One on One Theory.”
Forget the pairing, Wröbel said Gen Z shops and dresses “item by item.”
The cohort enjoys the experience of selecting new and vintage pieces. They might like an article for a special dye treatment and another for its history. “It’s super cool because it’s history,” he said. “They put outfits together and there’s absolutely no connection.”
This “fashion chaos” is an example of how Gen Z is moving away from traditional fashion systems. “And now it’s embraced by all high fashion brands,” Wröbel said, noting the eclecticism seen in collections and stores.
Mixing vintage with new merchandise is a way for brands and retailers to emulate the one-on-one experience. The strategy can also be applied at the show to incentivize discovery.
“Think about it because even at the [trade show] when you have a rack all green and another all red and another all light blue… think about creating a super strong product with a super strong message,” he said. “Think of a different way of presenting things.”
Visuals have never been more important, especially in Bluezone’s third trending story, “Insta-Tok Life.”
Although Wröbel noted that Instagram’s strength in fashion is waning and Facebook has become a place for distant relatives to share spam, investing in TikTok is a “must” to keep in touch with future generations.
“It’s also a place where fashion is accelerating, where imitation is going so fast that you can’t even imagine creating a trend or something to go with it,” he said.
Wröbel was referring to the deluge of accounts dedicated to cutting celebrity outfits, from Kim Kardashian’s Balenciaga-branded tape catsuit to Kate Middleton’s coat dresses. The difference, however, is that they mimic the look by recycling and DIYing items already in people’s closets instead of buying knockoffs.
“[Julia Fox] cuts the size of her jeans, and then there’s a video where you see a girl cutting her own jeans,” he said. “It’s an immediate thing.”
Wröbel then described these trends as 24-hour trends. “A Wednesday morning trend is already over Thursday morning,” he said.
However, trends are not always new. Wröbel pointed out how Gen Z thrives on Instagram and TikTok accounts dedicated to Princess Diana’s casual ’90s uniform of straight-leg jeans and a logo sweatshirt or varsity jacket.
Because of this, he said Gen Z is “rediscovering the kind of denim we think is totally [uninteresting] but for them it is totally new.
Particularly noteworthy is consumer intrigue with the British royal family — even to the point of mimicking the trademark dress Middleton wears for a special engagement.
“We have this… very old-fashioned thing. We have a lot to do with royal families. We have never seen so many [interest] in terms of fashion,” Wröbel said. “People are [having] fun imitating royal life. This is the reality now.
Bluezone’s latest theme, “Low Tech, No Tech”, counteracts these rapidly changing fads.
Describing the concept as a hipster take on hippie style, the company’s desire to slow down and unplug leads to an interesting design, Wröbel said.
And that’s more than using a flip phone ironically. He said the new low-tech design looks to the future and adds “artistic expression” to the products.
For denim, it means looking at its history and its culture built on vintage and heritage.
Wröbel pointed out that there are opportunities to make the next generation of durable, long-lasting jeans through underutilized processes like “old-fashioned” shuttle weaving. “We all know that shuttle looms go slower, so the yarns look better,” he said. “It’s a way to make strong jeans.”
Instead of describing jeans as heirloom or making them look like Levi’s jeans from the 1800s, he urged designers to do the opposite – to use the slower processes to create a “well-made” garment in a style. contemporary for low-tech hipsters.
Incorporating “no wash” messages and repairing are other ways brands are incorporating low-tech ideas into their collections.
“I really see that we don’t develop this low-tech trend enough that speaks to a new, younger and future generation and [the denim industry’s] low-tech know-how,” he said.