How to predict fashion trends

Trend prediction agencies are a branch of the fashion design industry and their role is to support the fashion designer in the initial and developmental stages of their collections. Trend researcher’s use data from a wide range of sources to compile a seasonal trend report.



Creating trend forecasts
There are a few things that trend researchers do to create their trend forecasts.

  • They are constantly looking for new and emerging designers and will often visit graduate fashion shows and contemporary art exhibitions.
  • They see what trends may be set to make a resurgence by looking at historical fashion collections and visiting museums and galleries.
  • They research the collections being walked by large fashion houses and identify correlating themes, colours and silhouettes that are occurring within the collections. This information is then passed down to high street designers who use the information to develop a paired down collection suitable for their target market. This is known as the trickle-down effect.
  • They research the bubble up effect. This is where street wear trends are developed by high street fashion designers into collections to suit their customer base. They often change the fabrics, and the shapes may be less street, but the influence is still there.
  • They use consumer research and social influencers in their reports.
  • They consider films and the music industry and how they have potential to influence the fashion industry.
  • The attend industry trade shows such as Premiere Vision.

Unlike in the past when trend reports were issued approximately two years in advance of a season, the timeframe is now year on year as the market has become more demanding and fast fashion is key.


What trend agencies offer the designer
Trend agencies offer a range of packages to designers. The amount of information and the frequency of the reports is based on what information a designer needs and the subscription they have.

Trend agencies will develop reports for different sectors of the market. For instance, if you are designing children’s wear, lingerie or evening wear collections the reports will contain the information needed for that specific market. This will include information on colour schemes, fabric trends, silhouette shapes and themes.

All this research does come at a substantial cost, however. The amount of research involved would be difficult for a designer to carry out on their own, especially if they are developing four or more collections per year. For designers, this service is considered a way of saving time and, while expensive, it is seen as a necessary expense.


Some of the key trend prediction agencies used by designers are:


Create your own trend predication
As an emerging designer, it is often beyond your budget to factor agency prices into your collection. The websites listed below can help you to create your own trend prediction. This will not only help you with your assignments but will also help you to develop ideas for your first collection.


Fashion Design Trends

Can you predict what the next big trend will be? We’d love to hear you thoughts and ideas.


References: (2018). Apparel Search Fashion Industry Guide. [online] Available at: [Accessed 15 Dec. 2018].

PANTONE. (2018). Pantone - Pantone Color, Chips & Color Guides | Color Inspiration. [online] Available at: [Accessed 15 Dec. 2018]. (2018). The Sartorialist. [online] Available at: [Accessed 15 Dec. 2018]. (2018). Beach apparel, cute dresses, fashion | StyleTrendClothiers. [online] Available at: [Accessed 15 Dec. 2018]. (2018). Trendstop | Trend Forecasts you can trust. [online] Available at: [Accessed 15 Dec. 2018]. (2018). British Vogue - Fashion, Trends, Latest News, Catwalk Photos & Designers. [online] Available at: [Accessed 15 Dec. 2018].

WGSN | Creating Tomorrow | Trend Forecasting & Analytics. (2018). WGSN | Create Tomorrow | Trend Forecasting & Analytics. [online] Available at: [Accessed 15 Dec. 2018].


The links included here are provided as a convenience and for informational purposes only. We bear no responsibility for the accuracy, legality or content of any external site or for any content on subsequent websites, nor does the inclusion of these links constitute our endorsement or an approval of any products, services or opinions stated.

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Written by: Deborah Walsh

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