Where do trends come from?

Where do trends come from?

Each season, designers, manufacturers and indie makers come out with new offerings, hoping to capture the attention of their customers. But how do they decide what to offer? And how do they know what will trend this season? The answer, at least in part, is that the fiber industry takes its cues from fashion trends. Today we explore a few of the places you can consult if you’re looking for the hottest trends to come in the world of yarn and fabric.

Yarn Trends

While there are several trade shows and countless consumer shows throughout the year (pandemic notwithstanding), Pitti Filati is THE yearly fashion event in the world of yarn and knitting. The international event attracts buyers and designers worldwide that come to network with manufacturers to produce the hottest items for the next season. Pitti Filati is a feast for the eyes, full of color and texture, new ideas and themes. If you want to get a feel for what’s it like to be at Pitti Filati, we love this video from January 2020!

Browsing the offerings and attending the runway shows, buyers and designers get ideas for what trends will be hot in the coming seasons. That includes details like colors and textures, styles, graphic designs or prints, everything from collars to sleeves, yarns that sparkle or shine to fuzzy mohair, and anything you can think of. With all these in mind, yarn companies and designers plan their seasonal collections, hoping to translate the runway extremes of haute couture to wearable items that customers will go crazy for.

An Example: Rowan Yarns

If you’re interested in seeing an example of how fashion week trends are applied to yarn and a knitting pattern design collection, check out this interview with Trisha Malcolm, Creative Director at Rowan Yarns. Trisha (and Rowan Yarns) does an excellent job of identifying top trends and translating them to wearable designs in seasonal colors and to create offerings for eager customers!

Pantone Color Institute

The Pantone Color Institute publishes color palettes twice yearly (Spring/Summer and Autumn/Winter) after New York and London fashion weeks. Taking the hottest colorways from the runways, Panton produces a full palette of colors that both complement and contrast each other, and work together as a cohesive color collection. Everyone from yarn companies to textile producers consider these color palettes and incorporate them into their seasonal offerings in some manner. As an example, here is the inspiration for Spring/Summer 2021 based on New York Fashion Week:

Remember, that these collections are running a season ahead – so the colors you see above are forecasted to be hot hot hot in Spring and Summer of 2021. You can see all those fun pops of color – French Blue, Amethyst Orchid, Burnt Coral and Raspberry Sorbet – it’s going to be a colorful spring!


Sewing Trends

In the world of sewing, quilt shows are a great way to find out what’s going to be hot in the coming seasons, and International Quilt Market/Houston is no exception. If you’re concentrating more on fabrics for fashion, the runways are where it’s at. Much as we indicated in our section on Pitti Filati, you’ll need to follow runway fashions in New York or London Fashion week and then search for patterns and fabrics that take haute couture trends and make them wearable. Fashion magazines are also a great source of inspiration. We love this article from Vogue on what’s influencing the coming 2021 seasons. In short, due to coronavirus, designers have focused on using leftover fabrics, reimaging older designs and producing less waste.



Now that we know where to look to anticipate trends, the real question is how you incorporate this information into your crafty offerings. Take a look at the seasonal color palettes from Pantone and acquire fabric, yarn or other craft materials in those colorways. Follow the social media accounts of designers and manufacturers who are on trend and have content your customers are always clamoring for. Peruse industry publications (knitting, crocheting, quilting, or sewing magazines) and websites (Ravelry, influencers) looking for themes or trends. Who are the designers being featured? What kinds of projects are they creating? What materials are they using? What details or finishing techniques are they using? Recreate some of these projects in your store as samples, either using the materials called for or adapting to materials you offer, showing your customers a new take on the project. Create seasonal window displays or an area for what’s trending that incorporate these projects and materials in a snapshot of what’s hot. And include sneak peeks and previews in your newsletters and social media to share what you’ve found with your followers and advertise that you have those items in stock and ready to go!

We hope we’ve given you some ideas on where to look for emerging trends and how to incorporate those ideas into your crafty business. If you’re looking for help adding trends to your marketing strategy, contact us today and let us help you craft a better business!

Leanne Pressly
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