The Future of Boutiques & Fashion
Trends change fast in today’s technology-led world. If you went back in time, hardly anyone would be talking about Instagram as a key driver of fashion or acknowledge that most people are happily using online shopping platforms instead of visiting boutique shops. Suffice it to say that the future of the fashion world will look very different that what we are seeing now. Predictions are always difficult, but if you want to dream about what the future of fashion might look like, here are some of the fascinating trends we see ahead:
Everyone can become a designer
Until now, fashion design has been left up to professional designers who personalize each item they make and sell. However, with the advent of the 3D printer, the future of fashion design seems it will be far more available to anyone and everyone. For example, you will be able to design more personalised products and even print out your own creations at home.
What could this mean for the fashion world and designers everywhere? The prediction is that new clothing lines will start popping up throughout the year with far more designers able to access the trade. Retailers will swap larger collections for a more ever changing line-up with new and constant designs coming at every turn. So a far better variety indeed.
Fashion and technology continues to merge
You’ve probably heard the term ‘wearables’ by now. The idea of clothing that has in-built technology has been around for quite a while, with the predictions slowly becoming a reality. The merging between fashion and technology is going to speed up and it might be hard to know which industry is driving which at some point in the future.
Heather Picquot told Who What Wear that, “wearables are becoming much more comfortable and fashion focused. A great example is Samsung’s Body Compass that was unveiled at CES 2016in January. It’s a tank top with a tiny visible metal disk, a bottle cap-sized sensor.” This particular fashion item can measure your heart rate and keep an overall check on your health and we think that’s amazing.
While the discussion has so far been mainly about how health will be monitored with wearables, future predictions indicate the addition of social elements and wow factors to fashion trends. Utility and functionality will no longer be the focus of these technologies. It might be fun to have a jacket that closes itself when the temperature drops!
The fashion world is being pushed by consumers towards a much more sustainable model with social responsibility at the forefront. Consumers are much more aware of the impact their shopping decisions can have. While people will continue to buy nice things and update their wardrobe regularly, they will want to do so in a way that doesn’t put strain on the climate or harm the planet or people. Brands like Adidas are already investing in inventions like their their recycled sneaker. Stella McCartney has begun using new, cutting-edge materials that provide consumers with a more sustainable choice – without having to forego great fashion elements.
Mobile shopping is the new black
When it comes to buying beauty and fashion items, online shopping will continue be a buyer’s dream come true. The convenience of using online stores to find great things and update your wardrobe without ever leaving your home will be quite appealing to people with busy, hectic lives. Online shopping will also continue to transition from the laptop to mobile devices so online retailers should be getting themselves ready for that in a big way.
Smartphone shopping will be the future of shopping. The market research firm Forrester has predicted mobile purchases to account for nearly 50% of e-commerce by 2020. Beyond this, it’s hard to see why the market share wouldn’t just continue to increase.
Companies are already acknowledging this with responsive websites and shopping apps. Cult Beauty is one example of an online beauty products retailer getting ready with their online presence and mobile site.
It is possible the traditional brick-and-mortar store may become a thing of the past, with more agile options taking center stage. Pop-up shops are already a big thing in the food industry, but fashion is likely to follow next. Any future store will have to adapt to its customer and become increasingly convenient and accessible – this is likely to mean that you can soon shop in hotels, cars and even your home.
The changing times are exciting for the fashion and boutique industry. Big changes are already in the making and older brands and concepts that do not take heed may miss out in the future. It is likely that new businesses, store fronts and designers will come to the forefront and steal market share. Whatever the future brings, it is an exciting time with fascinating trends, technology and change in the world of fashion and boutique stores.