From ‘neo-mint’ to A-Beauty, trend forecasters at WGSN spoke to us about what we will be wearing in 2019
2019 has us hurtling into the end of another decade, one that saw us get overly invested in Instagram, millennial pink, fidget spinners and #normcore. We’ve already blasted our way through manbuns, tiny sunglasses, dad sneakers and HD brows. Is there still time for another round of trends before the dawn of the 2020s? Of course there is! There’s always time for one more bandwagon to pass through town. We spoke to the savvy experts at trend forecasting hub WGSN about how we’ll be dressing, as we toe open the door, trembling, of the last year of the 2010s.
1. Minimalism and the Post-Philo void
It’s hard out here for a devotee of modern minimalism. What is a woman to do in the post-Phoebe Philo world? “Philo’s legacy brought with it a minimal, yet subversive take on women’s apparel,” notes Anna Ross, womenswear editor, WGSN. “We have Philo to thank for sneaker-dressing, oversized outerwear and the wide-leg trouser but to name a few.” So where should we be looking next? Ross mentions Daniel Lee, the ex-Céline designer now at Bottega Veneta. “His Pre-Fall 19 outing nods to all the idiosyncrasies of #oldceline’s codes. It’s with this in mind that we look to minimalism as an overarching trend for 2019; as a concept, it’s much more holistic.” Think buying less, but buying better, renting some sequined occasionwear rather than buying, or buying pieces that you know will last across seasons. “We saw this reflected in the SS19 catwalks, for example; all-beige dressing reigned supreme, with designers tapping into new neutrals as a way to promote longevity. It won’t be easy to fill the Philo-shaped hole in many hearts but people will try – and the consumer will follow – and with it, a new dawn for a pared back aesthetic.”
In a post-Instagram age, colour has a new ability to signify some additional status, and to proliferate like wildfire across our collective consciousness. A shade becomes a visual by-word for good taste, or the zeitgeist, or some insider knowledge only a few are privy to. So then: what is the colour of 2019? Enter ‘neo-mint’, “an icy and refreshing pastel tone, it highlights the enduring appeal of trans-seasonal tones and colour that can be worn by any gender or age group,” says Hannah Craggs, colour editor and trend forecaster, WGSN. “It’s youthful but accessible. It evolves from the popularity of soft pastels first established by the now ubiquitous millennial pink.” This, she notes, can be linked to new conversations around robotics and AI, and it’s a shade that captures our obsessions with futurism and what tomorrow holds for our planet. Hannah has spotted it on catwalks and predicts it’ll make waves in menswear, tech and interiors, too. Crucially, it looks perfect on a spring manicure. Get on it now before you hit colour fatigue.
3. Values-based shopping
Ditched your disposable water bottles for a slick reusable canteen in 2018? You’re not exactly alone in that choice. More and more of us are using shopping as a way to demonstrate where our values lie. “As people start to feel more concerned about sustainability, spending will become more political as people look to ensure that people and the environment are being protected,” explains Petah Marian, senior editor of Insight at WGSN. “We expect things like ‘Made in the UK’ to become more of a purchase driver in those countries, as people look to keep money within their own economies as well.” The good news is that we can make a tangible change when we decide to alter how we spend our cash. The bad news? No amount of heritage British tailoring or ethical lingerie will save us in the coming climate apocalypse.
4. Australian beauty brands
K-beauty? Tired. J-Beauty? Forget about it – there’s a new letter on everyone’s lips. “The focus for 2019 will be on A-beauty,” says Theresa Yee, senior beauty editor, WGSN. “Australian brands such as Sand & Sky, Frank Body, Dr Roebuck and Grown Alchemist are growing in popularity in the UK, but we expect this trend to have global appeal.” Since the steps in our skincare regimens expanded from a humble three to 12 or more, we’re ready for something a little more relaxed. More simple. More… Australian. “Australian brands have appeal here, thanks to the natural ingredients sourced locally in the region, the brands’ sustainability focus and the simplistic product formats.” Something to look out for in London? “Skinsmiths is a New Zealand skin and appearance company founded in 1994, but has recently opened its first clinic in the UK, which offers facials based on paying a membership. The company plans to open more clinics in the UK in 2019.”
5. Classic tailoring-infused streetwear
This may shock you: right now, streetwear isn’t going anywhere. But, WGSN tells us, in between the queues outside Supreme and the new niche brands that exist only online, you can expect a slight influence from classic menswear and hints of heritage. “This is not about a restoration of circa 2008 heritage workwear and tailoring purism,” says Volker Ketteniss, menswear director, WGSN. “Coveted archive reissues from the 80s and 90s, such as Ralph Lauren’s Stadium and Snow Beach releases, will keep authentic sportswear in the picture. At the same time, brands like Noah and Rowing Blazers have led a return of the perennial Ivy League preppy look that isn’t a rejection of streetwear, but an embrace of it.” Wondering how to put a twist on what is already in your wardrobe? Look to the past. “The attitude remains in the styling, and reaches across generations,” explains Volker. “Gen X will appreciate the fresh rebellious take on a look they inherently understand, while for Gen Z, the fusion of tailoring with streetwear becomes the gateway towards a more mature fashion vocabulary.”
With thanks to WGSN.