Here are some trends from our perspective as a USA manufacturer. We picked these up at Outdoor Retailer this month and through other travels.
TREND 1: ATHLEISURE
Athleisure is the big word on the street! This is a mix of Athletic and Leisure in case you didn’t pick that up. This is what people are calling that category of clothing that they wear at the gym and then to the grocery store. This category has been brewing for many years but now it has earned itself a name: Athleisure is here to stay!
TREND 2: ANTI PIXIE DUST
The Secret of Pixie Dust is out! This is what one of our vendors called the chemicals that treat fabrics to make them wicking, anti-microbial, wrinkle resistant etc…. Yes, for years the consumer has been duped into buying these technologies that cause more harm to the environment and to our bodies than necessary. There are alternative ways to achieve most of these features in a natural way. Like the picture on the right above shows how fibers can be knitted together in a way that transports sweat from the skin to the face of the fabric. This is done mechanically through knitting techniques and not with chemicals. Some fibers such as charcoal or bamboo have natural anti-microbial properties inherent to the fibers themselves.The list of natural alternatives goes on and on…. but now we feel like Joe Schmoe consumer is on his way to becoming more and more aware of this.
TREND 3: MESH, MESH AND MORE MESH!
Mesh of all kinds is showing up in apparel. Above is an outfit full of mesh and a rain jacket of PU coated mesh. Be on the lookout for all kinds of mesh integrated into outdoor wear, active wear, and casual.
TREND 4: PERFORATION
Not be confused with mesh, perforation is making headway in fashion and function. See the picture on the left above, this shows fabric perforation for underarm breathability. The picture on the right is more for aesthetics than functionality. Either way we see it popping up in several apparel categories.
TREND 5: INCOGNITO REFLECTIVE
Now you see it, now you don’t! Reflective is making it’s way into everyday apparel but in a hidden way. In the picture above reflective is woven throughout the fabric of the jacket and the belt. In daylight you cannot see it but once it’s dark and a light shines on it, it just pops.
TREND 6: NEW ZIPPER BREED
Last but not least, there is a brand new type of zipper. But don’t get too excited yet…Under Armor has exclusive rights to it until 2018. Developed for UA innovation contest, this zipper allows you to only use one hand to zip up a jacket. check out the video below to see it in action, then wait for 2018 and you can put it into your brand too! (video is a bit long- go to about the 1 minute mark to start the video to get the picture)