Creating Fossick Trends - Part 2
As I shared in Part 1 of the Fossick Trends story, both my experience as a Designer and in Trend Forecasting led me to exploring a new trend solution for the industry. After seven years pursuing my dream career in trend forecasting the balance had shifted to account management and business development. I needed to reignite my creativity and so spent the early part of 2018 throwing myself in to Melbourne’s creative network. I attended talks, meetups, meeting with business advisors and coaches, even rediscovering an old hobby of oil painting. I read Elizabeth Gilbert's book Big Magic: Creative living beyond fear which definitely spurred me along and I recommend this book for anyone looking for a fun energy boost to encourage their creativity.
I really embraced the amazing communities and resources available. I learnt about entrepreneurial businesses in the creative space and was particularly inspired by the story of the founders of Canva. I attended VAMFF in Melbourne and Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Sydney and listened to industry talks. I was open to whatever shape my ideas took, but through it all my original passion for trend forecasting continued to bubble to the surface.
Through the global community of Creative Mornings I came across a quote that inspired me and remains on my notice board today:
Both my professional experience and my gut sense was telling me that there was something missing in the trend forecasting industry. My design experience told me that having a point of difference was key in creating desirable products. As designers we are bowerbirds, collecting ideas, knowledge, visual inspiration, and bringing it all together to inspire new products. It seemed to me that having access to a variety of forecasts from all around the world would be ideal for Designers.
The idea of a new industry offering excited me and began to keep me awake at night - that’s when the idea for Fossick Trends surfaced. I dreamed of a platform where Designers could find ideas and inspiration created by forecasters from all corners of the world. A place where knowledge and creativity could be shared.
The sharing economy for trends
Designers draw inspiration from far and wide as consumer trends continually shift and change. I could see that globally there was a market gap for trend forecasting information that could be accessed on a user-friendly site that was affordable and contract free. I began playing with the idea of a sharing economy for trends. I was driven to connect designers with experienced, independent trend forecasters who can deliver relevant trends specific to categories. This new marketplace would be the connection point for trend forecasters and inspiration seekers to connect over fresh and original content.
Knowing my business would be online and the UX would be critical to its success I completed a UX course at General Assembly in Melbourne. I absolutely LOVED this course as it perfectly combined creativity and problem solving. As part of the course I interviewed designers which highlighted for me their research frustrations. My mind was filled with ideas of how to solve all their challenges in sourcing reliable, affordable, and inspiring trend content.
After completing the UX course I was clear that there would be a period of validating the concept, and then deciding on a plan and timeframe.
The right timing
The time away from working in trend forecasting gave me the distance to view the industry objectively. I identified four industry shifts (happening within Australia) which were driving change for trend suppliers:
I’ve been passionate from the start about the ‘off the shelf’ model where designers could browse and buy what and when they needed it from independent forecasters all over the world, not being locked in to subscription contracts. The Fossick Trends model offers both parties maximum flexibility. Smaller brands and niche product areas can often find it hard to source relevant trend insights for their specific category.
The trend forecasting community
Through the validation process I realised that there was little connection between professional trend forecasters globally. I struggled to find communities (online and physical) where forecasters were coming together as a creative collective. As I began interviews with forecasters it became apparent that there was opportunity to, and an interest in, creating something that brought them together.
As a forecaster there are limited options in sharing your knowledge. Through Fossick Trends there is now a platform where designers can discover them, get to know them, and see their work. The trend reports that are uploaded to Fossick Trends each month are original and inspiring. Nothing brings me greater pleasure than when a designer discovers a trend forecaster’s work that is a perfect match for their needs and supports their product range decisions.
Since launching Fossick Trends in September 2019, I’ve been contacted by trend forecasters all over the world. I have found the process of creating Fossick Trends and meeting so many talented people very rewarding. Although they come from different countries and backgrounds, they all share a desire to help designers and share my passion in providing relevant and affordable trend insights.
The journey continues
The process of creating Fossick Trends has been a huge learning curve, provided professional growth and best of all – i've formed new friendships. The journey continues as I constantly learn new skills and tools for running and growing the business. Fossick Trends is still relatively new (we’re not yet a year old!) and I'm excited as it evolves and transforms the way designers and forecasters connect.
I hope you found the Fossick Trends story interesting!
If you are exploring your own creative idea or want to know more about Fossick Trends please reach out to me if you would like to chat.