Post COVID-19 priorities and how to translate them for the Menswear market, by Laure Nicolai
French forecaster Laura Nicolai is an experienced trend consultant who works with leading corporations, including Universal Music, Procter&Gamble, and as a Colour expert for Premiere Vision. She is passionate and curious, combining her global expertise with her creative instinct to craft fresh and innovative trend books ideal for today's consumers. Laure shares her insights on menswear trends in this excerpt from her comprehensive Menswear FW21/22 Forecast, identifying four key trends Modernist, Mutation, Genesis, and Delirium.
The pandemic crisis may have wiped out many of our certainties and challenged what we know as solid, but it has not shaken our quest for meaning. In fact, quite the contrary. For many, the pandemic has highlighted where superficiality and the ephemeral are harshly evident. There is a growing trend toward frugality and appreciation for the basics, and from this, I like to imagine considered and smart creation. This is a unique opportunity to challenge brands and businesses in finding the right balance between creativity, a strong and authentic brand DNA, and ensuring environmentally conscious products.
To guide you on this path here are four top priorities for the upcoming season, and more specifically how they may be translated for the Menswear market.
MODERNIST: THE SHIFT TO RE-SHAPE THE SYSTEM
We are in a necessary transition period. Our existing systems as they stand can no longer hide their flaws. After several industry heavyweights made their opinions clear, there is a feeling of movement towards revolt against what we have known as the “fashion system”. It is now time to lay down our arms and take up our tools.
Inspired by the Avant-garde artistic and deeply social movement, Modernist proposes to conceive a brand-new paradigm.
Workwear influences pass on the side of the designers. We are inspired by the aesthetics of the design offices, the elegance of architects and designers, the freedom and determined style of the middle class, to reinvent a classic wardrobe for the modern cool man.
Exit the garish tones and bold statements, the palette of neutral manufacturers is measured and precise, without flourish. The lengths and volumes are adjusted for a brutalist sensuality. The fabrics are chosen for their timeless allure and their robustness. The details promise a studied twist of the classics to review an urban wardrobe with qualitative aspirations.
MUTATION: THE SURGE TO ADAPT IN AN UNPREDICTABLE ENVIRONMENT
Mutation immerses us in the heart of an unpredictable nature, oscillating between grandiose forces and hostile environment. An adventure that pushes the boundaries of the extreme and requires functional and easy adaptability. The outdoor-inspired cloakroom takes on a survivalist look, the details reinforce comfort and adaptability, always in a conscious and sustainable approach for products that last as long as possible and whatever the climate holds.
The silhouette develops highly contrasting camouflage techniques, the garment continues its way despite the snags, the looks are done in layering to optimize the abrupt changes in temperature. The technicality of activewear is confronted with the grungy aspirations of this revolt of Nature.
The world is changing, we are facing an uncertain future, it’s up for us to adapt! Let it be destroyed, revived, regrown, transformed ... Let’s Mutate.
GENESIS: FIND SANCTUARY IN COMFORT ZONE
Genesis takes a step away from our too-fast and over-connected life. Reconnecting man in his need for personal connection, comfort, serenity and affirms the prioritisation of primary needs. This resilient minimalism draws its inspiration from the beginnings of humanity navigating between Palaeolithic graphics, ancestral outfits and comfortable overlays.
The wardrobe gives pride of place to stylish and enveloping comfortwear. We rely on the textured character of the fabrics, the roundness of volumes, the calming effects of chalky color ranges. Every detail is essential in minimalism. We draw on the intelligence of the sobriety of our ancestors to design a resolutely contemporary look.
By reducing artifices, by using responsible materials and by favouring cocooning loungewear, we reduce our impact on the planet whilst increasing the feeling of appeasement so dear to our time.
Less is more, back to the primary basics.
DELIRIUM: THE INNER CREATIVE ESCAPISM (print direction)
A real visual theography, as humorous as it is wacky, takes you on a sleepy and offbeat trip. At the edge of our unconscious lies an inner creativity where trance, fantasies, nostalgia for our childhood and guilty pleasures promise a joyous escape to the land of the imaginary.
Delirium offers you to twist your basics and make your core collection anti monotonous.
We believe in the power of colors, the strength of the visual impact and the satisfaction that certain textures cause in us. Delirium relies on bold graphics and fuzzy-fluffy-puffy materials to bring a little craziness to our basics.
Down with gloomy winters, dive into your inner creativity!
LEARN MORE ABOUT THESE TRENDS:
These Menswear directions can be found in further detail within two reports:
FW21/22 Menswear Complete Trendbook - a comprehensive 102-page seasonal forecast to inform your design development. Including moodboards, pantone colour palettes & harmonies, key silhouettes (50 pages of items, outerwear, tops, bottoms, knitwear), details & fabrics, graphic directions, key accessories.
FW21/22 Menswear Essential Trendbook - an essential guide for Men's Apparel design for the FW21/22 season. The 24-page report includes moodboards, colour palettes & harmonies (with Pantone references), and key looks.
You can discover all of Laure Nicolai's trend work on her Fossick Trends profile.