Today’s extremely fast-paced work place is due to businesses and consumers wanting everything delivered “pronto” and at the least possible cost.
Such combination can be stressful for us fashion designer as we are often short on time to observe the trends around us and create the perfect, competitive designs that would make us proud. Trendbooks have therefore become indispensable tools for fashion designers today.
Trendbooks represent substantial savings in time, money, and above all, in getting your designs right. This is because it gives you an international perspective of consumer trends and behaviour in the form of colours, drawings, embroidery patterns and mood boards readily available to inspire you.
We at Minicool are aware of the effort placed in putting together a trendbook. We also know how important it is for you to have such a material. As such, our post will teach you the basics that will inspire you to create, in five steps, your very own trendbook for your small projects.
How about it? Shall we begin?
Here we go!
STEP 1: Investigate
In design, just as we do in life, before we can learn new things and use them to solve problems, we must first of all observe and search for information.
During this process of investigation to create a trendbook you should focus your efforts on observing your environment in order to identify any innovations that may influence your market segment. To be more exact, focus your attention on three things:
- Staying in touch with the experts of different areas. This will encourage you to learn and stay in tune with the latest news and developments taking place around the world.
- Pay attention to everything around you. You already have the opinions of others and it is now time for you to build your own. You will be able to find interesting clues that could lead you to the next step by staying tuned to the news, to things happening in restaurants, and in your day to day life.
- Predict where society will head next, and the impact thereof on consumers. Bear in mind that fashion trends come from them, and to know how they could behave is a step toward creating innovative and successful designs and products.
In order to help you make a good start, Minicool will introduce you to the areas we see as key in this investigative stage:
- Social relations
- Arts and Culture
- The Environment
Quite a number of stages, right?
STEP 2: Travel
We already know this is a step that leaves you concerned, as you may not always have the time and the money to travel in search of trends and visit new markets. However, there are cheaper options to help you achieve these.
Here are some of them:
- Take advantage of your business trips. Yes, we know that when you travel on business you have many back-to-back appointments and clients to visit. We also know that you will most likely stay in a hotel. Hotels are good examples of places where you will be surrounded by international fashion trends as they accommodate guests from all places. You should therefore make the best of the occasion by ordering a coffee and sitting at the lobby to enjoy the fashion parade.
- Ask friends, acquaintances and family members who live abroad. They experience the changes first hand, and would be best suited to describe them. They are the primary source of information on how the people in their countries live, act, what concerns them, and what they consume. Take note of their comments and the indicators that can help predict where society is headed.
- Peruse the compilation of images. Confident of having a blog list you can resort to when looking for photos of fashion trends. There are many publications of the kind today that put you in virtual contact with the world, allowing you to visit many fantastic corners of the planet that will inspire you. Take advantage of them.
If you are given the opportunity to travel, it is important to document everything so make sure to keep your camera close at hand!
STEP 3: Analyze
This is the most important stage as it involves taking all your notes, photos, comments, chats with friends, recorded sources, placing everything in front of you.
In this stage it is essential that you work to find all similarities and differences in the material you have put together, summarize them, and make deductions. There are no more secrets.
STEP 4: Decide
Once you have all the information and deductions, you will be left with deciding on what should be the results. In other words, you will predict the themes of trends, collections, the graphic style to work on in each theme, the colour palette for your project (for which you will need the trendbook).
Minicool regards colour as one of the most difficult decisions in that it requires great expertise and feeling to properly interpret social, economic or political changes, to translate them into a suitable range of colours.
We mentioned “analysis” earlier as a key step, and just as important, is it not?
It refers to one’s capacity to decide on each one of these elements as dependent on one’s creative process and successful development of the project. And if you wish to present the result in your portfolio, well, you will want to make it great.
The key is to carefully follow the previous steps to ensure you lose as little information as possible.
STEP 5: Design
It is now time to release your energy and put your creative genius to work!
This is where you will translate all of these ideas you have been collecting along the way into original designs you can quickly and easily adapt.
Just remember not to lose sight of the deductions from the previous steps so that you can exploit them to their fullest.
That is it. Your trendbook is now ready for use.
Get to work!
Surely, now that we come to think of it, these steps can help you to develop designs in almost any industry: web design, industrial design, graphic design. Fascinating!
How did you like the lesson? Would you like to sign up for the next lesson?
The Minicool Team.