Sep 17, 2021 | By Crystal Tay
Big data meets consumer insights, Experience WGSN.
WGSN’s Lifestyle & Interiors department has been keeping a close eye on the continuing intersecting of fashion and interiors. The initial idea was to be able to dress the home the same way we dress ourselves. While a garment might be an investment unaffordable for many, the perception shifts when it relates to the home. Smaller pieces are great giftable items and are easier to add an eclectic maximalism via accents and decorative items. Moreover, fashion brands can reach customers that might not necessarily be their apparel customer.
These are all reasons why the synergies between fashion and home are so strong, and will continue to grow increasingly sophisticated and intertwined: Dimore Studio designing for Dior, Virgil Abloh designing for Vitra, Kenzo launching a whole new separate home and lifestyle brand, and the gorgeous tableware by Ann Demeulemeester for Serax are just a few examples; not to mention influencers, supermodels and celebrities launching their own interior ranges.
Our fruition of social media has certainly had an impact on this; our feeds are a constant free-flow of imagery where different brands, eras, styles and references all blend together. Therefore, a curated presentation of a brand with a lifestyle lens – showcasing what to wear to the spaces in which to live – immediately has an aspirational appeal.
Brand activations have started to play a key role here. In the last couple of years for instance, we have started seeing Milan Design Week (probably the most important design event globally) become the stage for elaborate installations by fashion brands, ad-hoc collaborations and limited-editions. Confirming that fashion is starting to see design and interiors as a new field in which to expand its influence, build new connections with consumers, especially in a time where there is a lot of backlash on the sustainability of fashion collections. Homewares are being perceived as a safer, more long-term and overall more meaningful category to invest in.
There is also a strong impact coming from rising consumer interest in brands with a narrative and a strong story. This is spurring a dive into brands’ rediscovered and celebrated archives and heritage. Fashion houses that have a history are best suited to meet such interest. Patterns and decor the are iconic to a brand make an appearance across homewares, and vice-versa, as homewares brands that have a historic heritage open their archives to fashion designers to reinterpret them across interior collections, just like Gianni Cinti just did for Rosenthal.
Overall, there is a growing synergy on the aesthetics being worked into collections, both on the catwalks and in interiors. The recent S/S 20 shows for instance, were a great example of fashion embracing craft in apparel. We had been tracking this for a few seasons already, with tiles, textiles, tabletop and furniture focused on purposefully imperfect details that feel handmade, artisanal and authentic.
The S/S 20 catwalks showcased fashion taking on this design direction and celebrating it. Crochet, macramé, patchwork, weaving, coarse fibres and many more hands-on textile techniques were the protagonists across a broad number of brands, ranging from Simone Rocha to Dior, Oscar de la Renta, Dolce & Gabbana and many more.
We certainly look forward to this dialogue between the two sectors continuing to influence each other’s design ranges in a joint effort to engage consumers in a more meaningful, consistent and lifestyle-driven way.
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