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Trend Q&A: Top footwear and accessories drivers for 2023

Footwear & accessories special. Store display of sneakers
WGSN Original Image, Rick Govic/Unsplash
Feb 08, 2023 By WGSN Insider

The cost of living and footwear, enhancing sentimental value of products and plant-based fabrics. That and more on today’s episode.

Want to know what’s next? Listen to the show where our experts from around the globe unpack your biggest challenges. This week, WGSN’s Executive Editorial Director Bethan Ryder takes us to Romford, New York and London, where our fashion forecasters are shining the spotlight on the footwear and accessories category.

Watch the full episode below or read on for highlights of this episode:

Q: How will the cost-of-living crisis affect footwear and accessories categories?
“Longevity purchasing will intensify as a key driver, with consumers looking at classic investment pieces that can be bought and sold on. This will mean an increased focus on the development of character classics, where we see time-tested favourites updated with standout features, including modular components that can help facilitate different looks and drive cost-per-wear value.”
– Jane Collins, Footwear & Accessories Senior Editor, WGSN
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Q: How can we create personalisation opportunities to enhance the sentimental value of accessories?
“Items that hold long-term appeal and sentimental value will be key. Personalisation taps into this thinking and will help create future heirlooms. While monogram initials and names are the most traditional options, be creative with your offerings, harnessing uptrending photo printing and pet gifting that will work across different accessories.”
– Ana Correa, Footwear Trend Forecaster, WGSN
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Q: What is the role of plant-based alternatives in footwear and accessories collections and how do they compare to leathers?
“A shift towards sustainability and circularity is imperative for material strategies. We’re seeing an increased focus on waste as a valuable resource centred on byproducts. Materials that capitalise on waste of other industries, such as leathers and plant-based materials made with excess food or regeneratively farmed plants, are gaining relevance.

“Biomaterials are a more responsible alternative to virgin synthetics and aim to be the future alternative to oil-based products, resulting in a more responsible option for the growing vegan consumer. And we expect this to complement the leather market.”
– Lucila Saldana, Footwear & Accessories Editor, WGSN
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