Weightless, agile and impactful: The core tenants for Première Vision New York’s spring 2020 trend story appeared more intellectual than aesthetic at first glance. But a deeper dive into this playful, provocative season revealed airy taupes, “living” colors and a leitmotif of wellness that translates into nature-inspired prints, luminescence and glossy fabrics replete with pearly shine. Première Vision was held last week at Pier 94 in New York.
And wellness for this season means “the unveiling of the true self” through light, flowing and “unencumbered” fabrics with smooth, wet shine and iridescent leathers with a “firefly” effect, which includes waxy looks, glittery yarns and shiny laces. Fresh grassy tones and colors such as “cloverfield” and “sap” help define a trend that beckons the first day of spring and “brings materials to life.”
Julie Greux, deputy fashion director of Première Vision, told WWD, “There is a general importance of softness and fluidity. I think overall there is a trend around lightness,” harmonized by a muted, steely color palette, including colors such as “breath of clay,” a dark amber shade and “winds of freedom,” a cool-toned blue. “There is a raw aspect with linen fibers, but it’s mixed with more suppleness because the blends are made of Lyocell and Cupro.” She added, “When you wear these fabrics, they are super comfortable and smooth.” That softness, suppleness, lightness and fluidity is seen throughout, juxtaposed with a “sophisticated” roughness found in highly textured materials. “Light colors play together with smooth, soft and muted colors; it’s really a combination of those [characteristics],” Greux said. “We’re [also] playing with the impact of color,” Greux added, as bold colors such as “inflammatory red,” an almost neon “howling” orange and sunny yellows round out the season.
Milky tones and metallics are trending for spring, in addition to delicate washes for linens and cottons and knits that are “malleable, moving and smooth.” Patterns are described as blurry, hazy and blooming, with impressionist prints that hearken Monet and exotically colorful, tribal, street art graphics gleaned from African and tropical influences bear a resemblance to works by Basquiat. Optical illusion tie-dyes and “invigorating” graphics are seen on cotton and viscose, while stripes are mostly wide, with contrasting colors. An obvious focus on nature through prints such as “flamboyant” foliage; “crazy” vegetation, and “stylized” leaf patterns, also takes form in tropical florals, palm trees and rivers.
Its “sophisticated wellness” element is felt through “enhanced” naturals — think of Tencel, hemp and supple linens — to enhance the prevailing theme of sustainability that is innate throughout the season. Guglielmo Olearno, international exhibitions director of Première Vision, told WWD, “Sustainably is extremely important. It’s not a micro-trend, it’s a necessity. Consumers are looking for sustainable apparel and items that are greener, more respectful of the environment and extremely transparent. [And] brands, too, are trying to adapt to transparency.” Olearno also noted that personalization and customization have continued to be top trends among consumers. “People want to be part of the creative process,” he said.
The show’s Smart Creation Square featured “natural, responsible and transformative” materials and a look from sustainable designer Mara Hoffman, showcasing a colorful U.S.-made “Red Diem” bikini top made of regenerated Econyl nylon and Spandex and “Agave Cora,” a vibrantly colorful digitally printed skirt made from Lenzing’s Ecovero fibers. Also on display was Eileen Fisher Renew’s denim outfit, which included a kimono made of five-and-a-half pairs of jeans and a jumpsuit made of five pairs of jeans, both constructed through a special engineered pattern technique. And Première Vision’s Brand Ambassador Exhibition, created with the CFDA to promote local and sustainable designers, underscored the work of women-led fashion brand Tome, clothing designed with the intention to empower the women who wear the clothes, and those who make the clothes. In perfect alignment with spring 2020’s theme, Tome’s philosophy is summarized as “Soft power,” by way of strong, flexible silhouettes and versatile elegance, according to the brand.
Ramon Martin, cofounder and designer, Tome, told WWD, “Our path to sustainability has been a unique process. We started in 2015 when we partnered with Katie Ford and Freedom for All Foundation — a charity that fights human trafficking, forced labor and slavery. This was the birth of The White Shirt Project, a capsule collection that raises awareness for the essential work Katie does. The first step in this partnership required us to look at our supply chain and ensure all vendors we work with have ethical manufacturing standards in place; that we could access where our clothes were being made and have direct contact with the women making them. This then led us to focus on female owned/operated businesses with 0 percent pay gap and equal opportunity employers. Choices for organic or minimally processed raw materials and female artisan engagement in Peru, India and the USA naturally followed. I think many brands start with the product as their focus for a sustainable business, where as we started with the people who are part of that process.”
Martin noted that there are many areas where brands can explore sustainability, and many greener practices and procedures are “a work in progress.” He continued, “There are always opportunities where we can improve the ways we make clothes. This innovation is often found through partnership, and at the early stages of the creative process. Première Vision New York is actively creating this environment and encouraging conversations between weavers, local factories and designers. Thanks to the support of the CFDA and Première Vision, it is an ideal platform to promote the collaborative efforts of those in fashion who work to evolve sustainable practices in our industry.”
For more Business news from WWD, see: