COTTON FALL-WINTER 2002-2003: NATURAL ELEMENTS

Byline: Daniela Gilbert

NEW YORK — Taking their cue from nature, Cotton Incorporated’s trends for the fall-winter 2002-2003 season focus on colors and fabrics influenced by earth, wind and fire.
“The shorter, darker days make fall and winter inward-looking seasons,” said Suzanne Shapiro, Cotton Inc.’s senior director of fashion marketing. “How that gets played in the season’s fabric trends is an indulgence in soft, luxurious textures and inner, hidden functionality of fabrics.”
Color, she added, is a combination of “bright crayon shades that warm up the cold fall and winter months, but they are accent colors meant to clash and combine with the season’s grayed neutrals.”
Five groups sum up the different trends: In Your Dreams, Box of Delights, High Visibility, Evolution of Surface and Practical Brilliance.
In Your Dreams is “all about soft loft,” Shapiro said. The colors, which include lavender, rose peach, cider, cardamom green, lemon and dune, are “diluted and sophisticated.”
“Looks in luxurious cashmere and cashmere blends are important, including cotton and cashmere, as well as cotton and wool that features a chenille yarn for softness,” she said.
For Box of Delights, Shapiro’s inspiration came from the contrast of rich colors found in Morocco. Here, the palette includes deep greens and browns, accented with a light raspberry color called Moroccan Sunset.
Textures, meanwhile, were influenced by the architecture of mosques and mosaics. “There are some great coated cottons that look like suede and leather,” she said. “Tweeded plaids and freckled prints in cotton mimic wool and give an artisanal feel to the group.”
The colors in High Visibility combine tinted neutrals such as beige, clay and gray indigo with what Shapiro calls “commodity brights,” such as grape jelly, stop sign and bumblebee.
Textures are a mix of Op Art imagery and graphics from universal road signs. Strong diagonals are key, as are herringbones and twills. Novelty denims are also important and include colored weft slubs and tweedy effects.
Evolution of Surface features a palette of “sophisticated colors,” according to Shapiro. Reds are varied and include downtown red, brazen berry, uptown red and candied apple. Mixed in are a bright blue and mossy greens.
For texture, “finish is key,” said Shapiro. “Glossy sateen weaves, dense polyurethane coatings and mercerized and calendered effects are just a few.”
Rounding out the trend story, Practical Brilliance plays on the importance of androgynous looks. Colors are a mixture of grays, beiges, inky blues and blacks, and a muddy brown. Texturally speaking, a Japanese aesthetic dominates the trend. Fabrics are woven in geometric patterns or to create a rippled surface.
“Square weaves, such as panamas or cotton woven with metal threads for shape memory, are important,” Shapiro said.

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