Fashion was the main industry which gave birth to trend bureau and trend agencies. The old days their task was to forecast colors trends. After Second World War a mass production of clothing started in America. It was the era when trends analysis cross the border of colors forecasting and widely used in textile industry, men’s fashion, furniture and decor.

Until the 1960s, the fashion had evolved slowly and the main trends were based on the tastes of high society. The mass production led to growth of different fashion styles and subcultures. So there was a need to predict not only the color but also texture, shapes and materials.

Those times the work of trend forecasters based on taking photo on the streets and analysis of people preferences. They combined this information to trend reports and sold them to fashion houses.

Nowadays trend analysts use not only visual materials, but also operate with scientific methods, analyze markets and collect information all around world. The spread of web technologies has contributed to rapid growth of online trend platforms. In their data-bases you can find photo archives with visual materials from different parts of the world, CAD files and patterns. The fashion teams receive the latest updates from designers shows, catwalks, trade shows just in one click. Those platforms save time in collection of trends what helps creative class to concentrate the energy on the products, but not on information search.

Quite often the development of season collection starts with key trends identification. Designers visited art galleries, museums, trade shows, study the work of their colleagues, create moldboards in order to find the main direction of their collection. But before they show their ideas to management, they check out their findings to trend platforms. Here based on market research they can confirm that designer’s instinct correlates with future commercial success of collection.

The most eminent and well-known trend agencies are WGSN (est. 1998) and Trendstop (est. 2002) based in England, PEJ Gruppen (est.1975) in Denmark, Nelly Rodi (est. 1985) and Lidewij Edelkoort in France.

The world leader in colors forecasting is Pantone. For over 50 years, Pantone has been inspiring design professionals with products, services and leading technology for the colorful exploration and expression of creativity.

The list of trend agencies clients are not limited with fashion houses, you can find advertising agencies, supermarkets, mobile and sports brands among them, all those for whom knowledge of key trends plays a leading role in product development. As an example, have a look to the list of WGSN clients – L’Oreal, Leo Burnett, McCann Erickson, Reebok, Puma, Harrods, Giorgio Armani, Louis Vuitton, Harvey Nichols, Zara, H&M, Tesco, Carrefour, Swarovski, IKEA, Volkswagen, Motorola, MTV, Disney, Barilla, BBC, Warner Bros., Sony Ericsson.

Trend analysts are not narrowed with trend analytics, together with their clients they create and develop brand strategy and market positioning. The best in their class trend agencies help to transform intuition to facts and launch commercially successful innovation products.


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