Fashion is always changing - even if it's often looking back at the past to do it. Even though we sometimes revisit the trends of the past, from chokers to swing skirts, fashion is about looking forwards too. In this post you’ll find explorations of what shopping for fashion could look like as soon as 2030. Quite literally, hold on to your hat as you read this post!
More Blurring Between Fashion and Wearable Tech
Wearable technology has become pretty popular in the last few years. Some products, like FitBit fitness trackers and Apple Watches, have become very popular. Others, like Google Glass, didn't enjoy such success. One of the things that many people are beginning to note is that wearable tech isn't always the most fashionable, and often isn't particularly feminine. Some brands are already starting to address this. For example, Fitbit, one of the leading fitness tracker brands, has the Luxe Collection, so you can turn your Fitbit Flex 2 into a pendant or bangle. As technology and fashion options progress, there will be more wearable tech out there that looks good and does the job it's designed to do, from fitness trackers to headphones. Tech will also get smaller too, so it will be easy to put tech into almost anything.
3D Printing Accessories and More
3D printing is now cheaper than it has ever been, which makes it possible for almost anyone to own a 3D printer in their home. People use them to be creative and to save money on lots of things too. With a 3D printer, you can potentially find something you want to buy and simply print it out. Experts in tech and fashion are suggesting that in the future, not only will you be able to print things like jewellery and accessories, but you'll also be able to make your own clothes too. 3D printing is allowing people to create new fabrics with properties like anti-wrinkling too.
Shoes by Shaherazad used 3D printing to create moulds for it’s fine 18 carat gold shoellery.
Heels That Don't Feel Like Heels
Women have a complicated relationship with heels. Some feel like they're a patriarchal tool of oppression, while others just love a pretty pair. For others, it's a bit of both. No matter how much you love wearing heels, everyone can acknowledge that they have the potential to be extremely uncomfortable. But more comfortable heels are in the future - in fact, they're here now. Our shoes are designed to feel comfy and painless for up to 18 hours, and make you look and feel great too. They're also customisable, with our beautiful shoellery (shoe jewellery) accessories.
The Science Behind The 18 Hour Heels Revealed Here:
Remember the '80s? Even if you're too young (or you don't remember them for another reason), you've probably heard of the horror or Hypercolor shirts. These T-shirts were made from a fabric that changed colour with your body temperature. It might have looked cool when you put your hand on it, but not so much when you got hot and sweaty. It's possible that colour-changing clothes could be back in the future - only much better. A colour-changing thread being developed by a Google project responds to electrical charges to change colour, and could be used to change images and logos too. The people behind the project also want to develop fabric that responds to touch.
Imagine not having to wash your clothes, especially those items that you rarely wash anyway, like coats and jackets. While it might seem like a dream, it is something that could be a possibility in the future. One experiment in Australia looked at a way to clean fabric when it's exposed to sunlight. It uses special nanostructures that degrade organic matter when they're exposed to the sun. The researchers had to find a way to create these structures on an industrial scale. Soon, you might never have to do laundry again.
Blurring Gender Lines with Androgynous Looks
It's fun to think about just what the fashion trends of the future are going to look like too. One of the things we can predict from both fashion and changing attitudes today is that we're probably going to see a more androgynous look favoured in the next decade or so. This is something we've definitely seen before, both on the catwalks and in high street fashion. Think of the 1980s, for example - or look it up if you're unsure. There's plenty of androgyny creeping into fashion today, already. Many women like to wear comfy, loose-fitting clothes that might previously have only existed in the men's section. And men are willing to try a more feminine touch too, from bags and flowery shirts to skirts. We can even observe changes in children's clothes - John Lewis recently released a collection with no gender labels for boys and girls. We'll definitely be seeing more of this in the future.
Moving Back to Spending More on Less
In the past, clothes were more expensive. You couldn't pick up a T-shirt for £3 from Primark, which meant you couldn't buy as many clothes and you had to look after what you had. People learned to repair their clothes to make them last longer. But consumer culture now means many of us have clothes we've never even worn, or have only put on once or twice. If you look at changing attitudes, many people are becoming more conscious of how they spend their money and what impact it has on the world. In the future, we could be looking at investing more money in individual items but buying less. If a quality pair of shoes is going to last you several years, that's bound to be better than lots of cheap pairs that barely last six months.
More Mindful Shopping
This links to being more mindful about how we shop. People are becoming more concerned about the environment and making efforts not to be wasteful. A lot of people also want to live more minimal lifestyles, rejecting consumerism and the notion that we need new stuff all the time. But that doesn't have to stop you loving fashion. More mindful shopping can mean spending more time on making decisions about what you buy. As well as thinking about ethical concerns, you might just spend longer thinking about how you're going to wear something and whether you really need it.
Everything is becoming more mobile. We've started doing a lot of things online now, and we also want to be able to do them whenever we want. Fashion is no different, just like any other kind of retail. Many people buy clothes and accessories online, but can still sometimes shy away from it because they can't try things on. There could be a slight shift in the future. Maybe we'll go to shops to try things on, but then buy them on our mobile devices instead. There would be no need to wait in a queue to pay, and perhaps your items could even be waiting for you when you get home.
More Personal Involvement in Design
How would you like to be involved in the design of your own clothes? Of course, you could do that now by buying a sewing machine. But you don't need to be able to use one if you want to order personalised clothes with your name or choice of image on. In the future, things could go one step further, and you could have even more choice when it comes to influencing the design of your clothes. This links back to 3D printing clothes, which could make it easier to create customised clothes on a small scale. Even now, you can find ways to create clothing made just for you, but it often means paying a lot more to have something made to fit.
No More Seasonal Fashion
Currently, fashion is somewhat governed by the seasons. You can struggle to find a winter coat in July or a bikini in the middle of winter. Fashion brands and designers often release their new products as part of seasonal collections, and we see everything divided into Autumn/Winter and Spring/Summer. In the next 10 to 15 years, we could see this change, so that you can get whatever you want, whenever you want. Designers and brands might release new products all year, allowing them to be more experimental and not have to bundle everything into collections.
Shoes by Shaherazad, shown in the image below are ahead of the game and already do this.
Style Your Outfits Virtually
Virtual and augmented reality have both made an appearance over the last few years. They're used for fun and games, as well as for some more serious applications too. They could soon be used to help you look your best too. If you've ever seen classic '90s movie Clueless, you'll remember Cher using her computer to choose what to wear for the day. A slightly more sophisticated version of that could soon be available. Amazon has patented a design for a mirror that could allow you to superimpose virtual clothes on yourself, as well as change backgrounds so you can match your outfit to any environment. Perhaps this could be a way to try on clothes in the future too, removing one of the problems of buying clothes online.
More Eco-friendly Fashion
With everyone thinking more about the environment, as well as treating their fellow humans better, we could be looking at greener fashion in the future. Currently, it can be pretty difficult to find out about how and even where big name fashion brands make their clothes and accessories. Many companies aren't big on transparency, which can make it hard to see how ethical they are. More fashion brands will be meeting a demand for sustainable, ethical fashion in just a few short years. People want clothes made from sustainable materials that will last a long time to reduce waste. They also want to know that the people making their clothes are working in good conditions and earning enough.
Clothes with Charge
Some clothes in the future might be able to keep your personal devices going. We all carry around at least a phone these days, but these gadgets need charging. Batteries continue to get better, but you can still easily run low on juice when you need it most. You can already get a coat or jacket that will charge your phone for you (using solar panels) but in the future, there won't be any need for that. Instead, they will charge your device using the expelled energy from your body, so there won't be any need to stand in a sunny spot.
So, your clothes might be able to change colour in the future, but what if they could change shape? There are some people trying to see if we might be able to change the shape and fit of our clothes in the near future, so we can adjust them for different occasions. This would involve some fairly complicated science and some specially woven fabrics so that you would be able to change the sleeve or hem length of a garment, or perhaps adjust its drape. If you want something close to that now, you could always look for items that you can wear in a number of different ways.
When you buy clothes or shoes online, do you buy different sizes and send back the ones that don't fit? This is more common than you might think. Even if you don't order several sizes at once, you might have returned something and ordered it again in another size. Some brands have started offering services that let you try their products at home before you pay for them. In the future, it's very likely this kind of service is going to more widely available.
The fashion world could look very different in just a few years. The way we dress and shop might change a lot, but it's all part of keeping up with new discoveries and innovations.
PS. Pop by this link and check out my shoellery which uses 3D printing.