Accessories Drive Consumer Spending for 2019
From jewellery to bags to footwear – delicate pearls are popping up everywhere! Pearl dotted details were hot on both Fall/Winter 2018 and Spring/Summer 2019 runways with bigwigs such as Chanel, Gucci, Dolce and Gabbana, and Simone Rocha, unleashing them over bags and Nicholas Kirkwood and Miu Miu adorning them over footwear.
UGLY FASHION SNEAKERS
Love them or hate them, they’re here to stay. Hyped by the ‘Úgly Fashion Movement’, these sporty styles are outdoing the broader category of footwear in general. Retailers are introducing new takes on the chunky sneaker in order to lure thirsty shoppers. Market leaders in this regard such as Urban Outfitters, which increased its sports footwear offering by 41% in Q2 of 2018 as compared to last year, and JD Sports, Nordstorm and Bloomingdales which went up by 39%, 26% and 24% respectively in the same quarter, signal towards the wealth that lies in this massive opportunity area. Even retailers with no specialised experience in sports, such as Zara, Forever New and H&M, were up in this quarter.
Luxury retailers, which peddle their products with the enticement of limited edition pieces, are on a massive sellout spree. Top players in this segment include millennial approved brands such as Gucci, Balenciaga and Prada.
ON THE SEASIDE
With themes of escapism leaving everyone in a perpetual vacation mode, brands and designers picked up on the sentiment and utilised it to advance their offerings. Aquatic details such as sea shells, sequined and 3D appliques, colourful stones and beads, appeared over footwear, jewellery and bags.
Pops of neon greens, oranges and pinks swarmed the runways at Versace, whilst bright nautical colour blocking prevailed at Thom Browne. Slip on sandals, chic slides featuring cork soles were the mandate at Chanel, whereas Hermes introduced a new version of the strappy gladiator.
Techniques such as crocheting, are big and trending over woven tote bags, neckerchiefs as well as footwear. Colourful zig-zag and crafty floral patterns tap on the allure of spring whilst emphasising on the charm of sustainability – a direction the entire supply chain is moving towards.
ROPES AND KNOTTING
The use of cords and ropes found their way onto various accessories on Van Noten’s runway, lending a utilitarian look to the practical collection. Various aquatic influences have been prevalent in many of the Spring collections. Bag got a modern twist with a rope handle that lets off a wrapped cord look, or a twisted knotted sling. Ropes also appeared as ties and straps over footwear.
NICE TO FEET
Other styles such as last summer’s favourite espadrilles see a fall, whereas slides and platforms are splitting the market, with luxury increasing its price points compared to two years ago and mass falling. Another thing to note here is that seasonality is no longer a constraint in the footwear segment. Thanks to a generation of jet-setting kids, summer styles such as the ones mentioned above and flip-flops and strappy gladiators, sell all year long. Further proof of this is screaming from the latest footage from international runways, where the likes of Chanel, Sacai, and Marni, among others have incorporated these styles in their
S/S ’19 offerings.
After gaining momentum during the runway showcases of Fall/Winter 2018, this wild print is back in a bigger way for Spring/Summer 2019 and this time, it has branched out into the accessory category. Mix and match of tiger stripes, leopard spots, snake skins, cow hides and zebra stripes were a usual sighting during the recently concluded fashion weeks – not just on the runways, but on the streets as well. A unanimous trend across fashion capitals, the animal print is being juxtaposed with clashing print-on-print apparelaccessory pairings. Faux fur bags, blanket scarves, bold bags and even footwear, are pieces to consider.
The old school fanny pack is undergoing a revival of sorts.
This utility led versatile bag is being rebranded as a bum bag, or belt bag, or waist bag by major retailers and brands ranging from sporty names such as Nike to luxury players such as Burberry and Dior. The sudden surge of refined designs and versions tap onto the consumers of today – the millennials and Gen Z signaling a lift in new arrivals at 120% and a growth in sellouts to 359% in Q2 of this year, as compared to that in Q2 of 2017. Prices vary from as low as US $ 25 at Adidas to US $ 1000 at Gucci.
New trends suggest that the sellout amongst genders is equal, with the latest trend suggesting a new way to wear it – slung across the body/chest and over the shoulder, rather than the traditional way of belting it at the waist.
“Fanny packs, or ‘waist bags’ as we now call them, are the fastestgrowing segment in the men’s accessories market,” Marshal Cohen, an analyst with market research firm NPD Group, said. According to data reported by NPD, from September 2016 to September 2017, sales of fanny packs or belt bags grew more than 10% and hit US $ 100 million.
The rise of streetwear might be partly responsible for the huge success being enjoyed by this accessory right now. Consumers are inkling towards casual fashion that is easy and fulfils all the three parameters of comfort, practicality and convenience.
ALL THAT FRAYS
Frayed details are hot for Spring 2019 and include feathers, fringes and frayed denims.
Apart from adding texture and whimsy footwear and bags, these trims instantly update the product with a fun twist. Marabou-clad sandals came with a spectrum of colours at Dries van Noten and Valentino, whilst summer-approved raw straw fly-aways edged the bags at Jacquemus and Oscar de la Renta.
The accessory route might as well prove to emerge as an industry hack for many brands and retailers who have struggled to lure consumers into their physical and on-line stores. Accessories serve as a bait to attract customers to your offering – place such assortments on the ground floor of your store space and preferably in an area that promotes direct eyecontact with window shoppers. The first impression is usually the last impression, and in such a scenario, all that glitters may just be the path to retail success.
Comme Des Garçons
Dries Van Noten
Dries Van Noten