For most of us, ‘fashion forecasting’ jobs have an aura surrounding them. Forecasting of fashion trends is crucial and can make or break the destiny of the garment — whether or not the consumer will actually purchase it.
Fashion forecasting involves calculation of mood, behaviour, and buying habits of the consumer. It is not as much about classifying customers by age, geography, or income, than looking into how and why they buy, their moods, beliefs, and the occasion. From street fashion to red carpets, fashion trend consultants search high and low for innovations.
Fashion forecasters carry out research to inform designers about trends so that they can ensure their products are suited for the purpose. The area is growing, owing to the escalating number of consumer sub-groups that companies want to target — from teens to silver-surfers.
Each area of the fashion forecasting industry holds a wide range of career choices. From searching the streets for trends to reading and interpreting those trends as actual fashion products, to writing about, photographing and further interpreting those trends, there are ample choices.
Unlike common perception, fashion forecasting is a bit more scientific than crystalball gazing, although intuition does play a part. A trend forecaster’s work covers a range of areas such as product design, interiors and technology. The day-to-day job involves carrying out research with consumers, designers, and architects, visiting trade fairs and exhibitions and trawling the media. For those seeking a competitive, fast-paced, and rewarding career in the fashion industry, trend forecasting could be one of the career options. The first step is to study fashion and its history. Getting an internship or working with a company in the field would be a great place to start.
To succeed one needs to be creative and act like a sponge, soaking up everything. It involves using findings of research as well as an intuition to predict the upcoming trends, in addition to possessing analytical skills to be able to assimilate them and explain what it would mean for the end consumer. > HOTTIP
Fashion forecasters conduct research to inform designers about trends to ensure their products are suited for the purpose