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India can do the extraordinary, says Dutch trend forecaster

fashion-and-trends Updated: Apr 08, 2012 10:14 IST
Shara Ashraf
Shara Ashraf
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

Internationally-acclaimed-trend-forecaster-Lidewij-Edelkoort

Lidewij Edelkoort, the famous Dutch-born new-age fashion soothsayer ‘feels’ which concepts, colours and materials will be in rage two or more years in advance, and the world sits up taking notes. Named as one of the 25 most influential people in the world of fashion by Times magazine, the founder of Paris-based Trend Union, the trend forecasting company for fashion, beauty, automotive, retail, and interior design industries, is too humble to go by that definition though, and insists that her modus operandi involves observations more than prophecy.

Lidewij, who also goes by the name Li, was in the Capital to speak at the India Design Forum, a two-day design summit organised by CoCCA (Coimbatore Centre for Contemporary Arts), last month. Li calls herself an archaeologist of the future.

“The way archaeologists put together fragments of the past, I put together fragments of future,” she explains. Her work, she says, is paying attention to her surroundings, picking up various elements that catch her fancy and putting intuition into them to forecast trends.

Li, whose clients list includes Nissan, Coca-Cola, Donna Karan, Old Navy, Gucci, Estée Lauder, Lancôme and Shiseido, is quite enamoured by the Indian crafts, and loves the bright colours used in the festival of Holi. Li also has big expectations from India in terms of designs and new ideas. “The market is ready for Indian brands. We are waiting to see global lifestyle, beauty and fashion brands emerge from India. All that India needs to do is to revive and revamp its crafts, and create something extraordinary,” says Li. “India very much has all the potential to do that,” she adds.

Li made a presentation on trends, giving us a glimpse of lifestyle trends that would be a rage in Spring/Summer 2013. Here are some of the highlights:

Li’s trend forecast for 2013
Camping is going to be a super trend. We will see a wider interest in outdoor fun activities such as hiking, biking and walking.
So, keep your outdoor gear and apparel ready.
Move over tees, and start stocking up on shirts. While T-shirts would no longer be in trend, shirt will have a major influence in fashion, and shirt jackets, shirt tunics, and shirt dresses would be all the rage, says Li.
Yellow is the new pink, says Li, at least for the coming 15 years. The colour of sunshine and sunflowers, of warm inviting openness, would be one of the trendiest colour in decor and fashion.
We have had enough of dresses, says Li. The separates or twin sets — shirts/tops and skirts would become a big rage, reflecting our longing for a more innocent time.
Nature will walk into your house. From cushions that look like moss covered stones to carpets inspired by aerial view of planes, interiors will seek inspiration from nature.

Other trends to watch out
Red hair would make a major comeback. It’s a good thing for Indians, who already love henna-dyed hair, says Li.
The ’50s retro candy stripes and rainbow prints would make a return with a big bang.
Nature will have a major influence on design. The blue of the sea, the shape of the pebble, the curve of a wave would be the inspirations.
Rooftop gardens would be a big trend.
African primal voodoo prints would be a big inspiration.
Crochet, simple hand stitches, different stitches of embroidery, knotting, braiding and basket weaving would also be quite in.

Some of Li’s publications
Bloom: Li launched Bloom in 1998. It offers a bevy of lifestyle trends inspired by flowers, plants and gardening. Bloom relates major trends in these three areas to myriad industries such as fashion, interiors, design, packaging, cosmetics, food and culture.
View on Colour: View on Colour explores how colours influence industries like fashion, textiles and yarns, design, cosmetics, automobiles, art, and cuisine. Emerging trends are presented through thought-provoking photography, drawings and text. The magazine has bagged several international awards.

Trend Tablet: Li has also set up a trends wiki, Trend Tablet (www.trendtablet.com). It offers a wide range of latest lifestyle trends, and people from across the world contribute to the tablet.