The World in 2019

WGSN is the world leader in trend research and forecasting. Using a 360- degree view of analysis, taking into account ‘magic’ and ‘maths,’ they predict what’ll be in store, what the ‘big ideas’ of the future will be and track the zeitgeist.

Trend research involves ‘cultural brailing,’ whereby experts monitor the pulse of society, finding patterns and discerning what they mean. A range of information comes into play, including fashion houses, influencers, retailers and pop culture, to name but a few.

If you’re wondering why all of this matters, think back to the famous monologue in The Devil Wears Prada, where it is explained to Andy how it came to be that she was wearing the specific sweater she had on:

“However, that blue represents millions of dollars and countless jobs, and it is sort of comical how you think you made a choice that exempts you from the fashion industry when, in fact, you’re wearing a sweater that was selected for you by the people in this room from a pile of stuff.” 

WGSN Director, Sara Maggioni, heaped to Source Africa in Cape Town to discuss the latest findings in womenswear and menswear for fashion buyers. The seminar began with a look into the future – discussing the ‘big ideas’ of 2020. These were the three predominant themes that will surely trickle down into what we’ll see, wear and think about in the next couple of years:

Common Ground

Rather than building barriers, we’ll be building bridges, explained Maggioni. Society will focus on finding commonalities between nations and more simplistically, between one another. In fashion, this means there will be a focus on the ‘meaning of making,’ placing more importance on having sustainable and ethical origins of production.


Taking a break from the information overload of the internet, and the negative impacts that social media can have. There will be particular focus on mental wealth and finding imagery that promotes a better mood. Along with this, getting in-touch with our own nature, we’ll see a movement that is geared towards anti-wellness (think beer yoga classes & pizza runs).

Creative Manifesto

Creativity rules supreme in 2020, with a shift in moving into a zone of discomfort. Entering into new realms of escapism and finding mood-makers will be important. This kind of exploration will require society to shift from their comfort zones, enticing spurs of creativity.

This is the outlook for the future; brighter, better and closer.

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