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Defining Fashion Zeitgeist 2020

By Mai 18, 2020 No Comments

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A l i n a  S t e b l o v s k a y a

Defining Fashion Zeitgeist 2020

As any cultural phenomenon, fashion cannot exist on its own. It inevitably reflects the current trends in the society, and whenever it fails to respond fast to these trends, the consequences will follow.  

For instance, in the past few years we have seen an uptake in body positive movement and inclusivity. Some brands quickly picked it up, while others refused to listen. And just like that – the famous Victoria’s Secret show had to come to an end and the brand sales started to drop, because they were not able to adapt fast enough to the spirit of the time.

Climate change Vivienne Westwood

Climate change Vivienne Westwood

To define the 2020 zeitgeist, we can use three words: environmental activism, liberation, pandemic. These words might not immediately make you think of fashion, but yet they are what is on many people’s mind, which forces fashion world to yet again adapt and respond.

Environmental activism changes the agenda

 If 1960s changed the world by bringing fast fashion, 2020s are going in reverse by popularising the slow fashion movement. Ever since the documentary “The True Cost” came out in 2015, it has been out in the open: fashion industry is not sustainable. Then 2019 brought us climate change protests with Generation Z becoming a new force expressing their opinions. Now there is no way back from having sustainability on the agenda and fashion industry is quickly filling up with new eco-conscious buzz words, like “recycling”, “upcycling”, “carbon footprint”, “resale”, “ethical fashion”, and many more.

New kind of liberation

Millennials and Generation Z are now getting more and more power in the consumer space, and they are not there not joke around. They are the representatives of a new multi passionate workforce that is often self-employed. This often gives them higher than average disposable income and allows to dictate their own rules. Freedom from the outdated social constructs, strong opinions and readiness to invest more in the brands that they believe in and that have a clear mission are what defines them. And this overarching feeling of freedom is what determines their style choices too.

Facemask

Facemask

Pandemic

The definition of 2020 zeitgeist would not be complete without mentioning the pandemic. Millions of people have been forced to stay home and adjust to a new norm. Many had to start shopping online more, spend more time in tracksuits and homewear, creating a stronger need for clothes to be more comfortable and wearable than ever. The former symbol of air pollution — face masks —  have become our new must-have. And we all have been forced to pause. Reflect. Re-evaluate.