5 Fashion and Retail Predictions for 2013


Sonia Rykiel

A newfound focus on luxury’s main lines, a continued expansion of men’s wear — some of what got rolling in retail in 2012 will only continue to grow next year.  As we enter 2013, what will the fashion industry (and retail at large) look like?  Here are our best predictions for the coming twelve months.

Oh, and Happy New Year!

1. Luxury labels will take back the spotlight from diffusion lines:  With D&G officially folded into Dolce & Gabbana this year, and Sonia Rykiel re-focusing on its main line (after its younger diffusion line, Sonia by Sonia Rykiel, was seen as “cannibalizing” its elder), we envision an overall revitalized focus on luxury’s parent collections in 2013.

Sonia Rykiel is moving its focus from its lower-priced line back to the main brand in 2013.

2.  High-low collaborations will lose steam:  This possibility comes in tandem with the previous prediction.  In 2012, H&M actually had Maison Martin Margiela collaboration stock leftover, while the gigantic Neiman Marcus x Target holiday mash-up didn’t really turn out to be the be-all-end-all of gift giving, as predicted.  After a lot of wolf-crying that the public is weary of mass designer one-off lines, in 2013, production of said collections might actually slow its roll.

3.  QR codes will become mainstream:  With both Target and Walmart putting them to good use this year, QR codes might have found their utility at last.  We doubt we’ll see them in place, for instance, at independent boutiques, but they at least have a good shot at becoming de rigueur in big box stores.

A look from the Chinese brand Bosideng’s fall/winter 2012 campaign in London.

4.  Chinese labels are coming to America:  They’re already making inroads in Britain.  Meanwhile, WWD reports that though some are slowing down, China’s homegrown brands have been growing at a breakneck pace — and that includes eyeing foreign markets for expansion.

5.  Men’s fashion will continue to dominate:  2012 was a great year for men’s wear.  The global luxury men’s wear market grew about 6% faster than its women’s counterpart.  Mass retailers re-configured to appeal to dads. And even Prince Charles’ endorsement gave men’s fashion a boost.  We think that’s just the beginning, and 2013 will be even better for fashion for the guys.