What can fabrics tell us during a pandemic? How can they help us to cope with this time of crisis?
The SS21 fashion shows, the first collections created during the Covid-outbreak, have put some innovative materials into the spotlight. With lifestyles becoming even more fluid and lockdowns turning the home into a hub for work, work-out, social-life and entertainment, comfort has become one of the key drivers for the material choices of this Spring/Summer 2021 season. A visible value shift has made well-being and health a top-priority and put human at the center of conversations again. This intensified relationship of people with touch and the sensation of materiality on the skin and of the skin itself, has increased the focus on soft-touch and comfortable material.
The intensified relationship of people with touch and the sensation of materiality on the skin and of the skin itself, has increased the use of textured materials. Fabrics are rendered more human and turned into something visually haptic. This visually haptic character addresses the current health-related fear of touch and a generally increasing contactless and touch-less world. Updated textured fabrics range from handmade artistry to fibers with purposeful imperfections. Such unique fabric qualities are generating a poetic sentiment. A textured fabric narrative is a great possibility to update your best-sellers and create a more sensitive dialogue with the costumer.
If we look at the runways, we can also witness a growing consciousness about the planet and a strong focus on nature. This ecologically-aware mindset has increased designers’ use of sustainable materials and pushed creativity towards low-waist fabric solutions. May it be in sourcing more sustainable textiles or taking innovative up-cycling approaches, the dialogue on resourcefulness has been accelerated and turned good-will into action. We could see Balenciaga proposing a collection with more than 90% of plain materials being certified as sustainable or up-cycled. Acne Studios repurposed its deadstock-materials for the collection, while Maison Margiela reworked genuine vintage pieces into limited-edition products. Patchwork, Craft and Raw materials are also centric part for the conversation on textiles for SS21.