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Première Vision Paris: 4 trends in SS25 materials sourcing

By Florence Julienne


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Fairs |Report

Première Vision February 2024 Credits: Première Vision

Will a degree in chemical engineering with a specialisation in agronomy soon be necessary to visit the Première Vision fair? The fact is, the level of the selected exhibitors is such that one quickly finds oneself discussing mutating shells, materials made from waste, regenerative agriculture, and the business of certifications.

From February 6 to February 8 2024, 1200 international manufacturers of materials (leathers, textiles) and accessories displayed their spring/summer 2025 collections at the Villepinte exhibition park in Paris. We’re curious to see which of these are aligned with the new direction of fashion (adapted to the post-COVID world) initiated by the organisers of the Première Vision Paris sourcing fair, owned by GL Events.

It also yet to be seen if the spring/summer 2025 collections of clothing and fashion accessories (those found in professional trade shows, commercial showrooms from July 2024, and then in shops from March/April 2025) will be made with the materials (leathers, textiles, and accessories) highlighted by Première Vision February 2024.

But one thing is certain: the space and visibility given to manufacturers with a mindset (read: a mindset compatible with a sustainable and fair fashion system) are increasingly significant at the Première Vision fair.

Première Vision Paris February 2024 Credits: F. Julienne

It's no longer the time for grand ideas, much less for greenwashing, but for the reality of neo-materials of plant and animal origin

This new reality is found in the Inspirations Forum Spring Summer 2025, which can be seen as a trend forum for materials. "Beyond what is obvious in terms of appearances in the chosen theme 'Mutations', such as fabrics resembling shells, chrysalis skins, mysterious opalescences, we present materials that are less readable at first glance," Desolina Suter, fashion director of Première Vision, explained to FashionUnited at the fair.

Première Vision Paris February 2024. Plant silk fabrics Credits: F. Julienne

"These are mutations due to more interesting mixes in terms of compositions, particularly between all the liberian and cellulosic fibres. Linen, ramie, hemp, or nettle are combined with less wiry and non-plant-based fibres, silkier and more fluid, to create hybrid and innovative materials. These profound evolutions in textiles carry more weight than the visual aspect, which renews itself season by season, but on which we cannot capitalise in the same way."

Out of more than 1000 fabric samples received, the fashion direction displays 400 in this forum regularly: polyesters, obtained from petrochemistry, have been banned from the presentation.

Première Vision Paris February 2024 Credits: Première Vision

Do eco-innovations and dormant stocks spell the end for those referred to as ‘vegan materials’, but made from petroleum?

Today, the discourse on eco-responsibility is channelled through the Sourcing Solutions Forum (at the centre of Hall 6), a revamped version of the previous edition. Here, visitors can digest, thanks to texts that synthesise information, crucial, rather technical subjects. They invite brands to delve into the material, with a specific narrative.

"What are the characteristics of a fabric with optimised biodegradability? : the terms 'biodegradable' or other similar formulas are prohibited in France by the AGEC anti-waste law. Biodegradability is a matter of eco-design to ensure, from the creation of the product, improved degradation characteristics at the end of life. And not to mislead the consumer by suggesting that the article will easily disappear. A fabric is considered biodegradable when it can decompose under the action of living organisms, without harmful effects on the environment."

To further emphasise the visibility offered to this new ‘ecology of fashion’, the Sourcing Solutions Forum is adjacent to the Hub space (where exhibitors of innovative materials like Spiber, which manufactures fabrics based on sugar and proteins, are found) and the Smart Creations space, which houses the ‘sleeping materials’, a more poetic name given to dead stocks that are given a second life. But that’s not all.

Nativité Rodriguez, L’Atelier des Matières. Première Vision Paris Credits: F. Julienne

L’Atelier des Matières, created in 2019 as an initiative by Chanel, makes a notable entrance at Première Vision, with a modular stand designed from rolls of cardboard fabric. L’Atelier des Matières, led by Nativité Rodriguez, offers hybrid compositions, made with scraps of leather, wool, cotton, or cashmere (only natural materials). For instance: a small notebook whose cover is made with leather debris, then embossed by Créanog, a creative studio and workshop specialised in embossing and hot stamping techniques.

Right in the thick of current affairs, Première Vision offers a solution for better remuneration of farmers

As Gilles Lasbordes, general director at Première Vision, explained to FashionUnited ahead of the February 2024 edition, the leather sector is at the heart of the fashion industry's concerns in terms of eco-responsibility and traceability. But, here too, it's appropriate to go beyond merely demonstrating (sometimes absurdly) the virtuous practices of farming.

Olivier Antignac (Domaine des Massifs) and Mathieu Toutlemonde (Agoterra). Première Vision February 2024 Credits: F. Julienne

On Wednesday, 7 February 2024, in the Leather Hub (Hall 3), Olivier Antignac, founder and president of Domaine des Massifs, and Mathieu Toutlemonde of Agoterra, a mission-driven company engaged with farmers, presented a regenerative agriculture project. The principle is as follows: rather than buying carbon credits by planting trees in the Amazon, or elsewhere, French brands could give this money to struggling French farmers.

Explanation: too much carbon in the atmosphere leads to global warming. If farmers grow plants (such as clovers) that absorb carbon to release it underground and optimise soil biodiversity while their lands are fallow, everyone wins. Especially since this new activity would be remunerated via carbon credit.

Increasingly demanding certifications raise the question of standardisation for mid-range brands

Finally, it's time to look at the ‘A better way’ programme, created for the previous edition of the sourcing fair, which aims to provide a seal of good practice to manufacturers committed to social and environmental responsibility. This season, the Manufacturing exhibitors (those who manufacture the clothes) can benefit from this mention, inscribed on their signage.

Bambos Loannou, Livas Clothing Srl. Première Vision February 2024 Credits: F. Julienne

Such is the case with the Romanian, Livas Clothing Srl. The company’s general director, Bambos Loannou, explained the three points that make up his good managerial practices to FashionUnited: managing his employees (facilitating transport, covering meals and care in private clinics), recycling paper/plastic and fabrics by entrusting them to a specialised factory, and installing solar panels for electricity.

At Siena, a manufacturer located near Porto (Portugal), also awarded the ‘A better way’ label, the requirements go even further. The company is adorned with all the necessary certifications to meet the prerequisites. The discussion turns to GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard), a certificate given when a product is composed of at least 70% organic fibre (the crops must adhere to the principles of organic farming, banning the use of GMOs, synthetic pesticides, or herbicides).

Stand Siena, Première Vision February 2024 Credits: F. Julienne

This certification, which must be carried out at each intermediary (spinner, weaver, printer, etc.), and renewed annually, is becoming increasingly difficult to obtain and more expensive. A new policy that favours large volume producers at the expense of smaller ones, which is quite paradoxical in a world that invites us to "buy less, but better". But a situation comparable to what happens in the food industry, where many small producers give up the organic label for economic reasons.

By penalising small structures and the final consumer (as the price of the product is impacted), this intensive certification policy could well be counterproductive. A situation to be monitored.

This article was originally published on FashionUnited.FR. Translation and edit from French into English by Veerle Versteeg.

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