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From revaluation to deconstruction: 4 Trend predictions for AW25 according to an expert

By Susan Zijp


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Trend forecaster Christine Boland shares her four trend predictions Credits: Balenciaga AW24, Stella Mccartney AW24, Botter AW24, Launchmetrics Spotlight

Trend forecaster Christine Boland doesn’t just share fashion trends, she explains where they come from. These are crazy times. The earth is warming, there is a shortage of basic necessities, the political landscape is becoming more extreme. In this challenging period and according to Boland, “imagineering” – a term coined by the trend expert – is more important than ever.

It means that, despite the shortages in the world, imagination is an inexhaustible source for finding creative solutions. It is both a verb and a utopian prediction. And according to Boland, a beautiful prospect for designers, buyers, retailers, brand managers and marketers.

Based on her own research, Boland shares four major trends around the theme of “imagineering” for winter 2025-2026. Her razor-sharp analysis shows that imagination is extremely important in this day and age.

Classics in a new guise: ‘Reformulate the classics’

Boland’s first trend prediction, ‘Reformulate the classics’, is all about just that: the classics. In times of overproduction and innovation fatigue, says Boland, there is a return to existing fashion. Instead of trying to reinvent the fashion wheel, there is a revival of “symbols of freedom,” she says.

Think of XL bags that can hold everything for a trip regardless of the destination, timeless comfort and tailored essentialism. The trend forecaster also sees a strong reference to sportswear in this trend. For example, clothing made of a stretchy fabric, or the ‘tenniscore’ trend consisting of functional sports skirts that allow freedom of movement. The colours that go with this trend are red, white and blue.

Tenniscore Credits: Miu Miu SS22, Ferragamo SS23, Casablanca AW24, courtesy Warner Bros, Launchmetrics Spotlight

Revaluation of antiquity: ‘Revalue ancient intelligence'

Yet, the colours of sports are not the only important colours. “The colour palette of the world, think of earth tones such as brown, yellow, orange, red, beige but also warm natural shades such as terracotta, will be more appreciated,” says Boland. Especially in light of global warming, she adds. The trend expert shows photos of volcanoes, dry deserts, special colour combinations - such as blue and dark purple - all present on the earth’s surface.

That brings her to the next trend prediction: the ‘revaluation of antiquity’. In short: the appreciation of what the earth is. With a little empathy, you can draw inspiration from nature. Think of the hairy scales of insects, which have inspired a lot of fringe in collections. “Animal-inspired hairs are the new fringes,” says Boland.

Credits: Stella Mccartney AW24, Launchmetrics Spotlight

Also think of the shapes and colours of a flowing river or sea. However, this is where it gets grimmer: the oil pollution inspires the colour combinations black, brown and the use of shiny material such as lacquer, as seen in the collection of fashion brand Mowalola.

Credits: Mowalola Ogunlesi (Mowalola) AW23, Launchmetrics Spotlight
Credits: Botter AW24, Launchmetrics Spotlight

Cohabitation with technology: ‘Reimagine sci-fi’

Questions about people and technology will become more important. How do people relate to technology? But also, how can technology be used to promote clean drinking water, for example? With the trend ‘Reimagine sci-fi’, Boland explains that modern science fiction films have now become reality. People increasingly live alongside computers.

This is reflected in fashion collections through the use of “phygital” fashion. Think of Maison Margiela’s tabi shoe in collaboration with The Fabricant in March 2024.. Another example: the recent Louis Vuitton fashion show, inspired by the “space age.” The colours that go with this trend are “extraterrestrial colours,” as Boland calls them. Namely: neon green, neon yellow, cool blue hues, silver, metallic and soft hues inspired by clouds.

Credits: Balenciaga AW24, Launchmetrics Spotlight

What will also become more important: fashion inspired by the concept of ‘barely there’. Technological aspects such as a wifi connection are often seen as transparent. Think of terms such as “Airdrop” or Google “Cloud.” It is a “wireless connection”, and yet it is there, with wires and all. This contradiction can be seen in fashion. Think of very light, transparent fabrics over heavy materials such as leatherette. But also the colours that are almost holographic, resembling the shadows of light, or the colours that are released from a computer screen. An example that Boland gives is the X-ray tracksuit from Adidas, which has an X-ray image printed on it. In short: cohabitation with technology is a game between opacity and transparency.

Credits: Louis Vuitton F24, Launchmetrics Spotlight

Deconstruction and imagination: ‘Confusing fantasy & realism’

“We live in times where the virtual comes to life and the physical becomes immersive,” says Boland. The trend forecaster gives the Maison Margiela show as an example, where the models are made up as lifelike dolls. “There is something alienating about it,” she repeatedly states. This emphasises the trend she predicts for winter 2025-2026: ‘Confusing fantasy & realism’. This can be seen in the amazing collections that make you think “what am I looking at?” They are spooky, play with materials, place bows in a different place than you are used to and are not averse to asymmetry. The trend “deconstruction,” as seen in the latest collection by Dries van Noten, is an example of this.

It can be alienating, because reality is. It can be taken apart and put back together again, because it is satisfying to make things your own. It can be exaggerated and human. With a little imagination for winter 2025-2026, something that seems fixed at first glance is suddenly easy to change. That is what “Imagineering” stands for. Not following rules, but re-imagining what you would do if there were no rules.

Credits: Dries van Noten F24, Launchmetrics Spotlight
Credits: Maison Margiela., Launchmetrics Spotlight

This article originally appeared on FashionUnited.NL. Translation and edit by: Rachel Douglass.

Christine Boland