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Trends recap: this is what fashion stores sold in 2018

By Marjorie van Elven



As 2018 draws to a close, retail technology firm Edited has taken a look back at the year’s biggest trends by assessing the items which have seen an increase in offering by fashion retailers around the world. FashionUnited guides you through their main findings.

1990s nostalgia

Confirming Google’s list of most-searched fashion terms of 2018, Edited also verified a wave of nostalgia for the fashion of the 1980s and 1990s. Big logos are all the rage again, as are fanny packs and scrunchies. But the chunky sneaker is definitely the biggest 2018 trend coming straight from the past. Balenciaga’s Triple S led in the luxury sector, while Fila’s Disruptor 2 skyrocketed as a more affordable option -- a trend which has also been verified by fashion search engine Lyst and eBay. Now, mass market retailers such as Zara, Topshop and Pretty Little Thing are incorporating the trend to their assortments too.

Leopard print

Animal prints are growing in general, but leopard has been the most popular animal print of them all this year. According to Edited, UK fashion retailers increased their offering of leopard print tops by 24 percent in 2018. In the US, consumers seem more inclined towards leopard print footwear, which made up 32 percent of the market this year. The trend has even been introduced to men, with retailers such as Topman, Asos and River Island offering menswear options. Zebra and snake prints are slowly entering the menswear category too.

Natural bags

When it comes to bags, natural materials were very trendy this year. Edited has noticed an increase in bamboo baskets, straw bags and hand woven totes. The offering of natural bags has increased an astounding 123 percent year on year in the US, but the rise was even more impressive in the UK, where retailers have increased their offering of this type of product by 249 percent.

Gender-neutral clothing

Gender bending is no longer restricted to the runway. It’s becoming more and more commonplace for brands to offer unisex options. Asos’s new Collusion line alone is responsible for 43 percent of the market offering in the mass market category, as H&M and Gap discontinued the unisex denim lines they launched in 2017. The trend is more prevalent in luxury: in the UK, for example, high-end retailers account for 53.4 percent of the unisex apparel market share.

Photos: Asos Facebook, courtesy of Forever 21

Recap 2018