There is something of a revolution going on in fashion. Consumers, suffering from label fatigue, are turning to the new and the small, rather than the big and the established. They are tired of having to be different from everyone else in order to achieve recognition. Therefore, they strive for anonymity.
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Such is the basis for “normcore,” which is generally defined as “a unisex fashion trend characterized by unpretentious, average-looking clothing.” Normcore is now the counterpoint of fashion; it goes against everything that the luxury world stands for. The megatrend of athleisurewear falls perfectly in line with normcore.
This shift in the way consumers view what is most worthy and most desirable in fashion is directly correlated with a broader shift in the new generation’s perspective on consumerism. Generation Y places a higher value on pleasure than on possession of materialistic things. They are nonconformist consumers and are skeptical about branding and authority. Their purchasing decisions are also influenced by the fact that they must think twice before spending their money on luxury merchandise.
The question now is whether this is a trend that will come to pass, or whether this is a lasting shift in consumer mentality to embrace a less materialistic lifestyle. It could be that normcore is simply a detox from the overwhelming amount of choice consumers face today, or it could be the start of a major change in the way we think about fashion. There is also the question of what this means for luxury brands. Are their established roots of heritage and sustainability enough to win the hearts of Generation Y? Is there still a place for mega brands in the future, or is normcore the new normal?
Read more about the implications of normcore in Textile View #109 Fall/Winter 2016/17.