Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Spring-Summer fabric trends 2011-12

New York Fashion Week Sept 2011 (for Spring/Summer 2012) just finished on Friday, and I’ve been glued to the online reports. NY Fashion Week always sets the tone for the upcoming fashion trends and so all the big colour forecasters release their new predictions at the same time, including the interior decorators. So for a crafter like me, it’s the perfect time to look at not only the new colours and prints for fashion, but also for craft fabrics and the home in 2011-12.

By the end of New Zealand’s summer and the start of the Northern Hemisphere spring, fashion colours will be fun and bright, sometimes neon like - but overall, their hues will take after yummy sorbet or gelato tones rather than being lurid. And counter-balancing the brights are restful maritime navy and royal blues and teal greens – perfect for thinking about lazy summer days at the beach.

Pantone’s new top 10 colour palette is headed up by Tangerine Tango (an orange/coral), Solar Power (yellow), Lilac and Cabaret (cerise pink). I particularly adore the idea of coral and juicy orange and the warmth they bring to your skin, and/or couch!

The warming up of fashion palettes is obvious when you look at high fashion designers in New Zealand such as Karen Walker, who’s current season spring/summer now in stores is set to brighten up and morph into the Northern Hemisphere spring/summer collection she just showed at NY Fashion Week and which will come out in stores there in six months time. In fashion, it’s not only the clothes getting this colour explosion - the new range of shoes that World have created for No 1 Shoes in New Zealand include awesome orange sandels and bright turquoise loafers.

Adventurous fashion lovers will mix the coral tangerines with lilac pinks and pull it off – nowhere is this more obvious than in the sportwear trend taking fashion by storm.

(Thanks and credits belong to the sources of the above compiled moodboard image – here we are showcasing images from Pantone’s report; Highpoint Market’s Spring report; NY runway looks; Trelise Cooper spring 2012 and Karen Walker’s collections.)

(This interiors moodboard's images belong to High Point Market's Spring Trends report).

The patriotic Americana theme is massive in the US, and British union jack imagery in the UK, and in New Zealand we’re still following our Kiwiana theme with fantails and tuis, kowhais and pohutakawas…summer jandels and bbq imagery.

But across all three markets, ''bold blooms'' are set to be massive, with High Point Market’s Spring Trend report noting a move away from the smaller, ditzy patterns of the past couple of seasons to big, proud blooms (check out Trelise Cooper’s collection to see this in particular). The size of the flower also supports the continuing Parisienne theme of last season, which also includes butterflies and village fetes.

High Point Market also comments: “Stella McCartney’s juicy new fruit motif from the runway has designers going bananas for a fresh new trend for veggies and fruits. But steer clear of the whimsy; this is a more realistic approach.”

The strong industrial trend in interiors and homewares lends itself to drawing-style sketches of bottles, labels, old ceramic urns, newsprint, architectural imagery of streets and houses, scientific sketches of botany, birds and bugs, and shapes and icons from science and mathematics.

The tribal theme in last autumn/winter’s season is much less dominant this season. “The next sphere of influence on a global scale will be India – or so says Vogue,” reports High Point. “Touches of that exotic land can already be found in home fashions…see our “Passage to India” moodboard including a peacock motif, elephants and sari patterns.” Top US fabric designers Amy Butler and Patricia Bravo particularly showcase this influence in their latest collections….and it’s noticeable too in Karen Walker’s prints and Trelise’s bejewelled pieces. An accompanying ‘Greek’ pattern also shows as a key trend, helping to make traditional damask patterns become more edgy and geometric.

For kids, there’s an abundance of polka spots, strong stripes, gingham checks and denims and for girls, prints of sketched, cartoon-like blooms and flowers.

UK forecaster Trend Bible also picked it right when they said more than a year ago that this season prints and patterns would also take the adult maths and science theme further into the children’s themes of outer space, robots and gadgetry like the inside of circuit boards. (Check out especially the Robot Factory prints below and on my favourite fabric website.)

Escapism and nostalgia also led to other print-driven stories in new fabric collections, such as vintage-styled imagery of Hawaiian scenes, pirates and treasure maps, and for little girls, tales of heroines and adventures in woodlands. Dr Seuss is making going from strength to strength with the release of The Lorax fabric collection, available from Jan, following the success of The Cat in the Hat collection.

As always, we try really hard to work the seasonal trends into the new lily pad collections. The new summer 2012 range (available now at Daisy Baby and soon at other retailers) is the first range that my business partner Lisa has worked on independently of me, and I think she has beautifully captured the trends and her range is really set to add some sunshine into your day!

So as spring and summer approach, it’s time to get exercising and get out and about. Dust off that pram, give it a washdown to get rid of any grunge (baking soda and warm water works well), and then spruce it up with a lily pad. Not only will it look great, but it will give baby a comfy place to sit while you run around getting fit, and importantly, stop them from sitting against your pram’s synthetic seat and becoming hot and sweaty under the hot sun.

I can’t wait for summer!

See the full lily pad Summer 2012 collection here -


  1. Yay for colour, they keep saying orange, orange, orange, like in the mid 90s i guess, but i remember i prefer it on ojects & accessories rather than my body. Love Posie

  2. Wow, what a comprehensive post! So full of info, and much appreciated and enjoyed. Thank you! Brenda

  3. I love Indian prints, and those colours are gorgeous. How funny about the robots, remember when my mum couldn't find them anywhere?


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