From Craft to Tech: The New Territories of Sophistication

Accompanying the gradual decompartmentalization of formal and sportswear, the evolution of textile trends is helping to define a new form of sophistication. At one end of the spectrum are technical fabrics, whose aesthetic qualities—textural, tactile and optical effects—in addition to their high performance, are an inspiration to fashion. At the other end is a renewed interest in artisanal materials that also offer aesthetic possibilities. Knitwear is not to be outdone, following in the footsteps between the aesthetics of the handmade and new technical possibilities.

New innovative materials turn activewear from an asset into developing new forms of mobilities. From practicality is born a new, inspiring aesthetic that blurs even more the frontier between casual, active and sophisticated. On the one side, smooth, foamy, double-sided embossed knits are developed to create protective, shock-absorbing technical fleece with bio-based, anti-odor ribbing; and on the other side, from down jackets to windbreakers and compact and dense satins, water-repellent, metallic and reflective urban technical fabrics improve urban mobility.

As new, more assertive expressions of sobriety emerge to fight overconsumption through authenticity and longer-lasting pieces, rawness inspires a refreshing form of sophistication. It draws on ancestral traditions and the use of original, natural materials. Beautiful woolens and weaves with natural, rustic, undyed looks are the base for a wardrobe of large, enveloping coats, loose jackets and pleated pants. Think refined silhouettes with asymmetric cotton and wool etamine blouses or eternally simple jeans and T-shirts with ratine overcoats. Also inspired by traditional techniques, prints with micro-scale fake ikats, like blurred primitives, are used as allover, irregular graphics.

As knitwear becomes more than just functional, stitches get more and more precious, making knits more revealing. This is expressed through drop stitches that are worked in both regular and graphic versions. Vertical lines create a subtle blend of transparency and opacity with a light touch. A variation around this idea: a lace stitch for an ultra-fine gauge in a sensual and graphic lingerie style. Second skins, bodysuits and other undergarments are worn as main pieces for a cute and sexy effect.

Peclers Paris is a leading lifestyle trend-forecasting agency focused on building brands through the expertise of an international team of designers, strategic planners, futurists and consultants. The company has headquarters in Paris, Los Angeles and Shanghai.