The Making of Trends at Munich Fabric Start: Interview with Joachim Baumgartner & Theresa Walter

Trends play an essential role in the creative direction and development of new collections, for our visitors and exhibitors alike. Our role is to spot patterns in fashion, technology and culture to present meaningful insights which help brands to connect with their audience, as well as present the theme and inspirations for the upcoming season.

Ahead of VIEW Premium Selection in Munich on 16th & 17th July, Theresa Walter and Jo Baumgartner – Munich Fabric Start trend duo – shared with us their insights into the unique and creative process of defining the themes and inspirations for Autumn.Winter 20/21. In a Q&A style interview they reveal their top tips to using our trend publication, colour codes and getting the most out of our trend areas.

“I am sometimes ahead of them, sometimes behind them and mostly I follow the trend of individuality.” Jo Baumgartner

Typically working six months in advance, effectively starting straight after the launch of the current season, our duo are full of excitement to start the creative process all over again. As a team they discuss together what has happened, what is happening right now, which topics are currently the most exciting and what can be concluded from this. This stimulates an unconscious and very creative process, which also includes a lot of gut feeling, emotion and draws on their combined experience from previous seasons.

The process requires continuous observation, being attentive to what is happening in everyday life but also in politics and global affairs, to deliver new and exciting themes in reaction to the evolving world around us. Fashion, technology, culture, politics and history old and present all have a part to play. Also, discovering what is new in disciplines close to fashion like art, music or architecture. The basis for their research is mainly sourced from fashion shows, books, magazines, textile, fashion and design blogs. Trend analysis is crucial and often involves discussions in order to interpret and underpin the results of their research.

“Right now, my focus is very much production methods and high-quality materials. I am trying to encourage the change to a more sustainable consumer behavior, so definitely this is also influencing my approach and is most probably the strongest trend I am following.”
Theresa Water

Defining the theme of the next season which will set the tone for exhibitors and visitors at our show should present an accurate interpretation of the direction which designers, buyers, suppliers, brands and creative professionals will be focused on during the new season. Theresa and Jo reveal expert insights into the presentation of trends at MUNICH FABRIC START:

How essential would you say trend publications and colour codes are to brands?

It depends on the size of the company and its structure. Put simply, I think trend publications are important design aids and serve a very varied purpose. Depending on the strength of the creative direction of the brand, trend books and colour suggestions are basic material, guidelines, directives, inspiration or comparison. Usually asking themselves: „How do other observers, scouts and visionaries see the season?”

What details should brands pay attention to from the new trend publication?

It is our role to present trends that on the one hand have a broad reach and vision and on the other hand give precise information on how the implementation can or should look like. It can happen that some topics are more easily understood and others are more thoughtful.

What tips would you give new visitors and users to successfully interpret the trend information?

It is relative to the nature of their business however they should always begin by asking themselves how much they want to be supported by the information. Open themselves up to a dialogue, with us, with their company, with their business and with the topics we offer. To do this well, my advice is to order the Trend Book in advance, in order to be prepared for the presented Trend Areas. Time is limited and it is a good opportunity to be able to get more effectively involved with the fabrics and ingredients than just dealing with the themes and concepts on site. It might also be interesting to know that our Exhibitors are keen to present and create designs which are a reflection on the themes and inspirations for the new season.

How can our visitors & exhibitors get the most out of our trend publication and colour code?

That’s very difficult to say. For some it’s enough to have a certain image, one or two colours or a colour harmony to get ahead with their own ideas. For others the trend publication can be the basis for building up and designing the collection.

How should our visitors & exhibitors interact with our trend areas during the Show?

It is best to get involved with the respective topics, at least briefly, by reading and perceiving the introductory texts/keywords.For visitors, this is the best way to immerse themselves in the material diversity of the respective themes and colours. For the exhibitors, there may be a few new suggestions on the spot as to which direction follow-up samples are appropriate.

How can our visitors get the most out of the trend areas during the show?

Since the trend themes of the book and the Colour Code are structured in exactly the same way as the themes at the fair, in the trend areas, the visitor can source the articles directly by theme. The Trend Code and the Trend Book are tools such as the yarns at the fair that you can unwind yourself.

How much does the environment and display of the trend area contribute to the interactivity, engagement and ultimately the successful response to the trends themselves?

The topics are presented as atmospherically as possible, the open design invites you to stay in the forums. The best way for visitors to come directly to an exhibitor with the fabrics they have noted down is to have the fabric from the forum shown to them again. The sustainable produced article in the ReSource area are provided with a QR code and can therefore be viewed directly via the ReSource Homepage.

We look forward to bringing you the new theme and inspiration for Autumn.Winter 20/21. To stay informed about the new season themes and inspirations, follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter for the latest updates!