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Fashion Trends 2004

Part 2 - Colour and Fabrics Forecast

By Pauline Weston Thomas for


Colour and Fabrics Forecast


The Fashion Colour Palette for 2004

To sum up the fashion colours for spring 2004 -
Leading through to summer and autumn - the fabric palette is made of white and cream with black, burnt orange, pink tones, dusty berry reds, yellow and even more yellows, spice tones, chartreuse, lime, khaki, kingfisher, sapphire blue, powder blue greys, fruit shades and brown tones.

By winter 2004 dynamic strong jewel lustre fashion colours that are not garish will become the norm.  Many colours previously unacceptable to consumers will become more acceptable because of the way fabric weaves and new fabrications are mixed and layered together to provide a more creative high impact colour palette.

The colours for 2004 Spring/Summer fashions and accessories include white, cream, oyster white, and olive black.

Wardrobe mainstays; pastels than tone well with beige, burnt orange, burnt rust, dusty turquoise, aqua, dusty kingfisher blue, sapphire blue, carbon blue, indigo, washed out misty powder blues and stone greys, liquid lava, slate, lilac, most leaf greens, chartreuse green, lime, olive, pastel khaki.

The re-emergence of sea green and a subtle emerald, dusty pink, pink flesh, blush pink, rose beige, coral pink, shocking pink, fuchsia pink, magenta, scarlet, dusty reds, carnelian red, Chinese red, berry red clarets baby lemon, baby yellow, papaya, lemon, old gold, antique gold, apricot, ginger sand, Demerara brown, beige, wicker, washed camel, toast, tea, browns, mocha, soft and bright tones of intense fruit shades, and the colours of minerals.


Fashion Fabric Prints and Fabric Surfaces in 2004

In 2004 fashion fabrics and fashion garments with surface design and decoration will increase.  Throughout 2004 appliqué and embroidery on clothes and fabrics will be much stronger and more extravagant, yet remain dignified.  Aged patina and marble finishes on fabrics will give subtle understated looks to natural fabrics.  Both wrinkle and smooth effect fabrics will suit these aged looks.

Tropical prints which made headway in 2003 will attract customers tired of the bland, neutral palette still embedded in the minds of some consumers from the 1990s.  Many consumers will have become used to the odd brighter more colourful purchase like pink made during 2003 and will feel more confident about purchasing stronger, newer vibrant colours and jazzier prints in 2004, particularly as the fabrications create new, more sumptuous looks.

Other prints for the 2004 summer season include those inspired by op art, art deco, wallpaper, Asian flowers, Impressionist florals, soft faded Vintage floral blooms and softly tinted romantic Chinoiserie prints.  Fabrics with broken stripes, abstract geometrics and some with textured surface dots will please those who prefer timeless designs and dislike floral effects on clothing.

Prints in black and white or black and cream will be very strong in 2004 and this scheme translates well into other mood designs such as ethnic prints on various fabrics like crêpes, seersucker, sheers, viscose georgette and satin.

Dogstooth and the larger houndstooth check, both old favourites, will add a subtle, acceptable change to the dominant black and cream looks of more strident or aggressive bold op art and art deco prints.  Likewise Chinese and Japanese takes on the black/white, black/cream theme will attract a variety of very different consumers to those who go for the former prints.

In 2004 pearlized finishes on rustic fabrics and metallic and shiny surface finishes will vie with embroidered fabric surfaces for attention.  Other finishes to fabrics for 2004 include flocking on denim and corduroy, flocking on bridal fabrics, double faced cloths, striped fabrics of solid and sheer or opaque stripes.

Puffy jaquards and jacquard denim will mean we see more textured prints in this favourite fabric.  Comfortable washed out fabrics will have more importance than over-distressed fabrics.  Cotton with linen and polyester blends will come washed and have a used finish. Bicycle wear will feature more prints in 2004.  Couple this with the take on the 2004 Olympics in Athens 2004 and watch the world to pick up on ancient Greek influence with sports moods and sports passions of the moment.  Armoured looks in the style of Roman Gladiator dress will translate into pleats and sectioned pieces on garments.


The Importance of Fashion Trends in Linen Looks in 2004

Linen will be the fibre still not fully exploited until Spring 2004.  Expect to see Linen in a whole range of colours and fabric weights and textures as yet unexplored.  Linen will be combined with Lycra and many of the benefits that gave denim a boost when first combined with Lycra will soon be a familiar demand from consumers for linen.  Lycra with linen will help give a smoother fit to the form and will aid crease recovery, a factor that still deters some consumers from buying.

Deconstructionist fashion styling will suit the linens of 2004.  Linen as double faced, colour reversed linens will add the opportunity for un-faced, deconstructionist styled garments with contrast flaps of colour and fraying of this open weave fabric.  Airier more open weave gauze like semi sheer versions of the same fabrics will provide further opportunity for designers with innovative ideas.

Printed and textured linen will be snapped up and mixed with existing plain linen garments.  Linen printed with ethnic designs will also give an African or Nomadic Arabic back to roots earthy natural flavour.

Linen will be mixed with Lurex in pastel tones to create fabrics that shine ever so cleverly and delicately.  Similar, but different effects will be achieved when Polyurethane designs printed on linen give a sparkling look.  By combining different quality linens and yarns such as textured silk yarn, frosted, slightly iridescent effects will be available.

Natural, rustic distressed finishes will say linen 2004.   For those who prefer the natural effect, Linens will also come striped, burnt out, semi sheer, sharp and crisp or crumpled and soft or with a rustic texture.  Linen will also be mixed with wool to create new performance fabrics of a high calibre with improved touch, softer hand and added water repellence.

Ingeo™ - A new fibre called Ingeo™ a renewable non flammable fibre made from sugars found in vegetables such as corn will appeal to eco conscious consumers who approve of regenerated fabrics from easily renewable sources.  The fibre in its once exploited various forms, will eventually rank alongside linen, cotton, and ramie.

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