Is climate change forcing fashion to adapt and become less seasonal?


By AGENCY

A file picture shows clothes stored at Mango's logistics center in Lliça d'Amunt, north of Barcelona. Photo: AFP

Spanish retailer Mango is honing in on adaptable clothing to help customers adjust to wild swings in temperature as climate change makes fashion less seasonal, chief executive Toni Ruiz said.

According to him, the clothing industry used to work according to clearly delineated seasons, but global warming means it needs to adapt to periods that can include a mix of hot and cold temperatures and produce pieces that reflect those transitions.

"Before, when you came back from summer, all the shops were full of winter clothes," Ruiz said in an interview.

"More and more the customer is going to look for what they need at that moment."

Read more: How Asian celebrities are now the biggest stars at top fashion weeks

With Spain and other countries in Europe experiencing higher temperatures during some periods of the year as well as more rain in some places, clothing trends are shifting too.

The trend among women for light trench coats is an example of seasonally-transitional clothing, Ruiz said.

Mango is also offering clothes for men using "performance" fabrics that are more breathable and that better handle sweat on hot days.

In recent years, family-owned Mango has shifted to sourcing its trend-dependent items from manufacturers in Europe and its functional wardrobe pieces from manufacturers in Asia, Ruiz said.

"We have the ability to work in two parallel worlds, depending on the needs and the nature of the product," he said.

"I believe that is a necessary virtue at the moment in this disruptive world."

At the end of 2023, Mango sourced from about 3,000 factories in China, Turkey, India, Bangladesh, Spain, Italy and Portugal. Ruiz said about 40% of Mango's suppliers were located in Europe but that more than 80% of volumes were still manufactured in Asia.

The flexible supply chain has helped Mango navigate recent disruptions to shipments through the Red Sea, a risk that Ruiz said is now under control.

Read more: Vintage, dark romance, colour: Wedding trends move away from tradition

The retailer has been focusing its investment on expanding its number of stores and on developing technology, Ruiz said.

It is using artificial intelligence to help it track trends on social media and to cross-reference data on consumers with collections and other brands, he said.

The company has its own internal AI platform, similar to the ChatGPT interface, that trains designers. Around 20 pieces have been created with the help of AI, he said.

Ruiz added that AI is "a great wingman in our strategy to understand what's happening in the world". – Reuters

Follow us on our official WhatsApp channel for breaking news alerts and key updates!

fashion , trends , ready-to-wear , AI , Mango

   

Next In Style

'Just too much': Designer Dries Van Noten on why he is retiring from fashion
Muscle dysmorphia: Men are also struggling with unrealistic beauty standards
'Finance bro' fashion is out, here's what guys should wear to the office instead
Comfort in chic: Ditch the high heels for these easy-breezy shoes
More athletes are making their mark as the faces of luxury fashion brands
'The world is yours': Fashion week runway show takes over Unesco headquarters
Striking dress worn by Fan Bingbing in Melaka is a Bernard Chandran design
Men are upping the ante in style stakes when it comes to their dressing
Milan Fashion Week Men's seeks reassurance in nostalgia and artisanal craft
Ahead of the Olympics, fashion week brings another layer of chaos to Paris

Others Also Read