Power Prints Return to Fashion Design

Power Prints

Power Prints to Return to Fashion Design? Bold prints see a cautious return to retail, but that has not dampened their spirit.

For the new fashion landscape, simplicity, longevity and sustainable promises are high on consumers’ minds. So where does that leave the maximalist, where prints and bold colours prevail? Unfortunately, the London Print Design Fair for 2020 was cancelled this year, so trends have been based alternatively on reports directly from design studios. Many highlighted this cultural shift, with pattern largely taking a back seat. However, the available prints packed a punch and created true statement pieces among otherwise pared-back collections. Power prints are said to be making a return to fashion design. Though post-pandemic we expect to see a continuation of minimalism, we’re also predicting a print resurgence and injection of much-needed life and colour to the catwalk. If for nothing else, this will act to uplift our moods in times of uncertainty.  


The Minimalist Maximalist

Appealing to the minimalist mindset, studios have opted for trans seasonal prints that resonate with neither winter nor summer. Discreet textures and non-prints are key. WGSN has identified the following categories as important for the upcoming season that can progress seamlessly over time, as pieces stay for longer in our wardrobes. 

  1. Barely their botanicals: Watercolour techniques and distorted prints offer femininity to the print catalogue. 
  2. Earthy tones and textures: Seen within both menswear and womenswear, the pandemic has led to a resurgence of textured cameo and earthy prints alongside conscious consumption.
  3. Seasonless texture: Expanding on the minimalist mindset, texture and non-prints offer commercial options for paired back styling.
  4. Summer stripes: Stripes are a tried-and-tested favourite and can be carried through to S/S 21 for a gender-neutral appeal.


Key brands include: Carolina Herrera, Isabel Marant and Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini


Blast from the Past 

Often, uncertain times elicit nostalgia and familiar favourites. The following print categories serve this need whilst retaining modern appeal.

  • Retro geometrics: Revisit geometrics in midcentury hues and palettes for womenswear or interior design features.
  • Tie-dye: Extra time in the home and the encouragement of personalisation as a result of Covid-19 saw tie-dye return with a force which shows no sign of slowing. 
  • Neo Victoriana: Consumers love affair with historic silhouettes following ‘Little Women’s’ release sees a move into permanency for A/W20/21 prints.
  • Repair and reuse: As with tie-dye, items that embrace individuality will appeal to the growing consumer focus on sustainability, along with the home crafting’s popularity.


Key brands include: Burberry, Gucci, Rosie Assoulin and Adam Lippes


Optimistic Brights

While bold colouring and pattern took a backseat this season, there remained some resilient collections that stood out in a sea of neutrals. Specifically, Mugler offered a catwalk of refreshing colour and texture that appealed to a willing youth as they crave escapism.


  • Vacation florals: The longing for a summer escape has led to an increased call for vacation prints at home, especially within accessories for both fashion and home that require a smaller investment.
  • Virtual rave: As we spend an increased time online, creating for digital has become essential. Croznest previously reported on this with the Graphic Prints and Party Brights report. This is especially important for Generation Z who seek to make an instant impression via social platforms.
  • Blotched blooms: Post-pandemic, positivity will be high on many consumers’ agenda and large, colourful blooms will help affirm an upbeat mood across apparel. On the catwalk there has been a 33% spike in these bold designs, making it a trend to watch.

Do you believe that power prints will return to fashion design?

Key brands include Marni, Valentino, Dries van Noten and Gabriella Hearst 



Words by Rhiannon Hudson