‘Each year the leather sector eagerly awaits news of the latest fashion trends’, says Bianca Verstegen, product manager in LANXESS’s leather business unit, reporting from Milan, ‘because the sooner a manufacturer knows what is going to be in demand in the coming season the better. In the leather industry it is not just the colours that are important. These are generally dictated by the textile sector. Tanners also have to know what kind of surface touch, appearance and overall impression are wanted for fashionable upper leather, whether brushed or glossy, nubuck or patent, imitation crocodile or abstract grain patterns. All these factors determine whether a leather is in keeping with the trend or not. We help our customers to be prepared.’
LANXESS’s leather experts have their finger on the pulse. And they have the benefit of a leather competence centre complete with laboratory and applications development department in Italy, one of the centres of the fashion industry. They are also supported in their work by a well-known designer and stylist who is at home in all the major Italian fashion houses and is up to the minute with fashion developments around the world.
Together they have come up with four visions for 2009:
Poetic Irony – Sheer – Sensual
Passion, desire and humanity are fashions that never go out of fashion. Poetry is communication that uses sensual colours for constant interplay between fact and fantasy. This theme needs no explanation; its sensuality should simply be savoured. Materials which wrap around the body, sensual to the touch, sheer and rich, enhancing the emotional senses.
Energy – Individuality – Creativity
Youth loves life and lightness of spirit and is bursting with energy, the perfect ingredients for originality and imagination. An expressive and dynamic theme where modern colours bring life to a mix of surprises and accents. Original materials – space for creativity.
Charm & Intuition = Perfect Future
Invention and creation are much more difficult now than they were in the past when people travelled and communicated less. Today, with the Internet, the world lives in real time with fashion, sport, cinema and music. People are no longer surprised, except by a desire for real and positive change without waste for a magical and perfect future. In this theme, colour combinations leave no room for indecision. Bright and firm materials blend like a modern and innovative game.
Eternal Summer – Lust for Life
Sunshine!! Happiness strikes the soul in summer – warm, sunny days are reflected in the faces of people having light-hearted fun. Sunshine colours predominate in this theme. Fresh and natural materials, which absorb the negativity and blues of a cold, gray winter. Plant-based materials, dried and coloured nubuck, soft calfskin that gives the feeling of walking barefoot and free, whilst relishing a never-ending summer.
‘We have taken these inspiring visions and translated them into reality’, says Pino Latini, head of the Italian innovation competence centre, ‘and we will help our customers do the same.’ In addition to the collection of samples, LANXESS’s leather experts also provide users with recipes and processing suggestions to help them achieve the desired results quickly.
‘Our leather experts support interested customers worldwide, offering individual service at the customers’ own plants to enable them to produce leathers with the desired characteristics’, says Latini. ‘That is a genuine competitive advantage for our customers, because time is money – even in the fashion industry.’
LANXESS will be presenting the leather trend book at the FIMEC trade fair in Novo Hamburgo, Brazil. For a first impression of the poetry, energy and charm of the new trends in leather go to http://www.lanxessleather.com/