Thursday, 28 March 2013

Spring 2013 - What's Trending Where You Live?

One thing I learnt as a result of the Art and Business of Surface Pattern Design course is to keep my eyes open and my camera at the ready, even when I go shopping!

I live in Abergavenny, a small market town in South-east Wales, not far from the border with England. Abergavenny is known for its 'Markets, Mountains and More . . .' and if I walk into town on a Wednesday morning, I hear the sounds of sheep and cattle from the livestock market on my way. And from the park I cross on my way to the shops, I can see Sugarloaf, Skirrid and the Blorenge, the three mountains surrounding the town.

Not exactly the kind of place you would expect to find high fashion in the shops. But in fact, Abergavenny has far more shops than you might expect in a town of fewer than 15,000 inhabitants. And there's a good variety, ranging from quite a classy little department store and independent boutiques to small branches of most of the national chains.

I've been too busy to venture outside of Abergavenny for a while so I don't know how its shops compare with other places, but my impression is that most of the shopkeepers have at least some awareness of what is currently trending.

So here are some Trend Boards I've made from photos I took in town this week and you can decide whether or not Abergavenny's style is up-to-the-minute or lagging sadly behind!

My first impression was that there was 'Nautical' or 'Coastal' everywhere. There is certainly a lot of denim, canvas shoes, boater shoes, more denim, blue and white, even more denim - and 'deckchair' and 'matelot' stripes. But I also found some butterflies - on mens' clothing, unfortunately too small to show up here.

There are also a lot of 'Conversational Prints', which anyone who read Part One of Repeating Patterns for Painters, will know are patterns with everyday objects as motifs. Today I saw sailing boats, bicycles and paper aeroplanes on men's clothing! And I was pleased to find mini-prints that could have been Laura Ashley's in the Sixties and Seventies.

There is almost as much 'Tribal' - mostly in black and white and again, lots of stripes.

These were the shop windows that initially caught my eye. Not all of the green is Pantone's Tender Shoots Green and I think the yellow may be more influenced by Wales' national symbol, the daffodil, than by Pantone's Lemon Zest. But it all looks lovely and spring-like. There are bright green trousers for men and even the charity shop's window sported various shades of green, teamed with check shirts.

I finally spotted some Tangerine Tango in Abergavenny - better late than never! It was almost always teamed  with bright pink, one of my own favourite colour combinations.

Reds ranged from Pantone's Poppy Red in the department store window, through rusts and Burgundy to Aubergine. And there are still plenty of large florals, polka dots and lace.

Turquoise abounds in Abergavenny, often in combination with pink and white - checks, polkas, florals, and some with a definitely 'oriental' feel about them! If the green and yellow feel springlike and the orange and pink combination reminds us of roasting high temperature, this turquoise, pink and blue palette is somewhere in between.

In fact, I've got my eye on that check shirt - it's just the sort of thing that I'd be likely to wear a lot when the weather gets warmer. But after last year's wash-out of a summer, I feel it would be tempting fate to buy something so summery while it's still snowing outside!

So what's your verdict?

Are Abergavenny shops keeping up-to-date?

And what's on offer where you shop?


10 comments: said...

It's always good to keep up with the trends. Those shops seem to be doing a wonderful job. What a picturesque area you live in. I can't beleive the photos of your winter/spring weather. My husband was shocked as well! Her in Va. everyone complains about the 1/2 inch of snow which is followed by 60 degree days. I don't because at least it's here today and gone tomorrow. Hope your weather get more springy soon! :-)

Judy Adamson said...

Hi Crystal - glad that link worked so you were able to see the photos of the blizzards. It's really unusual to have that much snow in the UK but practically unheard of to have it so late in the year!

One advantage of this cold weather, though, is that I haven't needed to trim my big hedge yet this year!

jane maday said...

Hi Judy,
Thanks for dropping by my blog! I love what you have done here with your trend boards-especially the nautical one. Cold sleet falling here in Colorado today. My cousins in Essex had snow for Easter. Everyone is ready for Spring!

Judy Adamson said...

Hi Jane - glad you liked my trend boards! Becoming awar1e of trends has made shopping a totally different experience these days

We still have snow on the mountains and very cold winds but if you can find a spot out of the wind, the sun is actually quite warm at last :) Just heard on the weather forecast that 'wintry showers' (aka snow!) likely in Kent tomorrow!

natacha devaud said...

I love your trend boards, Judy. Abergavenny seems like a charming town. I've never been to Wales, but now I want to come see.

Judy Adamson said...

Thank you for your comment, Natacha. Abergavenny is a lovely little town. The only thing it lacks, from my perspective, is the sea - but then it does have mountains and you don't often get both together!

Carole Barkett said...

You certainly caused me to think about what I'm seeing when I go shopping. Is nautical a constant trend in your community or is it the trend this year I haven't noticed it here. I love the boards.

Judy Adamson said...

Thank you for your comments, Carole. I haven't noticed the 'nautical' theme until now, either. I think it may be one of those, like florals, that never goes away completely. It's a theme I really like, though!

Tasha Goddard said...

I keep meaning to take photos of the clothes shop windows. I work in Cheltenham and walk past / stand outside a number of lovely ones every day. I always stare at the patterns and colours on display - and sometimes pop in for a closer look. I wasn't sure if it would be OK to take photos :)

They've just changed most of the displays. There was some lovely blue and white prints in East for ages, and some very nice muted but summery colours in White Stuff. East now has some really bright colours and a tagline 'Celebrating colour' (I think). Going to try to remember to take photos tomorrow.

Judy Adamson said...

I've found the shopkeepers are usually delighted to let me take photos, even inside. The only one who wouldn't let me was a market stall-holder who was afraid I'd let the competition see what he was doing (as if they couldn't come and look anyway!), which was a shame because he had a wonderful display of 'Poppy Red'!

Look forward to seeing your photos, Tasha :)