Color, decor, and fashion trend forecasting blogs to help you create on-trend products shoppers want to buy. Plus, free sources for consumer behavior and retail industry trends, so you'll know when, where, and why your customers are shopping.
Designing handmade products with future fashion and home decoration trends in mind isn't for everyone. Some people like to follow their own style and instincts. But for many owners of creative businesses, designing on trend items is part of their company's identity. It can be an important selling feature for both retail and wholesale customers.
Clearly, if you aim to create items that are on trend, you need good trend forecasting sources. You'll need to know what styles will be hot well in advance to have time to design items, order appropriate supplies, create your products, and create promotional materials.
Checking out your favorite stores each season or reading popular fashion and decorating magazines will only tell you about what is popular at that moment. What you really need is a way to discover the trends you'll be seeing several months in advance, so you have time to prepare.
Luckily, there are a lot of free home and fashion trend forecasting sources online - A lot more than there were when I was starting out!
It's easier than ever to find that information for free.
I've added a few sources of retail market trends reports to this page. Those reports go beyond what customers are buying. They'll give you important information such as: when your customers are shopping, what they expect in a shopping experience, how much they will spend, and how they research products.
This list is not an exhaustive inventory of every trend forecasting blog out there. There are loads of blogs that specialize in forecasting trends. You could spend hours searching through all of them.
But you don't have hours to sift through trend reports. You have a business to run! So I've stuck to the trend forecasting blogs that are I like and follow.
Many of these sources offer paid future trend reports which tend to be quite pricey. However, every resource linked below also has a lot of free information. As long as you don't need your trend reports several seasons in advance, I believe you could find everything you need within the free trend reports.
Fashion Trendsetter is a great, free source for all kinds of trend reports including:
This site has a lot of information as well as a fun little search tool. Go to their trends page and browse all kinds of reports on color, decor, textiles, accessories, and apparel trends.
There's a handy tool on the trends page that allows you to filter the results by season, market, industry and category, so you can quickly find the type of information you need.
Pantone is the leader in color trend forecasting for design, home interiors, and fashion. They don't publish as much free information as some of the other blogs listed on this page. However, Pantone is so influential in the use of color in design that they must be included in any list of design trend sources.
The link above takes you to Pantone's Color Intelligence articles, which do provide some information about using color trends in design.
Emily Kiddy is a fashion design consultant and blogger I love who posts lots of trend research with a special focus on trends in children's fashion. Her whole blog is fabulous, but you can go straight to her fashion trend posts here.
You can also follow Emily Kiddy on Pinterest to get her beautiful trend reports in your feed.
This site offers information for the fashion and design sector. They have a paid service, which, I hear is quite pricey. But there is also plenty of free fashion and interiors trend information on their blog.
Trend Bible is another great blog full of helpful trend reports. Most of the blogs on this list focus on fashion trend forecasting, but Trend Bible's primary focus is home decor trend reports.
If you make handmade products for the home, and you want to embrace trends in your designs, you need to follow Trend Bible.
The Trendstop blog's primary focus is fashion trend forecasting, but you'll also find some color, lifestyle, and consumer trends information on the blog.
The WWD (Women's Wear Daily) site has loads of fashion industry information, including fashion trends.
On Etsy's blog, you'll find reports on searches that are trending on Etsy. Those reports are filed under the category trends.
Keep an eye out for their holiday gifting trends report, which is usually published in late September and their trends report for the upcoming year, which is published in mid to late December. Those reports will give you some insights into what shoppers on Etsy are searching for going into the Christmas shopping season and what craft trends may be hot for the coming year.
The Pinterest Trends Tool
Pinterest has an extremely helpful and easy to use tool that shows you the relative popularity of certain search terms on Pinterest over the course of the past year. I've written a guide to using the Pinterest Trends tool to help you get started.
The Pinterest 100
In mid-December, Pinterest publishes The Pinterest 100. It's a report describing 100 searches that are trending on Pinterest and will likely be hot topics going into the coming year.
Pinterest also publishes monthly reports on searches trending on Pinterest. You'll find them all on the blog filed under Pinsights.
Facebook publishes reports that explore insights into consumer behavior, including a holiday marketing guide with data on trending consumer behavior and an annual Topics and Trends report which shows international trending topics on the platform.
Every year, in October, I dig into retail shopping trend predictions for the upcoming holiday season. Here are some of sources I use for my research.
The National Retail Federation is a trade association for retailers. Their site full of information, including retail shopping trend reports.
Criteo publishes consumer behavior trend reports with a focus on ecommerce and holiday shopping trend forecasting. You'll need to provide an email address to download any of their reports.
Tinuiti is another company that focuses on online retail sales. While a lot of their reports are focused on topics like buying ads on Google or Amazon, they also produce consumer behavior guides that provide insight into the mindset of shoppers. You'll need to provide an email address to download any of these guides.
I review retail sales predictions and design trend reports in September and October before the busy holiday shopping season begins and again in December when trend forecasts for the coming year are published. I look at that information from the perspective of a craft business owner and report on those trends that I believe are most relevant and impactful to my readers.
You'll find links to those reports below.
Every December, I review Pinterest's and Etsy's predictions for the coming year and report on trends that are most relevant to craft artists. I also review Etsy's holiday gifting trend report in September or October.
You can check out my DIY trends reports for craft business owners here. Rather than linking to individual articles, the link above sends you to a section on the page that has links to all of my newest design trend reports. When I add new craft trend reports, that link will always take you to the newest articles on the topic.
In October, I review several sources of retail trend information and holiday shopping predictions for the upcoming Christmas shopping season with a focus on trends relevant to handmade product sales. You'll find links to all of my retail trend articles here. The newest reports, which use the most current trend data, are listed first.
If you prefer to access your information on Pinterest, I keep several boards on color, decor, and fashion trend forecasting that I update frequently. I always create two separate trend boards for each year (one for spring / summer trend forecasts, and one for autumn / winter).
I follow most of the sources mentioned above and pin reports about new trends as they are posted online. I'm typically pinning trend predictions for up to two years in advance. For example, in summer 2020, I would be starting to pin trend forecasts for as late as spring / summer 2022.
You can keep up with my trend research by following me on Pinterest.
I create new Pinterest trend boards for upcoming years and seasons as new information becomes available. If you follow all of my boards (not just the current year's trend boards), you'll get the newest trend boards in your feed whenever I create a new board to start pinning for a new year and season.