2024 fashion forecast with the pr advisor

In the realm of high fashion and luxury, the winds of change are as constant as the seasons. As we embark on our journey through the sophisticated world of haute couture and the elite, I’ll be your fashion forecast guide through the latest insights from McKinsey & Co State of Fashion 2024 report.

This 128-page document is a treasure trove of information, and I’ve delved deep into its pages so that you, dear reader, can savor its essence without the hefty reading. This is the first of a 14-part series as I dissect each section of the massive report one-by-one.


The Fashion Forecast: Navigating the 2024 Landscape

As we glide into 2024, the fashion industry faces clouds on its horizon. This industry’s reputation for resilience (refer to the previous economic profits in 2022) encountered challenges both persistent and deepening in 2023. Europe and the US treaded through slow growth, while China’s initial sprint slowed to a jog in the latter half of the year. Luxury also felt the heat after a period of robust growth.

In this climate of uncertainty, the word on every executive’s lips is, unsurprisingly, “uncertainty.” With consumer confidence as fragile as  Chantilly lace, the industry anticipates a growth of 2 to 4 percent in retail sales. Amidst this cautious optimism, you can’t ignore the looming shadow of the climate crisis. The fashion world is expected to bolster its resilience against these climatic upheavals. The stakes are high, with an estimated $65 billion in apparel exports at risk by 2030.

The Path Forward: Strategy and Innovation

The answer to navigating these choppy waters lies in innovation and foresight. The focus shifts from cost-saving to sales growth, with new pricing and promotion strategies taking center stage. The industry is poised to tackle the “bullwhip effect,” where minor sales variations whip up significant supply chain volatility. Transparent and collaborative relationships with suppliers are key.

Regulatory eyes are also watching, especially with new sustainability rules in the EU and the US. Brands are called upon to cut emissions, reduce waste, and protect natural resources. The fast-fashion industry, already upended by companies like Shein and Temu, faces additional pressure.

Harnessing Technology and Marketing for Emotional Connections

In the quest for growth, generative ai has become an unexpected ally. About 73 percent of executives are eyeing this technology, particularly for creative design and product development. However, a talent gap looms, with only a fraction ready to harness this potential fully.

Marketing strategies are evolving too. The focus is shifting from performance to brand marketing, aiming to forge deeper emotional connections with customers. In this new era, authenticity and relatability are paramount, favoring influencers who are quirky, vulnerable, and less-polished.

Embracing the Global Consumer in a Post-Pandemic World

As the world awakens from its pandemic slumber, travel is back on the agenda, and with it, the resurgence of international shopping. Fashion houses must recalibrate their engagement strategies to cater to the renewed wanderlust, especially with Chinese tourists expected to flock to overseas destinations. This revival of travel, coupled with a growing penchant for outdoor wear, blurs the lines between functionality and style.

As we traverse the intricate tapestry of 2024’s fashion landscape, leaders in this glittering industry must brace for strategic challenges, while remaining agile and ready to accelerate post-storm. It’s a journey of resilience, innovation, and a dash of daring – the very essence of fashion itself. Stay tuned for the next installment of this series, where we’ll continue to unravel the luxurious, complex, and ever-evolving world of high fashion.



  1. Resilience Amidst Economic Challenges: The fashion industry has demonstrated remarkable resilience, achieving significant economic profits in recent years despite facing deepening challenges, particularly in major markets like Europe, the US, and China.
  2. Prevailing Uncertainty: A common theme for 2024 is uncertainty, with fashion leaders expressing concern over consumer confidence and predicting modest retail sales growth between 2 and 4 percent.
  3. Climate Crisis Impact: The industry is increasingly focusing on its response to the climate crisis, with a need for enhanced resilience and sustainable practices in light of potential risks to fashion workers and significant financial impacts.
  4. Strategic Shift in Focus: Moving away from cost-saving, the industry’s focus is now on growing sales through new pricing and promotion strategies, rather than simply increasing volume.
  5. Supply Chain Volatility: The “bullwhip effect” is a significant concern, where small sales fluctuations can cause substantial supply chain disruptions. Strengthening transparent and collaborative supplier relationships is crucial.
  6. Regulatory Scrutiny and Sustainability: Upcoming sustainability regulations in the EU and the US are prompting the industry to intensify efforts in reducing emissions and waste. This will particularly impact the fast-fashion sector.
  7. Generative AI as a Growth Lever: A significant portion of executives are looking towards generative AI to drive creativity in design and product development, though a talent gap remains a challenge.
  8. Shift in Marketing Strategies: A pivot towards brand marketing is anticipated, aiming to cultivate deeper emotional connections with customers. Authenticity and relatability are becoming increasingly important.
  9. Global Consumer Engagement: With travel resuming post-pandemic, fashion companies need to adjust their strategies to cater to international shoppers, particularly from China. This trend also points towards increased demand for outdoor wear.
  10. Need for Strategic Agility: Fashion leaders are advised to prepare for various scenarios, managing pricing effectively and being ready to seize opportunities as the industry landscape evolves post-challenges.

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