Picture libraries and artist agencies are not just a great source of imagery for greeting card publishers, but due to their wide reach into other fields are also quick to gauge design trends and influences on the aesthetic.
Commenting (prior to the Covid-19 taking hold) on what theyfeel will be driving design tastes Bhavisha Vadgama, art director & senior agent for Advocate Art UK Amanda Hendon suggest what they feel will be the main areas with its clients are those which reflect the “specific interest and awareness of the cultural upheaval, climate change and sustainability. We have also seen a boost in nostalgia – new takes on classical tales (ie Disney’s African American Ariel) – while celebrating diversity and inclusivity.
We feel that card publishers have responded by having more diversity in their ranges; featuring a range of different characters, incorporating patterns and colour palettes from other cultures. We have also tried to identify the occasions which we feel could help expand our reach so focusing more on cultural festivals such as Eid, Diwali, Chinese New Year etc.”
Summing up three key trends which they feel are “on the rise, not just on greeting cards, but in other licensing products and also fashion,” Bhavisha and Amanda suggest the following trio…
Harking back: “Nostalgia is going to be big; imagine 1970’s discos with bright, bold colours and patterns, geometric shapes, kitsch motifs, as well as psychedelic influences. Our prediction for a trend colour is amber orange and burnt canary yellows to be at the centre of attention of this fun trend.”
Tropical tastes: “The next trend we think will be popular comes from Tiki and tropical influences: Travelling to the Hawaiian tropics and focusing on bold, exotic botanicals, tropical birds combined with a hint of paradise with sun, sea and cocktails. Exotic fruits like pineapples and passion fruits to create a more citrus design.
Overall we also predict a huge focus on food stuffs in licensing; this year all the trendiest boutiques are stocking food ornaments.”
Natural preservation: “The final trend we think will be huge is endangered animals and climate change, a topic that is very much the talk of our society right now, and the mission to preserve our wildlife and oceans. We think that card publishers are going to celebrate these endangered animals and have them as the focus of their designs, and combine the earthly tones and patterns with rich finishes to make these more trend forward.”