Animal print, dad trainers and Meghan Markle were top-selling trends at Asos last year

Asos has released a list of the items that its 20-something customers bought into enthusiastically last year and a number of the trends look set to resonate with consumers in 2019 too.


Dad trainers, animal print and anything worn by Meghan Markle were top sellers for Asos last year


Particularly important was animal print as the wide variety of pattern stories that come under this umbrella continue to morph from a short-term trend into more classic, wear-anytime, status. Leopard and snake were both key with animal print product demand rising 223% year-on-year on the site.

In fact, print was a big story overall, carrying on a trend that started more than a decade ago. For menswear, the tropical print was the biggest story in topwear with men’s floral shirt sales rising 131% and the Hawaiian shirt a particular favourite.

The company expects tie-dye to be a key pattern story for 2019 but it won’t be all about print with reflective metallics also predicted to make a splash for shoppers seeking an alternative to matt-textured plains.

2018 was also a big year for the ‘ugly’, clunky ‘dad’ trainer influenced by 1990s styling. The shoe was a young fashion hit last year as the general casualisation trend saw it being paired with looks from the ultra-sporty to the more feminine and plenty of shoppers bought these trainers to wear with floral dresses, driving sales of this particular shoe up around 25%. 

But it wasn’t only a hit with women as the dad trainer proved popular in the men’s market too. It’s clearly a trend that’s working across the price range with luxury search portal Lyst also calling out the clunky trainer as a key item last autumn.  

Talking of floral dresses, the ditsy floral print trend shows no signs of fading. The company saw particular success with an own-brand green dress that sold out fast and had to be restocked more than once. The company is also backing the belted ditsy floral dress to be popular in 2019.

As a complete contrast, the e-tailer also saw surging demand for tailoring (up 460%) as shoppers returned to the previously-out-of-favour pantsuit rather than buying their tailored jackets and trousers separately. Asos also expects strong demand for shorts suits this year after the SS19 runways were awash with them.

Also strong last year were tiny sunglasses, which proved to be a hit early in the year, selling 10,000 pairs in January alone. Cat’s eye styles were also popular, but for 2019 the company is predicting big demand for visor styles.

And jumpsuit sales were up 70% in 2018 while jeans, despite the onslaught of athleisure, saw their sales rising 23%.

Anything linked to Meghan Markle also sold strongly and Asos called her out as the key style icon of the year. And while her wardrobe usually consists of high-end pieces, a £38 Asos Design maternity dress that the duchess wore on a New Zealand visit sold out after she wore it and sales of the dress instantly doubled.

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