The best of trends: John Lewis & Partners hits of 2019

John Lewis Retail Trend Reprot 2019
Editorial Team

This year, you’ve been embracing mindfulness, the joy of missing out and been inspired by Fleabag, according to the John Lewis & Partners Retail Report 2019

2019 has been a year of big changes – in politics, yes, but also in our wardrobes, our homes and even our lunch boxes. So which cult TV shows are inspiring how we dress? Which classic bag shape is officially out? How is clean queen Marie Kondo changing the way we shop? And why have we started playing with Lego?

A sustainable outlook

You have spoken, and the verdict is clear: single use plastic is out. Sales of steel straws went up by 1,573 per cent as eco-conscious John Lewis & Partners customers got a head start on the incoming plastic ban. Meanwhile, David Attenborough got the nation behind the sustainability message in the BBC's Blue Planet Live, with sales of reusable water bottles shooting up by 15 per cent before Glastonbury. What else is in? Lunch boxes, collapsible coffee cups, reusable cutlery and beeswax sandwich wrappers. Of course.

Playtime for adults

Who says toys are just for kids? Sales of Lego sets aimed at over 16s went up by a quarter this year, as John Lewis & Partners shoppers took a much-needed break from contemplating a country in crisis to indulge in a spot of mindful play. With Star Wars' Yoda, the Taj Mahal and TV series Friends now available in Lego, we're not surprised.

The Fleabag effect

We forgot all about FOMO (fear of missing out) and rediscovered JOMO (joy of missing out) thanks to the return of cult classic TV series like Fleabag and Peaky Blinders. And all that on screen fashspiration swiftly found its way into our wardrobes. Sales of black jumpsuits jumped by two thirds thanks to Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s have-to-love-her heroine, while sales of Tommy Shelby-esque flat caps rose by a quarter.

World cup warriors

The Lionesses inspired us this summer, with sales of sports headbands, sports bras and goal posts all increasing during the Women's World Cup. Ad breaks during the matches saw shoppers logging onto the John Lewis & Partners mobile app, to purchase from our womenswear and accessories selections.

Marie Kondo mania

Marie Kondo's Netflix series fuelled our obsession with sorting our spaces. Tidying Up with Marie Kondo created a nation of clutter converts who invested in savvy storage solutions, with sales rocketing by 47 per cent and storage boxes and clothing hooks becoming top sellers.

Modest fashion

Mini skirts and flashing the flesh went out of style, making wardrobe space for cosy classics, loose silhouettes and midi hemlines. Sustainability-conscious shoppers made a beeline for quality fabrics and timeless designs – think oversized cashmere sweaters, printed maxi dresses and classic shirt dresses. Beauty looks were stripped back to match, with lightweight tinted moisturisers replacing heavy foundations.

No more clutch bags

When it came to bags, practicality ruled supreme. We gave our own-brand accessories an overhaul, removing all clutch bags from our collections. We replaced them with an array of exciting new bag staples, including petite pochettes, sculptural hoop-top handles and statement bucket bags. Read more about the new trends in arm candy with our story on which handbags to covet now.

One piece or two?

We left our itsy bitsy bikinis in the drawer this summer – the timeless one-piece came back in a major way, with sales of swimsuits outstripping two-pieces. Blending modesty with luxury, you complemented your little black swimsuits with stylish long-length kaftans and slinky sundress cover-ups. Karen Dacre’s swimwear feature celebrated the return of the black one piece.

Luxe loungewear

With more and more of us working from home, comfort has become the new black – but that doesn’t mean we don’t want to look good if we pop out to the shops for a pint of milk. And as in other areas of our lives, we’re prioritising quality and sustainability, pushing sales of luxe loungewear up by 129 per cent.

The tech takeover

The smart tech revolution pushed sales of landlines, camcorders and mantel clocks down by 20 per cent, 33 per cent and 30 per cent respectively, as more and more of us invested in video-enabled smartphones and voice activated speakers. Smart living also extended to parenting (see our smart parenting feature) led by innovative brands like Elvie, Owlet and Bluebell. But it was bad news for drones – we stopped selling them following the disruption they caused in UK airports last December.

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