Lucas Shorvon Of All Eyes On Revolutionizing Trend Forecasting
“I would say 98 per cent of the market is priced-out of trend forecasting,” Lucas Shorvon of All Eyes tells What We Seee. “It’s become a bit of an institution, a bit of a monopoly. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.”
You’ve probably noticed it — even if you haven’t realized. Walking by stores that all seem to have the same shirts, the same coats, the same trousers. A slight variation here, a change of button there. But for the most part, the same.
“It’s destroying creativity and brand identity,” Shorvon explains. And, ultimately, limiting what’s there for the rest of us.
Which is why he’s setting out to change that. Shorvon is co-founder of All Eyes, a fashion trend forecasting and consultancy company based in Hackney. Along with co-founder Natalie Grogan, they’re looking to democratize trend forecasting — making it easier and faster for everyone to follow street fashion trends in real-time. Along with consulting for brands and retailers, they’re developing a platform that will open up and facilitate trend forecasting for the rest of us — from fashion professionals to everyday browsers.
Trend Forecasting At Street Level
The journey to All Eyes has been full of surprises, as the company has quickly evolved from one platform to another as it discovered its natural place in the industry. But it all started with a risk.
“When I met Natalie she was at the London College of Fashion, doing a fashion media production degree,” Shorvon explains. “As part of that, she had to come up with an idea — Style Scape. People would submit images and they would be plotted on a map. We talked about the power of street fashion and the amount of data that was out there — about how we could harness it. You could see fashion around the world as it’s happening.”
When they realized its power, they founded SEARCH STYLE and started exploring the relationship between fashion and social media, allowing people to share street style in real-time. But they were both working other jobs — Shorvon in music and Grogan in graphic design. As the idea started to take off, they realized they had to focus their efforts.
“We went to a music festival and we had a few beers and Natalie asked me to quit my job and do this full time,” Shorvon says.
And he did. Together, they have found a gap in the market — trend forecasting for the rest of us.
“We decided to see what’s available online in terms of content and data and use it to forecast — and we realized everything we needed was available to really master trend forecasting at street level.”
Sense Of Change
Though they use technology to great effect, it’s clear that the business is about far more than data. Shorvon is an avid street fashion photographer himself. His Instagram is full of bold, arresting images caught on the street — many of them taken during various London Fashion Weeks. For him, street fashion is a passion — one that he’s committed to fully. When he speaks about what he does and why he does it, his enthusiasm is obvious.
“Street style is so much more authentic,” he explains. “You’re not limited by anything — it’s not prescriptive. You might get a Prada coat with beaten-up Nike trainers — you get a real sense of fashion and styling. Whereas the catwalk is unattainable. By its nature, straight from the start, it’s unattainable — it’s a bit outdated.”
The current All Eyes website is a perfect example of the shift from traditional, catwalk-based fashion to a user-driven, street-based approach. They have a blog full of photographs, interviews, and trend forecasts available to anyone and everyone. For those of us who have found fashion an intimidating, if not impenetrable, industry, it’s a refreshing shift.
“Traditionally, it’s been a very elitist practice. That’s how the industry has always existed, but there’s a sense of change now.”
The Democratization Of Trend Forecasting
With SEARCH STYLE the pair had played with the idea of a fashion-based social network. But when they realized the amount of information out there — the amount of data that they could play with — they decided to do something different and started to see how they could make this available to everyone.
“At the moment we’re geared toward brands and retailers, as we’re trying to prove the concept,” he says. “But the actual idea that we’re trying to do is to democratize trend forecasting. The idea is that it would give you what you need to do your own trend-forecasting and bypass expensive subscriptions.”
There is so much fashion content out there. We see it all over Instagram — all over so many corners of the internet. But at the moment, for someone interested in fashion, collating and utilizing this data is a problem. Whether it’s for personal or professional use, trying to keep track of all of the fashion you’ve seen and liked on the internet is unwieldy.
“Most people who are priced out of professional trend forecasting are getting everything from Instagram and Pinterest. They take a screenshot and maybe use it, maybe put it on a mood board, or just forget about it,” he says. “That’s one of the major things we’re trying to tackle. How to make this process a much smoother one, how to help people utilize what they see. We want to be able to create community-led trend-forecasting — from peers rather than an authority.”
Their new platform is still in the process of being built, but it should be available shortly. It’s been a journey fuelled by a mixture of passion and a sharp eye for business, by creativity and data. And it’s one that’s just beginning.
“At the moment, we consult with brands as we’re in the process of building this platform — one major online retailer has been working with us very closely. We hope to have it open to the public in the next 6 months.”
It’s safe to say the fashion world will be watching.