When it comes to luggage and leather goods trends in 2015, expect pieces to be a lot lighter in both weight and in color, says Kenneth Fishman, purchasing manager for Pine Brook, NJ-based Rymax Marketing Services.
"People are redeeming products that are lightweight and also offer additional packing space," he notes. "Color and design are also becoming more important. It's more of a representation of your personality. While black is still the No. 1 color, I think that in 2015, people will want color schemes with their luggage and their handbags."
Pete Mitchell, director of B2B sales for Samsonite
says he sees similar demands for lightweight luggage. "It's all about how low we can go," he says. As more travelers seek out lighter and lighter suitcases, however, it becomes a challenge for brands like Samsonite. "It's easy to make lightweight luggage -- but it's hard to make lightweight luggage that works now and works five years from now," says Mitchell.
He also notes that as portability becomes more important for jetsetters, having 360-degree spinner wheels is crucial. "Once someone uses a spinner, they can't go back to two-wheeled luggage," he says.
At Rymax, Fishman sees high demand for the Max Mirani LAMOVE Mobile Closet
and its unique shelving system, which "fits an unbelievable amount of clothing" as well as its 360-degree spinning wheels.
Jody Running, VP of sales for Oshkosh, WI-based Top Brands, Inc, notes that consumers want luggage with smarter technologies. That includes locking wheels to prevent drifting and high-tech luggage tags with radio-frequency identification systems that can track lost or missing luggage. She notes that Delsey's Chatelet and Honore
collections feature these types of functions.
Another luggage collection for which Fishman sees many redemptions is Tumi's Tegra Lite
collection which is made with the brand's proprietary composite material for incredible durability. "These bags are ideal for travelers with features like a four-wheel system and a patented X-Brace 45 handle system for easy maneuvering," Fishman says.
Rymax's Jessica Brown, senior director of luxury goods, sees "a shift from larger bags to medium-sized ones" for handbags. She also says messenger bags and crossbody bags like the Michael Kors Jet Set Travel Large Crossbody
will make a strong appearance. Colors will be "geared toward neutral and lighter shades," she says. "It's pale blue instead of navy, and watermelon instead of fuchsia."
At Top Brands, Running sees a trend for "less-expensive leather options." She notes, "Participants want to be able to select leather -- or faux leather -- items in lower price points or levels, and Vera Bradley
has anything from leather luggage tags to leather handbags and everything in between."