There is always an exciting energy in London during Fashion Week and this year was no different. The build up to shows, trend spotting, celebrities on the FROW, along with glimpses of the who’s who of the fashion world, all creates a thrilling atmosphere.
The excitement was not just restricted to London and each fashion week around the world has created a unique feel when unveiling next season’s hottest trends. New York celebrates the rock star vibe; bringing with it big, bold, excess. This city screams cool and never fails to deliver on its reputation for bringing out the pop stars and glitterati. Milan embraces all things sexy and an excessive opulence that only the Italians can do with true conviction. Paris is the pinnacle for couture, beauty, elegance and also reflective of the undeniable romance that the city represents. Then there is London; known for its creativity, cool factor and innovation. The British capital has an unrivalled ability for putting a designer on the map and also oozes a proud, aristocratic vibe.
Whether or not you are an avid follower of the various fashion weeks, they represent a crucial part of the industry and act as a platform for leading designers to showcase their latest collections. Trends are not necessarily something to live by solely, but they definitely set a precedent for the masses. Whether you suffer at the hands of being a fashion victim, or enjoy taking certain subtleties from particular collections, it is vital that you know what cut and colouring suits your body shape. Thankfully, for next season, there is a little something for everyone.
As we look down the line towards Autumn/Winter 2012, prepare yourselves for winter florals, geometric prints, oversized knits, skirts (full and slinky), military, leather trousers and yes ladies, leggings are coming back!
Now, I know I have just dropped the ‘L’ bomb, so I will deal with the leggings first. Many of you will cringe at the thought of a revival of Flash Dance; with ballet pumps and mini skirts accompanying such a trend. However, for next season the idea is that they will act as a substitute for winter woolies and hosiery. Yes, your little tootsies may get chilly on those nights out, but ‘pain is beauty’, as they say.
This time around, the legging look is to be worn with sexy pointed stilettos and either full skirts, pencil skirts or dresses. If done properly, it will make for a sophisticated look. Issa showed us the way with subtle fun pattern leggings that matched the rest of the ensemble, while Clements Ribeiro gave us a slightly more sophisticated take on the look by adding black leggings to bold colours and pencil skirts. However, if you are uncomfortable with your leg size or ankle area, it is probably best to steer clear of this particular trend.
Winter Florals is a welcome trend and the obvious phase for florals is spring blossoms and summer vibrancy. This trend will brighten up even the darkest winter day. Giles Deacon, Erdem, Christopher Kane, Alexander McQueen and Temperley all used floral influences in their shows. Erdem and Giles showed us that little cardigans mixed with bold floral patterned skirts in warmer shades of greens, blues, reds and yellows can work quite sweetly. This concept creates a garden party vibe, with a ‘Pimms-on-the-lawn’ chic that would not only be approved by our grandmothers, but also encourages us to seek inspiration from their wardrobe.
Geometric Prints were a fun trend on the catwalks, but think of it like Marmite for winter, its a love or hate relationship. However; unsubtle prints can be an acquired taste. I adore geometrics and think they offer a great way to break up solid colour and balance out most shapes. They must be worn on the correct area; top or bottom depending on your weak spot. This is also a trend that can be interpreted through accessorises. A bold printed scarf can make the little black dress really pop. A fun geometric inspired heel could be tried even by the most conservative of fashion followers. Mary Katrantzou, Peter Pilloto and Johnathan Saunders all brought something geometric to their shows, with skirts, sweaters and jackets all featuring heavily on the runway.
The oversized knit is probably my favorite trend for the winter as it is easy and comfortable. If you are feeling creative, then you can raid your partner’s wardrobe and borrow one of his sweaters. Simply add a belt to the waist, roll up the sleeves and voila! The main advice to offer for this trend is that the jumper must hit below the bottom, but well above the knee. Acne showed us such a look when showcasing a neon lime jumper over leather cropped pants. While Mulberry‘s show took oversized to another level. Large shaggy fur coats and gilets were whimsically inspired by Maurice Sedak’s monster themed children’s book, “Where the wild things are”.
Another trend that was evident on the runways was a new take on leather trousers. I love leather and wear this look most winters. But it is time for a new take on the skinny, wet-look, second-skin style, as seen previously. Topshop and Mulberry created a welcome alternative and edited the look by making it wide-legged and baggy. Although it is more grunge-inspired, I think this is perfect for the woman who is self-conscious about her leg. However, be careful not to swamp yourself with anything over-sized on top.
Swinging skirts also featured strongly and most women can work this ladylike look. There were a selection of shapes and sizes for this feminine trend. Temperley, Giles and Stella McCartney all had their own take on the flirty look. Swinging, kick flare, pencil, block, bold, swirl, brocade; the skirt is back and we love it here at The Sloaney. Its ‘Goodbye’ maxi and ‘Hello’ to a little bit of leg!
Finally, for the more conservative and tailored spirit, military is a key style for winter. It’s a look that can be very flattering and a nice alternative to the corporate and masculine androgyny that women use time and time again in the work environment. Khaki greens and clean lines were evident on the runways, especially of Alexander McQueen and Burberry. Try mixing it with lace up boots or heeled shoe boot brogues, as I think this look can bring out your inner dominance.