What do you think about fall fashion trends? Take a look at The Huffington Post, Glamour, or Style.com. Refinery29 is even calling out 2014. But trends today aren’t what they used to be. Consider the New Look and the ubiquity of wasp waists, or the counter-culture uniformity of the 70s, when we wore wide-legs or went home. 2013 doesn’t work that way.
- Fashion’s silhouettes flicker in and out over seasons, impact blurred by layering.
- Right now we may be doing legs, but variety trumps uniformity.
- In parallel, the specific triumphs over the general, singular objets de desir morph into “IT” bags and “IT” shoes, seen everywhere.
- Style is more varied and democratic than ever, nothing becomes a true trend until the streets say so.
Layering + Vintage = Anything Goes
We’re wearing loose sweaters over tight legs, dresses over pants, vests over all of the above, miniskirts, maxidresses, full skirts, pencil skirts – really almost any shape can work. The idea of “vintage” now allows for everything, except, perhaps, shoulder pads.
That Said, Legs Predominate, Even In Disguise
Weren’t you amazed by the swarms of miniskirts this summer? Didn’t you often wonder if someone had forgotten their pants? Legs, legs, and more legs, provoke, unsurprisingly, their mini-rebellions. This year we rebel in harem pants, next year maybe wide legs, either way, legs are still the focus.
It’s possible, given what designers are showing, that big round shoulders will start to make a mark. Or even the midriff. Get out your garlic and let’s fend off crop tops and bared bellies. Meanwhile, Grechen, of Grechen’s Closet, makes a pretty good case for the harem look.
Love her strapped orange sandals.
Objets de Desir That Ate Cleveland. And Manhattan And Dallas And Los Angeles.
As the momentum from broad trends weaken, pinpoint focus gains strength. We obsess over singular objects, and knock them off. Behold.
The Winged Bag: While Celine may have started the winged bag frenzy, Philip Lim has taken it to the mid-level with the “Pashli,”and even to good old accessible Target, in his recent collaboration. Kate Spade carries the middle with her Beau shopper.
Don’t those side panels remind you of wings?
Legions Of Ankle Boots: Ankle booties may be the single most retailed good in American apparel right now. Whether Dickers or Acne booties kicked this off, I do not know. Kicked. Reduced to word play, are we?
Studded Anything: While I believe that Alexander Wang was the originator, with the Rocco bag, Valentino’s Patent Leather Rockstud Slingback Pumps surely held the imaginary nailgun that has studded everything we wear. (By the way, I auditioned those Rockstuds for my wedding shoes, and immediately understood their tidal wave of appeal. Had Significant Husband smiled, I might have married with a more brutal edge.)
So What Trends Have We Started? And Do They Have, Um, Legs?
OK, so I admit, it’s not that there’s no such thing as trends in fashion. It’s just that designers don’t decide, we do. Remember party pants? They’ve got quite a thing going in their patterned jean incarnation. Last year, florals. This year, let’s try some plaid. What do you say? It really doesn’t matter exactly what pattern, just that you wear it, mix it, and layer it.
Oh, and for the fashion followers among us, which I confess I am in spirit if in not action, white dresses and peplum tops have “legs” too. Bada bing.
Democracy Will Dictate What Takes
In every case, democracy, or the power of the masses, has chosen both the exact “It” objects and the slightly more general categories that stuck. Pantone may say Mint, but we say “Niener niener Cobalt,” and Cobalt it is.
State of Affairs
That the fashion industry finds itself in this state of affairs does not surprise me one whit. In one sitting we can read about what we must wear this fall – in Vogue’s September Issue – and what we MUST wear next spring – in Style.com’s online show news. It’s like those Star Trek episodes where Captain Picard comes back from the future and almost overwrites his present self. The most important factor in style now, as worn, is the eye of the wearer. If you’re really in the mood for trends, let’s start one.
I vote for flat shoes. You?
Skirt over pants via Refinery29
Harem pants via Grechen’s Closet
ALEXANDER WANG ‘Lia’ small shoulder bag
ISABEL MARANT ‘The Dicker’ boot
ACNE ‘Alma’ boot
Pashli Large Tote
kate spade new york Tote – Two Park Avenue Beau Shopper
Patent Leather Rockstud Slingback Pumps
Plaid Skinny Jean AKA 7 for All Mankind party pants, via Saks Fifth Avenue