You may have already read about the five current commercial trends New York is rerunning for spring. If you haven’t, do – you could save yourself a lot of legwork. But what of the new I hear you cry! In a week which saw Givenchy cross the Atlantic to open its show to the public and Kanye doing what Kanye does best – ruffling feathers with an unscheduled show – there was newness in spades. Here we share our five best bets for the new season.
1. Trapeze Artist
‘Triangles are my favorite shape” sang Alt-J. “And ours!” replied New York’s designers, proving it with a host of trapeze tops and dresses. At Tory Burch that meant a beachy, high-necked camisole in bluebell. Vera Wang was more dramatic with the trend, creating a billowing crimson dress hung from the neck with a racer front. Silhouette distortion was achieved with dramatic triangle forms in the cotton tops at Rosie Assoulin. This one works best in woven fabrics and can carry a high-summer print well.
Why it works for Spring ’16: The crop top needs an update and here she is. Customers who bought higher-priced and high-waisted bottoms during Spring ’15 (things such as denim and culottes) will want a budget-proof way to bring their investments into the new season. A trapeze shape added to the top of last summer’s cami or slip dresses will breathe new life into the bestseller.
Trapeze tops:perfect update for crop tops,worn with high-waisted pants consumers bought in Spring 15.
2. These New Puritans
Monastic and pious: we’re not asking you to behave saintly all summer, just dress like you do. The cleanest of fluid lines, natural fibers and an absence of embellishment defined this new direction. In an entirely neutral palette, we saw references at Victoria Beckham, Opening Ceremony, Milly and Derek Lam. Key pieces were maxi shirt dresses, streamlined jumpsuits, high necks and fluted sleeves.
Why it works for Spring ’16: Fortuitously, this trend sits at the intersection of two others: sports luxe and the 1970s. It has the expensive feel and functionality of the former (minus the street references) and it takes shapes from the latter – think 70s era post-Beatles John Lennon. The trend’s dependance on beautiful fabrics and lack of adornment pitches it for the premium and luxury markets.
If things were getting a little well-behaved for your liking, fear not: deconstructivism is here. Fragmented, distorted and dislocated – words used to describe the architectural movement of the same name which apply to New York’s apparel interpretation too. Slashed fabrics, frayed edges, asymmetric panels and a sexed-up sense of disarray typify the looks on show at Givenchy, Derek Lam, Zak Posen, Altuzarra and other influential designers. The palette is the stiffest thing about this unbuttoned trend: think slate, white, navy and black.
Why it works for Spring ’16: Easy wins like frayed hems and unexpected seam slashes aside, this trend will triumph because it incorporates two of spring’s biggest shapes: the cold-shoulder and the midi length wrap skirt. If you take one thing from New York, be it that shoulders are the new abs. Tops, dresses, outwear, knitwear, sweaters and shirting – all were worked into cold-shoulder shapes while elsewhere designers opted for full off-shoulder looks. Wrap midi skirts will replace the mini wrap skirts/kilts so popular in Spring 2014, except this time round they’re hip slung, feature d-ring fastening and trail loose-ended ties.
Wrap midi skirts will replace the mini wrap skirts/kilts so popular in Spring 2014
4. The New Slider
Just the right balance of androgyny and polish, we present Spring ’16’s newest footwear style: the slip-on loafer. In two tone and tasselled at Edun, or studded and basket weave at Alexander Wang, these exude casual elegance and pair perfectly with Spring’s wide-legged, cropped trousers or midi skirts.
Why it works for Spring ’16: The Birkenstock and the pool slider have enjoyed a great deal of airtime, paving the way for flat, ‘ugly’ and androgynous footwear styles which consumers have fully embraced. Birkenstock-style shoes which arrived online this Spring took on average 56 days for the majority of sizes to sell out, compared to 123 days just two years ago. Retailers will need a way to entice consumers – a slip-on version of Fall 2015’s pointed loafers will do just the trick.
Among the usual bold and reworked stripes and complicated florals appeared a fresher print story. In the abstract forms of paper collage, this trend feels contemporary, crafty and child-like. Lacoste’s flag-inspired collection featured a playful print which brings to mind the shape work of Alexander Calder or Joan Miró. Tibi color-blocked their print into panelled silk, while Opening Ceremony and Jeremy Scott ramped up the fun factor.
Why it works for Spring ’16: Retailers and consumers will be on the lookout for a replacement to Spring ’15’s gingham print trend. This collage story has the same naivety, but packs in a few more cultural references and allows for a broader play on color. It bodes well for the trend that there’s very little on the market like it – meaning it will be identifiably Spring 2016 and the mass market should leap upon it.
There we have it! The new kids in town – get acquainted now and they’ll be your best friends before summer is out. We’ll be back next week when London takes its turn in the fashion week spotlight. Sign up to our Insider Briefing now and you’ll be the first to discover trends hot from the runway. EDITED customers, sign in now for even more data-drenched runway analysis.