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Why Street Style Is Important Now

Street style fresh from Spring 2016 fashion weeks. We selected the 5 trends with biggest commercial promise: denim, military, biker jackets & colored fur.
Why Street Style Is Important Now | EDITED

During fashion weeks when so much focus is on what’s in store for next year, the immediacy of street style inspires consumers to shop now. The oft-shared looks are weather appropriate and peer-backed. Social media liberates consumers from editors’ verdicts and let’s them indulge their highest-form-of-flattery impulse: imitation.  These trends convincing because they’re seen on people with aspirational lifestyles and not confined to the fake constructs of the runway. Yeah, we know there’s nothing in that tiny clutch bag on the runway.

Without further ado, here are our top 5 street trends from the Spring 2016 shows!

1. Denim Ain’t Broke

All images credited to their original source.
All images credited to their original source.

You won’t get a fashion editor attending a fashion show in her Lululemons. Yet. Denim is alive and kicking on the stylish streets, in all forms. Frayed cut-off jeans, rips and shreds, jumpsuits, culottes, wrap skirts, shirting and jackets: denim was the headline story. It’s all blue and indigo and mostly it’s loose fit: the straight leg and mom jean shape ruled the roost. Retailers are backing it: 18% of frayed denim currently online arrived in the last month and of all denim currently online, 48% is retailing in the premium market. Push to the front of visual merchandising now and keep stocking into those wider styles and cropped jean lengths into next year.

2. Biker Jackets

All images credited to their original source.
All images credited to their original source.

There’s nearly 11,000 women’s biker jackets currently online, with Farfetch and Yoox the biggest stockists, but that doesn’t mean they’re at saturation point. Biker jackets have become the denim jacket of yesteryear – there’s one out there for everybody. In the past 12 months, new arrivals peaked in August. Traditionally they lift in December, so we’re expecting this December to beat last year’s. Slim fitted, 80s over-sized, sherpa lined (and not just the traditional cream wool) and colored leather versions were spotted on the streets of the fashion capitals. The latter two will be a good mass market update for Fall 2016.

Charting the level of new arrivals of biker jackets.

3. Military Precision

All images credited to their original source.
All images credited to their original source.

Mirroring the utility looks seen on the runways for Spring ’16 were the show goers – evidence of runway trends moving simultaneously with retail trends. Looks on the street centred around the khaki palette and outerwear. The military shirt, in soft cotton or silk was a hit when paired with the frayed denim also trending. This trend focuses on fastenings – be they polished gold buttons, shoulder epaulettes, zippers meaning business or waists cinched tightly with serious-looking belts. An askew beret might be a touch too far for any pacifist, but will work well in visual merchandising!

4. Racy Red Outerwear

All images credited to their original source.

An unexpected trend was the number of pieces of scarlet outerwear spotted on the street. From capes to faux furs, from trenches to sequinned macs – all done in popping shades of lipstick red. There’s over 8,200 pieces of women’s red outerwear online currently, with the fastest selling amongst them a patched wool parka at ASOS and a tweed wrap coat at H&M. Now is the time to promote statement outerwear, so push them to the fore of social and email campaigns, then think about discounting in late November.

5. Colored Faux Fur

All images credited to their original source.
All images credited to their original source.

Stoles slung over jackets, cocooning clouds of fluff and bright jolts of unexpected trim. Colored fur’s runway appearance last season is already having impact in early Fall. Understandably, a 55% majority of non-typically colored fur currently retailing is in the outerwear category. But it’s the 22% accessories, 14% footwear and 5.5% in the tops category that’s especially interesting and potential to fast trend movement this Fall. This trend opens the gateway to more play with texture for Fall 2016. Retailers should keep hunting new colors and working color-mixes into garments and accessories.

The shades of colored fur currently in stock globally.
The shades of colored fur currently in stock globally.

Styling Pieces

Here’s the best way to style the pieces you already have in your assortment to reference the street:

1. Statement jumper + skirt
Whether it’s a mini skirt, a wrap skirt or a midi, stylish women at fashion capitals were pairing their in-season skirts with thick knits and statement sweaters. Add in heels, sneakers and a clutch (see below). It’s a great transitional look which can be taken into deeper winter with 70s knee-high boots and an oversized coat.

2. White shirts, anyway
The white shirt was already having a fashion moment, but safe to say it’s continuing. They were paired with everything – worn boxy and buttoned-up with jeans, tucked into plissé skirts, layered beneath dungarees…even worn backwards. Don’t limit this item to one category. Instead, think of its layering properties – they are many.

3. Clutch bags
Whether it’s meant to be a clutch, or whether you can just grab a soft crossbody and run with it – this is the bag shape of the moment. Kitsch prints and motifs, faux fur or soft, unstructured leather all got a run for their money.

4. Sneakers
Still absolutely everywhere. From lo-fi pairings with jeans, to juxtaposition against luxe dresses, the comfiest of footwear still gets top kudos.

5. Loose Cuffs
Riffing on the androgynous theme, men’s shirts with French cuffs were worn trailing for a little dose of Parisian insouciance. Jumper sleeves too were worn over-long in a play with proportion.

We’re not street style photographers – data analysis keeps us busy. That’s why we use imagery from the pros. Find theirs here:
Harpers Bazaar / Vogue / Elle / WWD