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Future Mar 16, 2013 3 min read

AW 13/14 season review: 10 Definitive Trends

After a month of non-stop shows, hot new looks and an endless stream of media superlatives, fashion month has ended. The chaos and energy of the twice yearly shows drive the indust...

  • End of season AW 1314 3

After a month of non-stop shows, hot new looks and an endless stream of media superlatives, fashion month has ended. The chaos and energy of the twice yearly shows drive the industry’s creativity and renew consumer interest, but what really sticks from all the ‘favourite looks’ and ‘editor’s picks’? We analysed consumer reaction across every show to find the 10 trends which sent ripples through the online world – an excellent precursor for commercial hits in six months time. Watch this space!

1. Top Designer
Frida Giannini has done it again; three seasons in a row has seen the brand under her rule triumph as fashion week’s most talked-about. Whilst Gucci had done fresh and breezy for SS13, with a jewel-toned palette and simple 70s shapes, Giannini returned to the Gucci phrasebook this season. Sexed-up creatures of the night, in leathers and feathers – updated with hints at the season’s retro trend and a lighter touch on silhouette – but this was unmistakably Gucci. It bears testament to the strength of the branding, and the huge consumer base to which is appeals globally, that Gucci have yet again won best in show.

2. Theme: In Retrospect
Designers have grasped that vintage seduces consumers on a global basis. This season they’ve gone full force, with the 40s, 60s and 70s bearing the brunt of attentions. The key to this season’s update is blurring references – in a 40s silhouette with a 70s print, a modish 60s suit with fur stole and doctor’s bag. Marc by Marc Jacobs’ take will do well with a younger audience, whilst Rochas’ sophisticated palette will appeal to an older market.

3. Theme: Go Large
Volume was turned to maximum this season, designers experimenting with playful proportions and luxury scale with a masculine result. Outerwear befitting of giants were piled over layers, palettes varying from mannish greys to candy pinks at Carven, and violets at Stella McCartney. Dropped shoulders and curved seams, oversized fastenings are all vital to this look, which will best suit the luxury market as a complete story or mass market in outerwear.

4. Key Shape: Mini
Pins parading became a common sight on the AW 13/14 catwalks, and mini skirts ranked as the most talked about garment online during the month. Boxy cuts and bold colours are the new season twists, while experimenting with unusual texture (fur pelmet anyone?) will add an instant USP to an otherwise simple garment. Cross-over styles with zips and colour blocked panels gave a sportier vibe to this girlish garment.

5. Top Fabrics
The fabrics attracting the highest level of consumer interest during the shows oozed luxury and highlighted a tactile movement; they were fur, leather and velvet. Of those, sentiment towards fur was highest, and designers gave consumers plenty to talk about with crazily coloured and oversized coats, unexpected trims and covetable accessories. Patent and coloured leathers were also worked into outerwear, eveningwear and casual wear, in varied weightings. Velvet’s evening appeal was highlighted by J. Mendel in sumptuous shades.

6. Theme: Neo-Minimalism
Minimalism has branched from sports-luxe of the past season and morphed into a strong trend of its own. Stark shapes, plastic, patent leather and neoprene fabrications, this look is clinical and pristine in palette. Key aspects are skin-tight turtle neck sweaters, straight midi skirts with origami pleats and fuss-free clutch bags.

7. Top Print
Plaid won the print contest hands down – springing up so often that it’d already cemented itself in consumer conscience by the end of New York fashion week. It’s a genderless print with connotations of workwear; when worked into feminine shapes it takes on an edgy appearance. Designers experimented with colour, scale and spacing carving any number of directions for the high street to play with.

8. Theme: Punk’d
And if you needed further guidance with the plaid trend, look no further than the punk story! Fashion had attitude this season, with zips, tartans and leathers tempting those who dare. Contrasting lace at Clement Ribeiro softened the look, while Versace didn’t do things by halves; they went blatant, patent and proud.

9. Key Shape: Cape
Another garment that set consumer interest alight was the cape, which fluttered down catwalks across the month. It’s a clever trend in that it lures consumers to purchase, at an outerwear price point, even when their coat may not need updating. Shapes covered the full remit, from floor-sweeping drama to moddish shoulder covers. Chloe’s navy wool, school-ish cut took the prize for balancing great design with commercial appeal.

10. The Palette
The season was poster-bold in its colour trends, be it in the graphic red, black and white story or the vast swathes of navy and mid blues. Flashes of vivid brights came from oranges and yellows, whilst pinks made an overdue return.