SS13’s ruffles and pleats ranged from delicate and understated in London at James Long and JW Anderson to the theatrical and in-your-face in Paris at Chanel and Balenciaga. I’ve always been quite wary of ruffles, I think I’d look more My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding than Givenchy, but the simplicity and minimalism of the pieces at JW Anderson particularly have made me think that ruffles and pleats could be worth revisiting, and could be a great way to try and at least vaguely summer-ise my wardrobe.
Masculine tailoring, a boxy silhouette and BIG OL’ SHOULDERS. A recurring trend that has evolved through 1930s Schiaparelli, drink throwing and handbag hurling in Dynasty, 80s Head Bitch In Charge power dressing and Michael Jackson wearing 2011 Balmain til it was threadbare, strong shoulders and a boxy silhouette made a lasting impression in the SS13 shows.
An emphasis on the shoulders has, through the years, become a symbol of establishing authority, projecting a hard, no-nonsense image for women through times that have been both socially and economically tough on women. Giving a strong, commanding silhouette, masculine and memorable, this trend is the absolute antithesis to Versace/Dolce and Gabbana et al’s hypersexualised sex-worker bodycon nightmare.
Patterns spread like wildfire across both the mens and womens SS13 collections, but womenswear was all about the clash. When I was a young man, clashing prints were the proviso of ~wacky~ art teachers whose questionable sartorial choices could be blamed on inhaling too many “paint fumes”. Fast forward to SS13 and florals, plaids, geometric prints, marbling and every other combination imaginable is one of the most prevalent womenswear trends. A great way to break up an outfit, accentuate textures and layers, this is also a great trend for those of us whose attitude to getting dressed in the morning is a ‘throw everything on the floor onto my body’ approach…
Even if I didn’t like metallics, I’d do this post just as an excuse to post this bad boy:
80s djs in shell suits. Ageing prostitutes in PVC. Drag queens in gold lamé. Tins of Quality Street. All important and exciting fashion reference points reflected in SS13’s mens collections. From a subtle sheen on classic suits at Hardy Amies to a full on wipe-clean visual assault in fuschias, greens and purples on trenches and shirts at Burberry, men’s metallics is a highly versatile, wearble trend, the perfect antidote to the dreary weather and a great style update for classic suits and shirts.
I love a
bad good wordplay almost as much as I love a bit of sheer panneling. Sheer used to remind me of those awful nylon babydoll things you see on market stalls up and down the country, worn by middle aged women who flash the milkman. Here’s an example of what I found when I searched ‘sheer’ in tumblr (tastefully edited to spare your blushes).
But thankfully, sheer doesn’t have to equal trashy. An incredibly wearable, versatile trend, there are lots of good sheer pieces available on the high street, more of which in another post. SS13 showed us the versatility of the sheer trend through subtly sexy panelling at Helmut Lang, sporty at Preen, romantic at Jason Wu and boyish grunge at Prabal Gurung.
For years prints had been firmly a feminine fashion feature, with particular prevalence on the catwalk over the last few seasons, with men’s prints only getting as exciting as “wacky” office ties, your grandad’s pyjamas, and the Casette Playa-esque/probable sex offender Timmy Mallet.
But for SS13, there must have been something in the air as a slew of collections led to men’s prints taking on a life of their own Paris, London, Milan and New York fashion weeks. From sharp geometric shapes at Fendi, to soft florals at Christopher Kane and even..er…whales at Thom Browne.