I am so excited about the fashion shows in Berlin on Thursday, January 17, 2013. Why? Because the sneak peek of fall fashion is refreshing and modern with a twist on one of my favorite trends the retro remix.
For those like me -- fashionistas who long for a break from striped tops and printed skinny pants, two trends which have been so popular in the states -- we can breathe easy, because out on the horizon things look pretty good for a change in what's popular.
I feel popular culture is the personification of our unique qualities and the values expressed in fashion. Fashion is defined as the clothes we wear and style is how we wear our clothes, which is the vantage point I want to celebrate. Here's why.
For much of the past three or four seasons, we've survived in the U.S. on a monotonous diet of stripes, stripes and more stripes. Vintage looks and retro styles have been mainstream in addition to a brick-a-brac of pattern mixtures and overly stimulating eye-popping color.
What stays the same and what gets reshuffled are the key design elements that give way to an uplifting attitude of vivacious charm for fall.
Blending decades through the reshaping of a silhouette, redefining necklines, simply stated fashion pieces, standout jewelry, handbags, hats and boots are a few of the creative channels that German designers like Laurel, Rena Lange and Schumacher chose to make their signature style shine.
Let's get started.
1. Retro remix redefined: Drop waist '20s-style dresses mixed with '20s Mondrian-esque painterly patterns (made popular by a dress designed by Yves St. Laurent in 1965) paired with a '70s neckline is not really groundbreaking. However, Rena Lange took a close look at these vintage elements and brought them back in an exciting, youthful and sexy new way. What's revealing is almost nothing, but almost nothing of what's not revealed says everything. It's brilliant and I love it.
2. Silver fabrics and subdued metallic threads woven subtly into geometric patterns: Laurel added silver to dresses, pants and tops, producing an upscale-feel to functional ready-to-wear wardrobe pieces. Funnel neck overcoats, knee-high boots and capped-sleeve shift dresses are the very silhouettes of simplicity. Functional and flattering are two words that get me enthusiastic about how the past is being translated into our modern times.
3. Mod '60s: The mod trend has been building for a while, from the April 2011 issue of Vogue magazine to the fall 2012 collection by Canadian brothers Dan and Dean Caten of Dsquared2 who design in Italy, Louis Vuitton's spring collection 2013 and now the fall 2013/winter 2014 collection of Schumacher. Schumacher is by far my absolute favorite with the contemporary way the designs of the '60s have been reintroduced. Feminine and functional components demonstrate that understated girly finishes can in fact blend well with the return of boyish pop-culture fashion.
4. Knee-high go-go boots (with a wider shaft around the calf), silver ankle boots, white pump shoes and the remake of '80s jewel-tone Chanel handbags with a chain-link strap are a few bare-bones fashion statements that don't so much as reminisce about days gone by, but set the pace for a fantastic future in fashion.
5. Mod short-brimmed hats and statement jewelry, like broaches, provide a clear focal point that accentuates the beauty, and overall balance, of a fashion centerpiece.