Edwina Ings-Chambers takes a look at what’s coming down the catwalk for Spring / Summer….
It’s a crunchy old world out there right now. This is true even in Fashion Land, where the concept of the eternally new has become a modern day mantra, and belt-tightening is usually about trends, not trading forecasts. Some credit crunch economic advice can be found in an essay written on crunchiness in 1988 by then-editor of The Economist, Nico Colchester: “Crunchiness brings wealth. Wealth leads to sogginess. Sogginess brings poverty. Poverty creates crunchiness. From this immutable cycle, we know that to hang on to wealth, you must keep things crunchy.” He believed in a sharp-edged world of black and white, of ups and downs, of highs and lows — it created opportunities. Colchester defined a crunchy system as one “in which small changes have big effects.”
It’s advice that many a CEO of a luxury fashion (or any other) house might want to keep in mind – and maybe even cut and paste onto a screensaver because right now, fashion needs to be crunchy. It needs that appeal and that strength. It needs to be unequivocal about what it’s offering; houses need to be clear about their message. They need, in short, to offer a bit of crunchiness to our wardrobes. So, what does that mean we should expect fashion to serve up for next spring and summer in the retail (and e-tail) world? As we take a gander at what has already been served up during New York, London and Milan Fashion Weeks and ponder what lies ahead in Paris, it’s likely we’ll see many of the following trends heading our way:
We became used to bright shades this season, courtesy of fashion’s current obsession with Op Art. Expect the trend to continue (New York has seen shades such as lime, saffron and magenta), as consumers will look for things to not just cheer up themselves and their costume palette, but also add some bite to their existing clothes.
It’s been around as a trend for a couple of seasons but expect the surface area of clothes to become – literally – crunchier. From beading to embroidery, simple macramé flowers and zips aplenty, you’ll likely hear this trend coming before you see it.
This time, it’s ab crunches translating into a healthy, sporty, lean and mean approach to the economic mood. This will be seen in items such as jumpsuits, shorts, racer backs and sporty dresses.
The fashion fail-safes, the wardrobe staples, the Audrey Hepburn or Coco Chanel dressing, these are items designers will expect us to come back to. They’re the clothes that are always crunchy profit-wise (a fashionable update that can still be considered an investment piece). So expect modern takes on the most classic of fashion pieces from New Look toppers to shift dresses to neat tweed jackets.