By Ally Champagne
This year, the cowpoke goes urban. Let’s begin with fringe: it is everywhere. On purses, clothing, shoes, boots, and jewelry. We may as well bring back the fringed jackets; Hello Tom Jackson (the metis actor you may know from, well, everything). Denim shirts are also making a comeback. They were a chic item in the ‘80s, and a renewed appreciation is returning for denim that is augmented with studs or jewels.
Gingham used to grace the tables and windows back in the fifties. These window and table coverings have now morphed into the cutest tops, skirts, and pants. Who knew this pattern could allow you to really think outside the fashion box in order to define your very own unconventional trend. Think gingham, stripes and polka dots all in one ensemble.
According to the fashion mags, pastels are also being resurrected in a variety of hues and styles, from dresses to overcoats, to purses and footwear. I have always enjoyed a pastel colour’s ability to accentuate the softness in women, and the effect remains today.
Sheers and florals have married! And are now being seen in all levels of fashion. I was recently admiring a dress featured in the New York fashion review because of its simplicity, which used a sheer floral material over a periwinkle blue satin, strapless slip-dress. It occurred to me this dress reminded me of my grandmother’s duster (day robe) she wore to do her morning cleaning chores.
Be prepared to see bold prints and shiny fabrics. It’s almost like experiencing a potpourri in the last 50 years of fashion. This summer, the little black evening dress is now the little white evening dress – and the couture mirrors Lady Gaga’s eclectic style.
Hemlines are everywhere – from minis to midis and everything in between. Dresses with the short front hem, and a much longer back hem, are still holding strong with the younger set. Skirts are full, narrow, A-lined, pleated, and flared, with the same variety of hemlines as the dresses.
Pants go from narrow to palazzos. They also come in all lengths, great patterns, colours, and textures – from silky materials to heavier ones. They are versatile, able to take you from work to an evening event with merely a top and accessory refresher.
Bra tops are another hot item. Paired with a full skirt and a beautiful sheer jacket, an elegant look is created, all the while maintaining a certain air of mystery despite the exposure of skin.
Botany never grows old. Around the world, floral patterns are emerging as dresses, skirts, pants and jackets. Imagine large mums, poppies or peonies, with colours exploding everywhere, creating a vibrant backdrop.
Prints reminiscent of fine art have also worked their way back to us. Surrealism, expressionism, modernism – just one outfit can turn you into someone’s muse.
Accessories are big and bold. Necklaces are similar to those Cleopatra wore, and chokers are back in. Earrings are ornate and dangly. Bracelets are still popular, especially stacking all different types together. Purses come in all sizes and colors as well, depending on your personal taste. The colours orange, purple and fuchsia are in demand.
The little evening bag is no longer the little bag you pull out to go to a fancy event. It’s been reincarnated into so many little fashion statements with so many complementary shapes to fit every hand. Buying one or a few will add that little je-ne-sais-quoi to your look.
Although we are talking about summer and some of the weather has not been compliant, do not let this dampen your spirits. Get your summer closet together and go shopping for your favourite new summer items. You’ll be all ready once the weather catches up to your preparation.