When it comes to style, March and April aren’t easy. It’s that odd time of the year when the weather can’t decide if it’s still winter or starting to move into spring… and this year it has been decidedly, ridiculously on the winter side!
Personally I’m over winter, and am dying to get my spring wardrobe out. So in the spirit of hoping April weather actually plays ball this year, I’m going to discuss key trends and how best to interpret them for grown-up, sophisticated style.
Let me start by saying I don’t believe in being a slave to trends. True style is about expressing who you are, not adhering to a set of rules set by the fashion elite that makes everyone look like clones.
That said, to keep your look fresh and modern, a subtle reference to the odd trend here or there is a good idea. The key is to pick the ones that work for you, and not to go overkill by wearing them all in one go.
Love them or hate them, the 80s are back. Any trend that focuses on an era you lived through is a tough one. Because while its brand new for millennials, there’s a risk that anyone older can just look like they’re permanently stuck in the past.
So rather than going full-on 80s, just incorporate one particular defining feature of that era into your outfit. For example a nipped-in waist, a touch of neon, a denim jacket, or a top with broad shoulders.
The item of clothing doesn’t have to have an overall 80s vibe – just one of these features incorporated into the design. That way you’re keeping your outfit contemporary, without looking like you’re going to a costume party.
They might be functional and comfortable but equally they can look orthopaedic. The trick to this trend is to make them look ironic.
So to avoid it just looking like you have bad taste in footwear, make sure the rest of your look is slick, feminine and sophisticated – so the shoes look like a deliberate style move rather than a bad mistake.
The fashion world has been trying to push these for a few seasons now, and, unsurprisingly, there has been quite a resistance. But they’ve finally taken hold, and let’s be honest, at least they’re pretty handy even if they do remind you of a cheesy tourist!
The first step is to embrace fashion’s more sophisticated name for them: ‘belt bags’. Then look for designs that have interesting, fun textures, or clean shapes. Essentially, opt for a bag with a shape that would look equally good if it was just a normal shoulder one.
Also, wear it across your body for a more ‘now’ take, and pair it with pieces that don’t have a typical touristy vibe, such as tailoring, an evening dress, or even a cool T-shirt with jeans and heels.
Fashion is moving away from relaxed, minimalistic silhouettes and is back to celebrating the feminine form.
For those who are more body conscious, the thought of a pencil skirt can be daunting. Thankfully, the new styles aren’t as clingy, they go past the knee and have a straighter cut. Also, they aren’t all high wasted so can still work if you have a bit of a tum.
Look for skirts that have an interesting texture or print for a funky take on the trend, rather than looking like you’ve just stepped out of Mad Men.
Pastels generally are trending this season, but the big colour is lavender.
While it’s a beautiful hue, it can make you look like the Queen. If you’d love to incorporate the colour into your wardrobe, but aren’t sure how, the best place to start is through accessories. Just a hint of lavender on a bag, shoes or jewellery is a nice safe reference.
But if you’re feeling brave and want to wear it all over, pick a piece that has a clean, modern cut – perhaps even one with an androgynous vibe. That way you’ll look cool rather than twee. Or if you’re feeling really badass, dye your hair lavender instead!
Rounding out the season’s top trends are polka dots. The key is to have fun with them because they work on pretty much anything.
Monochrome ones are particularly in vogue, and it’s even cool to wear them head to toe!