Tailoring takes a sculptural turn for next fall. Arms are rounded, torsos are nipped, shoulders are draped and hips are molded. Fabrics with body are essential, often reinforced with padding, facing, plastic coatings or clever cuts. Simple menswear tweeds or plaids give ballast to these somewhat avant-garde shapes, making them more approachable.
On the very first day of NYFW for Spring 18, Kim Kardashian attended the Tom Ford show wearing a slithery black latex dress by indie Queens-born designer LaQuan Smith, known for his body-hugging fits and hip-high slits. The shiny black was a harbinger of looks on runways in all four major cities. Several collections showed glossy coated fabrics, patent leathers or vinyl in inky blacks or the occasional lacquered lipstick red. There were prim ruffled skirts, mid-century frocks, tailored pants and precise blazers, making these high-gloss materials more about fashion than fetish.
Rich upholstery fabrics like damask, brocade and cut velvet add luxe texture and color to tailored silhouettes. Lustrous florals, swirls and geos have an antique feel that complements the demure, covered-up looks of the season. Mixed material piecing, sculptural cuts and layered patterns make these classical fabrics feel new.
Pantsuits, after a long absence, are looking right again — with good reason. While history can provide plenty of chicly-suited role models, the newest tailleurs are a bit oversized, providing some relaxed slouchiness along with the swagger.