A free-flowing bohemian spirit wafted through last night’s socially-distanced Oscars. While there was plenty of long-missed Hollywood glamour, the newest looks had a relatable hippie-goddess quality. Alluring elements included bare midriffs, bra tops, fluid lounge sets, floral boho gowns and plunging V-necks, accented by long loose hair or summer-festival braids. Layered necklaces, shoulder-dusting earrings, granny glasses and bright white sneakers kept the mood celebratory yet laid-back, underscoring the current movement toward ease and comfort.
Some of the best looks being shown for next Cruise channel a haute bourgeoisie look, replete with ladylike separates and status-scarf motifs. Gold jewelry is part of the look, as are gold chain belts, specator pumps and tailored shoulder or top-handle handbags. Items include bow blouses, printed bermudas, softly pleated or straight skirts and neat bootcut pants. The new penchant for logo prints shows itself as borders, facing for a lapel, or an ornamental motif for hoop earrings.
Our FW 19 Eyewear Accessories Album featured a new shape we call “The W Lift”. While Gucci showed an exaggerated version, there are plenty of more wearable iterations showing up on other runways and on city streets. Frameless styles and shields give the silhouette a sleek lightweight feel, while a softened “w” in tortoise comes across as a modern cat-eye. Our favorite are the graphic triangles in black acetate, capturing a Matrix mood that reads happy rather than wicked.
Intarsia sweaters have long moved past sentimental holiday signifiers and pretend folklorists. The newest designs are big and bold, often showing off a craftiness that includes trailing threads or “reverse side” effects. Some sweaters mix intarsia with knitted appliqués or yarn embroideries, adding dimension to placed motifs.
The penchant for fringe and the lust for glitter come together in tinsel-like trim. Sparkling strips enliven fringe skirts or are used as an allover look to create intense texture. The festive strands — whether they are sequin-covered, metallic yarns or cut from Day-Glo plastic — work for everything from ironic Coco-inspired tweeds to smooth techno pieces. Most beguiling, perhaps, is the mysterious allure created when long tinsel peeks out from beneath a menswear suit.
It was fitting that the Queen, with her famous love of scarves, was in the front row at Richard Quinn’s show. Quinn, the first recipient of Her Majesty’s British Design Award, seemed to use scarves as a starting point for his mix of florals and baroque curlicues; most of these madcap ensembles were complete with a silk square tied under the chin, babushka-style. Several other designers used scarves as accessories or as design elements — like a flowing panel on a tailored shirt or border-printed pajama sets.
Cardigans grow to giant proportions for Pre-fall 18. There are wide stripes going horizontally or vertically, as well as chunky yarns or mohair surfaces. Marabou trims or bejeweled shoulders make the item right for Holiday. Most of these roomy knits have extra-long sleeves, but sleeveless versions are great for layering. Whether in chalky pastels or classic camel, x-large cardis bring a grunge-y charm to any ensemble.
Home furnishing fabrics abound this season, adding an unexpectedly lush note to the usually featherweight materials used for spring. There are needlepoints, tapestries and matelassés, brocades worthy of Marie Antoinette’s sitting room at Versailles and kitschy bedspread chenilles that would be at home in a 50s trailer park. Quilted or trapunto effects and bound or fringed edges underline the upholstery feel.
For next spring the elements of grunge — the freeform layers, the dresses over pants, the plaids, the little-girl frocks and ripped lingerie, the Birks worn with socks — all take a decidedly ladylike turn. Grittiness is transformed into prettiness with lovely color, delicate sheers and upholstery florals. but the rebel spirit lives on in oversized proportions and a palpable sense of anarchy.
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.