In The Streets

August 6th, 2017  |  Published in July/August 2017

Fashion being a living art form unlike others of its kind, we know that when collections are shown on the runway, they will soon be available in a store near us. In fact, more and more designers are closing the time in which garments are sold after being shown on the runway. Clothes which used to take 6 – 12 months to appear in stores are now sometimes available with the click of a button right after the last model exits the runway. This is known in our industry as the runway to retail gap and is an ongoing debate still yet to be resolved industry-wide.

Speed is the natural bi-product of living in today’s world. Audiences simply don’t want to wait for clothing to be produced. If they see it, they want it.

No matter the timeline chosen by designers, every season stores are filled with new product and fashion writers galore have the opportunity to share the trends we’ll see on the streets based on the collections shown for that particular time period. And many trend forecasters scour major cities’ streets before collections are even designed to see the directions in which fashion is moving. Eventually after textiles are produced and garments designed, the final pieces (often altered slightly to be more palatable to a retail clientele vs. runway) are shipped to stores where we see the final product once again on the streets. In the meantime, trend analysts have already moved their gaze ahead several seasons to keep ahead of what’s next.

As our summer will soon turn to fall, every retail brand will transition to Fall 2017 and customers will visit malls, boutiques and e-tailers in Cincinnati and around the country for the newest season’s looks. So what will we be wearing as the weather cools to fall? Here’s a glimpse at some of the trends you’ll be seeing in the streets of our fair city.

Two distinct silhouettes will be seen as deconstructed style and utilitarian / boxy aesthetics were both seen on the runway. From an observer’s point of view, you will probably see more of the utilitarian silhouette on the street as it’s the more wearable version of the two.

Fur for the fall and winter seasons is not revolutionary; yet there’s some debate as to which form this trend will take. Some say it will be fur that’s fun, in bright hues and patchwork designs while others say you’ll see more muted, vintage inspired fur designs. I would veer more towards the latter as it is more in line with other vintage trends we’re seeing make a resurgence. Plaid tartans from the 1970s, sheer overlays from the 1990s and the florals listed below all call for a throwback fur style instead of “fun fur”.

Florals will make the transition from spring, this time in deeper hues of purples, blues and pinks by designers like Coach 1941 and Ralph Lauren: Think the type of floral motifs you’d see in a vintage embroidery instead of a watercolor painting.

For nights out, there are options galore. You will see fringe (thank you Marchesa and Michael Kors) and glitter. A lot of glitter as designers not only incorporated sparkle into their evening looks but also in footwear. Even J Crew showed a glitter bootie. Crushed velvet for the evening is also a highlight, especially when embroidered with florals as Altuzarra and Erdem showed on their runways or infused with a golden hue like Jason Wu.

Sportswear as everyday dressing with continue its foothold as the seasons change, although these elements have evolved slightly with the times. Some designers like Victoria Beckham found inspiration from the ski slopes and incorporated Après ski-esque zippers into their designs. Chloé went more in the direction of slouchy leisure suits. Many of these designs paired the sporty look with velvet, taking the fabric out of just the nightlife.

In terms of color palette, the standouts thus far are power red, chocolate brown (welcome back 1990s), pale pink, grey (especially for suiting), and statement making gold especially in crushed velvet. Elle Magazine has called the power red the color of the season, so take note.

Now that we know what the trends will be, it’ll be enjoyable to see how real people interpret these trends and make them their own. And that’s what makes it fun, seeing the art go from the hands of designers and moving to the closets of the consumer. Taking a piece of clothing and making it your own is a true art form in itself.

Jenny Perusek is a freelance Brand Manager, specializing in fashion and the creative arts.

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