Milan & Paris Spring 2018 Trends

As good as New York and London are, nothing compares to the powerhouse duo that is Milan and Paris during fashion month. For decades now, the final stops during the whirlwind that is fashion month seemed to have always been the cherry on top. The trends came through at an astounding rate this season, with countless brands taking a stab at the contemporary trend game. There were sequins galore, pops of colour, tones of duality, and a hint of modern cool that rarely falls within the walls of the European cities. The 4 trends picked for this article are sure to hit mainstream stores immediately for the holiday season and next year’s warm weather, so watch out for them and start planning your dream wardrobe right away!

Glitter In The Air

Sequins seem to have made a comeback during Paris and Milan fashion weeks in a very big way this season! The shiny little buggers were everywhere on the runway in the last two weeks, ranging from demure to daring in a slew of different colours. Most prominent of all were silver and soft champagne sequins. However, colourful jewel tone sequins seemed to pop up in a few shows as well, breaking the sea of singular shine here and there. Yet sequins weren’t the only eye-catching sparklers seen in Paris and Milan. Chainmail and high-shine beading also took the runway by storm, giving fashionistas a different take on glitz and glamour.

Two Tone/enoT owT

Duality seemed to be a big trend in Paris and Milan this season. Designers sent multiple looks that played with stark contrasts in colours down the runway. Sometimes black was offset with florals or jewel tones, while other times a simple pairing of black and white did just the trick to create a visual contrast on the models’ bodies. This may have very well been an evolution of the colour-blocking trend that swept the fashion industry a few years back. However, this time around, it seemed as if designers really wanted to showcase a harsh vertical split with their designs, leaving one half of the body plain and the other lively and colourful.

Icing Pastels

What’s a spring collection without pastels right? The runway of Paris and Milan seemed to be caked in ice cream coloured hues this season. But these weren’t your aunt’s pastels from the ’80s. No, this time around the pastels took on a far more mature and refined look, leaving behind the traditional notion that pastels are juvenile or overly frilly. Sharply tailored suits and streamlined silhouettes complemented this season’s more grown-up aesthetics by pairing powdery pinks and yellows with modern office daywear and adult eveningwear.

Plastique Fantastique

Very rarely does such a kitschy material take hold of the big European fashion capitals the way PVC did this season. For two cities extremely concerned with tradition and glamour, it was a surprise to see so much plastic on the runway. Countless designers seemed to have evolved the sheer trend of summer into outright translucency. Gone are the days of soft laces and meshes creating alluring see-through silhouettes and here are the days of complete and honest transparency! The trend was seen in every way conceivable: Dresses, trench coats, boots, stiletto pumps, and hats all had their shining moment of PVC wrapped goodness in Europe. This is a trend you’ll be sure to see on the global catwalk in the months to come.

*All photos courtesy of Vogue Paris Runway*

Dear… (A Comprehensive Look At The Most Questionable Moments in Fashion)

As a lover of fashion, I’m well aware the often times, many designers veer into the cringe-worthy territory of problematic life choices. Recently, the Novella team sat down for a brainstorming session on some new weekly pieces we could all bring to the boardroom table. Among the friendly banter and ideas being thrown around, we came up with an interesting concept. Why not call out those within the fashion industry that need a little slap on the wrist. In the end, we came up with the concept of Dear… Where I have the wonderful privilege of being able to discuss (and tear apart) some of fashion’s most epic nose dives for all of our reader’s gossip needs. So without further adieu, here’s fashion’s Hot Goss.

Dear Marc Jacobs…

The question we’re all asking after New York fashion week isn’t whether or not you’re one of the most talented and influential designers in the world, instead, we’re all asking why you seem to focus all of your design talents on making collections that are essentially culturally appropriative marching parades. Don’t get me wrong, you’ve made some jaw-dropping collections in the past. Louis Vuitton Spring 2012, Spring 2003, and Louis Vuitton fall 2011 all come to mind. So I know he has the potential of creating collections that are beyond beautiful, so why is that Mr Jacobs has been insistent on creating collections that take vital aspects of minorities cultures, specifically black traditions and culture. There really is something inappropriate about placing women who aren’t women of colour in dreadlock wigs or 70’s and 80’s Harlem inspired clothing. This subtle borrowing of black cultural without having black designers assist in the design process is just careless in the fact that a designer, no matter how experienced the designer may be, will never know the personal experience of the culture they’re borrowing from unless they were born into that culture or grew up in that culture.

However, Mr Jacobs seems to look past the complaints of those around him and continues to push the boundary on what is acceptable as inspiration and what is full blown appropriation. Recently, for his last show in New York, Jacobs focused all of his design talents on creating a collection fit an elegant woman of colour. Sadly, the collection had only a handful of black women walk the show. Which wouldn’t seem out of the norm in the fashion industry, but it’s extremely unsettling to see so little black women walk a show where the models are dressed in African inspired prints and head wraps that resemble those worn by African and African-American women. Now to some, it may not seem like such a big deal, however, when a show includes models like Kendal Jenner, Gigi Hadid, and Taylor Hill wearing traditionally styled Gele and Ankara headdresses worn by women from countries like Ghana and Nigeria, it becomes extremely problematic because those specific headdresses are seen as foreign and are often gawked at by westerners. But when white models sport them it then becomes fashionable and trendy. The same can be said for his collections that featured heavy hip-hop inspirations and dreadlocks. On one hand, “urban” clothing and dreadlocks are worn by black men and women every day and it’s seen as ghetto and lower class, but when people outside of a traditional black environment decide to grow their hair into dreadlocks or wear clothing heavily inspired by black culture. It then becomes extremely forward thinking and ambitious.

What the moral of this entire gong show is, is that Marc Jacobs should look into the social consequences caused by the appropriation of culture, especially that of black culture in the United States. And then look into the global repercussions of appropriating the cultures of minorities around the world are before creating collections that are culturally and socially insensitive.Remember Mr Jacobs,

Remember Mr Jacobs, black women were laughed at and made the butt of the joke for taking pride and wearing their Gele’s and headwraps in public for decades now. Making them feel as if they shouldn’t be wearing their traditional cultural dress outside of their own country and making them feel shame and embarrassment for doing so. So why make it harder for black women (and all POC who takes pride in dressing in their homeland’s traditional garb) by making them feel as if the one thing they have to take pride on, isn’t even their own anymore. Because someone else can buy and be praised for it, while they get shunned and mocked for it.

Sincerely,

Chris Zaghi

 

Tried and Tested: Paige Denim

Denim jeans are by far the most widely used and appreciated articles of clothing that people have in their closests. It doesn’t matter if you’re a regular Joe or a self proclaimed foshionista, chances are you own a pair of jeans, and among them the perfect pair of jeans. Now finding the perfect pair of jeans can sometimes be tricky – everything from fit to dye has to be absolutely perfect for denim lovers to fall in love with the denim they’re about to purchase. Which is bound to cause some frustration for those who can never seem to find the perfect pair. Luckily, Paige has a wonderfully unique and perfectly wearable collection of denim that’ll have even the most discerning of denim connoisseurs falling in love over and over again. Here are just a few example of how versatile Paige’s collection of amazing jeans are!

Drew Brown, Editor-in-Chief

The idea of spending a lot of money on a pair jeans never appealed to me, so I had very little expectations when given the chance to try and test a pair of Paige denim. I selected the men’s Croft-Langdon super skinny jeans and had a change of heart as soon as I put them on. The super soft and comfortable fit gave me everything that I ever wanted in a pair of jeans. Being somewhat vertically challenged, skinny jeans have always been my go-to when wanting to appear taller. But after wearing them a few times, they often don’t fit the same. I packed the Paige for my trip to New York for fashion week and wore them a couple times and each time the jeans fit perfectly; its as if they made were made for me.

What I love the most is the ability to dress them up or down. I can pair them with a studded moto-jacket for a night on the town or I can wear them with a white button-down and a blazer for work. Either way, these jeans are now my new favourite.

Meg Summers, Contributor

I have to admit, the straight leg pant has been a little intimidating for me for a while since I’m used to living in/styling my clothes with either super tight skinny jeans or over-the-top baggy men jeans. There hasn’t been an in-between. Until now! I went with the Julia Straight because I loved the slits at the bottom and wanted something unique to shake up my wardrobe. These jeans feel like the softest denim I’ve ever worn but still give me the satisfaction that I look stylish and put-together. The jeans’ claim to fame is that they do not lose their shape (we all know the rush to throw your jeans in the dryer last minute so that they snap back to their original fit). After wearing these out to run errands and, a few days later, to go dancing, I can say that the jeans have kept their promise to stay the way I found them! An absolute favorite that I will continue to try new looks with, no other pair could’ve cured my fear of the straight leg pants like these.

Chris Zaghi, Fashion Editor

Jeans, above all else, should be comfortable. If you’re squeezing into a pair that makes you feel like your lower half might just necrotize, or you might be wearing one that makes you look like you have a wet diaper hanging out from your backside. Luckily, Paige denim is the complete opposite of that. The fit of the jeans I chose, the Lennox, is arguably one of the most comfortable pair of denims I’ve ever worn. From what I can deduce, the extremely comfortable fit must come from the soft material, which has an amazing amount of stretch, making it feel as if you’re wearing a pair of soft sweats rather than a pair of heavy and thick jeans. Another great aspect of Paige jeans is their dye and wash. A simple pair of black jeans are all well and good, but it’s always fun to have a super interesting pair of ‘off-black’ jeans that add a little bit of oomph to your everyday look.

Michelle Cheung, Social Media Coordinator 

I selected the Hoxton Ankle Black Fog Coating from Paige Jeans. At first, I was hesitant to get a pair of wax jeans, thinking the coating would feel tacky and wouldn’t last over time. I chose the pair because it was unlike other items in my wardrobe. When I tried them on, they were very comfortable and yet form fitting. Although it is just a wax coating, the jeans look like leather without feeling tacky or uncomfortable like pleather. I’ve worn them a couple of times and even washed them, yet these jeans fit and feel the same. I’ve been wearing them non-stop, and I can say with confidence that these Paige Jeans definitely replaced my usual black skinny jeans. They are very versatile and I can wear them from day to night, pairing them with a basic white tee or a blazer for an effortless look. I especially love wearing them with my black-heeled boots. These jeans are my newest and most versatile fashion favourite. Try them and you’ll be wearing them all year round!

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The Best of Milan Fashion Week Spring 2018

Milan seemed up in its spirits this season. Of all the major fashion cities around the world, Milan has has a harder time with reinventing itself and finding its signature aesthetics. While the city’s designers are still looking for their voices, it seems that the soul-searching has led to a signature Milan-look. The Spring collections were filled with pretty things. Frilly white frocks were cut and sewn into delicate silhouettes, while pops of color and pattern introduced a light dusting of excitement throughout the week. In the end, it’s good to see that Milan is moving in this direction. Here’s hoping Milano sticks to the pristine angelic ensembles that graced the runway this season. Pretty suits the city.

Versace

Versace is an Italian powerhouse and has been for more than two decades. Celebrities and the elite have tripped over their own two feet to wear the iconic Medusa head on their bodies. But it seems that the world craves Versace now more than ever. Which seems like the perfect timing since this year commemorates Gianni Versace, who died in 1997. Donatella created a collection that took the spotlight away from the horrific murder and once again focused on her brother’s designs. The collection celebrated Gianni’s affinity for sexy mini dresses, cropped bolero jackets, gold chains, and seashell motifs. Versace’s designs were never intended to feel serious and uptight; they always felt fun and celebratory, like joy in printed fabric form, which is exactly the kind of carefree joy the world needs right now.

Missoni

Missoni is one of those brands that have become synonymous with Italian fashion. Since its humble beginnings back in 1953, brand has never ceased to surprise with its signature zigzag knits. Now some may think that keeping alive house codes created back in the ’50s is a recipe for disaster, but that isn’t always the case. With so many designers abandoning the things that made their brand famous back in the day, it’s refreshing to see brands like Missoni reinvent itself without throwing away its foundations. This season, Angela Missoni presented a collection with a bohemian flare. But the collection didn’t rely soley on boho-chic to get by — many contemporary trends came into play. Sheer gowns and oversized cardigans looked right at home beside completely on-trend oversized sunhats, giving the collection a vintage yet contemporary feeling.

Elisabetta Franchi

Kudos to Maria Grazia for attempting to pull off a modern western vibe at Dior a few months ago (better luck next time!), but it looks like Elisabetta Franchi has the entire look covered. Franchi, who’s mostly known for dressing Italy’s well-to-do in elegant and refined clothing, often opted for traditional glamour than take the route of over the top fashion designer or high fashion extremes. However, this collection marks a very interesting moment for the designer. Diverging from her usuals, Franchi chose to create a whimsical and very mature take on vintage western clothing. Large black straw hats were paired alongside flirty rompers and micro mini dresses. Long billowing gowns had pretty historic touches sewn throughout — they’re versatile and can be worn as they were seen on the runway or on their own. The accessories used throughout the show also emphasized the old world decorative dressing. The belts had a particular beauty about them, with their strung pearls and gold dangling delicately at the waist.

Prada

Arguably the most important designer in Italy (maybe even the world) Miuccia Prada lives and breathes fashion. Look at the last decade and try to find a collection that wasn’t in one way or another infleuntial, artistic, innovative, and beautiful. It’s likely that you won’t. And that’s what sets Miuccia and Prada apart from the pack. Prada has always been known as the brand that’s years ahead of its time. Elements from collections that Miuccia created years ago continue to pop up in other designers’ collections season after season. Luckily, Madame Prada commands enough respect to never have her designs completely ‘borrowed’. This season’s collection follows suit. Classic, the Prada-ism that put the brand at the top of the fashion game, with touches of forward-thinking design makes for a modern collection fit for fashion’s most progressive dressers. The collection itself was a crossroads of interesting designs, mixing beatnik vests and shirting with flirty in-your-face Prada patterns that the brand is known for. The bright pops of tomato red fit in perfectly with the season’s biggest color trend. And the accessories, as per usual, are simply to die for, with the brand’s signature graphic handbags once again on center stage.

Luisa Beccaria

Ethereal beauty reigned supreme at Luisa Beccaria this season. Everything seemed to be touched by a fairy godmother’s wand. Sheer gowns were strewn in embroidered flowers, eyelet lace, pastels, and fancy little polka dots. The show felt very surreal with models walking through a courtyard dotted with petals to the sound of classical music. The color scheme was very soft and delicate, mirroring the overall feeling of the show. Yet the delicate colors didn’t feel fragile but inviting and warm. Even the cool baby blues somehow managed to come across far more sumptuous and warm than cold and icy. Another major factor that made this collection stand out from the crowd of soft and pretty runway shows was its effortless sexiness. Many of the collection’s looks featured barely-there shorts and almost all of the gowns and dresses that walked the runway displayed various levels of transparency. But the collection never felt like it was trying to look sexy — Beccaria managed to infuse grown-up sexiness into the collection by manipulating the levels of sheerness throughout. It wasn’t about provoking by exposing the models’ breasts through gauzy fabric or by revealing a panty underneath a long gown. It was about dressing a woman in a natural, carefree, and self-loving way.

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Fashion Trend Report: New York and London Spring 2018

After a grueling few seasons, it’s good to see how New York and London have finally started to batten down the hatches and weather the storm that’s been pummeling the industry for quite some time now. With so many of the world’s most talked about brands closing doors or downsizing dramatically, it’s reassuring to finally see these fashion capitals reinvent themselves to push forward. And luckily for the fashion loving crowds of the world, with innovation and change come new trends that will paint the market and influence what the everyday retail fashion will see for the rest of the year. Here are some of New York and Londons best trends for Spring!

Tomato Soup & Lemonade

Bright colours reigned this Spring season. But above all the jewel tones and pastel that walked the runway, it was tomato red and lemon yellow that reigned supreme. New York seemed to have started the trend, with more than a handful of designers sending bright tomato red pieces down the runway with a ton of success. Across the pond, Londoners were treated to a healthy dose of vitamin C, with designers opting for bright and tart lemon yellow instead of red as their statement colour. The great thing about having warm pop colours for this spring is that fashion can now move away from the pastel trend that’s taken hold of Spring the last few seasons. Giving fashion lovers a bright alternative to whispy delicate spring hues when the warmer weather arrives once again.

Peek-A-Boo

To no one’s surprise, last year’s biggest trend was carried over to this season. Sheer clothing managed to sweep the runways once again this season, with almost every designer incorporating sheer garments into their collections. Both London and New York had their fair share of sheer frocks and two pieces, with designers choosing either sheer fabric or lace to create an alluring silhouette that oozes sensuality and delicateness. Now what you can get away with on the runway v.s. what’s practical for everyday can sometimes be two very different things. Fortunately, wearing the sheer trend doesn’t have to mean wearing a head to toe sheer dress or a translucent jumpsuit. Instead, opt for a sheer lace blazer or sheer silk blouse to create the same effect for a more everyday look.

Power Shoulder, Power Sleeve

Call them what you want (puff sleeves are probably the easiest generalization) but the dramatic ’80s sleeve and shoulder are back and stronger than ever, and they graced the runways of New York and London’s runways this season. The choice to bring the puff sleeves back from the dead most likely stemmed from last year’s high and fast fashion industries’ obsession with bell sleeves and elongated sleeves. However, the addition of puff sleeves to the extravagant sleeve family adds a touch of vintage glamour, straight out of the mid-80s’s most popular girl’s wardrobe.

DenimDenimDenim

For the past two years, denim has been the be-all-end-all in popular fashion. During London and New York, denim took a more decorative turn with destroyed and reworked denim. In London, elongated denim jackets created a beautifully elegant silhouette with an alternative and modern twist; in New York, ripped denim was paired with elegant evening outfits, creating a new wave of eveningwear that’s sure to end up as the go-to night-out outfit for many of the fashion world’s social media elites.

Fairytale Eleganza

Every season has its fair share of over the top, highly stylized gowns. However, this season seemed to up the ruffle factor by creating fairytale gowns fit for any princess. Many of the gowns featured this season’s hottest colours, while others featured stunning floral patterns and beautifully sheer fabrics, which all fell in line with the season’s trends. The gowns recreate the old-world fairytale silhouettes that feel as though they’ve come straight out of the world’s greatest stories. In New York, designers opted for more romantic stylings, trading in modern flair for a more vintage and sheer alternative to evening gowns; London chose to feature more contemporary versions of old-world looks, featuring brighter colours and far more modern silhouettes, while still adhering to the aesthetics of the inspiration.