Accessories Trend Report Spring 2018: Next Season’s Most Coveted Items!

Next season’s accessories came with a fun surprise! Colours, patterns, and textures dominated the accessories game on the runway. Differing from the norm, accessories told their own story this season. You could almost say that this season’s group of bags, jewels, hats, and shoe could easily be stand-alone collections in and of themselves. Able to carry out a cohesive and impressive story all on their own.

The Printed Pop Bag

Printed bags had the biggest impact on the runway for Spring. Prints, florals, and plaids all came crashing onto many of the worlds biggest brand’s accessories. Transforming the functional bag into an outstanding showpiece that could pump up any outfit in your closet. Milan seemed to take the trend to the most extreme by putting jarring patterns on simplistic bags. Giving a graphic edge to standard silhouettes. At Prada, bags were strewn with graphic comic strip style prints that took gave each bag its own unique story. Adding a special element to each purse that walked the runway. Over at Marni, adorable square bags were splashed with bright plaids. Creating an interesting, almost vintage take on the modern box bag. Paris seemed to prefer a more subtle take on the printed bag. Opting for more elegantly and less graphic prints than Milan did. At Valentino, models walked the runway in the brand’s staple rockstud bags. However, the bag seemed to be painted with gorgeous floral motifs. Giving the bag a double identity, soft vs hard, elegant, yet edgy.

The Peek-a-boo See-through Shoe

This season’s footwear took a surprisingly fun turn for spring. Last season’s love for the chunky heel continued as expected, however, this season’s chunky heel came with an unexpected translucent friend. For Spring, Parisian fashion houses Chanel and Balmain both put their models in interesting and super clear cap toes PVC boots. The boots themselves have an air rain time high fashion chic about them, but they’re grounded with the strong pops of neutral black and white. Giving the boots a more elegant, rather than childish look. Over in New York, Prabal Gurung sported an interesting pair of mules that used a sheer mesh and clear heel combo, rather than using PVC. Giving the shoe a more reasonable and breathable appeal for the summer.

The Epic Chandelier Earring

Chandelier earrings may have become passe in the last decade. However, the glimmering throwbacks are back in a big way! In Paris and Milan, oversized earrings packed a very big punch. At Saint Laurent, giant jewelled chandeliers took on a mod feel with big rectangular sparklers, making the earing look more like bedazzled frames ready to frame a royal masterpiece. Over in Milan, both Dolce & Gabanna and Gucci used pearls, gold, and gems to create a modern take on Renaissance royalty, giving Elizabeth the 1st a run for her money.

The Theatrical Straw Hat

This season’s straw summer hat get an exciting upgrade. What started with Gucci’s huge sunhat and Jacquemus Provencal hats has grown into one of the biggest and most interesting accessory trends of the season. At Andreas Kronthaler for Vivienne Westwood, the straw hat took a more vagabond like look aesthetic. Resembling something more cartoonish, which fits in perfectly with the outlandish and forward thinking appeal that’s been associated with Westwood for years. At Jacquemus, the straw sunhat took on its most extreme form yet. With proportions resembling something straight out of a French romance movie. The romantic movement of the hat perfectly mirrored the sensual feel of the collection. Over in Milano, Missoni caught wind of the trend and added its 0wn interesting flair. Creating a more windswept and cutting-edge sunhat that screams Missoni.

 

Bubble Up Theory: How Fashion is Screwing the Punks

Photo from Complex Mag

Cultural appropriation has been an ongoing topic in fashion. For some reason, it is still practiced in music videos, fashion shows, and street-style/festival looks today. It is no secret that designers and fashion lovers alike tend to borrow pieces from cultures that have historically been marginalized to give a look a sense of uniqueness or depth. The irony of this practice is that the practice only brings to the surface the designer/fashion lover’s ignorance. 

Whether we are just now starting to practice this ignorant fashion tactic today, there is no secret that we are seeing it more, as accessibility to favourite celebrities’ daring’ fashion moment their stylist put them in is at an all time high with social media. Subcultures that have typically been scrutinized are now also taking the hit in the fashion world. For example, brands like Thrasher and Supreme are taken from the skater community and worn stylishly with couture items for celebrities to look airport-chic in. This occurrence is called the bubble up theory — it explains why many subcultures, like Goth, Harajuku, and more are losing their unique sense of place, and becoming a gratuitous part of mainstream fashion. 

While many sub-groups have been significantly picked apart by this tactic, the one that has always felt personally damaging to me is the appropriation of Punk culture — this is funny because I am in fact, not in any way at all, a punk.

Photo from Elle

Last summer, modern style icon Kim Kardashian stepped out in a fully studded, painted, and patched punk-style leather jacket. While this DIY look has been a trademark of punk-rockers’ since the 1960’s, Kim K made this style statement for no less than an eleven-thousand dollar mock-up by Enfants Riches Déprimés. The Kardashians may express interest in a lot of things (makeup, hip-hop, basketball), but last time I checked, Iggy Pop was not at the top of their latest guest list. I realize that a Kardashian wearing a studded leather jacket isn’t truly the crux of the problem. Paying a large sum of money like that for a detailed jacket does in fact give credit to how much work is put into this kind of piece. The issue to focus on is how this trend trickles down into fast fashion stores such as H&M and Forever 21. This cheap alternative allows anyone to wear a jacket of similar style without knowing where the idea of this detailed jacket originates from. This leaves those who have put their time into understanding, learning from, and working hard to belong to the punk community left feeling stripped of their personal style, which has been a way they have identified themselves within a larger cultural spectrum.

Punk fashion derives from the history of the music itself. Those who spoke out against societal norms and values were looked down upon and punk music gave these rejects a voice, a way to celebrate their opinions. The fashion went along with this trend as UK designer Vivienne Westwood (she notably worked with The Sex Pistols) created t-shirt designs and patches reflecting the values of this outcasted culture. With them came the addition of safety pins, zippers, and, of course, studs. While Westwood made these designs and ideas infamous, punk fashion has a very DIY nature behind it. This meant that while many could not afford to buy key pieces brand new, with some creativity and dedication, they could make their own unique looks that fit within the punk world.

Photo from Marie Claire UK

As punk fashion developed, the acceptance towards this unorthodox sub-group did not. Many punk rockers have been subjected to exclusion in the workforce and other public sectors due to the appearance of their hair, their piercings, and their clothing. Because of this, creating unique looks is even more reputable as low funds force punk rockers to search for unique pieces in cheap second hand stores, dumpsters, and more. I have personally watched someone very close to me, who has appreciated the punk genre since a young age, tirelessly put hundreds of studs into a jacket, sew together old gloves to make a cooler version, and hand paint patches and jackets with punk symbols and logos from their favourite bands. When the industry mass produces pieces very similar to this, we are not only devaluing the time and creativity behind these pieces, but also their historical value.

Like I said, I do not in any way identify as a punk. I do, however, hold near and dear the things that define me and feel protective over the importance of unique and defiant style. When stepping out in an item of clothing that is related to a sub-group that one knows nothing about, you are discrediting those who actually celebrate the background from which their clothes come. One of my favourite bands is Guns N’ Roses. When wearing one of the band’s shirts, I have been asked several times whether I actually like the band. This is the result of bubble up theory at its finest as fashion looks begin to completely lose their meaning when someone borrows a key item only to elevate their unrelated style. This is not to exclude fashion lovers from exploring their personal appearance. Be brave, be unique, but most importantly, be aware of where your fashion comes from.

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5 lessons to learn from Berlin street style

Edgy, alternative, and eclectic are the best words to describe Berlin, Germany’s fashion capital. The city is known for its multiculturalism and open minded energy. The artistic atmosphere along with the creative community and the massive music scene made Berlin so vibrant and full of life. The local fashionistas are surrounded by their own arty beat and it’s rare to find  uniformity in the way Berliners dress. The only rule is that there are no rules. So it should come as no surprise that even the most conservative piece will get an avant-garde treatment.

Ever since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the city became the symbol of liberalism and anti-conformism. Even the graffiti in every corner of the city are more colourful and defiant than in any other European city. The street fashion reflects this city vibe. Here, it’s all about edgy streetwear rather than high-end, glamour looks.

We thought it would be great to break down some street style photos of the electric city.

Photo: Søren Jepsen

Too cool for school 

Berlin’s underground scene is the best platform to evoke your hipster side, so no wonder Berlin has become the hipster capital of the world. The “anti-chic” style, the attraction to dark colours and grungy looks the city is known for will put your fashion forward look to a test, simply because it’s almost impossible to beat their cool attitude. From distressed clothing and biker jackets to avant-garde pieces, think rough boots, flannel shirt, studs details and quirky accessories. Combine all together to create an original look. 

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Photo: WWD

Rules are made to be broken 

In this tolerant cosmopolitan city, there is no dress code. Over the years, Berlin has become a hotspot for fashion industry, designers, and creatives. It is flooded with independent designers and boutiques that will recharge your creativity. No doubt it is the world leader in street style that requires thinking “outside the box”. Their mantra is ‘Make anything old look new again’ and they achieve it by mixing vintage and high street for the perfect urban layers look. In this city of no style rules, a tough jacket can team with ultra feminine pants; mixing busy prints are never too loud and bright summer items are not only for sunny days.

Street style at Berlin Fashion Week
Photo: WWD

Vintage paradise

Second hand clothing stores are very popular in Berlin. The locals’ love affair with vintage shops provide you the perfect platform to recreate your own style and will blow your mind with inspirations. In the heart of Berlin,Mitte, you can find fashion boutiques that sell vintage accessories such as brim bowler hats or retro sunglasses and fashion garments like tutu skirts and leather goods. The exclusive vintage designer pieces prosper alongside new vintage from big names in the fashion industry such as Vivienne Westwood or Bernhard Willhelm. They allow you to mix and match and create a look that is all about being fun and unique.

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Photo: Søren Jepsen

Think green

The fashion scene in Berlin is also motivated by sustainable production and eco friendly thinking. Slowly but surely green concept is getting more recognition and becoming more accessible for local costumers. Eco Fashion brands have managed to step into conventional Fashion Week and this is already making sustainability easier. Berlin’s relaxed and nonchalant attitude goes hand in hand with the way they open up to new perspectives. It leads them to seek alternatives to mass production common in the fast fashion world. The result: ethical and affordable fashion brands that are using recycled materials spread across the city.

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Photo: WWD

Free love, 1oo% comfort

The street style in Berlin puts a lot of effort on feeling comfortable. Unlike other big cities in Europe, functionality plays a major role here. No more body-con dresses or stilettos. The attitude in Berlin is more relaxed with loose-fitting silhouettes and easy shapes like flowy skirts, A-shape dresses, or boyfriend jeans. Whether it’s blurring the lines between feminine and masculine elements for a casual look or dressing up for a glamourous night, keep in mind that your outfit should allow you to breathe and be loose enough to move around in. You can resonante a fresh energy without feeling like you are trying too hard.

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Photo: Søren Jepsen

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Brighten Your Winter Wardrobe

Since we had some warmer days lately, the first snow caught us unprepared. It is time to bring out those winter clothes that will take you through the long and harsh winter season. Whether you like it or not, one thing is for sure — you can still be stylish even with the winter layers. We tend to associate winter with frumpy coats, heavy-duty rubber sole boots, and chunky accessories in melancholy dark hues. While this is true, there are still some layering tricks and trendy pieces that will help you put together a stylish winter look, while staying warm and cozy.

accessoires-refinery
Photo: Victoria Adamson

First Impression

The winter coat is a wardrobe saviour, so it pays to invest in a quality and fashionable one. The good news is that this season we are flooded with so many choices that you might even wish for snow so you can wear yours. From parkas and puffers to tailored wool coats, there is something out there to suit your style. Own at least one bold coat. It’s all about the first impression and making a statement. The waxed ski jacket in green and blue from Balenciaga is a great pick. It is guaranteed to add a boost of colour to your wardrobe, without compromising your coziness. You can also choose the flashy option such as the Vivenne Westwood’s metallic puffer jackets or make a dramatic impact with an oversized fur coat like Burberry Prorsum.

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Photos: Vivienne Westwood, Balenciaga, Burberry FW16

Layers, layers, layers

Take inspiration from New Yorker fashionistas, who know how to master the cool-girl even in the frigid cold. Start by picking out the base layer. Wool is on top of our the list. This fabric will not only keep you warm but, as a breathable insulator, it will also allow you to sweat without getting your other clothes wet. For another layering example, wear a turtleneck with a silk camisole on top or a cashmere cardigan with a wool coat. A blanket scarf or poncho with unique prints can also jazz up your look, so don’t be afraid to load on the layers and play up with different textures.

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Photo: Harpers Bazaar

It’s all in the (BOLD) details

As much as we love wearing blacks and greys during the cold season, it can be boring after a while. Incorporating bold accessories into your winter ensemble will elevate a simple look and will even bring new life to the most redundant winter clothes. Experiment with bright toned and fun statement pieces like scarves that can be worn in various ways and will push you to think outside the box. You can fold your scarf in a triangle knot or even wear it as a belt on top of a jacket. Another option is to add a dash of luxe to your appearance with fur details, such as fur collars or fur mittens. Pom-pom beanies and printed socks (oh, the power of socks to change an outfit!) will also spice up your outfit in a cheerful way.

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Photo: Victoria Adamson

These Boots Are Made For Snow

No need to neglect your favourite skirt or dress during winter, you just need to invest in a thigh-high classy boots. Pair them with a midi skirt that falls below the top of the boot, or with a shorter skirt to reveal a flash of bare skin. Practical footwear doesn’t necessarily have to be unappealing. In frigid weather when you are forced to wear snow boots, you can opt for unique details such as colour blocking, neon accents, or colourful texture that can bring together a  cool outfit. Or try wearing track sole boots and loafers for an androgynous style. To make a fashion forward statement, match these chunky platforms with super feminine elements like a romantic lace dress.

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Photo: Fendi, MSGM, Diesel FW16

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