Net-a-Porter Retail Fashion Director Lisa Aiken recently released a SS’18 trend report outlining some of the biggest fashion trends spotted on the runway.
The bona fide fashion insider shares pointers on the key prints and silhouettes to rock this season, giving her foresight on where fashion is headed right now.
Besides florals and bright colours, some of the more easily predictable trends, unexpected elements have come into play this season in the form of strong shoulder silhouettes and deconstructed dresses.
Without further ado, here are the top key trends to pay heed to this Spring Summer 2018.
According to Lisa Aiken, this season is all about returning to “all things pretty and feminine”.
Newly appointed Creative Director of Chloe, Natasha Ramsay-Levi kicked this off by ushering “a new mood at the house that is far more urban, something we have fully embraced, so much so that we have doubled the number of runway exits we bought into.”
“The white summer dress has been elevated to a fashion item with ruffles, exaggerated silhouettes and patchwork fabrications. Even designers known for print, colour and embellishment such as Attico and Etro have reinvented this summer staple in their own signature way. Delicate florals and Liberty prints were also seen at Christopher Kane and Jonathan Anderson for Loewe both of whom have made subverting ultra-feminine ideas part of their DNA.”
Shop this trend by looking at our edit on the most spring-ready slip dresses to own this season.
“Saturated shades and Crayola brights have become far less intimidating. In terms of styling, the clash has been taken one step further with bright on bright — although white accessories offer a more universal solution.”
Acid shades and bright neons are in this season — but that’s not all. The bright colours are “juxtaposed with ‘off’ fabrications too — slick gloss, sporty jersey and punkish plaids.”
Don’t believe you can rock this trend at the office? We show you how here.
It’s all about going back to vintage archives of fashion this season.
“‘80s and ‘90s references have featured heavily in seasons past and have worked their way into our wardrobes: checked blazers, high waisted jeans, boyfriend shape tees and retro sneakers.Now puff sleeves, tweed jackets and chain jewellery all combine to create the most literal representation of this era we have seen to date.”
The way she sees it, polka dots is THE print of the season, with the trend being led by Jacquemus, Alessandra Rich and Balenciaga. ‘Nuff said.
The modern day woman’s business suit is about to get a whole lot lighter — and less boring.
Lisa Aiken notes, “the tweeds and heritage checks of Fall have been replaced with linen, (and a) a summery colour palette.”
As for pencil skirts, she feels that midi-lengths are still key right now as it “make(s) up the largest proportion of skirt sales (at Net-a-Porter).”
So, pastels on checks and plaids are now going to be huge — but we aren’t mad about it. The unexpected emergence of a commercially “Fall” trend doesn’t feel out of place for Spring Summer 2018 due to the lighter, fresher colour scheme.
“Taking the idea of deconstruction one step further, designers are now splicing multiple pieces together, developing items that are multi-functional or have a duality to the way they can be styled”
The deconstructed dress is a huge key item for the season, with fluid silhouettes, asymmetric hemlines and patchwork fabrics.
“This is the un-dressy dress, designed to be worn with boots or sneakers”
Figure-altering and proportion-stretching silhouettes were ubiquitous across the different runways for SS’18.
“The strong shoulder silhouette hasn’t gone anywhere, in fact it has become more prominent. This season it is a story we have invested in heavily. The broad shoulder line and narrow hip/waist is a lot softer than it has been before and surprisingly flattering.”
Other key items include puff sleeves and high waisted pants.
“We are seeing gently puffed shapes. From the likes of Ellery and Rejina Pyo we are seeing a more minimal take, while Magda Butrym and Saint Laurent are decidedly more feminine. The other predominant silhouette is a focus on the waist.”
Speaking of lightweight fabrics, natural textiles such as linen, crochet and cotton drill are about to become a mainstay in our summer wardrobes.
“This story is really defined by the likes of Jacquemus and Rejina Pyo, who have used linen to add a sense of ease to their sculptural silhouettes.”
What about denim? It’s all about simple, understated silhouettes this season with the focus turning to colour.
“There are two emerging trends are at opposite ends of the spectrum this season; dark indigo washes led by Raf at Calvin last season and a rethink of white denim, focusing on modern clean shapes with not a hint of stretch.”
As temperatures start to shift in countries like the US around September, deliveries for the Spring Summer season usually suffer as they arrive in January/February and have to be marked down as early as May. Ergo, designers see a need for outerwear pieces and jackets to be special fashion pieces with unique details instead of basics, giving women a reason to buy new later into the season.
“The abundance of trenches this season means that we are elevating the style next season with dramatic silhouettes and precious fabrics. The raincoat is the ultimate practical outerwear (which) has received a fashion makeover with Balenciaga and Vetements setting the trend.”
What Lisa is referring to here is, of course, reworked trench coats which are far from ordinary with a composite of textures, prints and cuts.