First, let’s dispense with the 2016fw trends you won’t be wearing. You’ll probably want to skip every Eighties revival from the nu-rave colours (do you want to dress in the colours of highlighter pens & Post-its?) to the disco redux look – leave the skin-tight wet-look leggings & slinky Lurex tops to teens. A more appealing alternative is the Forties revival. With its strong shoulders & nipped-in waists, its silhouette isn’t so far removed from that of the Eighties. Take inspiration from Prada’s wonderful, utility-chic double-breasted jackets & coats in heavy tweeds, & Levin’s desirable black day dresses & belted skirt suits.
Roland Mouret has virtually built his name on a 40′s-inspired silhouette, so he’s a lovely bet for this look, too. This fall, his figure-hugging dresses come in teal, grey, black or crimson. You can see these dresses in Paris during the 2016fw. Winter clothing is also on display here on a fairly regular basis.
It’s worth paying more for a label renowned for lovely tailoring, such as Vivienne Westwood Red Label. Contrast all that heavy tweediness with dresses & tops in boudoir silks & satins. For the perfect palette, take a look at the colours Tomas Maier uses at Bottega Veneta – all soft creams, delicate lavender & oyster.
Even though the new-look leather is wearable, Stefano Pilati’s focus on leather for Yves Saint Laurent provided us with a clear & concise lesson in how to do modern, chic city wear. That paired with a crisp white blouse with high-waisted black leather trousers & his softened-up biker jacket with gorgeously slouchy grey flannel pants.
Bottega Veneta’s leather shift dresses & trenches in dusty pinks & tobacco are so sophisticated, while at Hermès, Jean Paul Gaultier made leather look as covetable as you would expect at a house where a jacket can cost thousands of pounds.
Don’t dismiss the biker jacket; in its more languid, lighter state, it can be an elegant way to bridge the seasons. At Matches, Bridget Cosgrave is tipping it as the season’s perfect investment. He’s already had to re-order Balenciaga’s classic biker & also rates Dacoit’s simple leather jackets as a grown-up style.
Keep it simple. Follow Pilati’s lead & pair a leather pencil skirt with a crisp white shirt. As for lovely jackets, Jaeger has a great version in buttery soft leather.
Beautiful, minimalist tailoring is a key trend. Jill Sander is full of exquisite tailored pieces from fluid coats in pale caramel or dove-grey cashmere, immaculate skirt suits, shifts & pants in charcoal, black, and navy or cream. There is nothing dull about these investment pieces.
The recession has split retailers in to two schools of thought. Some believe they will be investing in classics. Others reckon that standout pieces will catch our eye. Either way, fashion designers have catered for both this fall.
The flip side is ornamentation. Footwear with intricate gilt beading, studded bags, bejewelled headbands & a rich tapestry of metallic jacquards or sumptuous devorés are all part of autumn’s rich decorative trend.