Key Trends For A/W 2012/13

Gothic Romance

After a summer of florals, pastels and candyfloss, there is a much darker mood afoot. Drama is key with long lines, sharp tailoring and bold contrasts.

Heavy fabrics such as velvet, brocade and jacquard layered with finer weights such as silk, is a great way to follow this trend.

Detail and embellishment is key with embroidery, beading and applique featuring heavily on the catwalks. For a more daring and dressier approach, opt for a bodice, floor-length skirt and flashes of leather.

After a summer of florals, pastels and candyfloss, there is a much darker mood afoot. Drama is key with long lines, sharp tailoring and bold contrasts.
Heavy fabrics such as velvet, brocade and jacquard layered with finer weights such as silk, is a great way to follow this trend.
Detail and embellishment is key with embroidery, beading and applique featuring heavily on the catwalks. For a more daring and dress

Oversized

Big is again beautiful this autumn, with cocoon coats, pillow-sleeved jackets, billowing trousers and softly structured skirts everywhere.

Oversize is the most prolific trend, not least because it’s suitable for all shapes, sizes and ages.

Look for dropped shoulders, longer lengths and voluminous silhouettes. Think confident, streamlined tomboy like Diane Keaton in “Annie Hall”.

The best way to oversize is to contrast volume with slim line structure in a stylish pairing of opposites.

Equestrian Meets Military

Shooting-weekend chic on the catwalks reveals that the Downton Abbey influence is still holding sway. Country classics seem set to stay with corduroy jackets, jodhpurs, tweed, Fair Isle knits and sturdy leather boots.

Alternatively, a modern twist on this trend can been adopted with tailoring pieces in utility fabrics, erring towards a military vibe.

Elegantly Waisted

Thanks to last season’s peplum, fashion’s focus remains on the waist, but with a softer silhouette.

The peplum has evolved to introduce beautifully tailored curves and belted middles, creating an hourglass line that is smart and super-feminine.

The belt is this season’s big accessory story, whether cinching a sleek pencil dress, finishing high waisted trousers or worn over a winter coat.

Key Pieces For A/W 2012/13

The Oversized Coat

Following on from last winter’s cocoon coats, the oversize version is this season’s update. Shape is not as important as size, which makes this a fabulously wearable trend.

Whether it is a cocoon shape, boxy, or flowing and voluminous – the key is to wear it big over slimmer items for the most flattering look.

The Peplum Hem

Moving on from summer’s obsession, the peplum as a standalone piece has most certainly evolved.

Now, instead of simply being a peplum shape, jackets, tops and dresses have adopted their own version with either a frilled and flounced hem, or an overtly curved shape over the hips- think Vivienne Westwood’s signature look from the 90s. This makes it subtler and easier to wear than before.

The Elegant Trouser

From leathers and cigarette pants to sharply tailored and slouchy boyfriend styles, trousers have forced skirts and dresses out of the limelight.

Sumptuous fabrics and a palette of rich, autumnal shades give this mannish basic a distinctly feminine feel. An excellent trend that will span your working and weekend wardrobes, wide-legged designs will add an elegant touch to your office ensembles, while low-slung skinnies will become a downtime staple.

The Belt

There was not a single type of garment that didn’t get the over-belt treatment, from glamorous gowns to bulky overcoats. Consider this trend the wintery way to get elegantly waisted.

The Geometric Jumper

If statement pieces are not really your thing, this is a comfier and safer option. Bold knits are integral to any winter wardrobe, and with this simple idea, you can inject a bit of modernity and be right on trend.

Graphic and geometric, stripe or check, circle or square – anything with a dramatic contrast of dark and light in neutral or bright colours is a perfect way to update your winter woollens this season.

Key Colours For A/W 2012/13

Purple/ Red/ Black/ Cobalt

With a much darker and more dramatic take on things, this season is less autumnal and much richer and deeper in colour.

Black is huge this season, but does not suit everyone. If this is the case, keep it to your lower half and away from direct contact with your face. Some blacks are easier to wear than others eg. sheer, light reflective or textured fabrics, where the black is not as “intense” as say, on a wool crepe jacket, are more flattering and less intense on some skin tones.

Purple is also a big statement colour this season, in fact wearing a whole purple outfit would be seen as right on trend. Any tone will do, mixing and matching different shades together or with other neutrals such as navy, black or grey.

Red is a great alternative to black for high drama and statement dressing. It’s also easier to wear because there are several shades – orange reds for warm skin tones, and blue reds for cool skin tones.

It goes fabulously with denim and most neutrals. Avoid wearing with brown or olive greens though.

Cobalt blue is a wonderful shade of blue that suits most skin tones and goes with almost all neutrals – black, brown, grey, cream and white. It is vibrant and loud but also chic and stylish, making it the perfect colour for a dress, winter coat – any statement wardrobe staple.

Key Textures For A/W 2012/13

Brocade/ Leather/ Be-Jewelled/ Super Shine

Brocaded and embellished fabrics appeared constantly on the catwalks. These sumptuous fabrics can be worn from head to toe in the form of a trouser suit or in part or detail as a trim on a blouse or jacket.

The same applies to the trend for super shine. Leather, PVC and rubberized rainwear were seen all over the catwalks.  Wear as much or as little of these fabrics that you feel comfortable in, contrasting them with matt wools and chunky knits for a dramatic look.

Key Prints and Patterns For A/W 2012/13

Checks/ Stripes/ Chinoiserie/ Psychedelic

Florals underwent a seasonal change in the guise of Chinoiserie patterns and graphic flower designs. The rich, deep colours of China, Japan and Korea prevailed without a pastel in sight on jackets, dresses and even trouser suits.

Checks and stripes are both conventional and slightly unorthodox. At one end of the scale are the usual neutral contrasts, at the other, full technicolor designs with zigzags and herringbone.

These can look great on statement knitwear, dresses, and silk blouses or, for the more daring, on a complete trouser suit.

Psychedelic is the natural progression of these designs, going into realms of madness for the eccentric and bold. Wear with very plain neutrals for a huge pop of fun and to lift the spirit!