Have you ever wondered how runway designs find their way to your closet? Or better, how you’ve been able to buy pieces that look similar to the ones on the runway at a more affordable price?
As an active fashion enthusiast and frequent retail shopper, I have analyzed hundreds of runway shows and have shopped at almost every well-known retail store across the country. With that being said, I have noticed how influential runway shows are for ready-to-wear stores. In this article, I will be answering the following questions:
1. What is a runway show?
2. What is the runway to the everyday fashion process?
3. What are some of the predicted fashion trends?
With no further ado, let’s get started.
What is a Runway Show?
Runway shows are more than just models walking up and down a catwalk. They are a chance for designers to provide the public with an overall feel of their new collections. In doing so, they also give us intel on what we should and should not wear for the upcoming seasons. These collections embody a designer’s individuality through the specific concept, theme, and atmosphere they are hoping to convey. Yet, you rarely see people actually buy or wear these extravagant pieces. Why is that? The simple answer to this is because they are impractical. The common person would never be able to wear, let alone afford, any of the pieces from a runway show. So what is the solution?
Runway to Everyday
From the moment a new collection hits the fashion shows in New York, London, Milan, and Paris, fast fashion retailers will begin their search for the next batch of imitated trends. How is this done?
The process is quite simple: retail buyers will take inspirational concepts from the runway and use it to develop a range of pieces that target the retailer’s specific customer. The retailer would then focus on colors, prints, fabrics and silhouettes that they have predicted will sell well. Once the concept selections have been finalized, they will be signed off and the offshore manufacturing would begin. Approximately three months later the selected pieces will hit the retailers floor and in no time, eventually find their way into your everyday wardrobe.
As another season unfolds, designers from all over the world have prepared us for what is about to be one of the most exciting years in fashion. The designs showcased at shows in New York, London, Milan, and Paris, are anything but ordinary.
Making a Statement
A prominent trend that was presented by many designers included the display of bold dresses. Victoria Beckham made her first debut in Paris Fashion week and revolved her show around the idea of “recontextualisation,” combining both fresh and modern designs to evening dresses. Beckham maximizes her use of texture, color, and trim to create an eyecatching persona for each piece. In the same way, Valentino incorporates bold colors and embellishments in their designs to emulate the power of individuality while also explaining the truth behind couture collections.
Both of these designers have given the public a sense of what is to be expected in terms of trends for the upcoming year. These designs are sure to be hung in every retail store within a couple of months. Next time you are shopping, be sure to look out for maxi dresses detailed with fringe trims, embellishments, and most importantly, ruffles.
Denim on Denim
Denim was one of the most used fabrics in this year’s fashion shows. Why is that? It is a wardrobe essential that will always be in “trend.” At the bare minimum, you will always have a pair of denim pants or even a denim jacket. Sometimes a certain trend will have an impact on the way the denim is styled but nevertheless, denim isn’t going anywhere. In terms of the “denim on denim” trend, despite popular belief, this style has never been considered a fashion taboo (if it is done correctly.)
Denim on denim was at its peak in the early 2000’s the moment Justin Timberlake and Britney Spears made their iconic red carpet debut dressed in matching denim on denim ensembles.
Today, layering this fabric is just as influential. Many designers have taken a more conscious approach with their designs by incorporating this highly sustainable fabric.
Givenchy showcased bleached, distressed, and embellished denim that communicated his idea of a “borderless world,” blending dress codes from two different countries. He incorporated the sophisticated fashion style
of France and implement the edgy street style of American celebrities. This brand identifies denim as a universal fashion statement which implies how reusable denim pieces will always be.
Ready-to-wear denim trends will be sold in the form of maxi denim skirts, denim pleated mini, denim tube tops, denim trench coats, and even denim heels and boots. This year’s must-have fabric is here to stay, so expect your closet to be filled with the latest denim pieces that are sure to be sold at Zara and H&M.
It is no surprise that leather has found its way back to the runway. Leather jackets have been making appearances at fashion weeks for decades and this season was no exception. Although leather is traditionally used for fall and winter, many designers this year took a contrasting approach by incorporating this textile into spring/summer fashion. From mini to maxi, leather skirts became one of the most favored trends worn by some of fashion’s chicest celebrities. Coach, Loewe, and Celine were some of the brands that featured a range of silhouettes, from figure-forming pencil skirts and classic A-lines to schoolgirl-inspired pleated pieces.
If you are hoping to imitate these runway looks, Zara is sure to have all things leather. From leather jackets and skirts to vests and blazers. You will be in leather heaven and will have the chance to stay on trend without hurting your wallet.
Although fashion shows are believed to revolve around the clothing, many designers this year decided to change that cliche. The shoes in this year’s runway shows finally got the spotlight they deserve. And who doesn’t love shoes? From Bottegga to Miu Miu this season’s shoe trends served equal parts edgy, whimsical, nostalgic, futuristic, and sophisticated.
The number one predicted shoes of note are ballet flats. This shoe has all the comfort, convenience, and elegance you have been looking for. Between fashion weeks in Copenhagen and New York, ballet flats were everywhere. Miu Miu, Coach, Foo and Foo, Victor Glemaud, and Sandy Liang, are amongst the few brands that provided the launch for this nostalgic must-have edition-or re-edition-to your wardrobe.
In regards to the trending styles for shoes, you can expect to see a lot of pointed toes, metallic leather, and clogs.
Pointed toes will fit those who like to keep it sharp. Christian Siriano, Bottega, Dior, and Victor Glemaud, all designed their own interpretation of this trend. They showcased a variety of pointed-toe slingback kitten heels, flat pointed-toe loafers, and pointed-toe high heels. Nevertheless, whichever style you choose, pointed toes are a simple way to make an outfit look effortlessly put together.
On the other hand, metallic leather shoes are all about standing out. Some of the most common metallic shoes shown on the runways included pointy pumps, knee-high stiletto boots and laced-up metallic high-heel sandals. So if you are ready to make a statement, then this is the style for you.
Speaking of making a statement, clogs have become the most controversial “It shoe” this year. Yet, in comparison to other shoes that are known for being comfortable, clogs bring a little more to the table. These shoes often have a thick heel, big buckles and tiny embellishments that have the ability to dress up any outfit without having to wear the regular uncomfortable heels. Celine and Hermes both launched their own designs for this elevated footwear trend and many celebrities jumped at the opportunity to be ahead of the game. If you want to get in on the action, Nordstrom provides a variety of clogs from affordable designers.
Something to Keep in Mind
Trends are great but I encourage everyone to find their own personal style. One that is timeless. Keeping up with trends can make you feel like you constantly need to buy something new every month. This is one of the main reasons why we have clothing items hanging in our closet that we will most likely never wear again. We purchased pieces that made sense at the time but did not really embody our own personal style. Becoming better informed with your fashion likes and dislikes can avoid these impulsive purchases. Refraining from those decisions will also initiate sustainable development and can lead to a more equipet environment as well.
Exploring your own style can be simply identified via your lifestyle, goals, values, likes, and dislikes. Once you have established a strong sense of style, you will be able to streamline trends into your existing wardrobe without having to clear out your closet after its temporary lifespan.
So the next time you watch a runway show, analyze what trends appeal to you and what you think will work best for your pre-established fashion identity. What colors of fabrics that catch your eye? Which shoes or accessories speak to you the most? Whatever the answer may be, remember that fashion is supposed to be fun and creative. Fashion is a way for you to test your boundaries and hopefully realize that you may be able to pull off more styles than you thought.