the out spring | OUTVisions for LGBT Professionals

the out spring

not your ordinary florals

the out spring
gavin reynolds

In the hit film The Devil Wears Prada Meryl Streep is fabulously ferocious as fashion powerhouse Miranda Priestly.

During a pitch she shuts down her subordinate’s rather mundane suggestion of florals, sarcastically stating ‘Florals? For spring? Groundbreaking…’ While the correlation between the pattern and the season may seem all too obvious to the grand dame of designer detail, the floral trends we’re seeing for this year are anything but ordinary.

Floral offers a classic and beautifully feminine approach to spring and it can be found in everything from a boldly patterned blouse or skirt to a myriad of amazing accessories. This season it’s not just the ladies, who you will find in full bloom. Now, it goes without saying that it would take a strong, confident man to pull this look off. However, this is not the first time that men’s fashion has faced the invasion of a rather unexpected print. Previous seasons have focused on a wide range of powerful patterns including animal and camouflage. Each of these looks can be described as both youthful and totally unconventional. Sometimes it’s the most cutting edge idea that ends up enduring season after season, continually being reinvented and gaining momentum in new and exciting collections all over the world. You’ll find that even edgier brands like Dr. Martens have updated their latest offerings to include a touch of floral. Try this trend on for size by infusing your current wardrobe with a floral shirt, tie or clutch depending on the look you’re trying to achieve. Just don’t overdo it or you might find yourself looking like a pair of curtains from the mid eighties.

Each season inevitably brings us an unexpected resurgence from the ghosts of fashion’s past. This time, the nineties era inspired look appears to be it. Expect to see everything from baggy denim overalls and drop crotch sweat pants to killer kicks ideal for the basketball court rather than the boardroom. It’s a more casual approach to fashion that is being warmly received. One facet of this emerging trend that is getting a lot of attention is what many are calling ‘the fashion sweatshirt’. This spring essential is a modern take on an old favourite and can be seen in several different incarnations that encompass rich fabrics like lace and leather and unexpected embellishments and prints. One of the first to catch our eye was the hugely popular Givenchy Rottweiler sweater which gave couture credibility to classic comfort. This was spotted on almost everybody who is anybody including current fashion icons like Rihanna and Kanye West. Since then, it’s exploded onto tees and totes and we’ve witnessed several takes on this trend that successfully merge high fashion with casual street style. A current favorite is the ‘Homies’ crewneck which parodies iconic French fashion house Hermes and the YSL spoofed ‘Ain’t Laurent Without Yves’.

Spring is the perfect time to tone up and get fighting fit. Especially since the crop top look has taken over the runways at New York Fashion week. The exposed midriff has been building for several seasons and is now making its way onto the spring/summer scene. Noteworthy designers including Alexander Wang, Badgley Mischka and Michael Kors all featured this look, often paired with oversize jackets and trousers or accompanied by a flowing skirt. It’s a more elegant approach on a look that you may recall with a slight cringe when thinking back to the 90s. Rest assured it’s less ‘Hit Me Baby One More Time’ and more ‘haute couture at the perfect time’. Use this as the perfect opportunity to cut the carbs, hit the gym and put a spring in your step with a healthy attitude as you look forward to the warm months ahead.

Another dominant look seen throughout the spring/summer shows was androgynous structure and styling for both men and women. This blurring of the genders was revealed in boyish tailoring in several top women’s collections including Victoria Beckham and 3.1 Phillip Lim. The goal is no longer curve-hugging silhouettes that showcase every angle. Instead, we are witnessing a masculine, monochrome style that’s relaxed in shape and consisting of high waisted cropped trousers, slouchy blazers and simple black and white collared shirts. Many of this season’s top presentations finished off this look by borrowing from the boys and lacing up a pair of heavy, classic brogues.

For men, it’s almost less about what guys are wearing and more about what they are carrying. ‘Man bags’ have experienced a bit of renaissance over the past several seasons. Gone are the typical messenger bags and duffels we’re used to seeing swung over fashion savvy shoulders. In its place are several more sophisticated options in a wide variety of styles, sizes and textures that are perfect for any occasion. Outside of almost any show you can expect to see an army of male bloggers, writers and critics coveting document style leather folios. Most likely containing iPads, tablets or whatever they are currently using to keep a steady pulse on the ever changing world of fashion. Bottega Veneta, Burberry and Jil Sander all showcased softer, slouchier clutches, totes and carryalls throughout their presentations that reflect the overarching theme of a more relaxed look for spring.

So why give the cold weather a second thought? There’s so much to look forward to this spring and it’s not just the warmer weather. If these frigid temperatures have got you down, grab a warm cup of your favorite blend, park yourself by the fire and browse the web for your favorite brands. With all the bright colors, bold patterns and freshly updated throwbacks we’re sure to see, these trends will no doubt melt the hearts of even the frostiest fashion critics.

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Authorgavin reynolds

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