For most people, a new year means a new you, but for fashion-minded students, a new year means a new wardrobe. Luckily, high-fashion runways have already revealed trends for the new year, so you can start deciding what the new you might look like.
This year’s trends are fresh and novel, making it easy to reinvent your wardrobe this season. Some of the trends for women will include fringe, fur and neon colors. For men, army green, colorful patterns and trench coats will be big. Although some trends are gender-specific, some will be popular for both men and women. Leather and tie-dye are examples of this shared trend, making them twice as popular this year.
The course of fashion trends goes one of two ways. Some are popular enough to make big street-style staples, while others only get one strut down the runway. We’d like to share our opinions on these novel trends, how you can rock them and if you can expect to spot them on the backs of “it girls,” celebs or even college students this year.
What trend are you looking forward to the most?
Sami: When I saw fringe on the runway during New York Fashion Week, I could not have been more excited. Fashion labels like Coach and Tom Ford highlighted fringe on items like jackets and evening wear. Fringe is fun, youthful and will be a great addition to your closet. Not only will it give you a go-to statement piece, this style also helps elongate your body, making you look taller and slim. Who doesn’t love a trend that makes you look and feel good?
John: Last summer, I became obsessed with incorporating more color into my wardrobe. There’s something about dressing like this that lifts my spirit and fills me with confidence. For this year, I’m excited to start experimenting with the colorful patterns spotted on the runways.
How can you fit these runway trends into your everyday wardrobe?
Sami: Some of these trends can seem overwhelming and a little too high-fashion for students on campus, but if you view these trends as accent pieces, they will be easier to incorporate into your everyday wardrobe. Wearing a neon pink shirt can be intimidating, but pairing it with a black skirt and a gray jacket will mellow it out, making the hue wearable with your day-to-day clothes. If you use these trends as statement pieces and pair them with more classic looks and colors, it will give your outfits the trendiness you want without overpowering the rest of your outfit.
John: Army green and trench coats are far from new additions to a classically male closet. That said, pairing a military green garment with black, white or dark gray pieces will make the color come off naturally. Trench coats will also be an easy fit, as the age-old heritage piece can be worn with anything from street to formal wear.
However, color in men’s fashion has historically been limited, but that norm is changing. While colorful patterns on the runways can be layered on top of each other and peacocked around, the average guy can have fun with this trend by sticking to one brightly colored garb paired with staple pieces in neutral colors.
What trends do you think people will actually wear?
Sami: Based on what I have already seen in stores, fur and leather will be very popular, especially since heavier materials mean more warmth during winter. Fur jackets seem to be all over stores like Forever 21 and H&M, and I’ve made an investment by picking one out — faux, of course.
Students are curious and willing to experiment with leather, too. I am not talking about wearing leather pants but possibly leather skirts and jackets. You can’t help but feel luxurious in a fur coat or risqué in a leather skirt, making these trends desirable to wear if people take the initial leap of faith.
John: My best guess is the biggest upcoming trend this year for men will be army green, unfortunately. Since many closets have not yet cleared out the Yeezy streetwear-inspired pieces of 2016 and 2017, I fear the color might soon return to the streets. However, trench coats are easily the runner-up, as many men already own this masculine staple piece and are well aware of the piece’s versatility in its styling options, ranging from casual to smart.
What’s the overall mood or aesthetic of the trends?
Sami: From fur to army green to tie-dye, the range of trends is bigger than we have seen in most seasons. These trends don’t build an image off each other nor do they raise a common mood. This is unfortunate, as I usually think of a mood when I think of a specific time period. But I don’t see that happening this year. Instead, this season will bring us risky and individual trends that can be worked together to form high-fashion and unprecedented looks.
John: Unlike recent seasons, it’s hard to find concise looks or moods with the trends we’re seeing this year. With the tie-dye, we get a hippie-dippie throwback to classic bohemian style; we get military chic from the trench coat and army green; we get pops of color from neon and the bright patterns; we get an added variable from the fur and leather, focusing on texture rather than color or form. Ultimately, I don’t think we’ll see one look or mood this year, but rather many trends and combinations coming together to either create chaos or a parade of fashionably mismatched styles.
What makes a good trend?
Sami: A good trend is something that catches on like wildfire. You could have an unflattering trend, like shoulder pads, and if you get enough people wearing them it could become the must-have trend of the season. The key to a good trend is having an ordinary person wear the same styles as celebrities and influencers. A trend is simply not what the most popular people are wearing, it is what the majority of people are wearing and liking. Having that influence actually stick to everyday people and having them buy and wear the trend is crucial.
John: Cultural context is key to whether a trend is great or a dud. A trend should reflect the time and place in which it’s created. For example, the 1970s wouldn’t be the same without shiny fabrics and jumpsuits, and the same is true for the 1980s without acid-wash jeans and animal prints. A trend needs to speak to the people of that time and place collectively by reflecting their interests, art forms and mindsets.
While trends come and go, holding fast to your own style is what matters the most. As we often say in our columns, confidence, comfort and self-expression are the most important components to fashion.
This article was originally published in the January 2019 edition of The DN.