Spring 2012 Trends
Spring 2012 was all about femininity and glamour with inspiration coming from the soft flowing water of the ocean and seas. This oceanic theme inspired underwater scenes displayed everywhere from the underwater world runway backdrop at Chanel and Mary Katrantzou's psychedelic sea beds, to clothing & accessories like Sarah Burton's McQueen mermaids, Versace's starfish prints, Giorgio Armani's water-inspired women and Givenchy's shark tooth accessories. Clothes and accessories were laden with shells, coral, pastel deep sea colors, mermaid-ish matte satin fabrics and underwater prints. It was enchanting and incredibly feminine!
|Oceanic Theme Spring 2012 Trend (From Left): Coral-esque Dress by Alexander McQueen; Opal-essent Look with Shell Purse at Chanel; Matte Mermaid Satin Fabric at Givenchy; Underwater Print at Versace; Abstract Water Print at Peter Pilotto.|
Colors (Pastels, 70's & Orange): While you could still find neon colors on the runway this Spring, it was pastels that were the new big color trend. Pastel colors mostly consisted of cotton candy pink, peach, mellow yellow, mint green, and robins egg blue. Pastels separates were mostly worn by "color blocking" them (see "Pastels" below"). The other trend was 70's appliance colors such as split pea green, mustard yellow, and raspberry pink. These strong colors were toned down when paired with this season's new neutrals such as: milk chocolate brown, silly putty beige, green (BIG trend), and white. Also, tangerine orange was the "It" color of the season seen on tops, shorts, dresses, pants... you name it, it was on it.
|Pastel Color Blocking Spring 2012 (from left): Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Badgley Mischka, Mulberry, & 3.1 Philip Lim.|
|70's Appliance & Neutrals (from left): Damir Doma Spring '12; Thakoon Addition Pre-fall '12; Balenciaga Spring '12; Jenni Kayne Pre-fall '12. Picture via DC-2-NY Confessions Blog.|
|Tangerine Orange Spring 2012 (from Left): Badgley Mischka, BCBG Max Azria, Derek Lam, Nanette Lepore, Jill Stuart, Christian Siriano.|
Prints: There was a wide variatey of prints this season. Obviously, the bit trend was oceanic prints (see "Theme" above), but big "in your face" floral, bird, landscapes, and 1920's graphic lines prints which were all trending this season. Landscapes incorporated everything from space to the deep sea. The bird print was evident at shows such as Carolina Herrera where these cute little birds were everywhere but also went more abstract at Marc by Marc Jacobs. And, graphic prints were 1920's art-deco reminiscent with bold line patterns and T-bird flames on sweaters, dresses, shoes and accessories. However, if you are looking for classic spring staples you cannot go wrong with nautical (stripes, anchors, and navy blues) or fruit & veggie prints as seen at Dolce & Gabbana or Moschino Cheap & Chic.
|New Prints (From Left) - Bird prints: Carolina Herrera (literal), Marc by Marc Jacobs (abstract); Graphic: Carolina Herrera, Milly; Landscapes: Akris, Mary Katrantzou.|
| Classic Spring Prints - Nautical: Michael Kors, Bill Blass, Yves Saint Laurent (Cruise '12); Fruits & Veggies: Dolce & Gabbana, Moschino Cheap & Chic, Dolce & Gabbana.|
Midriff Exposure (body part): The midriff was the "It" body part to display this season. Crop tops, cut-outs, and bra-tops were on almost every runway. To wear this trend, make sure that the upper abs are displayed with a cropped top and high-rise bottoms (the early 2000's Brittney Spears look of showing your full foopa--the little pooch of your stomach below the navel--is still tacky).
|High Midriff Exposure Spring 2012 (from left): Versace, Preen, Prada, Dolce & Gabbana, Jo No Fui.|
What To Get/Look For This Spring
Dresses: There were three big trends for dresses in Spring 2012: Structured (via peplums and ruffles), asymmetrical tops and hemlines, and 1920's style dropped-waist dresses. When you do get one of these dresses, make sure the length is either maxi or mini (medi styles are for skirts). For color, make sure your dress is bright cyan blue, pure white, red lace, or tangerine orange for Spring 2012.
|Dress Trends Spring 2012 (from left) - Peplums: Vera Wang, Jason Wu, Chanel; Asymmetrical: Jenny Packham, Diane Von Furstenberg, Luca Luca; Drop-Waist: Chloe, Gucci.|
Skirts: Just like dresses, skirts that were structured were also trending this season. Whether the structure is a in the form of a gathered/ruffled pencil skirt, has a peplum, accordion pleats, or is made of tulle (great with a pastel blazer, fyi), structure is what will get you from March to September this season. Asymmetrical hems and medi-skirts were also still in style and can also give you a fresh look this season.
|Skirt Trends Spring '12 (from left): Structured pencil skirt (Burberry Prorsum); Pleated Medi-skirt (Prada); Peplum structured scarf skirt (Dolce & Gabbana); Tulle skirt (Chanel); Structured pencil skirt (Preen)|
Shorts: Summer leather is a big trend this season and the easiest way to pull it off is with leather shorts as seen at Mulberry. Add these leather shorts or a pair of tailored shorts to a suit and you will have the other big trend for shorts this season. The short suit was seen everywhere from Chanel, to Versace, and Prabal Gurung...to name a few. Oh, and the Bermuda length short is coming back in style. Expect to see this length more in the coming year.
|Shorts Trends Spring '12 (from left) - Leather Short: Chanel, Mulberry; Short Suit: Versace, Prabal Gurung, Emilio Pucci (Bermuda length short); Jo No Fui.|
Pants: High waist, baggy but tapered, is the new design for denim pants/jeans. Skinny's are also still cool, of course. And for pants other than jeans, the same high-waist, baggy but tapered look in prints or with a single stripe down the side of the leg, along with wide legs and skinny cropped styles in solid colors were also used.
|Pant Trends (from Left) - Denim: Balenciaga, Theyskens Theory; Wide-leg: Michael Kors, The Row; Cropped: Giorgio Armani.|
My Spring Shopping List: Here is my "shopping list" for Spring/Summer 2012 separates:
Dresses: one feminine solid pastel dress (to match with pastel or white blazer and shell accessories), a white dress (with matching red lips and red pumps), and maybe a bird print dress.
Skirts: structured--probably one with tulle ruffles (with a pastel top, white blazer and metallic shoes)
Shorts: in the perfect summer leather.. any color.
Pants: skinny jeans--white and dark indigo (for the nautical look), and a pair of pastel pants.
Tops: one with a peplum (to pair with skirts, shorts,etc.), one with stripes, a cropped top, and a whole bunch of pastel basics. I'm not much of a floral person or else I'd be getting a floral top with the biggest flower print I could find.
Jackets: a pastel and/or a white blazer, and a leather motorcycle jacket..any color.
So, there you have it--the latest designs and looks for Spring/Summer 2012. Whether you buy, make it DIY style, or find at your local vintage or thrift store, these are the looks you want to be looking for. Have fun!