Saturday, 12 October 2013

New York, London, Milan, Paris- Overall trend reports!

After getting a little bit sick of making these boards on photoshop and spending hours on end erasing the backgrounds from behind catwalk models(not great for self esteem...or eyesight!)I decided to speed the process up a bit and instead of doing a set of boards for each fashion week I have made an overall collection of trend boards featuring designers from London, Milan, Paris and New York.

The first board is animal prints. A catwalk staple, regardless of season and location, this also means it can be quite difficult to produce a new take on the animal print. Generally leopard is the default animal print, but for SS14 designers seem to be leaning more towards zebra, giraffe and snake prints.

Temperley(shown below), however, decided to stick with the trusty leopard print. By combining the animal print with painterly orchids and merging the leopard and orchid spots, Temperley managed to produce a leopard floral hybrid, while retaining an overriding sense of class(as I'm sure we are all aware, leopard print doesn't always have associations with classy people).

The Linear trend I identified in the Paris trend reports, proved to be a strong trend across the board.I am really looking forward to using thin delicate lines such as these to add detail to my personal drawing work.

Onto the florals. Florals seem to dominate the Spring/Summer collections every yearand the SS14 collections were no different. Despite my general lack of enthusiasm for floral prints, I actually really loved the stencil and linear florals that seemed to feature in the majority of designers collections. Cutout, blocked in floral shapes featured in the collections of Marc Jacobs, Desigual, Dries Van Noten and Vivienne Westwood and strong graphic linear florals took centre stage at Jonathan Saunders, Peter Pilotto and Tracy Reese. Gone are the weak ditsy Cath Kidston-esque florals, the new floral for SS14 is strong, graphic and not to be ignored.

One of my favourite collections from London fashion week, and from all the fashion weeks combined in fact, was that of Christopher Kane. Championing the new stencil floral, Kane also provides us with a biology class through a fashion context, with colourful labelled flower cross sections featuring on his dresses and jumpers. Such a new fresh take on the traditional flora, I don't remember ever having seen floral cross sections as a catwalk print. This is definitely something I will be looking into for my own work.

Apologies for the circles around bits on this board, I've been using them at work to decide what prints to focus on....but I forgot to save the board so had to scan it back in. Ignoring that, the painterly floral trend is a great commercial way of introducing the abstract painterly trend!Although all the below designs are equally beautiful, I particularly like the Dries Van Noten dress which layers cutout florals and the background the flowers have been cut from on top of each other to create an interesting cut-out painted effect.

Below is my favourite trend of the season by far!Fashion turns to art for inspiration using purposeful brushstrokes to produce an array of colourful, childlike and expressive designs. I love the illustrative faces used in the Prada and Antonio Marras collections and the Gauguin-esque paintings used on the dresses in the collection for Aquilano Rimondi. Such an inspirational trend, it's so nice to finally see paintings gaining some recognition through fashion. It almost seems to signify a return to more traditional design as opposed to the digital designs we are becoming so used to.

Novelty is always the most interesting aspect of the catwalks, I always love to see what novelty trends are emerging,particularly when it comes to animal imagery, and for SS14 I have identified 3 main ones. 

Firstly, championed by Kenzo and Holly Fulton, was the usage of fish. As mentioned in my Paris fashion week trend post (, there was a strong seaside/marine theme to the SS14 catwalks and the usage of fish imagery is an offshoot of this. Although fish are generally thought of as slimy creatures, definitely not generally associated with fashion, I think there are so many ways fish prints can be made more feminine by careful colour choices and by adding more detail to the scales. 

A second novelty trend is insects and butterflies. Butterflies are always present in Spring/Summer fashion and are a particular high street favourite, but designers such as Matthew Williamson, Nina Ricci and Beccaria all featured them in their SS14 collections.

Birds were also popular with a variety of designers featuring ravens, parrots, hummingbirds and storks. The final image trend I think is worth a mention is the zebra. Increasing in popularity in animal prints, the zebra as a whole has now worked it's way onto the catwalk in the collections of Suno, Orla Kiely and Marani, amongst others.

So there you have it- an overall trend report on New York, London, Milan and Paris fashion weeks!Hope you have enjoyed looking at them, I'll post again soon with some updates about what's going on in my life design wise and hopefully I'll find something inspirational to write a more intellectual blog post on soon :)


Paris fashion week trend report!

So I am finally getting round to posting about the fashion weeks and the amazing trends that have emerged. I may have taken my time blogging about them but I have made some pretty little trend boards for you all to break down the trends a bit!

First up for Paris is the Linear trend of which I am a huge fan. Abstract agate lines dominated the New York catwalks and this delicate linear trend seems to be the Parisienne interpretation. Thin scratchy/scribbly lines layered on top of each other contributed to the hand drawn, illustrative looked that seemed to dominate every catwalk this season. Supported by Kenzo, Akris, Guy Laroche and Agnes B, this trend was extremely popular  but I feel like the designers who worked this trend best were Andrew GN with his delicate line work and Luis Buchinho's layered scribble prints. 
Paris also turned out some amazing novelty pieces this season!Galliano's beetle is a particular favourite of mine and I have already started working on my own interpretation of this print.I also really loved Miu Miu's abstract painterly faces which were hidden amongst other images and I am looking forward to using this idea to inspire some of my own work.

Seaside/swimming related imagery seemed to be incredibly popular for Paris's novelty prints this season. As a general rule I think we can now say that any trend that is backed by Kenzo is going to be a huge high street fad. After their recent takeover of the brand, Humberto Leon and Carol Lim(the design duo behind Opening Ceremony)have taken the fashion world by storm. Firstly with their Kenzo tiger design in SS13 and more recently with their all seeing eye in AW13, Kenzo's novelty pieces seem destined to become high streets fad's. Set against scribbly linear designs and wavy alabaster lines, Kenzo introduced koi carp prints which fit in perfectly with the seaside theme. Repeat prints of swimmers also featured strongly in the collections of Agnes B, Olympia Le Tan and Tsumori Chisato.

As a whole, this season's catwalk designers seem to have drawn inspiration from art and so every fashion week has had a very painterly/illustrative feel. As I come from a fine art  background, with a geekish fascination for art history, I could not love this trend more. I think it's great that fashion has turned to art for inspiration and, as a direct result of this, this season feels very colourful and expressive. I am so enamored by this trend that I intend to do an entirely separate post dedicated to it, but for now here is a trend board on the best painterly picks from Paris.

Florals are a staple catwalk trend for Spring/Summer but this year the painterly trend mentioned above has brought about a new floral development. Bright florals with purposeful brushstrokes featured alongside delicate illustrative linear florals causing designers to finally let go of the predictable ditsy floral prints.Expressive and often child like, this new floral is all about being playful. I'm very intrigued to see how this is interpreted for the high street and how much it gets diluted down!

Although it doesn't fit in with any of the above trends at Paris fashion week, one of my favourite collections was Valentino. Combining heavy colourful embroidery and folk art motifs, Valentino's SS14 collection was oozing with opulence. I love how Valentino has introduced this traditionally Autumnal aesthetic into Spring by layering the thick embroidery over sheer fabrics and using pops of blues/pinks to freshen up the collection. Another aspect of the collection that I am keen to see work it's way to the high street is the subtle introduction of the zodiac into the prints and through the necklaces. After researching future trends on Stylesight and WGSN, I am aware that obscure symbols such as the zodiac is set to become a major trend over the next year so it's really interesting to see how it is being introduced already. It also substantiates my belief that the majority of print/graphic related fashion trends are first introduced through accessories.

Here's a quick accessories overview showing some of the figures/shapes I found interesting. As you can see from this board there are a lot of bug and butterfly themed accessories over a variety of different catwalks/fashion weeks. Stars and celestial imagery is also becoming increasingly popular which I suppose is where Valentino's zodiac amulets tie in.

So that's Paris!I've been finding all these trend boards quite time consuming and so instead of doing a group of boards for each fashion week, as I have done with New York and Paris, I have decided to make some trend boards picking out my favourite collections from each fashion week and identifying trends across all countries.

Friday, 11 October 2013

Thank you :)

A big 'Hi' to all my followers/visitors!Sorry I have been so silent recently, I have had a heck of a lot going on but all will be revealed shortly!Just wanted to do a really quick blog to say thank you to everyone who has visited my page over the past 6 months, I have finally reached 10,000 visitors!YAY!

More posts will be coming shortly as I have a lot of things to update you all on! x