In most parts of the U.S. the weather is just now starting to get chilly enough to start pulling out our sweaters and jackets, but last month, before the first leaf started to change color, fashion designers in both Europe and the U.S. began unveiling their Spring/Summer 2012 collections.
Several popular fall trends will be carrying over into spring and summer; among them feathers, metallics, and geometrics. Lady Chic will be an important look, but expect it to take a turn toward the "spectator style" as the season begins to unfold.
I've been pouring over thousands of images over the course of the last few weeks, and thought it would be fun to make my predictions of the biggest color trends for spring, based on the new collections. We'll take a more in depth look later and look more closely at the hottest clothing styles, but for now, here are my picks for Spring 2012's Top Ten Color Palattes.
|Oscar de la Renta Collection Spring/Summer 2012|
photo: Elle magazine
Shades of blue made their way across runways spanning the globe during September Fashion Week. We were presented with blues in nearly every shade and hue.
Smokey blues were popular, i.e., the Emanuel Ungaro dress at left.
The designers also used lots of navy, both on its own and in combination with other colors, especially white.
Softer blues were present on the runways, often paired with neutrals.
Turquoise was perhaps the biggest news of all the blues, however. On it's own, or paired with black or white, it popped up in numerous collections again, and again. Perhaps the most important and striking of the color combos, however was the pairing of turquoise with tangerine. Expect to see a lot of this combination as the season begins to unfold in a few months.
|Emanuel Ungaro Collection Spring/Summer 2012|
photo: Elle magazine
|Left to right: Hermes, BCBG MAX ARIA, Emanuel Ungaro Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos: AFP, Elle magazine|
|Slides 4 & 6 Elie Tahari, Slide 5 Fendi Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos: Elle magazine|
|Slides 7 & 9 Carlos Miele, Slide 8 Agnes B Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos: Elle magazine|
As with most spring collections, picture-perfect pastels paraded down runway after runway. Ralph Lauren's collection was comprised almost entirely of pastels and white, and was clearly one of the best in this colorway.
He certainly wasn't alone in his passion for pastels, however. Premier and contemporary designers alike had their own unique renditions in shades of soft pinks, yellow, blues, and greens.
Pastels were often paired with white, and in most collections, the designers kept the effect soft and subtle, with no jolting or truly suprising pairings. Which is probably as it should be. Surprises came in the way of texture, where feathers, metallics, or other textural treats provided any needed updates.
Think Easter eggs and cotton candy, these designer offerings are just as delectable.
|Alice + Olivia Collection Spring/Summer 2012; photo Elle magazine|
|Left to right, Agnes B, Oscar de la Renta, and Ralph Lauren Collections, Spring/Summer 2012; photos: Elle magazine|
|Slides 4 & 6 Ralph Lauren, Slide 5 Diane von Furstenberg Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos: Elle magazine|
|Ralph Lauren Collection Spring/summer 2012; photos Elle magazine|
|Left to right, Betsey Johnson, Ralph Lauren, Vera Wang Spring/Summer Collections 2012; photos, Elle magazine|
Florals of every variety cropped up during Fashion Week. Designers produced a virtual garden of Eden with their fanciful floral confections.
At Alice + Olivia, even the theme of the show was "A Secret Garden." Instead of the typical runway show, designer Stacey Bendet created an informal indoor garden setting in which to debut her spring and summer collection based largely on vintage party dresses.
While florals were abundant throughout the new collections, the styles and colors varied wildly, just as in nature. Offerings included colors ranging from the palest of pastels to vibrant tropical colors. Some designers created realistic interpetations while others opted for a more stylized array.
From the tiniest of rosebuds to oversized abstracts, florals were a major design element in the Spring Shows. You can see from the slides below what a delightfully diverse garden we will be able to pick from.
|Bluemarine Collection Spring/Summer 2012|
photo: Elle magazine
|Slides 1 & 2 Alexis Mabille, Slide 3 Ralph Lauren Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos Elle magazine|
|Slides 4 & 5 Carolina Herrera, Slide 6 Diane von Furstenberg Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos Elle magazine|
|Slides 7 & 8 Betsey Johnson, Slide 9 Alice + Olivia Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos: Elle magazine|
|Slides 10 & 11 Betsey Johnson, Slides 12 & 13 Bluemarine Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos Elle magazine|
|Slide 14 Agnes B, Slide 15 Ralph Lauren, Slides 16 & 17 Diane von Furstenberg Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos Elle magazine|
Neutral colors will play a major role in the spring and summer fashionscape as the runways in New York and Paris were filled with neutrals in every sort of configuration. The designers gave neutral colors some very innovative treatments, and as such, they are a very bold trend stemming from normally quiet colors.
Browns, blacks, and beiges of every variety have been combined to create some very intriguing looks. Almost the entirety of Donna Karan's collection consisted of strong neutral colorblocking, which, by the way continues its popularity into the next season.
Designers Oscar de la Renta, and Carmen Marc Valvo put a very soft and feminine spin on their neutral attire while Michael Kors went the opposite route with rugged, outback inspired offerings.
Numerous design houses, including Burberry Prorsum and Elie Tahari combined neutrals with metallics for a shiny new spin. At Givenchy, neutrals were embellished with snakeskin accents.
|Oscar de la Renta Collection Spring/Summer 2012; photo Elle magazine|
|Donna Karan Collection Spring/Summer 2012; photos: Elle magazine|
|Slides 5 - 7 Elie Tahari, Slide 8 Michael Kors Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos: Elle magazine|
|Slide 9 Oscar de la Renta, Slide 10 Carmen Marc Valvo, Slide 11 Alice + Olivia Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos Elle magazine|
|Slide 12 Burberry Prorsum, Slides 13 & 14 Givenchy, Slide 15 Donna Karan Collections Spring/Summer 2012; photos Elle magazine, Getty, AP|
I hope you've enjoyed my take on what's coming for Spring. While many trends appear to be continuations of this and previous seasons, there are some real surprises ahead as well. Thus far we've only made it through four of spring's important colorways, so I'd love for you to join me as we continue to look at a few more in my next post. Until next time...
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Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's are also just around the corner, and I'll be doing special editions for these holidays as well. We'll broaden the scope a bit here and include decorations, recipes, and tips for keeping sane and polished during the holiday season. I'll have a "featured in" button available on the blog for you to add to yours if your submissions are featured. Can't wait to see all of your creativity!