The arrival of 2021 brings a sense of hope, renewal, joy, and optimism for all that is to come – refreshing our surroundings with revitalized energy. This spring is full of vibrant colors, neutrals, fun and flirty fashions, and classic coordinates.
ON-TREND: LIVING CORAL
The Pantone Color of the Year 2021 is living coral, which is an energizing color found in nature. Coral embraces us with warmth and nourishment to provide comfort and buoyancy in our continually shifting environment. We’re seeing every color under the rainbow being incorporated into 2021 fashion trends ranging from vivid bright to soft feminine pastels.
ON-TREND: TEXTURE AND PRINTS
Spring continues to be a very pretty, feminine season with lots of embroidery, crochet, lace, texture, and surface interest. From crochet to fringe to appliqués and tassels, a fun look has swept through spring collections. Prints are everywhere this season from vintage, tie-dye, florals of all kinds, conversational prints, palm prints, and lots of animal prints. Don’t just settle on one print this season, opt for several as designers mix and match their favorites. We’re seeing pineapples, bold florals, and a pop of color play an important part in everyone’s collections.
ON-TREND: STATEMENT TOPS, BOTTOMS, AND DRESSES
Statement sleeves for tops are in. As far as bottoms and pants, anything goes. From fray to lace to crochet and embroidered hem detail. You’ll find bottoms that range in length from the crop, ankle, and even wide-legged pants. Trends in dresses are showing uneven hems, the boho/prairie look, sleeve detail, bow detail, the open lace look, feminine and bold florals, mini to maxi dresses, and everything in between.
ON-TREND: LAYERS OF JEWELRY
Jewelry layering is a huge trend combining looks with triple necklaces and simple pieces. Butterflies and multi-colored jewels are also showing up in jewelry everywhere. It’s been said by the great novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne that, “Happiness is a butterfly, which when pursued, is always just beyond your grasp, but which, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you.”
Carry your fondest memories with you! Lockets can be personalized with a photo of your choice inside. Lockets are a great trend and layer perfectly with other necklaces. What better way to show off your children, grandchildren, or a special memory. Collecting sand or pebbles from your favorite destination and adding it to your pendant is another great trend in cherishing memory and carrying it with you wherever you go.
It’s past time to break the cycle of dependence on sweatpants and leggings, and the spring 2021 collections certainly offer plenty of alternatives. Chief among them are wide-leg, roomy trousers seen everywhere from Louis Vuitton to Jacquemus to the affordable online collection Raey.
ON-TREND: CLING APPEAL
Sensual, body-revealing clothing is the story of brands like Givenchy and Versace. After a year of slouchy, cozy clothes, it’s not hard to see the appeal of a curve-hugging dress or a slinky knit top, unbuttoned to the sternum. There’s a certain comfort in wearing close, stretchy clothing, and a declaration that when if we are dressing for ourselves our bodies are worth celebrating.
ON-TREND: PUMP IT UP
Only the daring might try out Loewe’s bulb-shaped skirt, but the continuation of a Victorian pouf-sleeve is truly for everyone. Whether in a pastoral print like the midi dress by Brock Collection or as a ruffled Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini mini, a voluminous sleeve offers a bold new silhouette.
ON-TREND: ALMOND DRESSES
With almond dresses from Jacquemus, tangerine turtlenecks from Ganni, and a cream set by Proenza Schouler, there’s really no reason to regress back into sweats this spring. With a casual sandal and carry-all bag, a knit dress or set is the perfect at-home to outdoors look.
Of course, the function looks different to different people. Some will call the outdoorsy patchwork puffers from Chloé and the charming and warming Miu Miu pastel coveralls useful. Others will find purpose in knit bodysuits like those at Givenchy and Courrèges or the many blankets and wraps from brands like JW Anderson, Stella Jean, and Jil Sander. Shoppers who deem dressing up an essential task will find plenty of grittily glamorous frocks from Simone Rocha, Prada, Paco Rabanne, and Rick Owens, and cocooning couture shapes from Louis Vuitton, Patou, and Roksanda. For those who want to move through post-pandemic life with unfussy ease, there are roomy new jeans at Christian Dior and Balenciaga and pleated skirt suits at Molly Goddard, Max Mara, and Calvin Luo. Even monograms have toned it down, with new logo prints at Chanel, Versace, and Balmain. A rising generation of millennial power spenders has simultaneously dictated the return of escapist aughts nostalgia; forget the roaring twenties, when we return to parties, we will do it with the vigor—and itty-bitty, flitty little dresses—of Paris, Lindsay, and Nicole.
That’s a lot to digest, and as a season, 2021 doesn’t wrap up as succinctly as previous ones. Maybe that’s a good thing. As fashion adjusts to mirror our times, it must embrace smaller, more individually powerful notions of style. That explains why, like everything else right now, so many of the collections are in total disagreement with one another: Show some skin or cover it up! Be comfortable or be crazy!
Designers like Gabriela Hearst, Marine Serre, and Stuart Vevers at Coach are patching together unused fabric scraps to produce coats, dresses, and upcycled tees. These collaged garments are not only sustainably minded but also nod to a new, idiosyncratic aesthetic that is less about head-to-toe dressing and more about personal expression through style. It’s fashion with a little heart—and harmony.