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Fashion Version 2012

The stylish men and women of this world must have already started rethinking their wardrobe as we enter 2012. Here’s a word of advice to aid in that process!
Fashion has always led by example by injecting new ideas and radicalising dress senses with unyielding intensity and command. 2012, however, signifies a grand change in fashion. We are starting to see fashion’s increase in tolerance and drawing heavy inspiration from music and pop culture, more than ever noted before. With the lines of conventional pop, RnB, Hip-Hop and Rock’n Roll now blurred into a swirl of ‘chart music’, fashion too has allowed the iconography of the modern pop star to influence the very core of that beautiful gown on our runways and fine haute couture sewing in our boutiques. COLOUR is the buzzword this season. Colour is the new black.
Rise of the feline woman
In 2012 we can look forward to seeing print-work divorce their ‘gaudy’ label and taking a proud seat at the forefront of fashion. Animal prints will be prowling the catwalks, as seen in small burst over the last season, at London Fashion Week and throughout Europe. The typical leopard and black and white zebra print are getting an avant garde makeover featuring non-conventional colours like purples, pinks, yellows and greens in florescent. This ‘animal fever’ will surely take hold over the fashion scene and give rise to a fresh approach to working with pattern graphic. Motifs will feature influences from across continents. African tribal print for its vivacious presence, and Aztec high-contrast artwork as shown Burberry Prorsum at London Fashion Week Spring Sumer 2012, will certainly characterise the looks we see emerging.
The use of texture will also develop across time zones to fast become ubiquitous. Fashion houses are showing that in 2012, more really is more, if opulence is the desired look. Pleats, ruching and layering introduce volume for grandeur to create truly eye gouging couture. As for accessories, faux fur or feather gilets, feather earrings and, for the more adventurous, feather cape shawls are statement piece. The two fingered ring is a daring choice as an embellishment.
One of the clever new innovations coming through in the implementation of texture is combining feathers and sheer fabrics in layers to create volume, shape and movement. This look is for strong personalities as it screams couture and is guaranteed to always draw envious or approving eyes.
In contrast, sheer shirts and blouses are also seen to be populating boutiques, and gracing the ‘world stage’ viewed by billions. More and more artists are buying into the glamour of sheer, taking to the stage and wearing the classic look. Pairing a sheer blouse with stone-washed jeans adds a touch of individuality to your look. Sheer tops remain sexy and edgy, while sheer bottoms with high opacity skirts offer a touch of elegance. If wearing sheer skirts, the longer it is, the better it works to give a delicate poised look. Colours like black, soft peach, pinks and ivory help to soften and flatter any body type.
Men becoming colourful
In line with the advent of new colour schemes across fashion, men’s tailoring gets a facelift also with colours such as mustard, burgundy and plum making the bold move from the lining of the suit to being the main motif. Paired with a two tone brogue, a coloured suit is the quintessence of style in 2012.
Moving away from tailoring, there are three key features to look out for in menswear fashion: waste bands/belts over blazer, monochrome colour scheme with florescent highlights and colour-blocking. Mugler and Issey Miyake shows at Paris Fashion Week for Spring/Summer 2012 helped to drive the movement forward. We look forward to Autumn/Winter 2012 for continuity in this stead.
In terms of accessories for men, there is only one must-have recommendation that I will make, which is the ‘Man Clutch.’ Bringing instant style to any outfit, be it formal or casual, the man clutch lends support to the much loved Duffel Bag. However, where the duffel is obvious and cumbersome, the man clutch is discretely practical, holding only the necessary items that you require. Available in a range of sizes, the clutch is also the perfect solution for carrying documents discreetly, where a briefcase would scream for attention and cause a scene. A black leather clutch is always a winner if you are looking for the perfect ‘je ne sais quoi’ to accent your sense of style. Go for a patterned or coloured clutch.
As I said in the beginning, fashion is becoming more colourful this season, and making more daring moves. Lift up your chin and stride with poise. Nothing can stop you from flaunting these bold trends masterfully!