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It may still be winter (and lockdown) but I’m very much looking forward to ditching my loungewear in favour of some pretty new seasonal pieces. Although almost entirely digital, the shows from New York, London, Milan and Paris fashion weeks still provided plenty of new trends to sink our teeth in for spring summer 2021. Trust me, it’s going to be a good season.
Summer trends 2021: Feel-good dresses
Weirdly foreshadowing our loungewear/lockdown fatigue, designers such as Molly Goddard, Rodarte, Christopher John Rogers, Simone Rocha and Jacquemus have served up some dreamy, extravagant dresses that scream escapism. Honestly, even the dress-averse won’t be able to stop that smile spreading on their faces.
Think over-the-top tulle ballgowns, acid-hued florals, ribbon detailing, feel-good colours and puff sleeves galore.
Summer fashion trends 2021: New shirting
Thought the humble white shirt couldn’t be more boring? Think again. This season, the shirt gets a high fashion makeover, if the new collections are to be believed. At Valentino, it was thigh-length and pink, at Jacquemus, cropped and asymmetrical, and at The Row they were oversized to the max. Whatever your mood, there’s a shirt for it.
Summer fashion trends 2021: Denim
Ok, so denim never really goes away, but let’s just say it’s taking centre stage for summer. See Chloe and Paco Rabanne’s high-waisted flares for a 70s take, Chanel’s 80s neon jacket and Gabriella Hearst and Wales Bonner for polished denim gowns.
Summer fashion trends 2021: Skimpy LBDs
Get ready to bring sexy back, because the little black dress didn’t come to play this season. From Victoria Beckham’s keyhole detail dress to Khaite’s and Rosetta Getty’s lingerie-inspired frocks. The more skin on show, the better.
Summer fashion trends 2021: Monochrome
The colour-averse amongst you will rejoice in the fact that timeless black and white are the hues to be seen in this season. At Prada, models wore sporty shirt over tailored trousers, while at Alexander McQueen, the take was decidedly more feminine thanks to puff sleeves and full skirts. At Balmain, the power suit got an 90s makeover thanks to exaggerated shoulders and cycling shorts.
Summer fashion trends 2021: Pink and red
That said, those who do like to brighten up their wardrobes come spring will love the shades of Crayola red and pink taking over the catwalks. Again, we’re looking to Molly Goddard for that pop of colours, as well as Valentino, Etro, Halpern, Roksanda and Christopher John Rogers.
Summer fashion trends 2021: The revenge of the bra
Ever since Katie Holmes stepped onto a New York street in that infamous Khaite bra-digan, we haven’t been able to get bras out of our head. Case in point: pretty much every designer going has incorporated the bra into their new collections, from Dolce and Gabbana to Dior, Victoria Beckham, Simone Rocha, Cecilie Bahnsen, Jacquemus, Chanel, Giamattista Valli and many, many more.
If you’re not feeling brave enough to wear it as is, simply layer it under an oversized blazer or a sheer blouse, or over a shirt or midi dress.
Summer fashion trends 2021: Flossing and keyholes
Nope, I’m not talking about that TikTok trend, but an altogether more chic approach. We’re talking items embellished with straps, usually around the bust or midsection. Look to Supriya Lele, Christopher Esber, Charlotte Knowles, Jacquemus and Preen for some lovely examples.
Meanwhile, Gabriela Hearst, Victoria Beckham, Maximilian were just some designers incorporating keyhole details into their collections, but in a chic, wearable way. Think jewel-embellished cut-outs at the waist and dramatic back decolletages.