Spring Trends: Frantastic or Frightening?

February 8, 2012

Have you visited stores, lately?

Well, you’re in for a treat…as long as you are prepared! Stores are just now being jam packed with Spring’s hottest trends. Get ready for a big jolt to your senses! The top trends for the upcoming spring/summer season focus on wearing something bold.

All the bold options encourage you to step outside your comfort zone. The trick is what to buy or how to wear it without getting visually overwhelmed.

My goal is to help you look and feel fantastic, shop wisely and get the most bang for your buck.

So, to help decode Spring’s top fashion trends, I’ve broken them down into four themes. This way you’ll be ahead-of-the-curve and proactive before you even walk through the front doors!

First, let’s start with…color.


Image credit, clockwise from top left: 7 For All Mankind ‘The Skinny’ Overdyed Jeans $169, available at Nordstrom; JCrew Vintage Burnout T-shirt $30, available at Net-A-Porter; Marc by Marc Jacobs Neon Croc-Effect Leather Bag $495, available at Net-A-Porter.

Color is a huge trend theme for Spring! From brilliant brights (pants), to soft pastels (tee), to 80’s neon accents (handbag). Color is going to be everywhere, on everyone and in every incarnation.

In fact, color is the new statement piece where the color is the focal point in an outfit and every other piece supports it.

The most popular colors will be orange, pink, red, blue, green and yellow. And all of these will be available in various tones. So, the color orange will show up as tangerine, melon, peach tones and more. Find your favorites tones within each color and go for it!

Now, let’s move on to the next top trend theme for Spring…Prints!

*Note: Slideshow displays large full-size images. To open image gallery, select any thumbnail image above. To exit image gallery, click directly on current image displayed.


Image credit, clockwise from top left: BCBGMaxAzria Liberty Top $188, available at Bloomingdales; JCrew Colorblocked Striped Tee $45, available at JCrew; Rebecca Taylor Garden Flower Flutter Dress $395, available at Bloomingdales; BCBGMaxAzria Aven Color Block Trapeze Tank $78, available at Bloomingdales; Rebecca Minkoff Kalahari Printed Pants $328 available at Bloomingdales; Jil Sander Cotton Colibri Tee $260, available at Saks Fifth Avenue.

Just like color, you’re going to see printed garments and accessories everywhere!

Our pocketbooks will be happy, because, as you’ll see, there are a number of Spring prints that are carrying over from previous seasons, so you can still wear them and be in style.

Allover botanicals is a fresh, new and very on trend print for Spring. You will see floral prints completely covering jackets, blouses, pants, shoes, dresses, handbags…everything!

As with any print, remember the size of the flowers, for example, in the floral print, need to be proportional to your body frame. This will be the most flattering.

Another very jubilant print this Spring is the splash print. You’ll see wonderful colors just beautifully blended together to create an eye-catching piece. Find the splash print on pants, scarves, handbags, tees, etcetera using a single or varied set of color combos.

Note: Colorblocking is not truly a print, but a design construction technique. However, I thought it was most helpful to include in this category because the after effect resembles a print.

Now, let’s move to our third trend theme for Spring…texture!


Image credit, clockwise from top left: Quotation Red Haute Sweatshirt $84, available at Bloomingdales; Tory Burch Layce High Heel $395, available at Nordstrom; JCrew Cotton Mesh Sweater $78, available at JCrew; Tibi Katya Lace Top $265, available at Saks Fifth Avenue; Moth Tape Yarn Pullover Sweater $98, available at Anthropologie; Nanette Lepore Strutting Short Ruched Sleeve Top $228 available at Bloomingdales.

Sheer, lace, open-knit, mesh accents…you are going to see these textured details in everything for Spring fashions. (Note: Cut-outs are not really a texture, but it is a popular detail in apparel this Spring and I thought it was most helpful to include it in this category.)

I would like to highlight one of my favorite textures and show you the many different ways to interpret the trend. A woven design pattern is huge this Spring. Its most traditional incarnation is a woven knit sweater which you will see plenty. But, you’re going to be seeing textured woven designs not only made with yarn, but also, leather, straw, fabric, metal…pretty much anything. And used as an accent in every style of clothing and accessory you can imagine, including the heels of shoes (above), wallets, bracelets, belts, handbags, etcetera.

Now, let’s move on to our fourth and final top trend theme for Spring…I call it mixed media.


Image credit, clockwise from top left: Joan & David Darly Sandal $199.95, available at Nordstrom; Elie Tahari Corrina Skirt $198, available at Saks Fifth Avenue; Madewell Meadowbloom Pictureshow Tee $48, available at Madewell; Proenza Schouler PS1 Keep All Small Leather and Canvas Tote $1295, available at Net-A-Porter.

Mixed media, as in art, combines multiple colors, patterns, and/or textures in one garment or accessory creating a lot of visual stimuli in one piece. It is almost a hopscotch of all other previous trend themes I just discussed.

For example, note the sandals (above) mix multi colors of patent leather with a beautiful watersnake print. Or, the skirt is a fusion of multi colors, fabrics and prints.

Do you see what I mean?

You can style mixed media clothing or accessories where it is the one piece that is highlighted in your outfit or you can be truly daring and combine multi mixed media pieces.

There will certainly be some fantabulous, wild mixed media pieces out there for you to choose from. It is a Spring trend that inspires you to have fun with it.

So, there are my top 4 fashion trend themes for you to be aware of for Spring 2012. Go ahead and play with color (whether it be brights, pastels or neons), keep your eyes open for exuberant prints, incorporate clothing or accessories with textured accents and be sure to have fun and experiment with the mixed media craze!

As always, let me know if you find my breakdown on Spring trends helpful. Do you feel more empowered to tackle stores now?

Top image credit: See By Chloé, Pleat Skirt Dress $450, available at Bloomingdales.

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  • Opt75

    Hardly trends. “Color” “Texture” “Print” are just descriptors. You always have those. “Cat Print” or “Liberty Prints”, “Bright Pink” or “Silver Accents” — THOSE are trends. This “Article” must have been written by a neophyte.

  • Corporate Fashionista

    I can see where you might be confused. I, too, think the word ‘trend’ is too general of a term and overused as it relates to fashion. I would define ‘cat prints’, ‘liberty prints’, etcetera as fads and rather trends as the general direction or key elements of a current season. For example, a hot trend this spring season is wearing color and neon is a fad. In my experience, women are often overwhelmed when they walk into a store or shop online. There are so many available options. This season they will be bombarded with a variety of colors, prints and more. And they certainly don’t have the time to try and decipher each trend/fad. I have found it more useful and empowering for business women especially when I categorize fashion fads under/within a trend theme. I made an attempt to demonstrate this in the visual images laid out in the post as well as the text. But, you’re right…it can still be confusing. I hope that clears things up.