Style Later: Spring 2014 Trend Report

by Paige Schultz, Fashion Editor, and Fashion Writers Emma Leuman, Marissa Monett, Annie Murphy, and Meghann Stelzner

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It’s that time of year again. With the comfortable crispness of fall beginning to be replaced by the bitterness of the looming winter air, we have been provoked to bundle up in our tall boots, trench coats, layering separates, and cold-weather accessories. Yet as we fight to stay warm in the midst of this seasonal transition, another shift is taking place in the minds of fashion industry personnel as they engage in the discussion of trends for the upcoming spring season.

Now I know what you’re thinking. The mere thought of pondering spring trends at this moment IS contradictory. However, during a moment in time that is all about preparing for what’s coming next, it is essential to stay on our toes and prepare for the return of warmer days.

As such, our Fashion Team here at MODA has devised your ultimate spring 2014 trend report to not only help you anticipate what’s ahead, but to allow you to smoothly and stylishly plan you’re next fashionable transition no matter how many months away it may be.

Thus, it’s that time of year again – the time to spring forward.

Zac Posen, Burberry Prorsum, Marissa Webb


Taking a step toward tradition, many designers moved away from the saturated colors of last spring’s designs and focused on a softer, pastel color palette. From the almost exclusively pale hues of Burberry Prorsum’s spring collection to Christian Siriano’s mix of lights and brights, to Marissa Webb’s metallic soft pink, pastels found their way into most collections in some way. A pale blue dress even made its way into Bottega Veneta’s almost entirely dark and earthy color choices.

Pastel colors are often the hue of feminine pieces. Sticking to this custom, Zac Posen sensibly paired a girly, pale green tone with the flowing chiffon pleats of his dress. However, some designers chose to “color outside the lines,” so to speak, juxtaposing light, feminine hues with masculine articles of clothing. Jason Wu’s pale blue color choice both contrasts and compliments his androgynous structured suit, while a pale yellow softens Jill Sander’s over-sized, boxy suit coat.

Sheer Statement
Valentino, 3.1 Phillip Lim, Rag & Bone

Sheer Statements

While we all know that Miley Cyrus is a fan of the sheer statement by her Jean Paul Gautier ensemble that she wore in early September, we may not know that this transparent look is trending for spring.  Sheer dominated spring 2014 fashion week with pieces by 3.1 Phillip Lim, Jason Wu, C and Rag & Bone.

Yet perhaps the designer that represented this trend best was Chloé’s Clare Waight Keller. By looking at her collection, it was clear that she understood that no woman wants to don something so diaphanous that it parallels looking naked. Thus, her interpretation of the trend is a hint of transparency instead of revealing everything.  These gorgeous, lightweight chiffon looks emulate the theme of minimalism for spring, and while we all cannot all sport the no-underwear sheer pant that Cyrus wears, we can at least incorporate a clean, minimal look for class, throwing in a partial sheer statement every now and then.

Spanish Mexican Influence
Emilio Pucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Rebecca Minkoff

Spanish Influence

Designers took the idea of colorful spring-wear to a new level by incorporating Spanish and Mexican-inspired influences. In a sense, the popular spring 2013 trend of color-blocking has been transformed and rebooted for spring 2014 by mixing bright colors, patterns, and structures, rooted in Spanish and Mexican cultures.

Prepare for lighthearted spring months because anywhere you go with this trend is sure to turn into a fiesta as this trend personifies casual spring days with its relaxed styles and structures. Designers on the runway highlighted this look through embroidered skirts and dresses, incorporating fringe, mixing colors, and playing with eccentric patterns. Paired with minimalist accessories and shoes, designers allowed the cultural elements of these pieces to come to life, making a truly fantastic statement on the runway.

Sporty Structure
Alexander Wang, Carolina Herrera, Robert Rodriguez

Sporty Structure

In terms of apparel architecture this spring, designers strove for simplicity and modernity with sporty, structured shapes. Athletic looks are not necessarily innovative to spring trends, but this year’s designers took a new spin on the look with the right angle.

Alexander Wang’s collection was a leader in terms of representing this trend. In one ensemble, a boxy, white tee with rigid sleeves and an innovative, rectangular overlay was paired with sporty harem pants. In another, his pleated skirt resembled the angular pleats of a tennis uniform, and was made even more modern when mixed with a stiff, white oxford shirt.

Channeling the same idea, Caroline Herrera’s designs embodied this trend as well. The straight, athletic shape and minimal detail of her white dress creates an almost futuristic look. Similarly, Narcisco Rodriguez’s clean black and white color blocking and boxy, sporty pleats generate a contemporary feel. Even Balenciaga’s feminine patterns were made sporty with over exaggerated A-line dress and skirt structures.

Monochromatic White
Michael Kors, 3.1 Phillip Lim, Chloe

Monochromatic White

What better way could there be to embrace spring than by storing your dark winter clothes and exchanging them for bold, bright-white ensembles? For spring 2014 several designers sent a variety of unique, monochromatic white looks down the runway, creating a popular trend for the upcoming season.

At Chloe, loose flowing silhouettes with simplistic construction inspired an innocent and youthful feel. Yet at shows like Michael Kors and 3.1 Phillip Lim, professional, classic, and structured pieces such as straight-legged pants and blazers dominated the catwalk. However, no matter how it was represented one thing was clear: monochromatic white is versatile, appropriate for a multiplicity of occasions, and absolutely hot.

Fringe Details
The Row, Altuzarra, Tibi

Fringe Details

There’s no doubt about it: fringe was all over the spring 2014 runways this year.  Whether it was incorporated into the garment itself or into accessories, this statement detail was sure to be noticed.  Unlike its typically bohemian predecessors, this season’s fringe went in a modern, rocker direction.  Used in outfits that were distinctly chic to give them a little edge, this treatment was versatile and can work for any girl who wants to add a little runway inspiration to her everyday style.

The best representations of fringe were seen in numerous collections, yet most notably on the runways of Altuzarra, The Row and Tibi. In these collections, sophisticated, classically-fit pieces were intermixed with deconstructed fringe elements that turned ordinarily flat ensembles to fabulous. As noted by these designers, the more noticeable the fringe the better. The key is that the fringe should move in a way that will bring attention to the individual wearing it. The goal is to be classic yet edgy; unconventionally bold yet put-together.


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