The Spectrum of Style
The runways tendered a number of actionable and salable ideas for the Fall 2012 season, and these categories strengthened as the runway shows progressed. The yin and yang of fashion materializes with the blossoming of “ladylike” underscored by the statement of menswear messaging, the extreme opulence of fabrics offset with simplicity of style in color, and the continued fascination with earlier eras contrasting the thoroughly modern technology. Concentration on color remains stalwart, the most thought-provoking in hot or cool color combos in menswear patterns and geometric mixes. Patterns on a grand scale lead the charge—one can almost envision the swinging ’60s on Carnaby Street in London.



Betsey Johnson

Louise Gray Issa

Meadham Kirchoff

Sophie Theallet

april 2012


Fashion forges ahead for fall with distinctive clarity in universal, global themes which include:
The Iron Lady
Tory Burch Rodarte Nina Ricci

The reverberation of Iron Lady-inspired looks is strengthened by the yearning for the past, when women defined their status by strict suitings and accessories. The look sees the reemergence of the jacket, as well as dresses and skirts that nip in at the waist and fall gracefully at the knee. Tweed is on trend, but also important are wool crepe, silk, satin and sensuous, sultry fabrics that soften the strict suit sensibility. High-slit hemlines, louche lingerie layers and a touch of shine modernize this message.

Erdem Prada Ralph Lauren

Louis Vuitton

Derek Lam

Baroque fabrics laced with shiny yarns are emerging along with ready-to-wear, dresses and outerwear. Other fabrics to consider velvet, jacquard and a wide range of embroideries and decorative embellishments. Pattern is getting a big play. The fabrics are lightweight and appear in jewel tones, including emerald, purple amethyst, ruby and, of course, black. Many fabrics are mixed and matched with simple solids. In many cases, the dressy, baroque item is mixed with something casual and chic, à la cashmere sweatshirts and cropped leather jackets. Fur is another dimension to this regal rapture.

Carolina Herrera

Savile Row
The suit emerges as the uniform for fall, and the masculine mood offers a nice juxtaposition for those who dismiss the concept of ladylike. Pantsuits are paramount, double-breasted jackets emerge in strength and sexy flares heighten the sex quotient. The ’40s are in favor with Marlene Dietrich as a muse. Menswear patterns of houndstooth, Prince of Wales plaid, pinstripe and Glen checks supplant the strong solid crepe story.

Aquilano Rimondi

Miu Miu Donna Karan

The Age Of Opulence
Marni DSquared2

Wes Gordon


Prabal Gurung

Manish Arora Altuzarra Burberry Prorsum Marni

The night sky of northern lights is an inspiration for shine. Prabal Gurung called it “oil spill,” and Marc Jacobs applied holograms in decorative designs for a similar effect. The one common thread is a multicolor theme. The mostly florescent green hue dominates, but red appears as well. It is a new dimension for shine and— beware—it could just be the precursor to disco!
Dries Van Noten

Asian influences are many this season, from original art prints to kimono styling and high-wrapped waistlines. Fabric formalities intensify the message with linear jacquards in grid patterns and prints that underscore the style. Oxblood, cobalt, jade and creamy white as well as vivid autumnal colors round out the mix. Origami folds are in evidence, as are crossover necklines and simple wrap skirts.

Samurai Style

A Military Moment
Military is a mood which takes various guises almost every season. The message came into clear focus by the time the Paris shows wrapped up. Military has many variations, from French Foreign Legion (with the addition of a cape) or Britain-based in green and khaki. The flap-pocket is the unifying signature appearing on every item of ready-to-wear, from blouses and shirts to jackets, trousers, skirts and, of course, outerwear.

Rag & Bone



Proenza Schouler

Rough Riders

Antonia Marras

Tsumori Chisato

A Piece Of Work
Patchwork is the evolution of mixing medias surfacing in the upscale denim echelons, and also as a new motif on totes, complete with vintage travel patches and country or city stamps. It is fun and can be applied to all disciplines and customers of all ages.
Basso and Brooke

Casual, rancher style includes volume skirts from prairie style to lumberjack, blanket stripes worn woven as capes and wraps, and sweater coats or thick knit sweaters. Rugged has a feminine flair. Ladylike shirts, at times with, feminine edge, pleats, yokes and bibs, are the important underlayer in silk to oxford cotton, both in solids and ditsy feminine floral prints. Note Donna Karan the reference to the horse intarsia.


On the Radar:
Nina Ricci Balenciaga A Détacher Peter Som Marc Jacobs Tracy Reese Douglas Hannant



Jonathan Saunders

Arm Candy

Knit Wit

Donna Karan

Marc Jacobs

Alberta Ferretti


Jil Sander

Negarin J. Mendel

Lauren Moffatt




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