With the return of in-person shows at New York Fashion Week, Spring/Summer 2022 marked a turning point – things are not going back to the way they were, but there’s an optimistic attitude to be found. Designers are tired of sweatpants, too. With the return of designers like Joseph Altuzarra and Thom Browne (both from Paris) and Rachel Comey (from L.A.), the five-day schedule felt packed with fresh ideas, all seemingly focused less on the texture or print, but on how both the designer and intended wearer feel about the clothes themselves.
If you crave nostalgia, there was plenty of it — geared specifically towards the aughts this season. If you follow resale, you’ll know that popular labels of the era like Blumarine, Jean Paul Gaultier, and Roberto Cavalli are seeing an uptick. Now, you can look forward to baggy, low-rise pants anew. If you’re looking for fashion that makes you feel joyful, the playful fringe and painterly motifs transform getting dressed into a creative hobby. Lastly, if you simply want to make sure your newfound embrace of comfort never goes away, look to the rise of the visible bra as a cue to keep your fashion goals as casual as you want them to be.
Below, get your breakdown of the eight key fashion week trends from NYFW to bookmark now for the start of the new year.
While there were plenty of shimmery sequins to be seen on the runway, there’s a new way to do metallics come spring. Slick silk and leather, as seen at Tom Ford, Khaite, and Peter Do, is an elevated way to stand out. Just make sure you have sunglasses handy or you just might blind yourself, too.
Clothes Like Canvas
Yes, to an extent fashion is always art, but this season designers treated the items that they sent down the runways as a more literal canvas, covering the front of dresses and gowns fully with everything from abstract curves at Gabriela Hearst to more traditional motifs at Rodarte and Thom Browne. The easiest way to get in on this trend: pick up a tee from your local museum.
As polarizing as it is to admit, the bubble hem is back. This voluminous, soft draping choice was a favorite at New York's more traditionally feminine fashion houses like Carolina Herrera and Jason Wu. While this season, the style appeared mostly in evening wear, expect it to trickle down to more casual looks, too.
Now that you're used to working from home in whatever it is that makes you comfortable, designers are co-signing creative applications of what's in your closet. The bra is becoming a styling staple all on its own. At Michael Kors, it made up the top half of a matching set, while at Maryam Nassir Zadeh, underthings were brought to the forefront of a left-undone outfit.
Black & White
This season, the often considered “safe” colors black and white are not to be written off as boring. Designers used contrasting shades to create bold, patterned pieces — in everything from swirls at Brandon Maxwell to chunky stripes at Tory Burch. The message: don't be afraid to get graphic.
On The Fringe
Now that you have occasions to go out and dance, meet the trend that will make celebrating feel even more ecstatic. Fringe details, refined at Altuzarra and bold at Proenza Schouler, added texture and excitement to the simple act of walking down the runway. Look for soft knit dresses with playful bottoms as a simple intro into the style for spring.
‘00s Baby One More Time
Whether your early aughts icon was Britney Spears, Aaliyah, or Elle Woods, it’s time to dust off your old posters and put them front and center again. Thanks in part to the interest of Gen Z, trends like low-rise pants, halter tops, and mini skirts appeared on cool-girl favorite runways like Staud and Kim Shui.
New Suit Silhouettes
It may have been a while since you’ve tried a suit on for size. For spring, you may finally find yourself excited to try them on again thanks to playful takes found at Prabal Gurung and Bevza. Feminine details like flouncy hems and beading make for an ideal going-out look, while the pajama-style separates at Bevza make for an ideal transition back to workwear.