My Secret Hack For Beating Everyone To The Next Big Trends


A few days ago an editor friend texted me, "I know you have the Proenza boots I’m obsessed with," she wrote, lamenting over the fact that this season's combat boots from the brand were out of stock in her size. Not to brag, but it's a headache I never faced because I ordered them using an under-the-radar shopping trick that you too can employ to shop shop spring fashion trends now. It's the under-utilized art of the pre-order that I'm talking about here. If something comes down the runway that you know you'll have your eye on (and are worried everyone else might as well), ordering a season ahead of time puts you way ahead of the game.

"Imagine that you are sitting front row at a fashion show and you had your pick of every item that walked in the show," says Lauren Santo Domingo, Co-Founder and Chief Brand Officer for Moda Operandi via email. "That's exactly what Moda offers. Trunkshows are unedited full-range collections offering every color, size, and look from a designer within days, sometimes hours, from when the looks walk down the runway."

After spotting what would soon become my combat boots in Proenza's Fall/Winter 2018 runway show way back in February, I noticed that they were available via trunkshow just days later. (The pre-order model is different from the see-now-buy-now model in that manufacturing happens on par with usual fashion seasons — which means in the months following, rather than before the label's runway show.)

Though I wouldn't actually have the boots delivered to me until June, I was able to get an almost nine-month head start on my fall wardrobe shopping, and wait with anticipation for an impending package coming my way. It's a shopping strategy I try to use on a few key items every season. I don't want to blow my entire budget months in advance, but it's a good way to outline what my key purchases will be.

A favorite spring find I spotted at Prada during Fashion Month. Photo: @aemiliafay

An added benefit to the pre-order model, which e-tailers including Matches Fashion and Revolve also employ, is the fact that it removes the potential that something you see on the runway never makes it into stores. (In the fashion industry, buyers from major department stores often pick-and-choose which items they'll choose to sell, so what goes down the runway may never actually be available to buy.) Instead, "you're able to score your favorite looks in your size without having to wait to see if the department store bought into it," notes Santo Domingo. With a trunkshow, production is based on demand, democratizing what runway pieces end up IRL.

So, now that fashion month has wrapped, trunkshows are here for a limited time to let you cherry-pick the key pieces for spring months before your less-savvy friends have the chance. To help you nail down exactly what you need, I've done a little pre-season shopping below, highlighting a handful of items that hit on next years key trends. Pre-order your favorites now, and you'll have a special delivery to look forward to in the months ahead.