That was quite an accomplishment. Fashion weeks are back in physical format after the pandemic. We’re also seeing new and exciting changes in the clothes and how they’re presented. While we’ve had ample time to discuss industry issues, we have some great ideas that will help us move forward. London was still hybrid, but the return of physical shows in Paris and Milan reminded us that nothing can replace seeing one another and experiencing shows in person. High-energy shows stimulated the senses and resulted in bold looks that ultimately drove business. We’ll be looking at the key moments and trends that shaped the return to physical fashion weeks for spring 22.
FASHION SNOOPS and Fashionneszone examined important shifts that will affect consumers. We both believe it’s essential to inform you about future inspirations, business shifts, and design strategies. This report is written by Melissa Moylan (VP of Womenswear, FS), and examines A Creative Renaissance Emerges during Spring 22 Fashion Weeks.
Luxury brands have triumphantly returned physical catwalks to offer more than just a parade of models wearing new looks. Raf Simons and Miuccia Prada presented their Prada collection simultaneously in Milan and Shanghai. Each event was streamed live on the screens. It was clever and a great way to expand global reach and accessibility via technology. This is a clear indicator of the times we live in. The buzzy fusion of Versace and Fendi for a design off’ collaboration is a perfect example of duality. Fendace was a cross-over of iconic designs from the Italian houses, which made for quite the spectacle.
The concept or ideas that challenged the idea of what a fashion show was or should be, however, was Demna’s “show” for Balenciaga. Balenciaga models were interspersed with editors, clients, and celebrities, such as Cardi B. As the most important fashion month event, the images were projected on large screens in Paris’ Theatre du Chatelet. This was fash-entertainment at it’s best. The film by Simpsons/Balenciaga, in which Marge and other iconic Simpsons characters glided down the catwalk to great fanfare, elevated the event. Gvasalia reimagined traditional fashion shows by incorporating pop culture into a digital format. This added humor and entertainment to the show was a great addition. The clothes were on point but the new format’s energetic relevance will be especially popular with younger generations.
Enjoy Joyous Freedom
Another highlight was the Spring 22 collections. They were full of color and glamour, clearly aiming to lift post-pandemic spirits. Bright, vibrant colors such as lemon-lime, power pink, green, and spritz orange all tap into the idea of product as mood booster. The key strategy for merchandising is color. It can be used across all product categories and has the greatest impact on both day and evening looks. Designers are anticipating a return to formal occasions when it comes evening collections. The dress category is seeing a significant rebound this season, with many extravagant styles available. Fendi’s disco glamour collection is a great example of a celebratory look. Many designers used a variety of embellishments, from fringe to sequins. Designers are betting on bold colors and novelty eveningwear to convey an optimistic outlook.
BRINGING SEXY BACK
Sexy dressing is one of the most important messages for the season. This is a broad-ranging silhouette direction that doesn’t necessarily follow a specific theme. However, Y2K certainly has an influence. This is about skin and designs that show that, particularly cutouts that touch erogenous areas like the clavicle or torso, it’s all about skin. The micro mini skirt is a hot topic thanks to Miuccia Prada, who exhibited the style at Prada and Miu Miu. These were the shortest styles of the season. Long and slim column shapes are also making a comeback, as well as body con dresses. This look is also characterized by exposed midriffs, which are accentuated with crop tops and bra tops. It’s aligned with Y2K fashion. It doesn’t matter how you do it, sexy will always be a way to empower all shapes and sizes.
Although handicraft is a less prominent trend than the others, its influence can be far-reaching and have the potential to impact well beyond the season. Gabriela Hearst is the CEO of Chloe. Her bespoke label, which she created, promotes craftsmanship and sustainability. To recognize items that feature the work of independent artisans, she created the Chloe Craft symbol for Spring 22. The result was looks that used deadstock fabrics, jewelry, statement macrame, and fringe styles. Altuzarra highlighted essential crochet tops, while Ulla Johnson showcased hand-dyed Shibori and craft details. The touch of human hands and sustainability are something that more designers are embracing and aspiring to.
In the end, Spring 22 was all about celebrating the return of physical fashion week with new ideas that we believe will be popular with consumers. By engaging people in conversation about the novelty of the unorthodox, the most talked-about shows were the best. Bright colors energized spirits, and sexy attire provided a liberating silhouette shift that gave people a reason to get out again. Although we are in rebuilding mode, designers have created concepts that feel both dynamic and fresh, anticipating better times.
FS is a global trend forecasting company that helps leading brands worldwide unlock innovation and drive growth. We combine human and artificial intelligence to analyze cultural shifts and identify patterns that can lead to trend-driven business opportunities. Learn more at Fashionsnoops.com