Fashion that tells a story is the common denominator of the Fall/Winter 22-23 women’s collections, and there are several chapters for the coming season. In a recent webinar, Melissa Moylan, VP and Creative Director of Fashion Snoops, outlined the key trends, colors (looking at you, Valentino PP Pink) and items that will shape the next season.
With F/W 22-23 runway trends touching on the whimsical, nature and futuristic, Moylan described how designers are moving away from basics and safe bets to give themed collections the spotlight.
Enchanted: A dark color palette serves as the basis for Enchanted, a fairytale and mystical take on gothic fashion. “Dark notions of romance,” Moylan said, translate to special-occasion attire in items like cut-out dresses, capes and corset hybrids, while shiny PVC and form-fitting silhouettes add a “tilt dominatrix”. The dramatic trend is seen in accessories through blackened gemstones, long gloves, and bags and purses with shiny surfaces.
Meta: The future of fashion is bright with colours, fine, fancy knits and liquid sheen materials. “We also saw some interesting details and lines like the asymmetry, the cutouts as well as the youth-centric streetwear style,” Moylan said. Accessories provide opportunities for creativity, as evidenced by metallic shoes, shaded frame glasses and handbags with decorative objects that bridge the gap between art and fashion.
Tailored With a Twist: Designers add a new layer to the term soft tailoring. Fitted garments juxtaposed with soft materials such as slip skirts (Fendi in Milan) and strong shoulders associated with flowing skirts (Saint Laurent in Paris) offer an elegant look for A/W 22-23. Oversized coin pouches with wooden closures, wristlet bags – which take shape with the new mini bags – and cut-out loafers offer unexpected twists on traditional pieces.
Soft Living: Comfort is the driving force behind Soft Living, a theme based on fine knits and practical utilitarian elements. “Here we look at everyday essentials that are elevated,” Moylan said. “Minimal doesn’t mean boring. We see much bulkier silhouettes such as baggy silhouettes and rounded shapes. The theme translates to accessories with buttery soft leather gloves, scarves to match overcoats and oversized clutches with ruched detailing.
Roots: In Roots, the designs are inspired by nature as well as arts and crafts. Knits are applied to body conscious shapes. Blurred textures are used in relaxed column silhouettes. Accessories are bold with “unintentional rips” applied to shoes, tights and ties, contrasting with embellishments. Openwork knit scarves have a web effect. Cracked surfaces add textural interest to bags and belts.
Alps: Après-ski patterns combined with cozy, plush textures play a key role in Alps, which has a storybook cottage vibe. Isabel Marant’s leather overalls worn over chunky sweaters show another way of approaching the theme, Moylan said. Hiking boots are updated with subtle tonal details, while chunky heather socks and balaclavas continue the knit accessory trend.
Study Hall: Elements of college preparation presented in a fresh and casual way live in the study hall. “There are a lot of different items to work with, from vests and track jackets to pants,” Moylan said. Argyle, checkered and collegiate branding and color blocking are expected. Micro skirts, like the ones Miu Miu put on the map last spring, however, put a new spin on the traditional theme. Classic headbands in accent colors, structured bags with contrasting tweeds and chain details complete the look.
In Crown Jewel, colors that evoke a “high level of drama” reign supreme. Jewel-tone purple, cobalt blue and ruby red are must-have colors enhanced by high-shine surfaces like silk or enriched by fabrics like velvet.
Power Red “adds an energetic touch to collections,” Moylan said. Designers have applied the color to evening wear, tailoring and knitwear. “I think we’re still seeing consumers who want bright, vibrant, just heavily saturated tones and powerful red is definitely a business winner,” she added.
Names like compost, sepia, caramel, wood and dijon make up Deep Rooted, a color palette based on earth tones. These sophisticated sediment or decay colors are a way for brands to update their fall staples, Moylan said.
Corsets, which Moylan says started in the young contemporary market, have evolved into hybrid styles like chemises and dresses with seams that mimic boning. Column silhouettes are also on trend, but what’s new is how the shape is applied to casual dresses and skirts versus evening wear.
Powerful blazers characterized by strong shoulders are a key element for A/W 22-23. Details like twisted cutouts and nipped waists that create an hourglass shape provide variety. Wide-legged stockings that sag at the waist are another. ” We see [this fit] featured in so many different books,” she said. “It’s not just denim, we see it on more [tailored styles] that incorporate a crease or crease.
Denim, however, gave designers the opportunity to explore new washes and finishes. “Some of the main ones were an overall soft and acidic wash. Different patterns included patched or quilted effects as well as yellow hues,” Moylan said, adding that these details underscore the resilience of the Y2K trend.