Recently fashion director Ken Downing of Neiman Marcus stopped by the Windy City and gave us the trend report straight from the runways of Paris. For his presentation at Neiman Marcus, he displayed a wide array of both womenswear and menswear looks. While Fashion month is an all-out affair, fashion insiders agree that the trends are set in the fashion capital of the world; Paris. Even though, we are in the midst of Spring, in the world of fashion one always prepares early. Due to the expertise knowledge of Downing, Chicago is officially ready for Fall.
As each season rolls around, a new decade becomes the inspiration for style. One trend that is clearly apparent from the lines of Marc Jacobs and Kenzo is the pizazz and flair of the 70’s. Just a few years ago, the fashion world decided that we should discard bell-bottoms and trade them in for skinnies. Now in 2015, bell-bottoms are back and some of us are clamoring through our storage for what remains of these iconic jeans. However, many lines are making sure we don’t have to go looking through our storage as they are providing a fresh new chic look to bell bottoms.
With bell bottoms gently dragging the floor, many of the clothes of the 70’s provided a bit of movement. A gentle breeze of the wind and the twirl of fringe can bring any outfit to life. Throughout many of the looks of Downing’s presentation, fringe was at attention front and center. Various looks from designers such as Chanel and Stella McCartney included this go-to spring essential. Downing showed that a fringe filled look can transition into any season as fringe can be effective in any fabric from suede to leather.
While the show centered around cool weather fall fashions, Downing made the proud and bold proclamation that one can don their favorite furs all year round. Sure it may get a little warm, but at least you’ll look fabulous. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to wear a floor length mink; but, a shawl, fur cape or even a heavy dose of feathers certainly does the trick. This white Marc Jacobs number effortlessly displays a year round ensemble with pieces that can transition into any season. It also features another unique trend seen from the runways which are a dress over pants look. It’s quite bold, but I think this could be a fun trend to try.
You aren’t quite getting the full effect of the 70’s if you don’t include the bright lights of the disco era. Complete with flashy sparkles and metallics, one’s look had to certainly make an entrance when partying with the likes of Andy Warhol & Elton John at Studio 54. Downing brought the Disco era to the runway with sequin dresses, bright jumpsuits, and he topped off the looks with some statement making headpieces. This red Maison Valentino jumpsuit with quite the elaborate fascinator is sure to make an entrance.
For the bold and daring fashionistas, one trend that will never go out of style is the mixing of patterns. Stripes with polka dots and vibrant prints with neutral prints are perfectly acceptable to be mixed together. Downing shared that it helps to follow a certain color palette if one is hesitant to take the full blown mixing plunge. He styled a black and white ensemble by mixing a polka dot blouse with a striped skirt. As you can never go wrong with black and white, this look is great all year round.
While the ensembles that paraded down the runway were quite bold and daring, the statement jewelry pieces were also eye-catching. Downing shared that one of his observations during Paris Fashion Week were bold adornments. It was not unusual for models to be wearing elaborate earrings. They would wear up to 3-4 earrings at a time creating a dramatic look, like the look seen on the runway of Givenchy. For a more wearable ready-to-wear look, Downing translated the looks from the runway with bold brightly colored and large statement necklaces and earrings. A statement earring or necklace easily ups the glamour of any outfit.
I’m still in awe over the expert styling of the legendary Ken Downing. Easily one o the best-styled fashion presentations I have seen in quite some time. It was quite hard for me to pinpoint what my favorite trend was from Ken Downing’s presentation. From the fringe to the fur, I had no disputes with Downing’s thorough runway report. There were so many drool-worthy looks that I would be quite pleased to wear just about any of the looks every day. One thing is for sure, after Downing’s report, every Chicagoan is now officially ready for seasons to come.