Looking good, feeling good

Even when the world feels like it might be ending, this year’s fashion trends give us a source of joy

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Ciara Duncan / Dribble

This fall’s new fashionable trends include Victorian-inspired clothing, more fashionable menswear, 90s inspired plaid and tartan, and capes.

Ciara Duncan, Features Editor

The cycle of trends is never-ending and constantly changing with the times. So, what’s in style this season? 

On and off the runways, we’ve been seeing the same trends that return every autumn; jewel-tones pops of patterns, neutral colors, and warmer textiles such as wool, flannel, and fur. Still, we are seeing some new trends this year including Victorian-inspired clothing, more fashionable menswear, the 90s inspired plaid and tartan, and capes.

Victorian-inspired clothing, characterized by long dresses, high necklines, and plenty of ruffles, was seen on the runways of Gucci, Tory Burch, and Zimmerman alike. A personal favorite of mine, this style effortlessly extravagant and oh so feminine. An easy way to include this trend in your own closet would be to pair the dainty dress with a dark or masculine shoe, such as a combat boot or black leather bootie. This would enhance the contrast between both pieces, and keep the style modern.

The market for formal-wear is at an all-time low due to people staying home. But that hasn’t stopped menswear from dominating the fashion scene this fall season, giving us structured yet relaxed silhouettes in a rainbow of different colors. The combination of masculine and feminine elements is cool and modern, and the variety of shades that these business-chic outfits come in has something for everyone. Prefer a darker color-palette, but don’t want to look matronly? Stick with a sweater and matching skirt in a shade of black, blue, emerald green, or burgundy. Rather make a statement? Channel your inner Cher Horowitz and choose a shade of baby blue, pink, or yellow.

Plaid is always a fall must-have, but this year we’re seeing it take on a more vintage feel. This 90s grunge has infiltrated the runways and led us to a land full of darkly colored plaid flannels, dresses, and skirts. Combining a light-colored tucked in undershirt, oversized plaid flannel, and a pair of faux leather straight-leg jeans along with some light or dark-colored sneakers would be a true-to-form yet comfortable take on this trend.

 Tartan came in everything on the runways of both Dior and Miu Miu. Fair warning, though: tartan is tricky. It’s a busy pattern and one that can easily look boring or dated. In order to keep the balance, have only one of your tartan pieces be the focal point; a skirt, cardigan, sweater vest, etc. Pair it with items in the same color family, and combine textures to make a statement.

The runways of Michael Kors and Oscar de la Renta have shown that capes aren’t only for superheroes. As off-putting as they may sound, these capes seem to be far different from the monogrammed polyester strips of fabric we see around our favorite superheroes’ necks. Similar to a poncho top, these capes come in a variety of different styles and can be easily adopted into any wardrobe. Acting as a coat, it can be worn on top of any outfit, as long as it belongs in the outfit’s color palette and matches the general direction your outfit is taking. 

We’ve also been seeing more and more trends this year that specifically have to do with the upper part of the body due to the increased usage of video chatting across the United States. These include wearing large or asymmetrical earrings, detailed blouses, and the layering of accessories such as scarves, hats, or jackets. This is a perfect time to invest in durable, timeless pieces that can be worn over and over.

While we may not have anywhere to go and strut around in our coats and boots this autumn, we are still in need of good, fashionable clothing. The confidence that radiates when a person feels good about their appearance is universally recognized, and in a time where everything seems to be crumbling down around us, the last thing we need is to be stressing about how we look.