Spring/Summer 2018 Runway Reflection: Traces of Feminism; a fresh mood of Optimism...

 LETS NOT GET TOO AHEAD OF OURSELVES.... ALTHOUGH THE FW 2018 SHOWS ARE ABOUT TO BEGIN, A LOOK BACK AT THE MOOD OF FASHION AS SPRING AND SUMMER APPROACH.

Ah, the Fashion Cycle. Every six months, fashion students and industry makers sit on the edge of their seats- or desks, eagerly awaiting the definitive runway collections showcasing the major themes and trends for the upcoming season in four major cities: New York, London, Milan and Paris. With NYFW a mere 2 days away we are about to get a glimpse of what the most dominant looks for Fall and Winter fashion of next year will begin to emerge. 
As the industry is always churning out new creativity six months ahead of time, its easy to get caught up living in the future and lose footing in the here and now. After all, Spring and Summer of 2018 have yet to happen. So, wouldn't it be wise to hit the rewind button and give ourselves a refresher course on what lies ahead- along with sunshine and warmer days? I think yes. 

The two major takeaways of the shows that occurred six months ago were feminism and optimism. I spent months and months reviewing the collection photos, reading reviews and piecing together mood boards and intricately curated "Notes" on my iPhone. After six months, I have a pretty solid and deep understanding of the direction in which Fashion is headed. 2017 was a bit of a dark year for multiple reasons. As fashion often serves as escapism, now more than ever with the power of social media and supermodels that double as influencers and marketing gold, high fashion now has more potential and means to join the conversation and carefully present attitudes, perspectives and moods that will come to shape the public on a global level. And as we've seen with Hollywood and multiple industries recently- the "Me Too" and "Times Up" movements have made A-List actresses and household names stepping up to the plate inevitable. Fashion has the power to shape the attitudes and dictate the direction in which humanity is headed not just creatively, but an even more potent underlying power exists- that which it seems the industry is only just beginning to explore.

New Romantics

Designers clearly had feminism on their minds. Plenty of pink was seen on the runways, accompanied by ruffles, 3-D florals, tulle, and voluminous silhouettes. There is an undeniable sense of romance and an embrace of classic femininity. While in the past so many collections have had an androgynous and edgy mood, these flouncy designs are a refreshing change. After taking a Fashion History course last semester, it was clear that many designers looked upon the past for inspiration. The ruffled sleeves and ornate details reflected upon 18th and 19th century fashions. Think modern day Marie Antoinette.

Designers clearly had feminism on their minds. Plenty of pink was seen on the runways, accompanied by ruffles, 3-D florals, tulle, and voluminous silhouettes. There is an undeniable sense of romance and an embrace of classic femininity. While in the past so many collections have had an androgynous and edgy mood, these flouncy designs are a refreshing change. After taking a Fashion History course last semester, it was clear that many designers looked upon the past for inspiration. The ruffled sleeves and ornate details reflected upon 18th and 19th century fashions. Think modern day Marie Antoinette.

BUST A MOVE   An interesting new micro-trend emerged on the SS2018 runways that is not quite cohesive enough to pinpoint... yet an obvious theme emerged. Multiple collections showcased pieces that emphasized and showcased a part of the female anatomy that always seems to be at the forefront of controversy: breasts. "Free The Nipple" has been an ongoing backlash against Instragram's censorship; public breastfeeding has been another noteworthy subject capturing both the media and public's attention at large in recent years. The thing about- ok, for the sake of this article lets just call them boobs- Boobs are a paradox within themselves. On one hand, they are a very sexualized part of the female body: they have been portrayed as a tool of female seduction and sex appeal for centuries. While both men and women have nipples, a general attitude of taboo has emerged throughout time regarding a woman who chooses to expose her chest. On the other hand, boobs are a vital component of human nature at it's core: they provide nourishment to babies; arguably one of the most beautiful and majestic things a human being can experience throughout their lifetime. The issues that have been raised regarding feminism last year surely got many creative directors thinking of ways to express their stance on feminism, and it did not surprise me to see this unique and slightly bizarre silhouette that fashion hasn't been too familiar with- at least not in recent years.

BUST A MOVE

An interesting new micro-trend emerged on the SS2018 runways that is not quite cohesive enough to pinpoint... yet an obvious theme emerged. Multiple collections showcased pieces that emphasized and showcased a part of the female anatomy that always seems to be at the forefront of controversy: breasts.
"Free The Nipple" has been an ongoing backlash against Instragram's censorship; public breastfeeding has been another noteworthy subject capturing both the media and public's attention at large in recent years. The thing about- ok, for the sake of this article lets just call them boobs- Boobs are a paradox within themselves. On one hand, they are a very sexualized part of the female body: they have been portrayed as a tool of female seduction and sex appeal for centuries. While both men and women have nipples, a general attitude of taboo has emerged throughout time regarding a woman who chooses to expose her chest. On the other hand, boobs are a vital component of human nature at it's core: they provide nourishment to babies; arguably one of the most beautiful and majestic things a human being can experience throughout their lifetime. The issues that have been raised regarding feminism last year surely got many creative directors thinking of ways to express their stance on feminism, and it did not surprise me to see this unique and slightly bizarre silhouette that fashion hasn't been too familiar with- at least not in recent years.

FashionPamela Kivi