It’s happened quite a few times: someone asks me in conversation if an element of fashion – a texture, a color, an idea – is on trend for the season, and I spout my knee-jerk reaction: “I guess. I don’t know”. (The other reaction I never voice is, “Why do you care? if you like it, wear it!”) They inevitably say, “You don’t know? How can you be a fashion blogger and not know what the trends are?”
While I don’t consider myself to fit under that particular title anymore (and probably precisely for this reason, among others) it’s not an absurd question. I’ve pondered it a lot. I’ll stumble across trends like anyone, catching a post about them on a favorite blog or spying them on Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, et cetera. They’re so focused on and in demand that, in my experience, they become pretty obvious when you spend an afternoon out shopping. I’ll even write about them here, occasionally, when they magically coincide with what’s on my mind and I have that little light bulb moment. But on the whole I won’t go looking for them, I won’t ask about them, I won’t cater my shopping habits to them…in short, I don’t really care about them. I explain this to people and have the urge to add an, “Isn’t that terrible?” or an, “It’s sad, I know”. Luckily, I don’t think I’ve ever let those slip out.
To feel dictated to by fashion takes the fun out of it. When you’re on the same page with the trends it’s wonderful; last year eggplant was having a moment for me and I thanked my lucky stars that it was everywhere. A few years ago I was obsessed with the vivid cobalt that’s been immovable from the industry lately, but it took me several seasons before I was able to find it in a pair of denim pants. Ahead of the curve? Maybe. Lucky? More likely.
I love runway shows, I love the thrill of Fashion Week every season, but it doesn’t define my understanding of style. Coco Chanel – as anyone would inevitable quote on this topic – said that fashion has to do with ideas and our lives as we know them; our passions, even. It’s about expression, and another person’s own shouldn’t direct ours. Fall strikes me every year as being much more focused on trends than spring and summer (or maybe that’s just my own perception). In the fall everyone talks about what the fashion forecast is, the fabrics, the colors – seriously, the colors – and it’s my favorite season so I’m not really going to have much of a disagreement if wine is on trend, or burnt oranges, or greys. Tall boots and sweaters, bring it on. Add in a deep burgundy lip, give me a Pumpkin Spice Latte and a book and I’m a very happy girl. Tell me that this fall is all about neon and I will leave you to your imaginings.
I think it would be a unique goal to use this season as an opportunity to build your own fashion forecast. What do you love, in this moment? What styles speak to you and your mood for the fall? Take in a few things from the industry – I’m partial to the rich burgundies and the baroque scene – but revel in the fact that fall is about reinvention as much as any season, maybe more. Why not take it from there?