Fashion that tells a story is the common denominator in Fall/Winter 22-23 women’s collections, and there are multiple chapters for the season ahead. In a recent webinar, Melissa Moylan, Fashion Snoops vice president, creative director, outlined the key trends, colors (looking at you, Valentino PP Pink) and items shaping the next season.
With F/W 22-23 runway trends touching on fantasy, nature and futurism, Moylan described the ways designers are moving away from basics and safe bets to give thematic collections the spotlight.
Enchanted: A moody color palette serves as a base for Enchanted, a fairytale-meets-mystical take on gothic fashion. “Dark notions of romance,” Moylan said, translate into special occasion attire in items like cutouts dresses, capes and corset hybrids, while glossy PVC and bodycon silhouettes add a “dominatrix slant.” The dramatic trend is seen in accessories through blackened gemstones, opera-length gloves and bags and handbags with glossy surfaces.
Meta: The future of fashion is bright with colors, fine gauge and novelty knitwear and liquid-shine material. “We also saw some interesting details and lines like asymmetry, cutouts as well as just overall youth-centric streetwear styling,” Moylan said. Accessories tee up opportunities for creativity, seen in metallic footwear, eyewear with ombre frames and handbags with decorative objects that bridge art and fashion.
Tailored With a Twist: Designers are adding a new layer to the term soft tailoring. Tailored garments juxtaposed with soft materials such as slip skirts (Fendi in Milan) and strong shoulders paired with fluid skirts (Saint Laurent in Paris) deliver an elegant look for F/W 22-23. Oversized coin purse clutches with wood closures, bracelet bags—which are shaping up to the new mini bags—and cutouts loafers offer unexpected twists on traditional pieces.
Soft Living: Comfort is the main driver in Soft Living, a theme based on lofty knits and practical utility elements. “Here, we look at everyday essentials that are elevated,” Moylan said. “Minimal doesn’t have to mean boring. We’re seeing a lot more voluminous silhouettes such as baggy silhouettes and rounded shapes.” The theme translates to accessories with buttery soft leather gloves, scarves that match overcoats and oversized pouches with ruching details.
Roots: In Roots, designs draw upon nature as well as arts and crafts. Knitwear is applied to body conscious shapes. Fuzzy textures are used in casual column silhouettes. Accessories are edgy with “unintentional rips” applied to footwear, legwear and neckwear, contrasted with embellishments. Open-knit scarves have a web effect. Cracked surfaces add textural interest to bags and belts.
Alps: Après ski patterns combined with cozy and plush textures play essential roles in Alps, which has a storybook cottage vibe. Isabel Marant’s leather overalls worn over chunky sweaters show another way to approach the theme, Moylan said. Hiker boots are updated with subtle tonal details, while chunky knit marled socks and balaclavas continue the trend for knit accessories.
Study Hall: Elements of varsity prep presented in new and casual ways live in Study Hall. “There’s a lot of different items to work with from vests and track jackets to trousers,” Moylan said. Argyle, plaid and collegiate branding and color blocking are expected. Micro miniskirts, like the ones Miu Miu put on the map last spring, are putting a new spin on the traditional theme, however. Classic headbands in accent colors, structured bags featuring clashing tweeds and chain details finesse the look.
In Crown Jewel, colors that evoke a “high level of drama” rule the roost. Jewel tone purple, cobalt blue and ruby red are go-to colors enhanced by high-shine surfaces like silks or enriched by fabrics like velvet.
Power red is “adding an energetic pop to collections,” Moylan said. Designers applied the color to evening attire, tailoring and knitwear. “I think we’re still seeing consumers that want bright, vibrant and just heavily saturated tones and power red is definitely a commercial winner,” she added.
Names like compost, sepia, toffee, timber and dijon make up Deep Rooted, a color palette based on earth tones. These sophisticated sediment or decaying colors are a way for brands to update their autumnal staples, Moylan said.
Corsets, which Moylan said started in the young contemporary market, have evolved into hybrid styles like shirting and dresses with stitching that emulates boning. Column silhouettes are also trending, but what’s new is how the shape is being applied to casual dresses and skirts versus eveningwear.
Power blazers distinguished by strong shoulders are a key element for F/W 22-23. Details like twisted cutouts and nipped-in waists that create an hour-glass shape offer variety. Wide-legs bottoms that slouch on the waist are another. “We’re seeing [this fit] featured in so many different books,” she said. “It’s not just denim, we’re seeing this featured on more [tailored styles] that incorporate a crease or pleat.”
Denim, however, gave designers the opportunity to explore fresh washes and finishes. “Some of the key ones were an overall soft and acid wash. Different motifs included patched or quilted effects as well as yellow hues,” Moylan said, adding that these details underscore the Y2K trend’s staying power.