Skip to main content

WWDMagic’s Fast-Fashion Trends Favor Wearability Over Newness

What fall’s fast-fashion trends lack in novelty, they’ll make up for in wearability.

The season’s prevailing staples will favor practicality over frivolity, in familiar shapes and silhouettes that promise to retain relevance in wearers’ wardrobes for seasons to come.

As the industry at large grapples with its environmental impact, brands appear to be injecting newness into a host of tried-and-tested styles with many occasions for wear.

Statement-making coats stole the show with oversized tailoring and bold, classic prints, while mid-calf-length silk skirts offered a trans-seasonal alternative to jeans that could be dressed up or down.

Sourcing Journal spoke to WWDMagic president Kelly Helfman about the show’s standout styles for fall 2020, and how they’ll transition into future seasons.

Rust tones

“We’re transitioning away from greys and browns to burnt orange and rust,” Helfman told Sourcing Journal. “It’s not just trending in fashion, but in home décor as well.”

The palette ranges from deep, warm cognacs to bright, rich apricot hues reminiscent of autumn leaves, and has been applied liberally to garments of all shapes and sizes, from sweaters to dresses, pants and coats.

“It’s obviously perfect for fall, but we’re going to see it transition into spring and summer as well,” Helfman added.

Statement coats

“Statement coats have always been around, but the lengths are getting longer, the sleeves are getting bigger and the shoulders are getting bolder,” Helfman said, adding that brands are infusing the trend with newness via overstated, eye-catching versions of classic prints, like plaid and animal markings.

“We’re seeing brands play with textures, prints and layering,” she added.

Related Stories

Across the showroom floor, men’s wear-inspired peacoats reigned supreme. Double-breasted silhouettes and exaggerated collars adorned the oversized outerwear, which Helfman characterized as “boxy and structured.”

“We’ve shifted from the ‘90s to the ‘80s, which is influencing the move to a strong shoulder,” she said. “We’re also seeing that men’s wear is going nowhere—it’s just going to continue.”

Silk midi skirts

In silky or satin materials, midi skirts proved all the rage at WWD Magic. Accompanied by casual staples like vintage band T-shirts and boots or sneakers, iterations of the trend emerged in solids, animal prints and polka dots.

“While lengths vary, they are generally below the knee,” Helfman said. “We’re seeing a comeback in maxi skirts, as well as mid-calf lengths.”

Many versions also featured thigh-high slits, which Helfman said was influenced by the rising popularity of shapewear.

“The Skims line that Kim Kardashian came out with accommodates skirts with slits, because she’s made shapewear with just one leg,” she said.

Turtleneck sweaters

An undeniable fall favorite, the turtleneck was back with a vengeance at last week’s show. Ranging from low-profile mock necks to exaggerated cowls, the style was applied to skin-tight bodysuits, ribbed sweaters and heavy knits.

“Turtlenecks really made a comeback with the nostalgic ‘70s looks, and they’re commonly used as layering pieces,” Helfman said. The style acts as a perfect complement to the statement coat, peeking out with a pop of color from behind wide lapels.

“You’ll see them in workwear as well as casual, and in fitted versions as well as chunky sweaters,” Helfman added.

Loungewear sets

Mirroring the success of ultra-popular streetwear styles like sweats and hoodies, loungewear sets made an impressive showing across a multitude of women’s brands.

While mass casualization infected the market long ago, these new products seem more geared toward genuine at-home wear than laid-back street style.

Perhaps pulling from the comfy, cozy Danish concept of hygge, roomy tops and loose-fitting, drawstring bottoms in whimsical tie-dye prints and serene solids were a common sight across the showroom floor.