Spring/Summer 2011: Key Trends

So back in September I discussed the Betsey Johnson Spring/Summer 2011 collection, and I said in that post I would talk about other collections, but I never did. Opps! So I then had a thought that I would lump all the collections and key trends together in one handy little post. I’m not a slave to trends at all, and so you might wonder why I’m doing this post, but I am in love with fashion, so I adore looking at what designers come up with each season. Simple as that really! However as like myself, most my readers don’t have a designer friendly budget, so I’ll relate some key trends to some beauties on the high street.

1970s Glamour


Left to Right: Louis Vuitton, Derek Lam & Ralph Lauren

Fashion designers have been taking their inspiration from the 70s for sometime now, but 2011 sees 1970s inspired fashion as a full-on trend, and its going to be huge! Clothes see a nostalgia to the decade that brought us disco with vibrant colours, flared trousers and flamboyant fringing hitting the catwalk. Both denim and suede were dominant this season, as they were back in the day, creating more of that Hippy vibe, whilst the bold, ethnic prints also made reference to the glamorous era. Think Dallas! Think wide leg trousers and platform heels. As you can see Derek Lam and Ralph Lauren kept the look simple by pairing flared jeans with crisp white shirts and denim t-shirts with oodles of fringing, while the glamorous feel was exaggerated at Louis Vuitton with retro prints in rich colour ways, and huge oversized hats! I’ve seen tons of ‘70s inspiration flowing into the high street just recently, particularly Miss Selfridge.

Get the look on the high street…


Left to Right: Topshop, New Look, Miss Selfridge.

White Out


Left to Right: Stella McCartney, Max Mara and Dolce & Gabanna

White often has that sort of clean and clinical look to me, and this trend with all white outfits certainly acts as a stark contrast to the abundance of colour and print in many of the spring/summer collections this year. But all white doesn’t have to be boring, and can be done in so many different styles. For example, sharp tailored pieces were seen at Stella McCartney and MaxMara, but then Dolce & Gabanna's almost all white collection had fun with the pure colour as frilly, flirty and there was a underwear as outerwear theme going on. This look can be so easily imitated from the high street. In particular I am loving the River Island cut out pencil skirt shape below, with white crop top, which does two key trends in one!

Get the look on the high street…


New Look, Zara, River Island

Maxi Lengths


Left to Right: D&G, Erdem and Lanvin

Surprise, surprise, maxis are back! But aren’t they always a Spring/Summer trend? The long, floaty dresses brought a hint of summer romance to the catwalks this season like at D&G, but I think maxi lengths also took on a new dimension as they made strong statements in bold colours,, as can be seen with Lanvin. But also to gorgeous full swept lace (which we’ve already seen is going to be big) at Erdem which is just stunning. You’ll find maxis in abundance this season on the high street, but I reckon this H&M, in a very Lanvin esque style, is the most spot on in terms of a designer worthy copy!

Get the look on the high street…


New Look, River Island, H&M.

Colour Block


Left to Right: Prada, Christopher Kane, Diane Von Furstenberg

Think colour, colour, colour this season, it’s everywhere! This spring we welcome some of fashion's biggest, boldest and loudest trends. With electric colour, graphic prints, maxi lengths and bright white as some of the key looks to emerge this season, there's certainly no room for modesty. Not for the shrinking violet, it's time to stand out from the crowds! This reminds me of Pop art of something, with a colour palette featuring hot pink, tangerine, lemon yellow, jungle green and cobalt blue. One colour doesn’t really seem to stand alone; instead, they were blocked together for maximum impact on the catwalk, so you get clash, clash, clashing! So you get the trend full on at Prada, with vertical striped dresses, then neon on neon to make your eyes sore at Christopher Kane, but then a calming clash of greens by queen of colour Diane Von Furstenberg. Topshop and Zara have got this trend done to a tee, but if pastels are more your thing, then New Look have some seriously cute pieces, such as that yellow lace top, which I so need!

Get the look on the high street…


Topshop, New Look, Zara.

And a few more key trends I noticed…



Left to Right: Erdem,  Issa, Oscar De La Renta

Lace fans will be pleased to know that the lace fashion trend is back with a fabulous mix of  red carpet worthy styles as well as breezy casual chic outfits for daytime. And just because it’s Spring/Summer you don’t have to say no to black, which featured a lot this season, but for me personally, I am just loving that Oscar De La Renta number, just how Audrey Hepburn is that? Then at Erdem and Issa you can play up the huge colour block trend at the same time, and how amazing is that red dress, which is pretty much identical to a recent Topshop design!



Left to Right: Balmain, Balenciaga, Balmain.

An unusual trend for this season, I know, but this one has kind of rolled over from the previous season. But for 2011, I think it’s more about about incorporating elements of  the punk fashion trend and mixing it with other seasonal trends. For example, something ultra-feminine with a punk-rock edge.

Crochet & Macrame


Emilio Pucci, Gucci, Ferragamo

Both crochet and macrame are huge this season, and kind of goes hand in hand with 1970s trend. So pieces are based on hippy, festival chic inspirations. Macrame is mostly used for accessories and objects but it’s visible in clothing and accessories alike. Because it can often have a very open weave, macrame and crochet is 2011's perfect beachwear look. This can be seen in this crochet Pucci number, gorgeous Gucci macrame, which would look amazing over swimwear, and then that cute Ferragamo bag.

Crop Tops


Paul & Joe, Yves Saint Laurent, Rag & Bone.

Hmm, this trend may not be so achievable with the UK climate, and certainly not in February! But the crop top trend takes many form; from teeny, tiny tops to the smallest hints of skin. You can wear it with elegance, with the merest slit along the waistline of a dress, turning it into a two-piece ensemble broken up only by a shallow hint of skin, as seen at YSL. This contrasts with full tummy baring as seen at  Rag & Bone and Paul & Joe. These type of cropped tops end just below the bust, and were paired with hipster pants for a revealing end result. You could just as easily substitute the hip-huggers for a high waisted bottom half, though, if you wanted to add some modesty. But I think you could also wear a cropped top with a vest underneath if you were a bit self confidence, but also if you want to keep warm! I’ve seen New Look and Topshop already selling crop top designs, so try some on and see how you like it!

There are a few more trends, but I guess these were the ones I kept noticing and thought were some of the more central themes. The high street images are all taken from their respective spring/summer 2011 collections, and so should be making their way into stores soon. I know I’ve seen a few of the New Look things already. What do you make of this season, the trends, and the high street inspired collections? I honestly don’t think you can tell in some cases which is designer and which is catwalk, which of course reminds me of Gok Wan’s Fashion Fix show! Let me know your favourite spring/summer look!



  1. I love lace, I'm hoping to find a nice lacey shirt for the summer!

  2. @ Hayley- you need to go to New Look, they have tons!


  3. I got so much lace last summer because I was absolutely in love! Nice to see it on the runways! And for some reason I always love punk styles!

  4. @ Emily Anne- oh lace is always gorgeous, isn't it? And I think Punk adds a lot of fun to the catwalk :)


  5. Great post hun! Love it!!
    I am so in love with the Christopher Kane bright, shocking lace look and also, the whole 70's vibe at Louis Vuitton and Marc Jacobs xxx

  6. @ The Fashion Teller- Awww thank you lovely. I love the 70s look too, particularly at LV. So gorgeous.



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