2013: A Year in Fashion

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As New Year beckons and the shops fill with glitzy Christmas offerings once more it’s evident that the red carpet is being rolled out for 2014. However, as the stereotypical Christmas film ‘Scrooge’ (by that I mean the Alistair Sim classic, not the Bill Murray knockoff) likes to remind us, it’s important to acknowledge the ghosts of fashions past, present and future. Yes, 2013 is ‘so over dahling’, but surely it can’t hurt to rewind and take a look at the styles, stars and revelations that shocked the fashion world all year through.

2013 for me is epitomised by ‘the gurn’, a facial expression so alien to the fashion elite that it soon became a thing of beauty. This was a clear case of ‘we don’t understand it therefore we love it’, classic fashion snobbery. The model ‘pioneering’ this move was none other than google-queen Cara Delevingne, darling of the fashion world and all round good egg. The model walked for every respectable designer at fashion week, watched by her on/off boyfriend of early 2013 Harry Styles and spent her spare time Instagramming photos of her impressive pout and crossed eyes for the world to swoon over.  Bar her mastery of facial contortions, Cara was seen in a plethora of fashion campaigns and sported some dream dresses and outfit combinations, resulting in her ascendancy to fashion royalty when she graced the cover of Vogue in March.

Also competing for this gurning crown was non-other than Miley Cyrus, who’s Disney Princess bubble burst at the Video Music Awards when she sported a latex nude bra and pants combo, whilst twerking alongside old-man Robin Thicke to Blurred Lines. The starlet looked to shatter her wholesome Disney image with a variety of questionable outfit choices. However besides the bizarre hair, her Met Ball floor length punk offering was adored by every fashionista, cementing Miley’s place as both the best and worst dressed of 2013.

Harry Styles, also known as the annoying member of One Direction, topped the fashion stakes this year, with his amazing ability to kid fashion critics into believing he created the sixties style clothing he attempts to rock. If one was to listen to the musings of some bloggers, it would seem Styles was the brainchild behind the classic skinny jean and Chelsea boots combo loved by a number of blokes much older and wiser than the Cheshire lad. His front row seats at S/S 2014 shows, most notably Burberry, unfortunately helped to replace the ‘that kid from the X Factor’ label with ‘Fashion Icon of the Year.’

Fashion Houses also saw great changes in 2013, dubbed ‘the year of the fleeing designer.’ Marc Jacobs officially stepped down as Head Designer at Louis Vuitton after 15 years with the brand, a move which Jacobs reassured fans was not prescheduled although the show, a retrospective akin to ‘this is your life’ said otherwise. Mulberry’s creative director Emma Hill also left her post amid rumours that the brand’s new owner was looking to appeal to a wider, ‘more exclusive’ market, in other words, upping the price of the bags for no apparent reason. For Hill the label was about achievable luxury, not overpriced leather, leading her to leave.

Style-wise, Spring/Summer 2013, saw ladylike lace in pastel tones, contrasted with leather, PVC and midriff-bearing looks. Peplums continued to be popular, swapping their burgundy tones from 2012 for softer hues. For me, Sandy from Grease pre and post transformation sums up the styles showcased for the beginning of 2013. Autumn/Winter 2013 saw British textiles take centre stage with masculine tailoring featuring in many shows and the high street awash with tartan. Leather was paired with oxblood accessories while the sharp-cut Zara skort was favoured by the blogging elite. Animal print and Houndstooth toughened up even the meekest of wardrobes. Autumn/Winter 2013 was Granny on a Harley.

Now here’s the thing, those tough looks from winter, the lace up boots, spiked shoes and battered leather jacket need to go back in the wardrobe. According to fashionistas and October’s S/S 14 fashion week, spring is all about soft, feminine shapes. Loungewear becomes high fashion as delicate printed sweaters are paired with elegant dresses and pastel tones rein supreme. Blue hues are back, as are the standard ethnic-inspired pieces we see every Spring/Summer. As an alternative to your beloved leather jacket, try a bomber in grey tones or a brighter box crop piece. These cover ups will compliment the soft, athletic looks which are already being channelled by Hollywood’s most fashionable, notably Diane Kruger.

If in doubt, or due to lack of funds,  stick to what you know and stay safe with ‘90’s style crop tops and loose knits. Channel a young Drew Barrymore in muted florals and chiffon layers, or kitsch prints seen on the cast of ‘Saved by the Bell’ which are destined to appear in high street stores in the New Year. Before then, enjoy your novelty knits whilst they’re still acceptable, don all your velvet and leather offerings and see in the New Year 2013 style.

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