What will happen to fashion after a pandemic? Theories have already began surfacing as forecasters return to the field, giving everyone a sense of hope. The current state of dressing will return or better yet, move into something we can look forward too again. The world had turned to a place where getting dressed meant putting a shirt over your pyjama bottoms for your daily zoom meetings, not quite as chic as you think. We are not talking Miuccia Prada styling here.
Far from it, the prints so iconic to the house were nowhere in sight, the only prints we saw were the snowy penguins adorning the pyjama bottoms we practically lived in. I too became victim to this! It made sense, comfort was key as the workforce were working from home. Sales of athleisure and anything with an elastic waistband sky-rocketed and comfy became the new cool. However, all things, good or bad, must come to an end.
The fashion industry has been looking back on past events as a comparative tool to forecast what fashion will look like post-pandemic. Christian Dior’s ‘New Look’ comes to mind. After a time where fabric was rationed, Dior showcased beautiful silhouettes that combined luxury and a new minimalism. Sculptural pleated skirts that exploded from underneath tailored jackets that accentuated the wasp waist.
Oftentimes, buttons and belts were used, giving some of the looks an element of utility. This made complete sense as a war had just ended, the military was bound to inspire designers and their collections. It was a strong look. Somewhat masculine, combined with a beautiful, feminine silhouette. If this is anything to go by, we can expect the same influences, but further showing refinement and modernity. Showcased in Spring 21 we can already see the beginning of these influences, but expect a less obvious interpretation.
Designers known for their layering, colour choices and unique silhouettes are already presenting us with refined looks for SS21. This will only build momentum as we move into 22. Designers have began shifting to a place where they showcase what we know as the core of their brands. Revisiting iconic shapes and cuts which made them the powerhouses of fashion they are today.
Raf Simons for example, referencing his RIOT RIOT RIOT bomber jackets in Prada’s fall 21 show.
Simone Rocha, known for her bold use of print and texture, played with that carefully for SS21. The looks which still remained very Rocha were paired back and were as minimal as a maximalist would allow them to be. However, it was a noted and welcomed change for the designer. “A cream canvas dress with a scoop neckline, curved hips, seamed bodice, and a bow in the back. “Ah, that one!” Rocha concurred, “That’s my favourite.”
So what can we expect from fashion post-pandemic? A clean, minimal silhouette, think Jil Sander or Daniel Lee’s Bottega. Look to places of practicality for inspiration. Trench coats will surface as they do each year but now reformed. Luxury fabrics will be the base in which many designers will create their garments. The trench now, draped in leather. Rich cotton twills will provide staple trousers. Luxurious silks and chiffons will be crafted into blouses that will take you from day to night, weekday to weekend. Knitwear will be understated and will provide endless layering options. The overall styling will be minimalism at its finest. The colour palette will feature the use of earthy neutrals with deep, rich accents of colour. Rather than prints or patterns opting for textures and the combination of them to create interest.
Post-pandemic will be timeless, ageless and genderless.