• Emily Duff

The catwalk shows defining SS21 trends

Despite the ongoing Covid situation, catwalks across the four fashion capitals managed to go ahead. While New York and London opted for digital showcases, Milan and Paris held small events with social distancing measures in place. Some of the trends spotted at these events seemed very impractical, such as the capes and long trails that adorned the Raf Simons and Halpern catwalks. However, there was also a lot that I think we’ll start to see during our Tesco trips and Zoom calls.


As showcased by Chanel and Gabriela Hearst, monochromatic looks are going to remain a big trend for SS21. We’re slowly moving away from the trademark brown of AW20 and towards black and white once again. Christopher John Rogers and Dolce & Gabbana brought a new level to the black and white colour combo through the use of a checkerboard-style pattern – possibly taking influence from the recently popular Netflix show The Queen’s Gambit, which focuses on a chess player.

Similarly, silvers and greys seem to be coming back with a bang. This took the form of a lot of disco-style clothing which, as a ‘70s fanatic, I adored. Sequins seemed to appear in every form, from dresses by Balmain, cardigans by Gucci and suits by Louis Vuitton. While I can’t see myself wearing this around the house, let’s hope this trend preempts the return of parties in 2021...

Big pants and jumpers

In keeping with the online work and social schedules we’ve had to adopt, wide-legged, baggy pants, jumpers and hoodies frequently appeared. Shades of grey were most common from brands like The Row and Max Mara, but pinks and reds also took centre stage courtesy of Paul Smith, Stella McCartney and Chanel – ranging from deep and romantic colours to bright and childlike shades.


Everyone will have seen this trend on social media recently. Admittedly, at first I didn’t like it – why would we want to restrain ourselves after years of fighting it? However, after seeing the confidence it's inflicted on so many people, I totally get it. We’re not giving in to something we fought to remove, but reclaiming it as our own choice instead. Plus, it looks super flattering in any colour and shape. Clearly, the high end designers agree too. Corsets were seen everywhere, from Vivienne Westwood to Balmain. Alexander McQueen even paired one with a jumper to keep things comfortable. All it takes is a pair of jeans to make them look surprisingly lowkey!

Yellow crop tops

Crop tops and bralettes are here to stay, so it’s not surprising they featured in many collections, such as Dior, Boss and Givenchy. The most popular neckline seemed to be square, which I love, but the splashes of yellow were what brought me the most joy – there was even a yellow carpet for the Maximilian show. Yellow is everywhere as it brings a cheerful mood to any space - although, I might be biased as my room has always been yellow and I’ve even managed to incorporate it in my uni flat.


Charlotte Knowles and Acne Studios took on this material, but it was Etro, Valentino and Alberta Ferretti who made the daring decision to style it into dresses. The risk paid off as the designs were gorgeous, especially in the yellows and oranges that featured a lot. It’s a great material to turn a boring t-shirt and jeans combo into something more appropriate for parties and social events.

Edited by Katie Wheatley

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