BUY luxury, buy quality, buy something that will become an iconic piece in your wardrobe - from Miuccia's Prada's chandelier dresses, to Jil Sander's raw and ripped chiffon, to Dolce's knickers or McQueen's metallic snakeskin marvels, to Lanvin's most beautiful dresses ever, to Peter Pilotto's prints, to Burberry's trench dresses, if you buy one thing for spring/summer, make it a big story. If the recession isn't letting up yet, buy one thing and the thrill will last.
If hemlines are to be believed as the rule of all things financial, though, things are certainly looking up - skirts are creeping up the thigh and bottom-revealing bloomers, henceforth known as hotpantaloons, first appeared in New York and bred across the fashion cities fast.
While there was a touch of sparkle in the front row of every single show, it's a trend that is built to last and whether you wear it on your tights, on lamé socks with high heels, around your neck, woven into your chiffon evening gowns or tied to your handbag, a little bit of glitter always does a girl good. Shoes are still big statements but heels are coming down too; kitten heels have even been mentioned and so have clogs (Chanel, Celine, Louis Vuitton).
The big story for summer though, is nudity - the vast majority of shows opened with nude, ice-cream colours, making cut and drapery the big style statements as opposed to eye-popping colours. Where last summer we obsessed about colour blocking, next will be about subtleties of tone: nude with peach with washed out nutmeg, or grey with icy blue. A general lack of clothing will be approved of too - your underwear must look its best next summer because if it's not on show it's not worth wearing - only to be covered by swathes of knotted and ruffled sheer chiffon - and a touch of lace will keep things interesting (Stella McCartney, Fendi).
White is always a trend for summer, but 2010 is expecting a full washout - bleached cotton came tailored and masculine or bulging and ruffled. And if you want colour, make it a check (Christopher Kane, Louis Vuitton).
So what to buy, if you will be shopping? Party dresses - lots of them, to be worn day and night: with interesting (and forgiving) folds around the hip for added shape. A jumpsuit - single shouldered or strapless if you dare. Loose trousers that taper to the ankle, preferably in silk. Bring shoes down a level or two, and if you venture from the washed out palette, make it a bold, tribal or ethnic print (Dries Van Noten). A trench coat, long or short (or turned into a party dress at Burberry). A belt - skinny ribbons or wide leather versions; the waist intends to allow you to show off your curves next summer. And if your curves are that good, swimwear is teeny weeny as can be.
And everybody's new favourite model? Australian model Abbey Lee Kershaw appeared in all the key shows, surely with plenty of ad campaigns to follow. Certainly no recession hangover for her.
- Dolly Jones, The Trend Report