Wishful Thinking: Fashion Predictions, Lofty or Otherwise, For 2013

Dries Van Noten, Proenza Schouler, and Christian Dior Spring 2013
((l-r) PIERRE VERDY/AFP/GettyImages, Peter Michael Dills/Getty Images, Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)

As the curtain draws on 2012, we can’t help but to ponder — nay, obsess — over what’s yet to come. New trends emerged on the Spring/Summer 2013 runways, but whether or not they’ll stick (and whether or not we even want to see them stick) is another question. With the scope and interconnectivity of the modern fashion model forevermore accelerating, ARTINFO breaks down the best and the brightest of what we think we’ll see tomorrow. 

Dries Van Noten’s Spring/Summer 2013 Collection, Everywhere


If social media had a vascular system, it would’ve been white-capped with adrenaline when Dries Van Noten showed his S/S13 collection, a lineup that garnered what must have been 99.9% praise. Yet the e-gushing was totally deserved — Van Noten’s collection was the standout of the season, with its modernized take on grunge and its androgynous pattern-clashing. Smells like well-dressed teen spirit. 

For Better or For Worse, Céline’s Fluffy Footwear

Say hello to spring’s cutest hypebeast: Céline’s Muppet footwear. Expect to see stylists violently banging down Céline’s PR door to get ahold of these cushy accoutrements. Hate ’em or love ’em, they certainly incite bloodlust. They also beg the question — to what extent are designers consciously toying with the street style try-hards?

Incandescent Iridescence 

From twinkling crepes to matte satins, reflective fabrics will see a notable resurgence in 2013. The lynchpin in the light brigade? Raf Simons, who, for his debut Christian Dior ready-to-wear collection, showed a series of full-bodied skirts that crackled with static electricity down their spot-lit stage. The world was watching, thus sheen will surely be in demand. Keep an eye on Burberry Prorsum and Jonathan Saunders, too. 

Python is an Un-Endangered Species

Snakeskin — in authentic, synthetic, or printed form — slithered its way onto Spring/Summer 2013’s runways. Cavalli is probably breathing a sigh of relief, like, “Finally!” But the imminent reptile invasion won’t necessarily be all Roberto. Proenza Schouler showed diamondback patterning with color-blocked neons, and Erdem worked in boa scales over dainty lace. This trend will certainly be widely mimicked across High Street — it’s easy, and everyone loves a little exoticism. 

Instagram, Out

Everyone’s favorite party drug, Instagram, sunk its claws into the fashion elite’s skin this year (selfies with Derek Blasberg, anyone?). Then it hit a little snafu, proclaiming and then retracting its intent to own and possibly capitalize on every image ever posted on the app. Given Instagram’s hype, and the fact that it’s basically a glorified on-the-go vanity project for so very many people, perhaps the bubble will soon burst. At least give us an update, or a dislike button!

Brave New Internet

It’s been the year of the World Wide Weird, and things are only getting wilder. We’re talking next-gen collabos and cross-cultural, cross-gender, cross-media mash-ups. Take Dis Magazine, the online publication where micro-trends and invented fads are explored in fetishistic detail, and superstars like Fatima Al-Qadiri and Mykki Blanco reign supreme. We’ll definitely see more of this post-post-postmodern aesthetic in fashion and beyond as we head into the 20-teens. 

Fashion Grows Up

Recent seasons have seen a more grown-up look come back into favor, with grungy, model-off-duty slouch appeal giving way to something a bit more structured. As a new wave of designers comes of age, their collections are evolving right along with them. (Don’t believe us? Just look at Alexander Wang’s evolution from T-shirts to his latest offering, subdued suiting — a momentum he’ll have to continue at the hallowed house of Balenciaga.) And while we’ll always have a place in our hearts for studs and leather, here’s looking to polished tailoring, pastels, and pointed pumps.

The New, New Fashion Map

This year cemented the status of fashion’s latest international hotspots. Leading the pack are Sydney and Tokyo, where hometown designers like Dion Lee and Phenomenon have more and more editors paying attention — while cities from São Paulo to Moscow to Berlin are nurturing young talent of their own. And don’t underestimate the influence of purchasing power, as the high-end market courts the consumer hubs of Asia and the Middle East.  

Shake-Up Shockwaves

Between designer hires and major magazine moves, 2012 was the year of the shake-up. Could the shockwaves continue in 2013? This year we saw Sally Singer’s return to Vogue; maybe Anna’s exit is next? Could this be the year Karl finally retires? Who will helm the Schiaparelli relaunch? Will Hedi’s (Y)SL sell? The questions are endless.

Toned Down Luxe

With the global economy precariously perking up, major luxury brands are rethinking how they do business. While bags and shoes are still moneymakers, the new retail model is becoming a bit more sustainable and subdued. Whether it’s Dior’s streamlined couture, the Row’s label-less essentials, or PPR’s young designer grab, expect less theater and more pragmatism — and more salable clothing. 

For an illustrated guide to our 2013 fashion predictions, click on the slideshow.