Mild winter inspires new season’s looks

Pops of colour, flawless tailoring, and bold, floral prints were all part of luxury fashion retailer Brown Thomas spring/summer 2019 collections.

Capitalising on our unseasonably mild winter, the show mood was vibrant and versatile with a sense of optimism underpinning 112 new season looks.

“It’s great to see a big pop of colour coming through,” says Brown Thomas fashion director, Shelly Corkery; a theme that was reflected in the pink and cobalt runway staging foreshadowing the high fashion hijinks to come.

Although spring florals feel more typical than titillating, this season’s sophisticated display diverges from the typical darling buds.

Maria Traynor wears Erdem long-sleeved floral dress (€1,175) and Laura O’Grady wears Christian Dior blue and white dress (€3,780). Pictures: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland

From ebullient layers of chiffon at Dolce & Gabbana to Zimmerman’s paisley prints, not to mention Erdem’s retro-inspired rose print jacquard coat — the memo is orchard-fresh and oligarchic, especially when rendered on dreamy diaphanous fabrics.

Tailoring, similarly, continues to dominate the style agenda albeit with an ’80s twist, as power shoulders make space for empowered dressing. Combined with saturated hues, expect this trend to take no prisoners. Prefer a quieter approach?

The omnipresence of utility chic makes tailoring more laidback than go-get-’em as the peerless lady tux finds a pared-back partner in the boilersuit. Top tip? Make like Stella McCartney in head-to-toe white — a creative blank canvas for layering.

It wasn’t all work and no play, however. Oodles of crystal embellishment, handcrafted accents, and froufrou feather trims celebrate the ritual of getting dolled up.

Even Isabel Marant’s urban nomad saw fit to upscale bleached denim with a silver sequin top.

The most notable mention goes to Richard Quinn, recipient of the inaugural Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design in 2018, whose mellifluous kaftan and voluminous leopard print coat populated Instagram with the hashtag #BTSS19. Be prepared for a serious case of slackjaw lust. Looking to dip your toe into the trend? Expect extreme toe kitten heels, slingbacks, and Mary Janes (bedazzled, of course) to add gussied-up gusto to your stride.

Maria Traynor wears Zimmermann patchwork blouse (€650) and red shorts (€550) and Aine O’Gorman wears Roksanda striped coat (€3,310).

Speaking of whimsy, Prada’s ode to the 1960s surfer girl made for the ultimate modern-day muse. Sporting printed neoprene tops, cycling shorts, plunging bodysuits paired with cutesy Alice bands, and logoed denier knee socks or, on occasion, a pair of sock sandals. 

Expect these to vie for pedal power against the ever-trending chunky tread trainer.

Colour-wise, although auxiliary hues received this season’s Pantone seal of approval, the minimalist rigour of earthy tones creates a considered sophomore offering. Think muted shades of ivory and sand, beige and khaki — a palette cleanser that reflects that shifting mindset towards sustainability and trans-seasonal wardrobe staples. Victoria Beckham, Stella McCartney, Dries Van Noten, and Jil Sander led the charge with a cache of elevated basics (look out for the cargo pant in luxe fabrications) that make the everyday effortless, particularly where transitional dressing is concerned.

Aine O’Gorman wears Peter Pilotto red and gold one-shouldered dress (€3,985) at the Brown Thomas spring/summer 2019 collections.

New brands? Kitri, MM6, Rejina Pyo, Rotate, Stine Goya, Comme Des Garçon Girl, Kenzo, Jil Sander, and Preen Line join the rails, while Victoria Beckham, Loewe, and Joshua Sanders are new to The Shoe Rooms. As for Cork? Expect established names like Roland Mouret, Temperley and Roksanda to continue their Leeside residency.

Should our demi-winter continue unfettered, we could be welcoming our spring wardrobes sooner than expected. That said, there’s no time like the present.

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