QUIRKY TRENDS THAT ARE ON THE RISE FOR 2022

This issue, Katie Abson explores fun and quirky fashion predictions for 2022.

Y2K fashion took 2021 by storm – from low rise jeans to satin camisole dresses, to retro swirl print flares. High street brands such as Zara, Motel Rocks, and Urban Outfitters dominated our search histories, and we popped our heads into every vintage store in town in search of a floral-patterned midi skirt to pair with our twist halter crop tops.

For those who love to incorporate colour into our day-to-day style, 2021 has been a fashion dream. But what about 2022? Here are a few unconventional, quirky and unexpected predictions for the oncoming year.

Rubber shoes

There’s no denying it – Crocs are back in. The no-hassle, easy slip-on waterproof shoe is making a comeback for 2022. The “ugly” shoe trend, from Birkenstocks to clogs, are making a regular appearance in street-style fashion shows. Daniel Lee’s rubber Puddle Boots, a fashion- forward alternative to wellingtons, were Bottega Veneta’s most-wanted designer shoe of 2020. Next year is set to see a rise in poularity once again. Given the likelihood of the murky English weather we’re bound to have, these indestructible shoes are sure to brighten any mood or outfit.

Loose-fitting suits

The fearless power-suit is a statement piece that will never go out of style. But fashion predictions from the runway depict that looser fitting blazers and paired trousers are on the rise for next year. Gone are the days where women feel obligated to accentuate waist sizes to feel and appear feminine. Informal, boxier shaped suits are coming into style, presenting a more relaxed, casual and carefree appearance. We’re scrapping the form-fitting suits and pairing this oversized look with chunky trainers and a casual t-shirt. Bold colours are especially popular for this trend; block pinks, light blues and olive greens are sure to keep their reigning status in our stores in the following months.

Textured jackets

Designers and retailers are breathing new life into our jackets with fabrics that cater to our touch senses. Fashion forecasting predicts fringe detailings, particularly popular as an alternative addition to a leather jacket, will be a trendsetter for the new year. Soft wool, nylon, tweed, fleece, and faux leather offset with colourful patterns and sculptural shapes rose in popularity over previous years and continue to command the catwalk in designers’ 2022 collections. Texture is going nowhere.

Cardigans for men

In the not-too-cold for a coat but not-too-hot for a t-shirt flux of British weather, cardigans offer a comfortable in-between, ranging from chunky nana knitwear to lightweight button-downs. Designers such as Dunhill, Jil Sander and Prada are incorporating cardigans into their 2022 menswear collections. This unisex piece of clothing was spotted on the runway assembled in a range of styles and colours such as pastel and earth tones, pieced together with collared shirts, loose sweatpants, converse and suits. We’re excited to see more diverse adaptations of menswear fashion through the use of the humble cardigan in the foreseeable future.

Ballet flats

Ballet flats are back – but not as you know them. The practicality and ease of the slip-on ballet flat shoe has been worn for decades. Whether you don them for work, school, or to complete everyday chores, the ballet shoe is a trusted piece of shoe wear. However, recent years have seen a fall in demand for this style of shoe, replaced by slip-on trainers and boots. Now, designers are taking advantage of the dip in the market and are reinventing the humble ballet flat. Simone Rocha released a collection of platform ballet flats, complete with criss-cross straps, buckle fastenings and a delicate bow embellishment at the toe of the shoe. Given our obsession with chunky footwear in 2021, we are bound to see alternating styles of ballet flats popping up in our high-street stores, following in Rocha’s footsteps (pun intended).

Avant-Garde

Fashion and art go hand-in-hand, full of innovative ideas and self- expression. The merging of this pair is becoming a rising star in the fashion industry as we’re seeing unconventional designs, prints, and patterns take centre stage in fashion shows, exploring underlying satirical messages through each new design. Impressionist-style paintings are becoming increasingly popular as prints for t-shirts, dresses and trousers, alongside creative cut- outs and architectural jewellery and accessories. Influenced by Japanese designers who brought Avant-Garde to the forefront of fashion culture, designers such as Barbara I Gongini continue to make a huge impact on the industry, redefining what we know as conventional fashion. These designs are likely to seep into 2022 as a new era of experimental fashion. Be on the lookout for surprising geometric shapes, bold prints and intricate patterns inspired by our favourite artistic paintings from around the world.

Fashion forecasting is a wonderful way of predicting next year’s fashion obsessions, but we never really know what is going to take the fashion industry by storm next. Designers are constantly buzzing with new ideas, reinventing old ones, and have a way of surprising us in exciting and unconventional ways. The industry is continually changing and reviving and experimenting – who knows what will be on the horizon for the future of fashion. But we can’t wait to find out!

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