Exciting French Fashion Trends for Fall/Winter 2016

Exciting French Fashion Trends for Fall/Winter 2016

© Kenzo

Gone are the balmy nights and sweaty metro rides. In their place, Parisiennes are covering up frost-bitten digits with leather gloves and wearing a couple of extra scarves. Yes, oddly enough the weather did turn quickly in the City of Light to merge fall into winter. If you haven’t already transitioned your closet for the season, save yourself some time and space by getting it done. There’s no hope of you wearing that strappy maxi dress now!

Once you’ve got your base closet set, you can start to interject some French fashion trends for this Fall/Winter season, and the styles this year are the sassiest yet! Easy to pull off, full of texture and fun – you’re going to want winter to last all year!

French fashion
Image by Kirsti Alexandra Reid

Splash of Colors

The powers-that-be have chosen a rather unusual color palette this season, not so much for the colors themselves but as to how designers have decided to pair them together. It’s not often we see such bold choices and color combinations such as pink paired up with yellow. But, here we are and it appears to be the hottest combination of the season.

Designers all over are combining a fuchsia shade of hot pink with a pineapple yellow, color-blocking it in top and bottom separates or mixing the two into psychedelic prints. To embrace this color combo without looking like big bird (it’s a fine line, let’s be honest), experiment by pulling pops of color through your accessories and purses to enhance a more demure outfit. Unusual color mixes might look incredible if you’re Gigi Hadid but for the rest of us mere mortals, I’m not sure Paris is ready for a full pink and yellow get-up!

Courtesy of author
Courtesy of author

Also on the bold side of the scale this season is a rich bottle green and a striking orangey brick red. To balance out these attention-seeking hues, we also have a complexion-flattering icy blue, classic slate grey and a unique dusty pink lemonade shade. Of course, with the holiday period advancing quickly towards us, old faithfuls such as Christmas red, gold, silver and every jewel tone imaginable will be popping up all over the place.

Plush Fabrics

We fashionistas are spoiled for choice when it comes to fabrics this year! With a flashback 90’s vibe going on in beauty and accessories (the return of the choker necklace, platform shoes, dark lips and scrunchies galore), the 90’s have not been forgotten in the fabric department either. Velvet is everywhere this season, from crushed velvet boots to floor length dresses and winter coats; everything is being crafted from this plush fabric, particularly in pastels and jewel tones.

velvet dresses trend
Pictured: Alessandra Rich, Ganni, Maje (Source: netaporter.com)
And everyone from Kendall Jenner to members of congress have been spotted embracing the velvet slide. Although it was considered slightly tacky after its last battle in the industry, it’s back in full force, and I say go for it! Whether you just want to adopt a velvet accessory or you want to fully commit, velvet is flattering. It feels divine and nothing says rich and luxurious like a quality velvet dress. Think more in the line of Red Riding Hood’s cape than those nasty velour slogan tracksuits and you’re on target.

Metallic lurex is also one of the big three this season. It often rears its head around the festive months too. This year, it’s evolved in ways we couldn’t have imagined, taking the form of a tinsel-like structure for voluminous skirts and dresses. If you prefer to stick to the traditional uses, it’s also still being used as a supplementary yarn. You’ll find metallic lurex woven into wool coats, metallic epaulettes and elbow patches as well as some fancy knitwear with intricately knitted lurex to achieve just a hint of sparkle.

The pinstripe has finally made a comeback too, and it’s a great one to have at your disposal. Anyone can wear a pinstripe; it’s chic, elegant and elongates the body – what’s not to love? With so many different thicknesses and quantity combinations, from chunky overbearing stripes to barely there skinnies, there’s bound to be a pinstripe that suits you. Lastly, we also have some super shiny patent leather in the trends, from patent brogues to trench coats. The shinier the better they say!


Image by Kirsti Alexandra Reid
Image by Kirsti Alexandra Reid

Silhouettes to Make a Statement

It’s not just the 90s offering inspiration this season. Many of the silhouettes have come from the flower power 70s, with bell and cape sleeves and mom jeans all resurfacing. Sleeves are also seen to be extra long, surpassing the hands and often featuring a practical slit. No, this doesn’t mean that the fit of your clothes isn’t important anymore, it just means that if you want your clothes to be ill-fitted, it has to be in the sleeves only!

Hoodies trend 2016
Source: Sandro.com
The king of streetwear, the hoodie, is also having a moment and is extremely popular on the runways. Many designers have upped the cool vibe and added a little Goth or punk injection for a fun but relaxed look. Finally, for your more formal affairs, one-shoulder tops with elaborate embellishment seems to be top of the list for party and eveningwear. Everything from feathers to sequins and beading en masse is being used to create intricately embellished dresses and micro minis.

Now that you’ve got the latest trends, it’s time to get out there and look for pieces you can see yourself wearing this season. Don’t forget, it’ll be the festive holidays before you know it, so start having some fun and prepare your knockout outfits!

Kirsti Alexandra Reid is a freelance fashion designer and fashion writer based in Paris. Originally from Northern Ireland, she moved to Paris three years ago on placement with university and never wanted to leave. After finishing her degree and briefly moving to Thailand, the city of lights called her back home. Kirsti writes for online platforms, luxury fashion magazines and produces design tech packs for suppliers under her brand K Alexandra. She is a self confessed Paris addict and can often be found finding her Zen in Bois de Boulogne with her little Boston Terrier.



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