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10 style trends that defined 2022

From Barbiecore to bodycon and lingerie-inspired dresses, this year was high on glamour and style

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan at Cannes in Valentino

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Trends come and go, but true style always stays relevant. However, without this recurring cycle of trends, fashion won't be half as exciting. While often we may find some of these trends cringe-inducing, it's hard to overlook their anthropological significance, from cinema to street.

Here's the lowdown on key trends, which made news this year and are likely to impact coming seasons as well.

Barbiecore

Hot pink was the new black this year. At Milan Fashion Week, socialite Paris Hilton ushered in major Y2K vibes closing the Versace show in a sparkly pink dress and matching pink heels. Before that, eclipsing the French Riviera during the Cannes film festival was actor Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, who set the mood for hot pink in a Valentino pantsuit. Influencer Masoom Minawala, too, picked an all-pink Yousef Akbar ensemble in Barbie pink. Among the AW 22 offerings, hot pink ready-to-wear pieces and accessories seduced the luxists, from Prada's pink leather coat to Gucci's dusty pink GG Marmont shoulder chain bag.

Also read: Looking for trending winter fashion? Try experimental knits

Heritage revival

It was the year of archival redux with mega brands reintroducing their heritage bags. At the beginning of the year, Fendi unveiled a limited edition Fendi Baguette, created for the series, And Just Like That. The Roman design house and actor Sarah Jessica Parker collaborated to design a custom pink sequin baguette, worn by her character, Carrie Bradshaw, in the episode, “No Strings Attached”. Another example was the new Gucci Blondie bag, artfully recontextualised from the house’s heritage unleashing an ungender vibe and slightly evoking the '70s.

The Gucci Blondie
The Gucci Blondie (Courtesy Gucci)

Bodycon style

The super skinny silhouette made a comeback, reminiscent of the 90s Kate Moss campaigns. After a few seasons of anti-fit styles, bodycon silhouettes erupted in the form of body-hugging slip dresses, shifts and cut-close-to-the-body trousers suits seen at Prada. At the Milan Fashion Week, Dolce & Gabbana collaborated with Kim Kardashian, who lent her look-at-me, sensationalist appeal to their realm of sensual Sicilian dress codes.

Lingerie-inspired dresses

Racy, sensual and offering a peekaboo, lingerie-inspired dresses, which were big even last year showed no signs of fading out. From David Koma and Nensi Dojaka to JW Anderson, strappy, slip dresses inspired by the 90s grunge were the flavour of the season.

Micro minis

The mini mania started with Miuccia Prada showcasing it at her Miu Miu show this season at the label’s AW 22 outing. The Miu Miu miniature came with a sportified tennis skirt version, paired with preppy polo tees, socks and ballet flats. An offshoot of the Y2K era, mini was also seen at Hermès, Courrèges, Chanel and Coperni. Some of them even come with a dangerously thigh-high slit.

From the Chanel AW 22 collection.
From the Chanel AW 22 collection.

Co-ords

It was hard to overlook co-ords inundating the runways at the fashion weeks back home. From Nirmooha to Nikita Mhaisalkar, from SVA to Payal Singhal, printed co-ords were seen making their presence felt everywhere. Moreover, co-ords conjure up an appearance of a one-ensemble or a romper but yet can be styled as separates, for a smart wardrobe.

High-octane shine

Space-age inspired fabrics and crystallised mesh were designers' go-to fabrics, both in India and internationally. Globally, Gucci came out with mirrored sequinned skirts and crystallised lace shirts and Louis Vuitton showcased gold tweed dresses. Back home Falguni Shane Peacock, Namrata Joshipura and Arpita Mehta used chainmail fabrics in their resort offerings. The memo was clear and succinct, go bold or go home.

Feathers

While India has always been synonymous with zardozi and sequins, it was interesting to see feathers becoming a ceremonial and bridalwear mainstay. On the red carpet too, actors like Shraddha Kapoor and Janhvi Kapoor were spotted in an array of fluttery feathered ensembles. From Falguni Shane Peacock's feathered shrugs to Gucci's trouser suits, which came with plume-encrusted sleeves and elbow patches, quills were easily one of the most defining red carpet trends.

Mesh

Looks like the naked dress is here to stay. At the Milan Fashion Week, Blumarine showcased sheer separates with ornate crosses embroidered on them. Prada, meanwhile, sent out some racy sheer coats worn over noir innerwear. Missoni's runway saw a panoply of knitted, sheer dresses and there was heavy duty transparency at MSGM and Etro presentations. In India, designers like Gaurav Gupta and Falguni Shane Peacock toyed with sparkly mesh presenting them with embellishments and texturing.

Cutouts

It's been a season of risque cut-outs on the bust and the waist. Bally’s new creative director Rhuigi Villaseñor had pelvage exploration on his mind as one of his knitted gowns was slashed on the midriff and the crotch, flashing skin. Back home, the cutout maxi has emerged to be the season's key silhouette seen across the board. At the fashion week in Mumbai, Alaya F., who closed the show for designer Nikita Mhaisalkar, wore a halter neck romper with cutouts on the sides. Nirmooha's sensually-charged resort runway was deluged with strappy maxis with cutouts on the midriff.

Also read: What's trending? Co-ords and cut-out dresses

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