New York Fashion Week: 6 trends to know before autumn hits

From slinky dresses to strong suits in bold hues, we round up the hottest styles that emerged from the runway for autumn /winter

A model walks the runway at the LaQuan Smith fashion show during New York Fashion Week at Spring Studios on February 10, 2019 in New York City.  / AFP / Angela Weiss
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We may only be one destination into fashion month, but already at New York Fashion Week, which concluded last night, the key pieces for autumn/winter 2019-2020 are emerging from the chrysalis of a summer not yet passed. Here, we highlight the trends that look set to dominate next season, to help you get a head start on your shopping list.

In the dust

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 10:  A model walks the runway for the Ryan Roche fashion show during New York Fashion Week: The Shows at Gallery II at Spring Studios on February 10, 2019 in New York City.  (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for NYFW: The Shows)
Ryan Roche. Getty 

Prepare to get loose when it comes to  outer- wear, as winter jackets have a prevalently slackened structure, tempering some of the season’s more taut tailoring. Duster coats are making a reappearance, but they’re not the flimsy constructions of years past; instead, those seen at New York Fashion Week are comfortingly cosy. Textured wools, autumnal stripes and oversized collars were spotted at Ulla Johnson, grounding more lightweight separates and one-pieces to chillier climes. LaQuan Smith made plaid the main player of his coats, adding contrasting prints for added interest, while Ryan Roche offered a more feather-light take, with boxy, Wall Street-style lapels and an ankle-skimming hemline.

Dye another day

Model Ashley Graham walks the runway of Prabal Gurung fashion show during New York Fashion Week on February 10, 2019 in New York City.  / AFP / Johannes EISELE
Prabal Gurung. AFP 

That’s right, the DIY technique that rose to fame in the 1960s and 1970s is back. Tie-dye, the artform loved by many a teen over the decades, has made a resurgence on the runway, with labels such as Area and

Prabal Gurung favouring the psychedelic print. But forget the tattered, grungy tie-dye tees of the 1980s and 1990s – modern-day iterations find the technique cast across fine knits and silks, rather than simple cotton jerseys. Vibrant, animated and yet somehow still elegant with generous gyrations of unabashed colour, the trend imbues winterwear with a beachy effortlessness. Follow in the footsteps of Prabal Gurung, who elevated the print by pairing it with a block colour plucked from within the swirls. The bold could wear the pattern head to toe as the focal point of their look, as seen at Kim Shui, while Jonathan Cohen provided a solution for those who want to dabble in the painterly trend, splashing tie-dye splotches across an otherwise sombre coat.

Buckle up

A model walks the runway of Phillip Lim fashion show during New York Fashion Week on February 11, 2019 in New York City.  / AFP / Johannes EISELE
3.1 Phillip Lim. AFP 

When it comes to the finishing touch for your autumn / winter wardrobe, it appears no look is complete without a belt. Myriad looks were tied together with a structured strap around the waist, cinching in slouchy tailoring for a more feminine effect. This is not a peek of buckle, either; belts were worn as the final layer, encasing knitwear, outerwear and leather jackets, adding a hint of silhouette to the season’s many layers. Tibi and emerging label Khaite put an equestrian spin on the concept, encircling leather bands around chequered wool blazers. It’s not just a detail to pair with suiting, either, with Proenza Schouler wrapping  Western-inspired belts around halterneck dresses. The most effortless take was at 3.1 Phillip Lim and Adeam, where co-ordinating in-built belts added an ease-of-use element, whether sewn on to utilitarian jumpsuits, looped around boxy jackets or knotted at the front of oversized shirts.

Chasing waterfalls

epa07357338 Models walk down the runway to present a creation by Brandon Maxwell during New York Fashion Week in New York, New York, USA, 09 February 2019. New York Fashion Week for designer's autumn and winter lines is being held from 06 to 13 February 2019.  EPA/JASON SZENES
Brandon Maxwell. EPA

Forget the sturdy knits and chunky wools associated with the season – next winter it seems we’ll be embracing slinky satins and silks. The louche, luxe fabrics were seen across catwalks aplenty, from Jonathan Simkhai and Dion Lee to Sies Marjan and Brandon Maxwell, imparting a romantic fluidity on wintry ensembles. For evening, rippling, figure-skimming floor-sweepers ruled supreme, as seen at Maxwell, while Marjan added trims of lace to midis for a boudoir feel. Palettes ranged in the acidic spectrum, with hot pinks, neon yellows and parakeet greens all in abundance, while Lee used military khakis for a more subdued take on the trend. Those who want to just echo a touch of luxury can take style notes from Ryan Roche’s creamy-hued collection, featuring silky separates – from billowing maxi skirts to relaxed blazers – juxtaposed against architectural tailoring and snuggly jumpers.

Home on the prairie

Models walk the runway for the Tory Burch Fall/Winter 2019 fashion show during New York Fashion Week at Pier 17 on February 10, 2019 in New York City.  / AFP / Angela Weiss
Tory Burch. AFP 

Disregard the drab, washed-out prairie  dresses of the past, because this year’s modern incarnation of the calf-skimming staple packs a more vivid punch. Traditionally, the modest gown has veered toward shapeless, covered in faded florals, but Tory Burch’s take borrowed a colour palette from the 1970s, rich in reds and russets. Patchworked dresses in conspicuous prints turned heads on the catwalk, and are destined to lift the season’s more restrained and functional separates when layered underneath. Longchamp brought hemlines up a notch, with minute ditsy prints taking centre stage against timeless accessories and platformed knee-high boots. Brock Collection, however, offered up a more traditional take on the demure dress, with Jane Austen-worthy florals on romantic, vintage-influenced silhouettes. Contrasting sashes and ruched details ensured the label’s offerings didn’t dip into the dated, instead culminating in trans-seasonal, ever-so-slightly chintzy dresses that will delicately lighten up a drab day.

A strong suit

Models walk the runway for the Tory Burch Fall/Winter 2019 fashion show during New York Fashion Week at Pier 17 on February 10, 2019 in New York City.  / AFP / Angela Weiss
Tory Burch. AFP 

Sugary pastel two-pieces and beige co-ords have had their moment – the newest interpretation of matchy-matchy tailoring is no wardrobe wallflower. Suits for autumn / winter took a darker turn at New York Fashion Week, with Tom Ford tankering with textures in a crimson look, comprised of silk scarlet trousers and a rich velvet blazer. A currant-coloured turtleneck finished the tonal effect, while Kate Spade echoed such lavishness with suits crafted in subtle corduroy, adding contrasting turbans and pussybow blouses for a nostalgic air. At Anna Sui, the go-big-or-go home aesthetic was at its peak, with glimmering brocade trousers and jackets bringing a decorative edge. Feather-trimmed cuffs and sleeves were extravagantly ornamental, proving that eveningwear for the season ahead can be as extra as one’s heart desires.