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5 Headline Fashion Trends from NYFW FW21

From architectural knitwear to the grandad tank and the rise of shirt suiting — this is your first look at next season’s must-know trends.

Courtesy of LRS

Fall/winter 2021’s digital fashion month is now upon us and there’s plenty to be excited about. From a blockbuster collection by New York Fashion Week favourite Proenza Schouler to the wit and ingenuity of Collina Strada’s ‘morphing’ lookbook — the US fashion capital was abounding with new energy. Note the runway renditions of the grandad tank, architectural knitwear and resolutely laid-back shirt suiting: this is your recap of the standout trends straight out of New York.

The trend: new shapes in knitwear

Gabriela Hearst, Bevza, Ulla Johnson.

Where we’ve seen it:

Gabriela Hearst, Ulla Johnson, Bevza

What you need to know:

About that knitted dress that you’ve been living in this winter… it’ll still be a wardrobe mainstay this time next year, too. If you’re not already a convert to the cult of full-length sweater dressing, Ulla Johnson and Bevza’s ankle-grazing yarns should prove persuasive. Meanwhile, Gabriela Hearst just put a wholeheartedly artisanal spin on the WFH blanket wrap with an eco-attuned collection inspired by creative polymath Hildegard of Bingen, an 11th-century German saint who “believed in ‘green power’.”

The trend: shirt suiting

Proenza Schouler, Bevza, Gabriela Hearst.

Where we’ve seen it:

Proenza Schouler, Bevza, Gabriela Hearst

What you need to know:

Let’s rephrase this sub-head as ‘what you already know’, which is: none of us miss restrictive corporate dress codes in the form of rigid suiting. Easy-going tailoring that is resolutely laid-back arrived at NYFW in the form of shirt suiting. Flick through Proenza Schouler’s FW21 collection and you’ll see exactly why designers Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez are so beloved by Ella Emhoff, Meadow Walker, and nearly every fashion editor from Paris to Sydney. As Vogue’s Nicole Phelps puts it, “they haven’t lost touch with their cool kid bona fides” — which means plenty of zero-effort chic pieces that we want to wear now.

The trend: the grandad tank

PH5, Our Legacy, Bevza.

Where we’ve seen it:

PH5, Our Legacy, Bevza

What you need to know:

Instagram’s most-wanted wardrobe staple has undergone a NYFW refit, complete with fresh styling cues. Try neat flares, a crisp ’90s boy band shirt or side-split ribbed dress to tap the new New York attitude that encompasses everything from uptown polish (seen at Ukrainian label Bevza) to pillowy comfort (look to PH5).

The trend: pleats

3.1 Philip Lim, Bevza, Adam Lippes.

Where we’ve seen it:

3.1 Phillip Lim, Adam Lippes, Bevza

What you need to know:

I’m going to describe our renewed appreciation of pleated skirts in two words: Princess Diana. The royal’s style archive, (she wore a waist-sculpting belt and swishing, accordion-like midi with aplomb), still has plenty to teach us about timeless style. So, how are we wearing them now? With an elegantly oversized tie-front shirt (3.1 Phillip Lim), boxy polo (Adam Lippes) or thigh-skimming coat (Bevza).

The trend: grunge redux

DSquared2, Our Legacy, LRS.

Where we’ve seen it:

DSquared2, Our Legacy, LRS

What you need to know:

In spite of the mass commodification of the grunge ‘uniform’ in the ’90s, the clothes that the original Seattle bands wore on and off stage were a pretty regular rendition of the city’s style at the time — just, perhaps, a little off. If you’ve found yourself seeking out well-loved plaid shirting, genuinely frayed-edge denim and decade-old jersey T-shirts from the bottom of your drawer of late, you’re not alone. NYFW fall/winter 2021 delivered a celebration of the worn-in, worn out and beloved pieces we all own and gave them the finesse they deserve — and we’re here for it.

Read Next: All The Hair and Beauty Trends You Need to Know From New York Fashion Week FW21

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