Fashion shows are my favorite form of entertainment. If I’m not watching Project Runway, The Fashion Show, Launch my Line or whatever other fashion-related reality show on TV, I’m flipping through runway shots in magazines to appreciate the latest silhouettes, taking note of hemlines and skirt lengths, colors and styles that are ‘in’ right now. Live fashion shows are the best, of course, so you can appreciate even the textures of the fabric and how it moves and falls.
Last week my friend Paula Ruelan, SM Cebu’s Brand Manager, sent over a cute invitation resembling a credit card for the SM Ladies Wear Fashion Show as seen on the runway of Philippine Fashion Week. That really got me interested, because usually we are accustomed to seeing collections of individual designers or a group of designers instead of pieces from a very popular retail brand. I’ve also started to notice that their collections have been getting a lot more stylish in recent months, venturing from safe to hip, and giving international retail brands a tough struggle for share of pocket, even taste and quality.
And the show was great, featuring a lot of classic pieces mixed up with the hottest current trends. The highlight for the audience was seeing Gov. Gwen Garcia and her daughter Atty. Christina Garcia Frasco, the celebrity models for the show, sashaying in iconic bodycon dresses. Based on what we saw, here are the top trends and must haves for the season:
- Little white dress– White is all the rage right now, and I really believe nothing can be quite as chic as an all white ensemble. White minidresses are great for the day, you can wear them under a blazer for work, then step out for lunch or dinner in polished, classy style. If a minidress isn’t your thing, go for trim white trousers instead, they look fantastic with anything- from florals, stripes and brights.
- Printed maxi dress– Very bohemian summer girl (and looks good even if it’s raining already). Maxi dresses make tall girls appear even taller, and give off a relaxed, playful vibe. The maxi dresses that appeared on the ramp that day were all flowy, colorful florals and were worn with a thick silver cuff for extra impact.
- Boyfriend blazer– There’s something very sexy about an oversize blazer with the sleeves rolled up 3/4ths, worn with either a minidress, shorts or jeggings. Instead of basic black, try ones in navy for a touch of nautical, or khaki/tan for a safari-like feel.
- City shorts– Shorts of varying lengths are also at the height of a glorious comeback, even passing for party attire when worn with a beaded or lace blouse. Just remember, if you’re wearing very short shorts, it’s best to top it with something loose and not too skimpy (or add a cardigan or blazer over a tank top) so as not to look to exposed. Leaving enough skin to the imagination is always a good idea.
- Body con dress– Of course, the body con dresses a la Herve Leger that were so in demand last year are still best bets for nights out around town. We saw variations in black and gray, and even multi-colored stripes. Time to whip up the Spanx and killer heels for an extra sexy silhouette! Oh, and do make sure when you get one of these dresses, make sure you have the right size. Too tight just looks really unflattering, and of course a size too big misses the point.
- Cropped pants– I also love cropped pants, they make legs look longer and adequately showcase your shoes. Very preppy, especially in navy, gray, tan or black. These days you can wear cropped pants to the office with a nice long sleeved polo, heels and a belt. On weekends, wear them with a fitted tee and ballet flats.
- Bold colors– My favorite part of this show was when the brightest colors of spring took over the runway- fuschia worn with purple, tangerine worn with emerald green, lemon yellow worn with cobalt blue. Absolutely attractive, it looked like a rainbow parade. The styles also varied, from shorts to cropped pants and palazzos, all in billowy flowing light satin fabric. It had a retro feel and yet was also very modern and edgy.
- Playsuits– Another must have is the one piece playsuit– both the shorts style in either plain or floral print for weekends and the palazzo style in satin or jersey for dressier occasions. Very disco diva! Then wear it with a gorgeous belt, bangles, a clutch and sexy heels and you’re all set to roll.
- Palazzo pants– As mentioned, palazzos were all over the collection as well and I couldn’t be happier. These babies are super versatile, you can wear them to work, to dinner, a cocktail event, and they can even be comfy enough to travel in. Palazzo pants also flatter your figure with a cinched waist. Wear them with wide belts and small tops for maximum impact.
- Jersey and Satin– We’ve had a fabulous love affair with jersey for quite a few years now, and I don’t think we’ll ever have enough of it. But satin raises the luxe factor a notch and looks good whether worn by day or night. Think white satin draped blouse with tan trousers—you’ve got the perfect look for a lady executive who doesn’t want to look too severe or stuffy. Or take a black top and wear it with fuschia satin palazzos—now you’ve got seriously fashionable party attire. Just like jersey, satin will probably never go out of style–so stock up, girls.
In addition to all this, also noteworthy were the SM shoes worn by the models, which were very current and colorful and could give pricey shoe brands a run for their money. All in all, it was a perfect ladies’ collection and I’m sure all the women in the audience rushed to the department store in a mad frenzy after the show searching for the items they spotted on the ramp. I know I did!