Recently, I had the pleasure of attending the Première Classe and Paris Sur Mode shows here in Paris, and found Two Principal Directions in Accessories, along with several Micro-Trends to Watch…
- Pieces With Personal Meaning
A multitude of items, particularly in bags and jewelry, were noticeably designed to communicate personal convictions, beliefs and multicultural interests. It makes sense that, in an economic environment in which even affluent consumers reflect before buying, a piece that can make an emotional, private connection with its owner would be highly valued over the ‘fun’ purchases of yesteryear.
In this category, I saw pieces that reflected a sense of Artisanship and Heritage, such as in the handmade Alpine boots from rosa mosa or the Pyrrha line of jewelry cast “from authentic 19th century wax seals”, with “meaning culled from family heraldry”.
I would also include in this group a plethora of Folkloric Influences that were apparent, particularly in oversized shoulder bags, such as an enormous, Mayan-motif carpet bag from Laurence Heller, or the brilliantly multi-hued, hot pink fringed bag from Elliot Mann.
Last, but not least, as part of this trend, I saw a significant emphasis on “Ethical” or “Authentic” Products, with Hand-Knits everywhere, comfortably-worn Western or biker boots and beaten-leather satchels or shoulder bags. Notable here was Lost Property of London, whose bags made from recycled coffee bean sacks stood out as a bold choice for a Conscious Consumer.
- “Space Age” Hard Metal
Every point must have its counterpoint, and for the softer, gentler world of Pieces With Personal Meaning, it is the tough, “colder” feel of Retro-Futurist “Space-Age” and Hard Metal accessories.
This trend, though not quite as prominent as its kinder predecessor, showed its teeth nevertheless, in metallic spikes on long cuff bracelets, seen at Philippe Audibert, or on a smaller scale at various designers in articulated metal finger “cuffs” with scrolls or spikes. In shoes, this look popped up here and there in the form of metal studs.
The ‘cold’ edge of accessory design for the season also showed up in the form of “Space Age” looks, often highly structured and geometric, in silver metal (of course) and in colorful plastics. Two examples that stood out for me : Elena Canter from Spain, who showed a certain”Princess Leia” flair, with unusual metal headpieces, and House of Flora from the UK, who stood out from the pack with their clean, geometric, futuristic plastic eyewear, headpieces and such.
- Other Trends to Watch
* COLOR, the Brighter the Better: Though the Number One hue was undoubtedly Emergency Vest Orange, as marvelously exemplified in Tracey Neuls footwear, other tones stood out and shouted for attention…Peacock Blue and Fresh Grass Green, in particular, which were found in a fabulously unusual mix in Simona Vanth shoes.
*Art Deco Influence: In sinuously-curved wedge heels and felt cloche hats
* Girls Will Be Boys: Traditional men’s shoe styles made for women, particularly brogues and biker boots
* Also, a fair bit of both Python and Fingerless Gloves (not to be combined!)
Voilà! You are now officially ‘caught up’ on the latest accessories trends!