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Expression, Recession, Celebration

Stay fashion forward in 2009 by choosing the right trends – strong contrasting blocks of colour, black and white and a retro 1980s look, Anaita Shroff Adajania predicts the trends for the year.

india Updated: Dec 31, 2008 13:12 IST
Anaita Shroff Adajania

Black is back this winter. As international shows trumpet its return, this time it has a new feel – stark modern sophistication as well as a rock-and-roll chicness. An infusion of rich jewel tones is also a luscious going-out requisite. Enjoy the festive mood by sporting either bandeau body-conscious dresses or single-shoulder drapey ones.

Going into 2009, the recession will determine the way we shop. Invest in basics and accessories – you can combine them innovatively, adapting them through the year by adding your personal touches. You can still indulge in fashion by following various styles on a budget and shopping smart. So here are some key trends to make your own:

Colour sets the mercury rising. Deep pink, coral-saffron and peacock blue are the way ahead. Blend contrasting blocks of colour if you choose to flaunt a stronger look.

Fearlessly explore the chaos of intermingling prints and colours. Layer and mix bold op art, African or floral prints with solid colours to create your own unique look.

Black and white combine to make strong statements. You can pull out some old favourites in these colours and combine them to create a graphic look. Try throwing a bold black and white woven dupatta over a slim kurta and lean stretch churidaars. Or complement a tight tee or skinny jacket with your mum’s stunning ikat saree.

The ’80s are back, and power dressing is at its best. Try shoulder pads on man-style jackets with peg-legged trousers that are baggy and tapered at the ankle. Experiment with elements from Flashdance, though I’m not so sure those cropped tops need to come back!

The intense interplay of sheer and opaque is an interesting trend; it’s like a fashionable game of hide and seek. Designers have innovated the technique of strategically covering with layers of sheer fabrics and lightweight jersey, ruffles, oversized bows, and dizzy sequins. It’s a flirty trend to follow. On the extreme, bondage dresses have made a comeback, it’s the elastic bandaged dress that works on a worked out body.

Denim will make a mainstream comeback, with broad legged boyfriend jeans (named for the way they fit, but best to buy ones made for women!) lending a cool look that can be worn in an androgynous I-don’t-give-a-damn way. Or add a sexy twist with stilettos and a skinny shirt tucked in. It’s also cool to marry denim with denim, especially in ultra sleek dark petrol indigos or some of the lighter washes with retro attributes.

Talking of retro, the jumpsuit is back. So slip into a loose slouchy jumpsuit in a light fabric, and team it with metallic roman gladiator sandals and chunky bangles for a look that can definitely go from day to club.

This is the era of the exaggerated statement accessory – be it a chunky necklace, bold belt, oversized shoulder bag, or wedges with embellished heels. Choose your statement and wear it smartly, but don’t wear it all together.

(Anaita Shroff Adajania is the Fashion Director of Vogue.)