Plastic Fabrics Meet Fall Fashion Trends

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This season, many designers broke out of the typical dark palette and brought color and life into fall trends. The fall/winter 2012 collections featured some familiar cool-weather favorites, such as leather, layers of black, and of course fur. But there were also some groundbreaking pieces that made us realize the cool months are perfect for layering color, experimenting with volume, and showing off our unique fashion sense with bold new trends to test-drive. What’s even more exciting is that many of these looks can be channeled using versatile plastic fabrics—many of which contain price tags that are a fraction of what the runway pieces cost.

Trend #1: Leather separates. At the DKNY show, there were bits of leather everywhere: a flared skirt, a wide corset belt, and my personal favorite—the leather sleeve blazer. This look has already come through at fast-fashion stores like ZARA, where everyday cotton T-shirts are accented by short sleeves—short, plastic faux-leather sleeves, that is. Synthetic leather made with affordable, durable plastics is a great fabric to integrate into your wardrobe. Plastic faux leather shorts are a versatile transitional piece that you can start wearing now and layer with tights in the cooler months.

Trend #2: Peplum. By now, you’ve probably noticed that peplum is everywhere. The Mad Men-esque throwback style is a fun, structured, and ladylike look to pull into your wardrobe. I love the way peplum was styled at Burberry: a lace peplum skirt can look extremely dated, but paired with a youthful puffer jacket and a graphic tee, the look is amazingly modern and fresh. Peplum skirts made with spandex plastic fabric are a great way to get the most out of this structured look. While some materials may fall flat, plastic fabrics help garments hold their shape and keep your look daring rather than dragging.

Trend #3: Prints. Gone are the days of simply piling on black to coast through the winter months with little color in your wardrobe. At Peter Som (and on several other runways) we were shown loose-fitting printed jumpsuits, fluid and flowing trousers, printed silk pants—you name it! You too can get the loose, flowing, printed pant look for much less than the price tag of silk, and without the proclivity for wrinkles, by finding a pair made with durable polyester plastic fabric.

These three trends will carry your wardrobe into next season with ease, and clothing made with versatile plastic fabrics will help you breeze into fall perfectly in style. Just remember, as with most things in life, a little goes a long way—so don’t get carried away and try several trends at once. Less is more!

To learn more about Erika Thomas and her blog, click here.