January may feel like an unusual time to be thinking about spring fashion trends, but – as we all learned last year – time has actually learned to fly, and we're refusing to be caught out again come March.
That, and the fact that daydreaming about next season's wardrobe is the perfect way to tune out of all the ‘new year new me’/New Year's Resolution noise…
Luckily for us, the fashion industry is always one step – and six months – ahead, having staged its spring/summer 2023 runways in September and forecasting our new season wardrobes for us before we'd even given it one thought.
Sure, a quiet Tuesday morning in the office might not see you reach for an anthurium flower to wear across your chest (unless you're an utterly devoted Loewe stan) or a metre-wide clutch bag (although Louis Vuitton's are undeniably tempting), but the seasonal runways are nothing if not bursting with inspiration. These theatrical catwalk accents might not make their way to your wardrobes, but you'd be naïve to assume that the trends on show won't heavily influence the fashion landscape – wherever you buy your clothes.
So what's in store for spring/summer 2023?
2022's obsession with all things fuchsia makes way for a softer, pastel take on pink, while black and cobalt blue are set to be the surprise stand-out shades of the season. Low-rise waists and sheer fabrics will be rife for those looking for something a little sexy, while ‘groundbreaking’ florals for spring get a punchy, three-dimensional upgrade.
For those of you who can't wait three months to indulge, you'll be pleased to hear that there were some strong trends to suit a winter wardrobe too… more specifically, your party season wardrobe. From riqsué boudoir-inspired eveningwear to high-octane sequins and some pretty major party bags (of the glitzy kind, not the plastic 90s kind filled with Haribo, blow bubbles and a napkin-wrapped slice of cake) you'd be savvy to invest in those spring trends a few months ahead of time to truly get your money's worth.
Keen to get ahead? Scroll down for your first look at the 13 fashion trends that will be dominating all of our wardrobes by spring.
Sheer fabrics have been having a real moment for several seasons, but never more so than for spring/summer 2023. From dress overlays adding drama atop a simple evening slip to more risqué lingerie-baring pieces, it's a super sexy way to layer and add a sense of sultry intrigue to a look if you want to forgo the more traditional routes of minuscule hemlines and plunging necks.
Spotted at: (L-R) Erdem, Prada & Victoria Beckham – as well as Molly Goddard, Miu Miu, Valentino, Bottega, Chanel, Rejina Pyo, Nensi Dojaka, Cecilie Bahnsen, Susan Fang, Sinead O'Dwyer, KNWLS, Tom Ford, Sandy Liang, Maryam Nassir Zadeh, Huishan Zhang, Fendi & Acne Studios
It's official, the nineties' favourite low-slung waist is back in fashion. With everything from jeans to suiting, shorts to evening skirts having been given the low-rise treatment, it seems our beloved high-rise may be taking an extended sabbatical for summer 2023. Pair your new look with a crop top for full midriff-baring impact.
Spotted at: (L-R) Givenchy, Stella McCartney & Zimmermann – as well as Proenza Schouler, Nensi Dojaka & Sandy Liang
You don't have to tell us twice. While sequin season may traditionally fall in December to coincide with the seemingly endless stream of festive parties, 2023 is ripping up the rulebook and declaring spring/summer the perfect time for a little glitz and glamour. Crucially, for SS23 the trend adorns a softer, lighter colour palette, with pale pinks, nudes and pastels set to be the most prolific.
Spotted at: (L-R) Nensi Dojaka, 16Arlington & Huishan Zhang – as well as Chet Lo, Valentino, Area, Michael Kors, Tom Ford, Brandon Maxwell, Halpern, Richard Quinn & Chloé
Fuchsia was undoubtedly the colour of 2022 (thanks, of course, to a certain Mr Pierpaolo Piccioli who ignited the trend in March at Valentino's AW22 showcase), but for SS23 the shade steps aside as a punchy blue hue takes centre stage. It's been a while since cobalt blue was at the forefront of fashion trends, and its return is a welcome one. Splashed across everything from dresses to jackets, skirts and even boots, you'll be wise to jump on this trend before we inevitably overindulge and return to our neutral wardrobes once again.
Spotted at: (L-R) David Koma, Cecilie Bahnsen & Alexander McQueen – as well as Richard Quinn
Perhaps not one to trial in the office, SS23 looks set to be one very sexy season with boudoir detailing at the forefront of eveningwear. Whether you dip your toe via a sexy slip with a little lace detailing or dive straight in with a head-to-toe look complete with hold-up stockings and lace gloves.
Spotted at: (L-R) Nensi Dojaka, Versace & Burberry – as well as Tom Ford, Victoria Beckham & Christopher Kane
If these were the bags handed out at the end of parties then perhaps fewer of us would make a tactical early exit. The antithesis of the plastic party bags of our youth – packed full of Haribo, blow bubbles and napkin-wrapped cake – these are heavily-embellished evening bags that loyally subscribe the mantra of ‘more is more’.
Spotted at: (L-R) Paco Rabanne, Fendi & Jil Sander – as well as Valentino, Hermes, Khaite, JW Anderson & Victoria Beckham
An unlikely shade to dominate a spring/summer landscape, black was an undeniable recurring theme of the latest runways. Of course, the colour takes a lighter touch than is typical, with skin-baring fabrications such as crochet and lace allowing giving the look an unexpected softness.
Spotted at: (L-R) Chloé, Dior & Louis Vuitton – as well as Cecilie Bahnsen, Dries Van Noten, Versace, Roksanda, Alexander McQueen, Valentino, Nensi Dojaka, 16Arlington, Givenchy, Richard Quinn, Victoria Beckham & Yuhan Wang
While the season may kick off at the end of March, there's a certain February 14th feel about one of spring/summer 2023's stand-out trends. Heart motifs were spotted across endless runways in September, splashed everywhere from hips to legs, chests to hemlines. Adorning dresses, in particular, serve up the perfect date night look for those willing to wear their heart on their sleeve (or anywhere else!).
Spotted at: (L-R) Paul & Joe, Nensi Dojaka & Acne Studios – as well as Victoria Beckham & Moschino
She may have slandered them back in 2006, but even Miranda Priestly would find these florals ‘groundbreaking’. More theatrical than your usual spring floral, next season sees the classic trend take on much more of a three-dimensional role, emerging from shirts, shoulders and even taking over your torso. Sure, the latter may be a little much for a quiet dinner with friends, but those unafraid of a stand-out fashion moment can't go far wrong with this one.
Spotted at: (L-R) Loewe, Richard Quinn & Roksanda – as well as Dior, Dries Van Noten, Nensi Dojaka, Carolina Herrera, Prada & Lela Rose
Fringing, of course, is nothing new, but the familiar design accent goes big next season. And we mean very big. From fringed ‘cuffs’ that begin at your elbow to entirely fringed dresses, fringed clutch bags and, hey, why not *actual* fringes… Whatever it is, if it's fringed, next season, we're into it.
Spotted at: (L-R) Jil Sander, Victoria Beckham & Proenza Schouler – as well as Jonathan Simkhai, Givenchy, Alexander McQueen & Acne Studios
Step aside fuchsia; there's a new shade to know. A softer, more pastel, candyfloss shade of pink is taking over next season, welcoming a less intense, more approachable way into the trend. Whether you wear it splashed across your look from head to toe or invest in some saccharine accessories – you'd be wise to think pink come March.
Spotted at: (L-R) Victoria Beckham, Acne Studios & Zimmermann - as well as Nensi Dojaka
There was a very specific, romantic colour trend that dominated the spring/summer runways – with a soft sunset ombré proving an unexpected hit. Seeing reds run into oranges, yellows and whites was the perfect warm antidote to the blustery winds outside the September shows, offering up a sense of optimism for the new season. If you spot a piece with this sunset shading, you won't regret the investment.
Spotted at: (L-R) JW Anderson, GCDS & Zimmermann - as well as Ferragamo & Courreges
Tailoring is becoming more and more popular during the warmer months thanks to the industry leaning into softer, slouchier shapes. But for SS23 things get even more fairweather-friendly, with soft pastel shades dominating the suiting landscape. Rather than the pinks we've become accustomed to, though, next season it's all about pastel blues, greens and greys.
Spotted at: (L-R) Eudon Choi, Stella McCartney & Rejina Pyo - as well as Molly Goddard, S.S. Daley & 16Arlington