Name the top 10 iconic style images of the past 50 years: Bianca Jagger in a plunging blazer on her wedding day to Mick—the epitome of modern sex appeal. Jackie O in a patterned headscarf; prim glamour at its most quixotically pragmatic. John Travolta in a three-piece pantsuit (not that Tony Manero would have called it that). Queen Elizabeth II in any one of her ice-blue outfits. Meryl Streep en safari in Out of Africa. Kate Moss in a trench coat. J. Lo in a green chiffon jungle-print Versace scarf that had somehow been worked into a dress. Well, bullseye because they’re all featured in the spring collections.
I can’t remember a season when so many proven favourites felt like fresh, exciting options. If that sounds paradoxical (how can the tried-and-true seem novel?), welcome to the ingenious twists and turns of fashion in 2020 and the designers who, with tiny incremental tweaks, have refurbished the classic into the classic nouveau.
Let’s start with Hedi Slimane’s CELINE, a 63-look tour of considerable 1970s force. It was everything you sort of recall from the era of glam rock, decadence, boho and hippies, but with a new refinement and an updated sensibility. Think high-waisted flares, sequinned dresses, sculpted jackets with lapels and shoulders so sharp, you wouldn’t want to turn your face too quickly for fear of lacerating your cheeks, deluxe denim and, wait for it, waistcoats.
This key new take-out item hasn’t had this much gas in its tank since Saturday Night Fever. It’s your day-to-night ally for spring. Wear a waistcoat as part of a Burberry three-piece tailored suit; without the blazer for a contoured-jumpsuit effect, as seen at Louis Vuitton; or over a skirt for some Fleetwood Mac R&R, à la Chloé.
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