Enhance your wardrobe with SS18 trends

words Alexa Wang

With the weather jumping between cool and warm or showery and clear, it’s hard to nail the right outfit for the occasion.

Need on-trend looks that are perfect for the spring fashion season? Check out the SS18 style guide from River Island — leading retailer of bags and purses — to discover how to dress flawlessly for spring…

Reviving the 1980s

The 1980s revival revolves around pulled in waists, emphasised shoulders and tapered legs. Pouf skirts, power suits, ruched tops, and lashings of denim; SS18 is rewinding the clock and dousing itself in ‘80s glamour.

What do you throw on for a day out in spring? Go for high-waisted, light-wash jeans and square-shoulder blouses, and at night, go for a top-heavy, ruched-velvet dress enhanced with hoop earrings. Be prepared for an incoming of parachute pants, turtleneck sweaters, waist belts, unapologetic prints, and puff sleeves. If you’re lost, take inspiration from Anthony Vaccarello’s collection at Paris Fashion Week SS18.

Layering for spring

Layering throws open the doors of opportunity when it comes to dressing and helps you stay comfortable regardless of the unpredictable weather. Just remember that the finesse of layering is being able to mix and match fits and shades flawlessly. Channel the colour-blocking trend and build a multi-layered outfit out of contrasting hues — perhaps an ivory shirt under an emerald sweater finished with a fitted black blazer, boxy red mac and navy jeans.

What shape are your layered choices? This will affect how well they complement each other. For example; don’t opt for all loose and billowy clothing, but similarly, don’t pull on fitted pieces with each layer. To make layering an art in spring 2018, you need to contrast your fittings. Go for a bralet that hugs your body then pair with culottes, flares or wide-leg trousers. Slip on a sheer wrap top over your bralet and top-off with a cropped silk, loose-fit kimono and tailored tuxedo jacket. These pieces all work perfectly together, and you can add and remove as the day and evening elapse to suit the dress code and weather. Some designers have even sent their models down the catwalk wearing voluminous tulle skirts over skinny-fit trousers, again showing that mixing outlines is key to this growing fashion trend.

Going for lighter fabrics

In spring, you may want to ditch the heavy material for lighter fabrics. As the days and nights warm up, incorporate less heavyweight materials into your wardrobe — in other words, ditch the wool coat for a cropped, suede trench and sub you faux-fur-lined jacket for a chiffon kimono.

Lighter fabrics also usually give us a more undefined outline that can flatter all body types, and luckily, the soft, floaty silhouette is another big SS18 trend we have to look forward to.

Enhancing your clothing colour scheme

One of the biggest outcomes of recent SS18 shows was the amazing array of colours on the catwalks — from the tomato red dresses of Preen to the canary yellow gowns of Balenciaga. To replicate, colour yourself gorgeous by emboldening your look with a dynamic shade — like electric blue, acid green and tangerine orange. Either splice your shades together in the form of striped tops and checked skirts, or wear them in blocks — think cobalt tapered trousers with a scarlet shirt or mustard culottes with a turquoise cami.

By the way, lilac is going to be a major colour for ladies this spring— so make sure to infuse your seasonal wardrobe with plenty of it.

Traditional flower power

From large and bold rose prints to delicate and wispy petals; the floral trend is set to take over this season. Check out the SS18 catwalks of Erdem and Dolce & Gabbana; using soft pastels and intricate patterns, they nailed the spring-ready floral trend. Go for high-neck tops and traditional tea dresses — similar to Emilia Wickstead’s range — and opt for time-honoured fabrics, like silk and brocade, to pinpoint the vintage floral look in time for blooming season.


When you’re not donning feminine, flower-print tops and skirts, you’ll probably be opting for fringed garments — another big spring 2018 trend. From the jackets of the SS18 Bottega Veneta to the dresses of Calvin Klein, fringe hemlines are going to be swinging everywhere this coming season.

Fringes aren’t limited to cool and casual festival-style outfits, either. Ditch clean-cut handbags for fringed alternatives and enhance your evening dress code with long, flowing fringes that swing in sync with every step. More dancefloor-diva chic than festival-girl boho, SS18 fringes are made to enhance, not just accessorise. Get yours in a long, luxe fabric and remember, the greater the swing, the better.

Check clothing

Checks, like florals, are going to be a pattern-of-choice over the next few months. Designers are now investing in versatile prints that we can wear and repurpose as the year goes on — and this is where checks come in.

From ultra-dressy outfits to casual attire, plaids and checks in all sizes and colours were everywhere on the global SS18 catwalks. From the trenches of Burberry to the dresses of Fendi, checks came in all sizes and shades, which means you should keep an open mind when it comes to selecting your ideal check colour for SS18. For example, Loewe offered a stunning, dip-hem dress featuring baby pink and blue checks, while Alexander McQueen took a harsher line with bold red and contrasting white plaid patterns.

Spring-ready suit shorts

It’s the season for sun — so don’t waste it and get yourself some gorgeous suit shorts. During the day or for off-duty events, you might not feel the ‘80s-inspired trouser power suit is the look you want to go for. If that’s the case, find your powerbase with shorts, instead. Forget limiting your wide-shoulder blazer to tapered trousers, spring 2018 is going to salute knee-length shorts that you can pair with tailored jackets and ruched chiffon shirts for a power-ready vibe that is warm-weather appropriate.

Which SS18 fashion shows did this trend best? Off-White showed power shorts gorgeously in pink before polishing the look off with an open collar shirt, while Balmain went more office-focused with on-trend checks and a monochrome palette.

Dressy athleisure

From Rihanna to Ariana Grande, the athleisure is adored by celebrity trend-setters. So, what will SS18 bring to the table? This spring, it’s all about athletic-inspired clothing ­— especially the two-piece tracksuit. But don’t just throw it on with anything. The mood is changing around sportswear and now, we’re being encouraged to think outside the box by fusing out athleisure gear with glamour-focused accessories.

There are many ways you can build an outfit around athleisure. Wear your joggers and cropped top with high heels and statement jewellery, and you have a look poised to take spring 2018 by storm. This also works the other way. Go for sneakers or cute plimsolls and dress them up when the warm weather hits with a floral dress or checked skirt. Striking the balance between casual urban and dressed-up chic is essential to nailing this in vogue look.

Seasonal accessories

Of course, accessories are an important component of any outfit. SS18 is driving the trend for bumbags and belt bags. Don’t believe it? Check out Gucci and Balenciaga’s SS18 show. To keep in line with the power of the ‘80s, opt for waist belts that pull you in for that iconic Dynasty-esque silhouette and put the final stamp on the look with over-the-top earrings. You can find so many great accessories just about anywhere, but you can save a lot of money on your purchase with a Bloomingdales discount code.

For stylishly keeping the sun out of your eyes, go for cat-eye and tinted aviator sunglasses, and for shoes, bring out the espadrilles and flatforms for daytime drinks. Then, get ready for sunny evenings with wedges and open-toe heels.

Incorporate the SS18 clothing trends into your current wardrobe and make sure you look flawless wherever you go this spring and summer.


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