Skirting the Issue

This fall, fashion teeters between two very distinct and strongly opposing aesthetics to highlight the season’s strongest trend: power dressing.

The power of the fashion industry really lies in the ability, or opportunity, if you will, that designers have to deliver a message to the masses through their designs. In the past, for example, trends with militant influences reflected times of political turmoil. This season the message was skewed more towards the positive but was just as clear: It’s show time for well-edited clothing that’s meant to serve as power dressing for the strong woman who knows what she wants. Some houses told the story through an obvious return to a retro approach to embracing femininity: Skirts both flouncy and full as well as pencil thin, curve-hugging silhouettes and bust-bearing, corseted dresses all spoke to a new age, pin-up mentality. Others opted to go with an androgynous slant, marrying quality of construction with superior fabrication to deliver a different kind of sexy. The truth of the matter is that a perfectly tailored tux can be equally as effective as a dangerously low décolleté—pick your poison.


There’s something sinfully sexy about menswear-inspired womenswear. Perhaps it’s the power in knowing that [women] can instantly elevate something as simple as a suit to new levels of lust-worthy. This season, several of the top tier fashion heavies stepped up to the plate with some great options for such dressing. The double-breasted leather suits we saw at Bottega Veneta could easily rival even the glitziest cocktail frock in the place. Similarly, Salvatore Ferragamo, Michael Kors, and Joseph Altuzarra caught our attention through androgynous designs that, while boyish in the simplest sense, oozed with a sophisticated air of high-fashion trendiness.


At Louis Vuitton it was no holds barred. Marc Jacobs’ army of Lara Stone-esque supermodels, Lara included, busted down the runway in bust revealing, real time manifestations of 1950 something references. The look ran rampant, and femininity trickled from runway to runway everywhere from New York to Paris. At Miu Miu the look was sweetened by employing the help of daisies and bows, while Giorgio Armani had no reservations about putting it all out there, paying homage to the female form through figure-revealing shifts that were made to embrace your frame. Most fascinating: This season’s girly girl look approaches sexy through recently unconventional tricks of the trade —a less is more attitude that allows for a revealing frock to feel more appropriate and instantly empowering.