But there has never been a better time to reassess your approach to shopping and curate a timeless wardrobe that you'll wear season after season. Here are five fashion trends guaranteed to see you through 2021 and beyond.
If there's one thing we learnt about our relationship with fashion in 2020, it's that the perfect outfit can make you feel like a million dollars. Whether it's bold, blooming beautiful floral prints or punchy pops of vibrant colour that lift your spirits, 2021 is the year to embrace maximalism and optimistic fashion. Throw the fashion rulebook out the window and mix, match and clash colours and prints until your heart's content.
Styling tip: The only rule you need to abide by is simple: if it makes you feel good, don't overthink it – wear it, and wear it often.
Sweatpants With Style
While 2020 reinvigorated our love affair with activewear, this year we'll see the trend kick it up a notch. If you're still looking for excuses to pair those cosy, comfy sweatpants with your go-to work blouse, fret not: activewear is here to say, and we'll see much more of it borrowing from trends from the high-fashion world. Think slicker, more sophisticated silhouettes that are appropriate to wear outside of the home. Keep an eye out for ethically minded brands that sacrifice neither style nor sustainability, opting for planet-friendly fabrics instead of synthetics.
Styling tip: Invest in versatile pieces that combine the best of both worlds: style and comfort. Slick, sports-inspired jackets, figure-hugging knits and crop tops that can be worn in the gym, at home and beyond make for a multifunctional wardrobe.
Whoever said beige was boring is about to be proven wrong this season as a soft and sandy colour palette will reign supreme. The predictable albeit fail-proof capsule wardrobe formula – monochromatic pieces in inky black and crisp white – makes way for contemporary earthy hues that can be worn all year long. If you're looking to create an easy-to-wear wardrobe that ticks the on-trend and will-wear-for-years-to-come boxes, this colour palette is for you.
Style tip: If 2021's the year you've vowed to give suiting a try, consider teaming ultra-flattering wide-leg pants with a slouchy, boyfriend-style blazer for a look that means business.
It's become impossible for the fashion world to turn a blind eye to the global climate emergency and you, dear consumer, have a role to play too. While we're a long way off from style and sustainability being synonymous with one another, many fashion brands are taking necessary steps towards a more transparent, circular and environmentally friendly model. Expect to see new fashion labels launch with an unwavering commitment to sustainable and ethically minded practises, and innovative green fabrics become more commonplace.
Style tip: 2021 is the year to shake the habit of purchasing pieces that you'll only wear for a season. Invest in brands that align with your values and in garments that you will cherish and wear for years to come.
2020 hit our local fashion designers hard. But we met the challenge and rallied around them, supporting #ShopLocal for a decent portion of the year. Now is not the time to let our love of local fashion waver; in fact, supporting local fashion has never been more on trend. Although the events of 2020 threw a bit of a spanner in the works of the flourishing New Zealand fashion scene, it also meant many designers responded by tipping the traditional season-to-season model on its head. We'll see the rise of custom-made local fashion and smaller production runs as well as more brands embracing a direct-to-consumer business model.
Style tip: Spend some time hunting down the hippest new local brands – trawl Instagram, read few fashion magazines – and support small, up-and-coming designers. With local brands producing smaller runs, you're almost guaranteed to never bump into someone wearing the same outfit as you.