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As in nature, this spring’s favorite colour palette leans towards an organic spectrum of warm, glowing tones. Gold and yellow evoke feelings of joy and vitality. A staple shade for the season ahead, bright, invigorating Primrose Yellow was highlighted across the 2017 spring collections, showing up in Delpozo theatrical gowns, CHANEL mini dresses, or Chloé’s monochromatic pieces.
Rooted in a history of workwear for cowboys and labourers, the tough, tireless blue jean has endured as a closet staple for years, evolving from its humble beginnings to spotlight on the glitziest of red carpets. A multi-tasker, this season’s denim stars in everything from blazers to ballgowns, veering from dressed-down and distressed, to intricately cut and elaborately embellished.
Calling out to the love of countryside calm and pastoral romance, feminine florals lend their natural beauty to a demure look, with soft blossoms and fluttering petals. Always a spring favourite, pretty floral motifs also take the stage at the season’s catwalks: from Dolce & Gabbana’s bold, bright blooms, to Sonia Rykiel’s ladylike subtlety and Carolina Herrera’s woodsy, whimsical wildflowers.
A modern nomad’s fast-paced lifestyle calls for functional, low-maintenance pieces and utilitarian materials inspired by the earth’s hues. Of course, we’re talking khaki. This year, the ultimate traveller’s staple returns as an unexpectedly haute fashion essential. Designers, from Loewe to Dion Lee, reinvent the rugged canvas in sleek bombers and feminine frocks, often with edgy military hardware and practical cargo pockets.
Straightforward and clean-cut, stripes are the quintessential pattern of the detail-oriented power figure. Like the lines on ruled paper, stripes are a mark of all pursuits orderly: from a sailor’s nautical wear, to the elegant pinstripes of fine wool suiting. Interpreted for the season predominantly in horizontal directions, varying widths, and bright hues, the classic motif makes an appearance on bold silhouettes and mixed textures.
Floaty, airy, fabulously feminine pieces are on this season’s agenda, and nothing says fabulous quite like tulle. Whether playful ballerina or noir femme fatale, the frills and flounces have danced across runways from Dior to Rochas, in flirty tutus or dark, dramatically layered compositions.
Fashion Trends Text by Kate Missine Translated by Xiao Tian Produced by Many Ngom
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Iconic blue-and-white patterned ceramics originated in 14th-century China, later emerging in traditional Dutch Delftware and 18th-century European porcelain. Intricate toile motifs, in shades from the palest cornflower to bold cobalt, glide over white lace and cascading chiffons at Ralph & Russo, for a look that’s both antiquely fragile and timelessly feminine.
Elaborately woven works of metal and wire inspire ornate, filigree-themed styles at Fendi, Marchesa and Elie Saab, channelling the metalwork technique popular throughout 16th- to 18th-century Europe. Graceful scrolls from 5,000 hand-cut holes turn the rose-coloured Persian lamb fur into a long lace dress in Fendi, while brocades in precious-metal swirls of antiqued silver and gold shine at Saab and Marchesa.
One of the world’s oldest artistic traditions, native Chinese painting, uses a fine brushstroke technique to execute highly detailed designs in coloured pigments. Elie Saab and Zuhair Murad take cue from the vivid style of bird-and-flower painting: exotically vibrant flora and fauna splashed upon a pure white backdrop.
In a nod to the theatrical, heavily embellished fashions of the Renaissance and Elizabethan eras, designers including Valentino and Fendi emerge with dramatically layered, voluminous styles. Silks, velvets, and brocades meet petticoats, full sleeves, and ruffled collars, bestowed with gilded detail and ornate embroidery.
Dating back to the Middle Ages, watercolour painting gained popularity since the Renaissance, peaking during the 18th and 19th centuries. From the sepia blossoms of Chinese watercolours to Monet’s luminous transparency, the bloom of delicate petals and colour-washed pastels add romance to essentially feminine forms and flighty, gauzy fabrics.
The timeless beauty of classical Greek sculpture shows up in flawlessly simple silhouettes and the all-white hues of creamy marble. At Dior and Ralph & Russo, artful draping minimally adorns straight, column-like sheaths of streaming, fluid satins, and asymmetrical one-shouldered cuts allude to the traditional togas dressing Greek and Roman statues.
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At midnight, you hear the volley of a great cannon from the castle rampart followed by a dazzling fireworks display. You put down your wee dram of scotch to link arms with your friends and family as the entire nation sings a rendition of Auld Lang Syne. What a way to enter a new year! But this is only a small part of the celebration in Edinburgh.
No one rings in the New Year quite like the Scots. The folks of Edinburgh have been celebrating Hogmanay for centuries. The custom dates back to Viking times to celebrate the winter solstice, but the festivities have since grown to encompass many traditions, which last three days.
The torchlight procession is the official opening of Hogmanay. The Up Helly Aa Vikings lead over 8,000 torch-bearers, pipers, and drummers to create a river of fire and illuminate the city as they walk from the Old Town to the ancient meeting ground of Calton Hill. Here the revelry culminates with a sound and light show and fireworks display.
All of Edinburgh celebrates New Year’s Eve with massive outdoor concerts and fetes across the city. Revelers gather at the Concert in the Gardens on Princes Street for their annual music festival. This year, the headliners are the English indie rock band The Charlatans, which will play against the stunning backdrop of Edinburgh Castle. Those seeking more traditional Scottish music and dancing should head to Parliament Square for the Céilidh, where masters will be on hand to instruct dance and keep you moving into the new year.
The Midnight Moment rings out with bells around the city and cannon fire from the castle. The fireworks display is extravagant as across the country family and friends link arms for the singing of Auld Lang Syne. Originally a Robert Burns poem, this tune has become synonymous with the celebration of New Years the world over.
Nothing clears the cobwebs from a night of revelry quite like a dash through a freezing river. Enter the Loony Dook, an annual plunge into the River Forth at South Queensferry. Now in its 31st year, Dookers parade through the High Street before taking to the freezing water, all in costume. And when they get out of the frosty depths, Stoats Porridge is there to hand out warm, hearty porridge to participants. “At the event, we give out over 1,000 bowls of porridge,” says Olivia Stone from Stoats. “And despite the indulgences of the night before, the most popular topping is Whisky & Honey!” Stoats also hosts a costume contest and many of the participants use this event as an opportunity to raise money for charity.
While you’re there
While the New Year’s celebrations are a perfect reason to visit Edinburgh, this charming city has so much else to offer while you’re there. Take some time to shop the boutiques on Victoria Street to stock up on the traditional tweed fashions of Walker Slater or vintage hardbacks at The Old Town Bookshop, and scale the Scott Monument, a gothic commemoration dedicated to novelist and poet Sir Walter Scott, to get the best views of the city.
And no visit to Scotland is complete without indulging in a fine single malt to help you stay warm during this time of year. Enjoy a wee dram from the Islay, Speyside, and Highland regions of the country at the Scotch Whisky Experience, which boasts the largest whisky collection in the world. And after all the Hogmanay celebrations come to an end, rest your head at the stately Balmoral Hotel and enjoy waking up to a New Year.
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