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Louis-Vuitton AW 2010crop

Key Trends for Autumn/Winter #3: All Woman

Playing tribute to the female form was a reoccurring idea earlier this year as a cornucopia of designers and labels let it dominate their autumn/winter 2010 collections.  It’s a celebration of all that is womanliness with an unabashed nod to Mad Men glamour and retro feminine silhouettes stolen directly from the 50’s.

Perhaps Christian Dior himself was the main reference point taken by contemporary designers as his ‘New Look’ collection and concept of constructing clothing by moulding them upon the curves of the feminine body has been borrowed and revamped for the 21st century.  Louis Vuitton (above), with Marc Jacobs at the helm, oozed romanticism and voluptuousness as full skirted prom dresses, square necklines and nipped in waists exaggerated womanly features and screamed sexuality.

Prada combined measured and wearable dressing with sexy undertones that left just enough to the imagination. Their pristine detail and tasteful retro prints served to emphasise the glamour, whilst cable knit socks and skinny cropped trousers bring the whole idea bang up to date.

A well received take on the female form came from Dries Van Noten during Paris Fashion Week. While disregarding the wistfulness displayed by LV and Prada, it brimmed with ideas about how to dress like a lady. Prom skirts coupled with military style tops and more emphasis on the waist made this a pretty but tough look and a perfect modern alternative for those who prefer to avoid looking bijou.

Giles Deacon portrayed the idea of a playful ’50s Stepford wife throughout his AW 2010 collection and Erdem kept it demure and structured around the hourglass effect; both showing how to work this trend with freshness whilst maintaining an enduring quality of which Dior himself would be proud.

For the savvier shopper and those on a shoestring, think vintage. With a vintage shop opening on every corner it’s become accessible for all and sundry, and considering they don’t tend to deviate from selling the garments this season is pushing, you could get your hands on the entire look for under a hundred quid. As long as you riffle hard enough of course and be prepared to fight for the authentic stuff.

Thankfully the ideas surrounding femininity and sexuality this autumn couldn’t be further away from the delightful female habitants of ITV’s The Only Way Is Essex (much-loved by the Notion team btw) as softness reigns, elegance prevails and the only shade of orange you will see is on the garments themselves.

- Francesca Strange

Photo: Vogue.co.uk

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