Oh, what a year in fashion. There were moments, fads, and trends galore (some with staying power . . . others, well say buh-bye.) Here's a look back at 10 things to remember about 2012.
-- Anne Bratskeir, Special to Newsday
1. Hair of a different color
Blonde or brunette? Oh so passé unless, of course, you're Long Island’s “The Voice” contestant Melanie Martinez, who divided her head down the middle. But it was color of a, well, more unnatural variety that raged 2012: Kelly Osbourne opted for all-over soft lavender, Katy Perry went blue, Demi Lovato sported blue streaks, Britney Spears did blue and pink while Christina Aguilera, pictured, has been seen with blonde-white locks boasting a deep pink dip.
Unexpectedly popular, the new silo featuring an add-on flounce to tops, sweaters, dresses and coats. It turned out to be flattering for many and a hit with shoppers. Pictured, a sparkly top from H&M.
3. Power Pink:
Yep, pink was big in all shades for spring, and, surprisingly in a notably strong hue — wowsa, fuchsia — for fall, never better evidenced as when first lady Michelle Obama and Ann Romney both turned out in embarrassingly similar pink outfits at the Hofstra presidential debates in October. Eek!
4. Fab collabs
Those designer collaborations continued to march on at breakneck speed. Perhaps the biggest newsmaker? The holiday driven Target + Neiman Marcus collection — such a crazy combo — which delivered big names such as Marc Jacobs, Rag & Bone, Oscar de la Renta at lowish prices. Maison Martin Margiela and Marni did their things for H&M, and Jason Wu’s upbeat collection for Target was a sell-out. Francisco Costa for Calvin Klein brought his minimalist aesthetic to Macy’s last May, while Sophie Theallet teamed up with the Limited, and Narciso Rodriguez killed it at Kohl’s (pictured, Katie Holmes in one of his dresses). And the trend isn’t waning. We cannot wait for Prabal Gurung for Target, which will hit on Feb. 10.
5. Juicy fruits
For sure, there was the neon moment, and plenty of black and white, along with fall’s breakout shade of oxblood and the aforementioned pink. But really it was citrus pops that headlined in 2012. Plenty of designers fell for fresh lemon-lime (in an odd coincidence both Julie Bowen and Niki Minaj, pictured, wore the same lemony Monique Lhuillier gown on the red carpet. But the color of the year, dictated by Pantone, was tangy tangerine, which showed up e-v-e-r-y-w-h-e-r-e.
6. Decidedly Deco
Maybe it was news of the remake of “The Great Gatsby,” but plenty of designers were enamored with dropped waists, flapper looks, feathers and even cloche caps. Most notably, Ralph Lauren’s collection was thoroughly Gatsby. For spring, pictured, he conjured dandies and Daisy Buchanan with pastel floral suits topped by feather stoles and garden party gowns. The theme took on a British spin for fall with his “Downton Abbey”-inspired collection (ooohhh, that velvet smoking jacket, those embellished gowns). But he wasn’t alone. Among others, Carolina Herrera, Marchesa, Marc Jacobs, Tory Burch and Zac Posen were Deco devotees.
7. Playing with blocks
We always welcome a color-block redux, and in 2012 it returned big time. With its mod vibe and bold color combos (all on one garment, mind you), the trend extended its reach from garments to accessories such as handbags and shoes (pictured, a pump from INC International Concepts).
8. Printed matter
Hail to the huge print. Designers took to graphic eye-catchers and decorated everything from dresses, gowns, even jeans with geometrics, florals (for spring and fall) and patterns on steroids. (Pictured, an all-over print at DKNY.)
9. Hi to the thigh
While hemlines were a mixed bag, thigh-high slits were de rigueur, allowing for a serious flash of leg. Of course, no one went thigh-high more famously than Angelina Jolie at the Oscars, wearing a black velvet Atelier Versace gown. Her awkwardly prominent leg pose took on a life of its own — even garnering a twitter account @AngiesRightLeg, which has close to 42,000 followers. LOL.
10. Fifty Shades of . . . Ow, maybe? Designers were thinking kink with tough looks that smacked of S&M, with encasing leather trim, harnesses and even a netted mask or two. Notable, Anne Hathaway’s all-black Tom Ford ensemble worn to the “Les Miserables” premiere this month that included some verrrrry serious bondage boots, pictured. Miserable indeed.
11. The leather revolution
Leather is an expected commodity for fall, and boy, there was tons--and not just outerwear. There were dresses (pictured, a dress by Alexander Wang), skirts and T-shirts, some textured or lacquered, along with trim on everything from sleeves to seams, But the buck didn’t stop there: lighter-weight leathers – some in soft colors – were must-haves for spring as well.
12. Ups and downs
When it was called “the mullet” — short in the front, long in the back--high-low hemline dresses were, well, kind of trashy, mullet being the operative word. But then big names adopted the style and the look — quite prettily — went mainstream. (Pictured, a dress by Free People.)