Springtime fashion fever: bold color, lace, sequins


Yves Saint Laurent said, "Dressing is a way of life." In response to a retrospective of his work at the Petit Palais in Paris this past summer, designers cited him as a major inspiration for their spring collections.

As a result, the 70s are back, and in a big way. 

Maxi dresses are a great transitional piece from spring into summer, while peasant blouses and safari-inspired silk blouses are a great option for dressing up or down.

Also look for the return of wide-legged, drapey pants, which are a welcome change from the skinny jeans of the past few seasons.

Major platforms (try some wooden ones for an earthy, comfortable look) are still in demand and look awesome with flared jeans.

If 70s bohemian isn't really your thing, think about borrowing from the boys. 

Structured jackets and blazers are a classy way to transition out of sweaters.  Throw one over a floral dress for an effortless look.

Cargoes are another easy way to mix up your style. Go either slouchy or skinny, but pair them with a ruffled tank and cardigan to offset the boyishness. 

Lace is also making big waves this spring. Avoid anything too tight or too short, or else you'll end up looking cheap. 

The key to rocking lace is to look for a dress or top that is romantic and timeless. Look for lace patterns that are sheer with needlework inspiration.

Avoid colors here — blacks and whites will ensure that the lace looks more expensive than it actually is. 

In addition, neon's moment in the spotlight is ending.  Instead, incorporate small pops of color with accessories, but stick with a more neutral base of white, nudes and blacks. 

Or, go all out with this spring's brightest hues. Look for pieces in your favorite Crayola color. 

Jewel tones — emeralds, cobalt blues, bright purples like amethyst, fuchsias (and citrus hues) tangerines, limes and lemons — are definitely helping to chase away the winter blues.

If you're feeling bold, color blocking is a great way to combine shades.

Choose one piece with several stripes of color or layer pieces of solid, complementary colors to customize your own look. Head-to-toe white is also a risky, but classic look. 

Spring also introduces sequins for daytime. Anna Dello Russo, an editor-at-large and creative consultant for Vogue Japan, deserves credit for this trend, as the blogosphere has made a huge deal of her favoring evening wear for daytime. 

Pair a sequined camisole with a sweater or jacket and jeans for a casual look, or let some sequins sparkle out from underneath a dress. 

The key here is contrast: chambray top with a sequin skirt will give it an edge and dress it down. While this look isn't exactly class-appropriate, it's perfect for weekend lunches or creative internship interviews.

The key to consider for spring is that the classics are back. 

Stash anything that is too over-embellished or complicated.  The shrink-wrap tight dresses that recall the 80s are great for going out at night, but keep in mind that the emphasis is heading toward well-tailored, structured dresses with a hint of volume.

Tailor each of these trends to your own personal style and have fun in updating your look.

— Dickman is a junior from Indianapolis majoring in English writing. features@thedepauw.com