Fashion trends change faster than you can say Prada, Gucci or Dior. Unless you’ve been lucky enough to be in Milan or invited to New York’s Fashion Week, you might not have your manicured finger on the zeitgeist of current styles and cutting-edge colors. From animal prints to tribal designs to 1920s flapper chic and New Age hippie couture, the 2012 summer is heating up to be an eye-popping display of looks and trends. While cool and muted nautical fashions were the go-to style of previous summers, that traditional yacht rock look capsized this year in favor of bright and vibrant colors. Canary yellow, cobalt, red and fuchsia have replaced blue, white and khaki earth shades. Fashionistas in bright summer hues are taking over the beaches and boats. These bright shades are the ideal juxtaposition to clear skies and quartz-white sand. Whether you accessorize with a racing striped clutch, diamonds or leather bracelets, the fashion forecast for the summer of 2012 is bright, hot colors.
From the Cote d’ Azure to South Beach
The beach promises to look like a Matisse painting this summer. In other words, it will be awash in bright Fauvist shades. Yellow and red are the dominant coastal colors this summer and tangerine is the color of the year. Red is always en vogue, while rolling fields of European sunflowers influenced many high-end designers this season. Yellow is the color of sunshine, citrus and optimism, and therefore it makes sense it would find its way to the beach. However, bright hues do not just refer to bikinis and monokinis, but also to accessories. On the beach, sunglasses are as ubiquitous as ice-cold mojitos. While oversized black frames are always stylish, they’re also blisteringly commonplace. Trendy colors like orange and purple make a bold statement. No make-up? No problem. After snorkeling or surfing, who wants their make-up streaking in Kiss-like lightening bolts? Go all-natural!
Poolside with Cocktails and Flirty Designs
You can up the ante and dress a bit more chic when your relaxing poolside. Why not strut your stuff on the deckchair runway? The pool has always been about flirty cosmopolitanism with a resort style edge. A loose, wraparound tribal or animal print skirt would look stellar offsetting your fuchsia bathing suit. Top off the look like a cherry on a frothy pina colada with a racing striped clutch. However, in order to make the whole look work, you have to offset it with soft toned make-up. Being poolside has always been more about fashion than going swimming. Soft, muted, earth colors will take some of the edge off the vibrant bathing suit and wraparound skirt. Make-sure the tribal print is not too busy. It is poolside, after all, not safari.
The 7:00 Garden Party
It’s time to exchange the flip-flops for a pair of wedges or sandals. It’s time to hang up the swimsuit and find a sundress or a cute, breezy pair of shorts. If the garden party is more California surfer and Tiki Hut and less F. Scott Fitzgerald and Zelda, then bright, candy colored shorts are effortlessly hip. Match it with a muted, vertical striped nautical top. If it is more of a formal jazz age bash, then cobalt, pink or yellow maxi dresses are ideal. Whether it is sleeveless or short sleeved, these cotton and chiffon dresses are comfortable and elegant.
In 2012, the laid-back and carefree vibe of summer is heightened by the bright color palette. The colors and designs are as bright as azure skies, Caribbean waters and pink coral sand.
More about contributing writer Megan Brown
Megan Brown is admittedly couture-obsessed. When not scouting sales for bandage dresses and sky-high heels, Megan is a social media networker at Slingshot SEO. In addition to shopping and blogging, Megan also enjoys spending her time cheering on her favorite sports teams, cycling, and going out on the town. You can find her on twitter (@thatgirlmegan) or find out more at her website: http://www.thatgirlmegan.com
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