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Spring '98 Fashion Forecast

by Kathleen Spike, Coaching Works



Simplicity and femininity; less is more; quality over quantity; pretty colors are the messages for spring. Do you ever watch Elsa Clinch on CNN every Saturday, 10:30am EST? It is a half hour of concentrated current trends. It introduces you to the colors, lines and shapes of the coming season. Stick "hangers" (models) and ridiculous designs you say? What if you looked at the more subtle message such as: the incredible fabrics they use, how they push the edge of the shapes in design, how they mix colors (great and not so great), how talented they are to create all of those lovely pieces, how crazy they are when they create outlandish designs, how many choices we have everyday, how lucky we are to dress in our own style and not be dictated to.

Last week on Elsa’s show the message was clear. Women want it simpler and the designers are respecting us and know we won't buy much else. Anything in their line that doesn't make sense sits on the department store floor, goes on sale and loses money for the store and the designer. You are all making an impact. They are listening to your message. You are not willing to dress up like paper dolls, fantasy women or weird-os.

You want clothes that mix and match, stand up under washing and wearing to work every day, that excite you with color and compliment your womanly shape. You want shoes that are pretty and sturdy.

You will get all of the above for spring. The colors are still subdued yet quite colorful. Lots of soft greens, corals, peaches, grays, and aquas. The lines are uncluttered like in the ‘50s and ‘60s. Lots of collarless jackets, lots of stuff that works for business casual days. Pants are big and will continue to be so forever. They can be worn everywhere -- even to the office in most places. Men wear them to the office, so can we as long as they are stylish!

Take the following survey to see if you are a candidate for simplicity in fashion and style.

1. I like to dress in separates rather than dresses or suits.

2. I have a color plan in my closet and everything I buy goes with everything I already own.

3. I keep a paper bag in my closet and drop things into it regularly to keep moving stuff out.

4. I own more accessories than I do clothes to help me change my looks and make less more interesting.

5. I spend about 7 to 10 minutes a day on my makeup.

6. I have a hairstyle that I can manage with about 15 minutes a day or less.

7. I buy good shoes and I take them to the shoe repair person for upkeep so I don't have to keep buying shoes.

8. I have a shopping list of what I need when I go out shopping and I follow it.

9. I like the current shapes and styles.

10. I am beginning to end purchases that don't fit into my closet plan and budget plan.


If you answered yes to 5 or more questions you have a bent on simplicity and feel very comfortable with less is more. The underlying key is, however, do you look stylish and fabulous in all of the outfits you put together?

Simplicity does than mean sloppy, ordinary, pedestrian. Simplicity breeds style. You can be stylish this spring.


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