As we settle into 2018, it’s time to look ahead to what we might be getting ourselves into this year—on a fashion level, at least. It's pretty hard to predict anything else these days.
The industry has gradually become more and more politicized in the past couple of seasons with the #MeToo movement and our new commander-in-chief, so definitely expect more sartorial resistance and hyper-awareness amongst consumers in the new year. On another note, get ready to swap your metallics for neon and your millennial pink for literally any other color.
Ahead, stylists pass along these and more fashion predictions for 2018. Whether you follow along with their suggestions or not, just know: It’s a good time to stand out.
Flaunt old-school femininity
"Embrace your girly side while still staying true to your badass self, with designers like Sandy Laing, Isabel Marant, and Simone Rocha. Ruffles and lace aren’t just for special occasions anymore, and can now be easily incorporated to give your look more texture."—Heather Newberger, stylist
Fashion will stay political
"Having gained momentum after 's election, using fashion to make a political statement continues into 2018. Already we've witnessed #WhyIWearBlack, as some of the most powerful women in Hollywood wore black at this year's Golden Globe Awards to speak out against gender bias and sexual harassment. Designers, artists, and influencers are empowering themselves and using their platform to make a statement about issues they care about, well beyond the traditional boundaries of their work. Humans have used clothing as a form of symbolism or a means to send a message throughout history, so it will be interesting to see what new ways fashion will communicate its point of view in 2018."—Carrie Weidner, stylist
Play with primary colors
"Give your everyday look a pop of red, yellow, or blue. Major brands like Marni and Valentino are going back to their grade school roots by incorporating these strong hues into their spring/summer collections."—Newberger
Shine on, you crazy diamond
"[I've been seeing sequins] everywhere—from gowns to skirts. They can be dressed up, or you can throw on a sweater with a sequined skirt for a fun, daytime look."—Samantha McMillen, celebrity stylist
"Checks, plaid, stripes, windowpane in unexpected silhouettes. See: Monse, Balmain, Miu Miu." —McMillen
Digital platforms will rule the shopping world
“Some of the most successful new fashion labels I've come across over the past year have risen through social media. Instagram, especially, has a unique way of putting aesthetic first with strong visual impact, then breaking it down into a shopping opportunity with tags and mentions. When Bella Hadid wore an Orseund Iris top or Poppy Lissiman sunglasses and tagged them on her Instagram, those brands gained exponential levels of exposure. The digital experience has become more meaningful to shoppers than physically being in a store, not only because social media feels more personal by portraying a sense of 'realness' and offers the opportunity for interaction via comments, but also because there is an increased feeling of intimacy. By scrolling through these accounts every day, we feel we know these people and their worlds, and they become a part of our collective consciousness.” —Weidner
Pay attention to what's happening across the pond
"London’s calling, and we’ve got the memo. Brands like Molly Goddard, Simone Rocha, and SHRIMPS are all the rage this season with their oversized, textured garments that play on traditional silhouettes."—Newberger
Bring on the neon
"Brands like MNZ's, SHRIMPS', and Priscavera's brightly colored spring/summer collections bring Day-Glo out of hiding."—Newberger
More awareness of sustainability and ethical practices
“Most of us, in 2018, care about our environment—we are aware of issues like global warming, the overuse of plastics, and the conservation of precious natural resources. Only very recently have we made the connection between what we are wearing and its impact on our world. Consumers are now asking: Where do our clothes come from? Who is making them, and are the workers being treated fairly? What goes into the fabrics, and how is the environment impacted in the manufacturing process?
Designers such as Reformation have become well-known for their commitment to sustainability, and organizations like Eco-Age have been established to facilitate the movement toward a more responsible direction in fashion. Furthermore, increased ethical awareness has spurred several major fashion houses—including Gucci—to join the likes of Stella McCartney by discontinuing the use of real fur. While fashion still has a long way to go, I see the industry moving toward a more sustainable and ethical future.” —Weidner
Pastels in unexpected silhouettes
"I’ve seen a lot of great menswear-inspired suiting in gorgeous pastels. Lavender/lilac is my favorite. You can even find timeless 6-inch Timberland boots in gorgeous pastel colors!" —McMillen
Go wild with animal prints
"On their own or mixed and matched, adding some zebra or a little cheetah to your wardrobe is the easiest way to elevate your look this season." —Newberger