‘Womenswear will take inspiration from menswear’ – Patricia Beausoleil of Univers Mode style agency

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Relaxnews: What will the main trends be for Autumn/Winter 2013/2014?
Patricia Beausoleil: Womenswear is going to blur the line and draw on menswear and men’s formal attire for inspiration. The devil will be in the detail next season: perfect cuts and an immaculate finish. Competitive sports will also influence the colors and shapes of designs. It will be a new vision of the future, linked to the performance of cuts and fabrics. These types of pieces will have functional and graphic details. 

R: Will there be a trend that goes in an opposite direction, as is often the case?
PB: Yes. On the one hand, there will be this strong masculine/feminine trend and an emphasis on strong lines, and on the other there will be a more theatrical trend, almost baroque that will center on black and gold. Eighteenth century bas relief, military frogging and suits will inspire rich embroideries and prints.

R: Will designers once again be influenced by a particular time period? 
PB: 1920s styles will appear alongside 1940s styles. Cuts will be sophisticated and antique lace and burnished leather will be used. When it is a question of materials that are enhanced with time, vintage always rules. For Autumn/Winter 2014, fashion will look to Baroque and Renaissance eras to create spectacular prints. 

R: Will the shapes still be feminine?
PB: The graphic and modern aspect of a straightline, compact silhouette will override femininity in many of this season’s trends. Even the baroque trend, which got a headstart this winter, looks to an equestrian silhouette, with an emphasis on sleek jodhpurs and tapered trousers rather than dresses. Femininity and refinement will come in through the materials: velvet, silky damasks, guipure and embroidery are all back. 

R: What will be the key pieces for next winter?
Straight-cut coats as well as all kinds of masculine overcoats and belted coats. Finishing touches on the outside will draw inspiration from those generally used for the interior, or create a contrast in fabrics, such as between the sleeves and the body of the coat. We’ll also see tops cut like sweatshirts but in high-end materials like wool and leather, embellished with geometric cut-outs. 
Miniskirts and mini shorts worn over skinny jeans or thick leggings will create dynamic and sexy layered looks. 

R: What can we expect in terms of color?
Black and its sister tones will still have pride of place but there will also be touches of gold and copper. These will temper the rich baroque prints –ironwork styles, scrolls and curls, arabesques and intricate leaves. In contrast, colors inspired by sportswear (bright red, Yves Klein blue, billiards table green) will be paired with grey flannel and ivory for geometrically angled outfits, often featuring oversize elements.

R: Which current must-haves will be out of fashion next season?
In terms of clothing, it’s all a question of mixing and matching so nothing is forbidden. It’s just a question of changing how you put the pieces in your wardrobe together. However, avoid vintage style 1960s pieces like wide circle skirts. Also, last autumn’s essential satchel will have seen the end of its run.

R: What will be on-trend terms of shoes?
Men’s shoes will be reworked for women’s wardrobes. For example, derby and brogue styles will be embellished with metal straps and details. In line with the baroque trend, cowboy-style boots will be embellished with embroidery while embossed, burnished leather details will be seen on high-heeled ankle boots and stiletto styles. There will also be sculpted, studded and stone-embellished high heels on styles that mix rock and baroque.

R: There’s a trend of women wearing lighter and fewer garments and opting for flowing and transparent fabrics, even in winter. What can we expect in terms of materials for next season?
Materials will be heavier next season. Satins will be darker and fabrics more tightly woven. Lace will be replaced by guipure. But necklines will be daring and there will still be some glamour. Only chiffon and silk crepe tops will be seen in draped and semi-transparent versions. 

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