10 Key Factors Influencing Autumn Winter 2010-11 Trends

on 21/2/10

As the Autumn / Winter 2010-11 runway collections take place in New York, London, Paris, and Milan, The Trend Boutique provide a guide to the key trend drivers & influences behind the season. What are the major events, lifestyle shifts, and artistic direction that have been at the forefront of everyone's minds. We provide a rundown of our ten key influences for the season.

No 1: The Desire for Change - After two years of economic uncertainty and a decade of war & terror this social / political backdrop has created a real desire for change, and this is the very essence of the Autumn Winter 2010-11 season. Added to this we have played it relatively safe in terms of colour, styling, and label choices over the last couple of seasons with Spring Summer 10 being very commercial colourwise and in Autumn Winter 09-10 we reverted back to black (albeit with lots of embellishment & texture) to ensure that we got through the season intact.

Now with real excitement & innovation surrounding the world of technology, plus the move towards a more radical environmental approach, and also this sense that we need to shake things up to ensure customers have a reason to come back into stores to buy, this had lead to a complete boost to the season.

Chest of Drawers 100 by Tejo Remy & Ted Noten for Droog
Chest of drawers #100 for Droog by Tejo Remy & Ted Noten
Photographer: Droog

No 2: The African World Cup - The event of the year because of its ambition and spectacle, there will be no getting away from the Football World Cup in South Africa this summer and we expect the influence to last well into the Autumn Winter 10-11 season. As we speak we are imagining a riot of colour & noise that is often associated with African football, and as we commence the run up to the tournament we will be bombarded with images of this richly diverse and contrasting continent.

Take inspiration from those deep, dark earthy tones associated with the ground itself (& something that was picked up by Puma longtime sponsors of African football) plus both the traditional and the modern takes on this amazing continent from tribal weaves to eclectic football shirts worn. Follows on from the 'global traveller' from Autumn Winter 09-10.

JW Anderson SS10 Collection
Jewellery Collection by J.W. Anderson

No 3: Colour in Winter - Who wants to head into a winter of greys, blacks and dull, dull colours again - so for Autumn Winter 10-11 we shy away from those traditional winter colours with four key colour stories. Pastel brights with flashes of orange, whitened tones or tonal greys with burnt umbers & smooth buttery metallics, opulent purples with acidic lime accents, and finally palettes with deep, pronounced contrasts in deep chocolates against bright teals and pinks, all set to to liven up those cold, dreary days. Heart-warming & spirit-lifting just what we need to get us excited about the season.

As we speak most of the early Autumn Winter 10-11 designer collections from New York and London have opted for the safer tonal greys and metallics, there is also still alot of black around, however for the younger, more directional labels colour is definitely on the agenda.

Autumn Winter 2010 Collection by LacosteAutumn Winter 10-11 RTW Collection by Lacoste

No 4: Minimalist Styling - Although colour & pattern may be bold and bright, these types of fashion statement require simple clean lines with precision cutting. The overall styling is a hybrid of the 'bodycon' & 'volume' shapes we have seen over recent seasons with shapes cocooning the body rather than creating exaggerated volume & draping or the oh so figure-hugging silhouettes, creating a new extremely wearable & flattering look.

Although New York Fashion Week may have taken this too literally, with both minimalist styling and a ultra 'safe' color palette it is normally the more reserved of the Fashion Weeks so we look forward to what London, Paris and Milan have to offer. Already though we have seen lots of the cut-away micro trend with designers revealing just the right amount of flesh.

No 5: Exaggerated Texture - Following on from last season adding texture is the easiest way to add interest to your collection whilst also ensuring that the range is extremely wearable, and instantly desirable. Texture can be added in virtually any shape or form as long as it is big & bold, with large scale cable knits influencing interiors & fashion, head-to-toe laddering, metallic threads interwoven into extravagent jacquard patterning, and contrasting sleeves or colour blocking creating interesting variation in both colour & texture. 

Although dyed and wild-looking furs also add texture, we are not so keen on the large amount of real fur seen on the New York catwalks, let's hope the rest of the world's designers rely on fake fur to do the job.

Thakoon Autumn Winter 2010-11 Collection
Autumn Winter 2010-11 Collection by Thakoon

No 6: Bauhaus Retrospective - Almost as if in honour of the the legendary Bauhaus school of design, that celebrated its 90th anniversary in 2009 with exhibitions around the world, the influence of this iconic, and instantly recognisable style is still as strong and relevent today and for Autumn Winter 2010-11 is set to have a massive impact on both fashion and interiors.

Originally founded by Walter Gropius as a way of bringing together various forms of design, as well as, spawning various incarnations of minimalist ideals 'less is more'. The spirit of Bauhaus fits extremely well with the Autumn Winter 2010-11 season as we strive for a similar balance between creativity and mass production, and as luxury gets a new pared down austere aesthetic.

Bauhaus Architectural Design

No 7: Maarten Baas Chankley Bore Collection - In a similar way to Alexander McQueen's effect on the fashion industry, this relatively new designer has had a huge impact on the general design & interiors world. His early 'Smoke' collection created in 2002 signalled an adoption of his black, lacquered aesthetic for furniture and lighting that is still in evidence today. Recognised throughout the world for his visionary approach he was awarded the 'Designer of the Year' award by Design Miami last year. 

Despite being launched in 2008 at the Salone Internazionale del Mobile The Chankley Bore collection is only just now starting to filter through trend wise, references athat are being picked up are its 80's styling, simple colour palette and sense of fun. 

Maarten Baas Chankley Bore Collection
The Chankley Bore Collection by Maarten Baas

No 8: Fashion goes Digital - With live streaming from many of the shows you cannot fail to notice the impact of new technologies on the fashion world. Kicked off last season with initial forays into live streaming, it is now the domain of the many, not the few, with London Fashion Week leading the way with its digital runway schedule and fashion films.

Added to this, it is now the bloggers role to be seen front row at the shows, with everyone tweeting & blogging live during the action, whether it is to announce 'what a bun fight' it was at the Mark Fast show or in the case of 'What Katie Wore' getting the chance to show the world what you are wearing for Fashion Week. Who knows if it will turn out to be a short-term fad or something longer term (technology and fashion have not often mixed) only time will tell, but when some of the most prestigious editors start blogging we know it can't be ignored. 

London Fashion Week Digital Schedule
London Fashion Week Digital Schedule Website

No 9: Celeb / Designer Collections - Love or hate her there is no denying Victoria Beckhams inextricable link with fashion, and it doesn't look as if this is about to change if her favourable (albeit slightly flattering) reviews of her latest womenswear collection are anything to go by. She is not the only celebrity making the leap into the fashion industry and the New York catwalk shows had more than their fair share with the likes of the Olsen twin's Elizabeth & James label and Justin Timberlake's William Rast debuting its third collection.

Obviously, we know there has always been a link between celebrities & fashion, and there have been many forays in the past, but given the response to these latest set of celebrities slash fashion designers it could be that they may be around for some time to come.

Justin Timberlake & Trace Ayala William Rast
Justin Timberlake & Creative Director Trace Ayala of William Rast

No 10: The Loss of Lee Alexander McQueen - As we discuss the rise of the celebrity / fashion designer, we must unfortunately mark the fall of one of the most celebrated and directional fashion designers Lee Alexander McQueen. As the shock of his death hit the opening day of New York Fashion Week, the loss of such a major talent and trend-inspiring designer will be felt for a long time to come.

With news that the label shall continue and his Autumn Winter 10-11 collection will be shown, the impact of his death will be an unmistakeable void in terms of creativity and visual reference points. The loss of Lee Alexander McQueen has cast a sombre shadow over the fashion industry and it remains to be seen who will be able to lift it going forward and be the next true visionary leader that he has been.


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article resources

For further information & references visit:


World Cup Africa

Puma's World Cup Article by The Trend Boutique

J.W. Anderson

New York Fashion Week

London Fashion Week

Milan Fashion Week

Paris Fashion Week




Maarten Baas

William Rast

Victoria Beckham

Elizabeth & James

Alexander McQueen




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