Written by Peyton Haahr
Denim is one of the most iconic fabrics in the fashion industry, period. Applied from everything to jeans, jackets, even boots (yikes!), denim never really goes out of style, it just evolves. We see jeans in every style eventually make their way back around, in every color, with every detail and accessory imaginable. It’s easy to wear, versatile, and comfortable, so naturally, designers were able to take some risks when utilizing it in their work. During the Fall/Winter shows, several designers took to resurrecting retro styles, even creating ‘double denim’ looks.
First up – Dior. In a show studded with various shades of blue, denim boiler suits stood out alongside sheer tulle dresses and leather berets. If you’re looking for dark denim, the first part of the show followed this color palette, and featured wide-leg pants. It was paired with a similar colored button up, and a coat. The monochrome look can be done without having denim on denim, and wearing a top of a different fabric, but similar color can make the look sophisticated and strong. But on the lighter denim side, Maria Grazia Chiuri, the creative director, took to creating boiler suits, structured jackets, and classic jean styles. Large pockets were featured on both pants and menswear inspired shirts. When pulling off these full-denim looks, it is important to add interest with shoes, or even jewelry. Here, rings were piled on each finger and a purse with a thick chain. All hail the new denim uniform.
Next, at Raf Simons’ debut for Calvin Klein saw similar monochrome looks in blacks and dark washes. Both men’s and women’s looks were seen with this trend, as Simons’ pulled on iconic American ideas, denim – obviously – and even cowboy boots. Turtlenecks were thrown on underneath the tops, giving a masterclass in layering. If not a high-neck top, try something lacy or sheer to add some interest. The black denim is also a strong look – and a completed wardrobe most definitely includes black denim. Both the top or bottoms shown here can be separated and either dressed up or down. Wear the jeans casual, with a great graphic tee, or dress it up with a delicate tank or chunky sweater.
Colovos and Tom Ford also sent head-to-toe denim looks down the runway both choosing smart, tailored, utilitarian pieces, indigo selvage, exposed stitching, and sharp cuts. Public School also showed workwear-inspired looks only Chow and Osborn smudged their silhouttes by chopping and off-centering their designs. These dark designs can inspire the brave fashionista to take the look to the office. However, this wardrobe flexibility comes with one big caveat: your jeans are for dressing up, not dressing down. Find a jacket with extended collar points, a straight leg with flowing ruffles, or a jumpsuit with a nipped-in waist to feel modern and crisp.
Last, Stella McCartney created less monochrome looks, and mixed various washes with leathers and other fabrics. On one of the looks, featured a cropped jean jacket, layered on a denim button-down and high-waisted jean. Most people wouldn’t go for three denim pieces in one outfit, but each of these looks can be utilized to their full potential separately, too. A cropped jacket can be a great layering piece, and can work well with looser dresses as the jacket defines your waist. And the dark wash featured here can pair with a dressier look and still look chic and cool. Last, a denim button down last working into a leather ensemble, with thick white stitching to create interest. While this is a tough look to recreate exactly, one can take some inspiration from it. With no collar, and sturdy buttons lining the front, the shirt is different from your average top, and pairs nicely along the leather, which is a similar color and feel. You don’t have to go the full denim look to achieve a similar monochrome look.
Denim will never really go out of style, and various fits and colors always repeat themselves. So before you throw out those jeans you haven’t worn for a while – wait – you’ll be wearing them soon enough. While full denim looks were common on the runway, it may not translate that well into real everyday wear. But taking each piece separately, it is easier to work them into your wardrobe. Take a cue from each of these designers, making even the most basic of denim pieces into stunning outfits.