The Shimmer Effect

Written by Peyton Haahr

Rihanna famously sang “shine bright like a diamond”, which sparked a thousand bad graphic tees at Forever21 and H&M, and frankly, if I heard it right now, it would be stuck in my head for weeks.

This bright, stunning idea stood out in Fall fashion shows. Outfits were dotted with metallics and radiated a spectacular sheen as models strut down the runway. In a time of the year where people bundle up, cover up, and generally think less of what they’re wearing in an attempt to stay warm, the looks on the runway demonstrated that it is possible to mix comfort and high-fashion.

Coats were the natural choice to alter first, and at Dries Van Noten, they were taken to the next level. Take your basic overcoat, the one you throw on as you head to the office, and update it. Add some sheen, a colorful metallic finish that gives you the look of a confident, high-ranking official, even if you don’t feel like it that day. Their coats featured repeated prints, in greens, purples and oranges. Throw these on over your everyday wear, and provide a stylish alternative to the average overcoat. For a look you can put on, and leave on in the office, see the blue metallic blazer – complete with a fur coat addition. Rather than hanging up your overcoat, this is one you can wear continually – and is easy to pair with your classic cigarette pants or trousers. At Van Noten’s show, they were paired even with jeans, and often featured turtlenecks underneath to give dimension and even more volume.

 If it were possible to crown a winner of this trend this fall season, it would be Chanel. Karl Lagerfeld truly delivered (although, when does he not?), sending models down a space-themed runway. They were clothed in both dark and light metallics, shining silver boots with black toes, and shimmering puffer coats draped over the shoulders. Of course, no Chanel show would be complete without that famous tweed, and that was on show here as well.

The pieces shown on this runway are a prime example of how to do dressed up looks – with a metallic color as the centerpiece. Monochromatic looks are created with a dress, tights, and boots – all of similar color, but leaving the right amount of skin. Balance the looks with a flash of the collarbone or a deep v. If you are feeling adventurous, try the head to toe look, but like the runway looks, balanced it with another neutral look, such as grey. For an evening look that is sure to stand out and shine – literally – take a cue from Chanel.

Lastly, at the Atelier Versace couture show, the stunning simplicity and power of a metallic bronze can be the ultimate statement piece. Model Lexi Boling stood tall in the 20 looks presented, each intricate outfit featuring some form of sheen or sparkle. Quite a few of the looks had a bronze and ivory sequin texture, and the pair of pants with this addition were stunning. Set against a crisp tuxedo jacket and black heel, the trousers became the centerpiece of the outfit – giving it a very ‘girl-boss’ feel. The bronze metallic color was put on full display in a monochromatic look – a long sleeve mini dress (with shoulder pads, I may add) and heeled boots. It’s pretty much the ultimate party look. It bronze isn’t your color, going with a silver tone is easy to style, and you can easily mix it with other colors.


Metallic prints and shades are easy to work into any outfit – regardless of the time of day or occasion. They can be added on to any piece of clothing, and in a variety of shades. And incorporating it into your wardrobe doesn’t mean you need to find a one-time piece – rather, look for the addition that can be worn a multitude of ways, still maintaining that stunning shine in every look you craft.

With this trend, you can literally be a ‘gem’, shining like a brilliant diamond, emerald, gold bar – you name it, you got it.