2 May 2019

MasterClass: On Trend Without ‘Following The Leader’


Keeping up with the “trends” can be exhausting.

I like to know what’s on trend but not necessarily adopt it. Knowledge is the key and even more so when we know what works for us and what doesn’t. “Fashionable” can run the length of the spectrum and back around again. Designers dream, thankfully, but not all of their creations are for everyday wear.

Staying “on trend” requires talent and it is two-fold.

It is an art to decipher fashion and be forward thinking enough to pick and choose what works. It’s easy to get it wrong and not only don’t we look how we want but also it can be costly. We have all made those mistakes. Understanding, appreciating and loving fashion does not make it imperative to follow every fad and change up our personal style every season. We should select carefully and adapt.

How do we adapt or decipher fashion “trends”?

This is where the second part comes into play. If we understand our own “look”, what suits and what makes us feel confident then we can pick and choose those elements to work for us. Floral and floaty dresses may be featured in profusion for the coming summer but I know, while I appreciate them on others, they will not be a big investment for me. Perhaps a pretty flowered blouse will come my way or a “floaty” dress in a plain to give the same feel but in a way to work for me. The same goes for very wide trousers – I may relinquish the skinnies – but I will meet the width in the middle. I know wide legs have never been for me and simply because “those in the know” say they will, I should know better.

As the decades roll, my style choices are becoming simpler. Dare I say, more classic. There is a case for investment dressing and cost-per-wear wardrobe essentials. I spend more on sustainable items and far less on the fads. Like my love affair with sneakers, I will wear them every day and enjoy them while I can but I won’t spend designer prices on them. It’s an easy case of “get the look”. It’s an interpretation of a trend without breaking the bank. Beautiful accessories, blouses or evening shoes are an entirely different spend.

How to look “on trend”?

We don’t want to look old-fashioned or dowdy but neither do we want to look ridiculous; wearing what doesn’t suit us is not the goal.

If extreme or extravagant fashion doesn’t have your name on it there is no need to opt-out or be behind the game. I learned early on there are ways to play the part without feeling like someone else is occupying my body. It’s an easy fix and essential if we want to stay up to date. European women are the masters of this and I believe it is one of the reasons we revere their fashion sense.

The answer is, of course, accessories.

And a great haircut.

Yes, a fresh haircut is the easiest way to look the part. A modern and clean style regardless of colour choices can elevate the simplest of tees, black pants, and blazer to another level. Add a pair of the latest frames and we are good to go. Sunglasses or reading glasses can revolutionize how we look – we can drop decades and look completely in the know without letting go if you get my drift ;)

The same goes for shoes.

Watch the trends and adapt what works for you. Sneakers won’t look the part if they are accompanied by track pants and money belt; think a sheath style dress and leather jacket. We don’t need to stumble around in ten-inch heels to stay on trend; try kitten heels with your capri pants and oversized broderie blouse.

Staying on trend is all about adaption. Following the leader? Only when and if we want to. xv

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Taste of France

Color is another one. I am noticing the return of matching. Red bag, red shoes, red accessories…or name any other color. Same color shoes and pants is a favorite on both men and women. Some colors are more “in”–mustard, millennial pink….It’s easy to find pieces that work for you and still be on trend just by using color.


Yes! I also love all black or all neutrals with contrasting shoes in particular. :)


Love your line “we can drop decades and look completely in the know without letting go”. Great writing, Vicki!


Vicky, you always look fabulous in all your photos. But these days I hsven’t the patience. I just buy what I like. I don’t worry about being on trend. Many of my clothes are years old but still in good condition because they’re always well looked after. Most of my beautiful knitted winter jackets belonged to my motger and were pretty much one off works of art. Designed by Oz artists, including Jenny Kee. My Mum was a very stylish lady. I also buy in Op shops. Found my husband a fabulous genuine Balmain sportscoat once, $6.00 (originally $12) in the winter sale. But I do buy good handbags (my current fave is my black Valentino candybag), silk or cashmere scarves and designer costume jewellery. And I wear sneakers (plain black or white leather ones) most of the time – well made and comfortable but not designer. I think as we get older we have already found our own style and just make occasional changes, perhaps just in colours, for freshness. I rarely throw anything out unless it’s worn out. Even then clothes i wouldn’t wear going out get another life as my gsrdening clobber. Best wishes, Pamela


Over the years I’ve learned what looks good on me and what doesn’t. That doesn’t mean I don’t try new things, like prints… I’ve never been a print person but recently bought a print skirt and a print midi dress… but overall I am not a monkey see, monkey do. xoxox, B


Like you, I check out the trends, then pick and choose what suits my style, looks good on my body and colouring. I’ve learned to never say never. I mostly lean towards classics in neutral colours. But…that doesn’t mean I won’t buy the latest style purse, or pay attention to the toe shape when buying footwear. This spring I’m all about floral tops. Say what?! Yes! I’ve fallen for all those pretty floral tops.


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