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Fashion trend report for spring/summer 2016

Oct 29, 2015

by Emily Dean handmade and vintage goods

Yes, we know it might sound a little premature, but forward-thinking Etsy sellers are already planning ahead for 2016!

To give you a head start – and this  is useful for savvy shoppers, too – we asked Stylist Magazine’s Executive Fashion Director, Kitty McGee to break down the BIG fashion trends for spring/summer 2016.

Flight of Fancy

Fashion trends SS16 Ultra Girly Flight of Fancy

Clockwise from top left: Celine | Kenzo | Chanel | Chanel

Travel was the key mood of the season; inspiring everyone from Karl Lagerfeld at Chanel, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli at Valentino to Phoebe Philo at Celine, Carol and Humberto Leon at Kenzo and Mary Katrantzou.

Highlights included a cosmic traveller meets French Bourgeois theme at Mary Katrantzou during London Fashion Week and the Chanel Airlines terminal which was the setting for an incredible collection from Chanel on the penultimate day of Paris Fashion Week.

Ultra Girly

Fashion trends SS16 Ultra Girly

Clockwise from top left: Gucci | Chloe | Emilia Wickstead | Rodarte

Some designers toughened up sickly sweet dresses with leather, cut-outs and hardware, but for the main part there was a super-feminine moment on the runways where designers embraced femininity in a big way; think pink and pastels, delicate florals, neat ruffles, lots lace and unashamed prettiness.

One of the stand-out shows was Christian Dior where Raf Simmons’ spring garden, complete with a vast wall of 400,000 blue delphiniums was home to a show focused on femininity, fragility and sensitivity; filled with the softest pinks, scalloped edges, chemise tops and delicate rows of buttons and undulating silk pleats.

Sunset Shades

Fashion trends SS16 Sunset shades

Clockwise from top left: Prabal Gurung | Altuzarra | Burberry Prorsum | Jill Stuart

This mood started in New York where everything from show invitations to presentation settings and collections were inspired by colours of the setting summer sun. Orange was the standout colour and highlights included Prabal Gurung, Jonathan Saunders, Max Mara and Marni.


Including mermaid inspired ruffles and sequins, nautical details and motifs and embellishment and embroidery of underwater creatures.

Fashion trends SS16 Oceanic

Clockwise from top left: Proenza Schouler | Gucci | House of Holland | Mary Katrantzou

The ocean proved a huge inspiration for designers this season, Milan was where we saw this most predominantly where it was inspiration for everything from soundtracks at shows; ‘What shall we do with the drunken sailor’ played at Max Mara while models showcased a collection that included nautical stripes, Fishermans jumpers and rope prints, to embroidered and appliquéd sea creatures at Gucci and Emilio Pucci.

In Paris, Carven was inspired by the urban mermaid and in London Sophia Webster hosted a mermaid themed presentation full of iridescent fabrics, sequins and even tiled sandals.

Circle Motifs

Fashion trends SS16 Circle motifs

Clockwise from top left: Emporio Armani | Hunter Original | Thomas Tait | Jonathan Saunders

The circle motif was everywhere at fashion week, whether embroidered as at Peter Pilotto, appliquéd as at Tods, printed as at Topshop and Jonathan Saunders, or in the form of circular eyelets on ready-to-wear; or on shoes and earrings as at Prada, it’s the stand-out motif for SS16.


Fashion trends SS16 Nineties

Clockwise from top left: Chloe | Chloe | Mary Katrantzou | Alexander Wang

The slip dress, the rucksack, the tracksuits, the baseball cap,  Designers showed so many variations that it was impossible to ignore this trend on the ss16 runways; highlights included nineties rave inspirations at Christopher Kane and nineties-inspired sportswear at Chloe.

Eccentric Bohemia

Fashion trends SS16 Eccentric Bohemia

Clockwise from top left: Gucci | Gucci | Lanvin | Marco De Vincenzo

Milan was all about retro eclecticism, the muse of the season is a nostalgic, eccentric, bohemian girl who loves art, travels a lot, is inspired by vintage and isn’t afraid of accessorising. She embraces colour, embellishment and quirkiness. She isn’t satisfied with a single statement piece, she wants a statement dress to wear alongside all of her statement accessories; opticals, jewellery, handbag, shoes and possibly also socks or gloves.

The Gucci girl is the embodiment of this trend; with her pearl-studded heels, jewel-embellished gloves and multicoloured lace dresses and embroidered separates. We also saw this trend done at its best at Prada where skirt suits were accompanied with a wealth of accessories; signature embellishments and dangly christmas-tree style bauble earrings were worn with elegant low-heeled shoes.

Micro trends:

* Deconstruction: off-the-shoulder and deconstructed tailoring
* Night-time for daytime: pyjamas and lace slips
* Ultimate embellishment
* Tying the knot
* Sunshine accessories
* Victoriana
* Chokers
* Backless shoes, plus slippers and slides
* Buckle details
* Get shirty
* PVC Accessories

What do you think of the big trends for 2016? Have you started planning your range yet? Did you find our fashion forecast useful? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us @EtsyUK!


  • janewoolner1

    Jane Woolner from SartorsLondon said 3 years ago

    Great summary. Particularly interested in the ultra girly and sunset shades as I've been marketing my own designs which fall under those categories, see my shop SartorsLondon.

  • deykka

    Anastasia Deykka from Ohnotheydidnot said 3 years ago

    I am sorry to say, but your fashion report is made very badly. There is no connection on selected items. It is confusing mix of "what is nice for my eye" from fashion weeks. I suggest you to delete it. If i could be possible to add pics here to show trend report cuts...

    • Natalie Wall said 3 years ago

      Hey, thanks for your feedback. This is a round-up of the biggest fashion trends to come from the recent spring/summer 2016 shows, by someone in the know. It's purpose is to be broad enough to give sellers and consumers alike some inspiration for the upcoming season - particularly so sellers can be inspired to start preparing their own ranges and collections. Nearer to the season itself, we will publish a 'way to wear the trends' post, similar to this one from AW15. I'm not sure what you mean by 'adding pics to show trend report cuts' but hope I've helped to explain where we're coming from with this!

  • helenandthegap

    Helen James from gappyGOBS said 3 years ago

    PVC Accessories?! Hell yeah that sounds great.

  • Pompomelo23

    Prem-usa Dilenge from Pomcloset said 3 years ago

    Lace, orange, traveller and Bohemian would work for my next work^^

  • gracedmoments

    Sue Taylor-Davidson from gracedmoments said 3 years ago

    I liked sunset shades, noticed the BIGGGG glasses, and liked the giriness look ... but not to keen on the mismatched colour and pattern thing...????

  • gracedmoments

    Sue Taylor-Davidson from gracedmoments said 3 years ago

    sorry...I meant to write the girly look...

  • Lissies

    Anne Lise Hestness from LissieDesign said 3 years ago

    Yes, I have planned for spring/summer 2016. It feels great to be ahead of things.

  • Kashuen

    Kashuen Collectibles from Kashuen said 3 years ago

    I love orange color and the sunset shade is perfect! And the Bohemia look, it is always a trend for me.

  • eanjewellery

    Elizabeth Anne Norris from eanjewellery said 3 years ago

    Yay! The 90's. Well I have fond memories of it anyway ;-)

  • mermaidsboudoir

    mermaidsboudoir from mermaidsboudoir said 3 years ago

    I love the sunset shades, the romantic vibe and of course all the lace.....still on trend!

  • HelenLucas

    Helen from HelenRebeccaCeramics said 3 years ago

    Nice article. Be good to see one about homeware fashion too. ..

    • Natalie Wall said 3 years ago

      Oooh, well whaddya know - we have an interiors one coming RIGHT UP! Stay tuned! x

  • xZOUix

    Zoui from XZOUIX said 3 years ago

    the 90s - love that! i was born in the 80s, raised in (and by) the 90s :) i'm a fashion designer and the early 90s aesthetics has a huge impact on my work. the trend report here isn't bad, but it doesn't show the actual wide range of styles that are (and will be) trending. there is more to show than just the eclecticism, prints and boho (urban boho) style. funny that you forgot to mention minimalism. minimalism is eternal, and i'd say its sophistication is the great and fine specialty typical for designers from the new york area. am i right? :)

  • trueconfessionsstyle

    True Confessions Style Co. from TrueConfessionsStyle said 3 years ago

    Oh my good gosh, these colours and patterns and textures are so killer!


    Heather Pugh from CUTIEDOG said 3 years ago

    Adore the colours and patterns for next year !

  • Villedefleurs

    Tatiana from VilleDeFleurs said 3 years ago

    That's looks fun. Orange is one of my favourite colour ! hmmm… perhaps will create something with incredible rosehip oil with slightly orange tint for this glamourous sun tan look ? Or the orange candle ? Already love the idea...make me thinking...

  • Namaz

    Nazima Banka from nazimabanka said 3 years ago

    The floral dresses are stunning!

  • happyaccesories

    Alexandra Chereches from HappyAccesories said 3 years ago

    great inspiration :)

  • MyLoftVintage

    My Loft Vintage from MyLoftVintage said 3 years ago

    I really like this trend suggestions! Very vintage style!

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