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After the Second World War, fashion dictated rules where shoes matched a purse, which matched a dress, which at its turn matched gloves and a hat. Overall, dressing up in two hues of the same colour has a strangely positive effect on the one who wears it and attracts the one who sees it on the street. It still carries a message of power (there is a reason why the present First Lady of the USA and her granddaughters wore monochrome for the inauguration ceremony), elegance and perfect tailoring.
Besides suits where monochrome plays a significant role, it became a widely used trend to wear matching sets or pair a few shades of similar colours in outfits from top to bottom. We can see that in loungewear, after all, if you have stopped wearing suits to an office but still want to look and feel organized, what could be better than a matching set of silk wide-leg pants and a button-up shirt? We see that in sweatsuits and in layers of coats and dresses that match. We see it and understand that not a lot changed since Jackie Kennedy wore her famous pink tweed Chanel suit. Monochrome as a trend had phases of fading and rising again, yet it had never disappeared from runways.
This Spring/Summer season, designers once again added monochromatic looks to their collections for those who truly appreciate the grace and intelligence of its form.
This season Chanel made us believe once again that a classic tweed suit can be observed as something modern and dynamic. The show revealed two sides of a girl: an elegant lady and a sassy, confident trendsetter. As for monochrome, current head designer Virginie Viard presented it through classic mini and midi skirts with matching blazers in both neutral tones, as well as shades of red and pink.
Preen is all about flirting feminine elegance this S/S 2021 season expressed via asymmetrical frills, ruching, blooming flowers and pastel colours. Monochrome was presented through blouses and trousers in creamy beige and soft rose pink in tops and skirts.
Valentino S/S Couture 2021 collection is all about effortless elegance and a new approach to the once exclusive side of fashion, but now available for many. Even though it is a couture collection, it exchanged pomp to a more casual choice of fabrics yet kept tailoring its highest point of craftsmanship. Monochrome was seen through yellow suits, beige sets of skirts and tops and head-to-toe shades of pink.
Classic, timeless, yet so modern were Salvatore Ferragamo suits in S/S 2021 show. It is another fashion show house that, instead of rewriting the DNA of the history of the house, keeps on improving it according to modern times while keeping original principles alive. They presented monochrome, sophisticated-with-an-eccentric-twist looks through mixed shades of yellow, green, grey, beige, orange and purple.
Zero Maria Cornejo collection seemed to be an experiment of forms, textures and variations of pink and beige to speak about monochrome. They created a visual flow from a darker shade to a lighter that moved along with a model.
A true ode to the minimalism of black, white, and shades of beige is what the S/S 2021 Gabriela Hearst collection looks like. The designer took a step towards presenting monochrome from a familiar side, yet in such a delicate and intriguing way in textures of matching sets and coats over dresses.
Avasan, through simple total black and grey, reaches that level of presenting harmony and true elegance that it inevitably makes one think of raw natural beauty and how slick forms and familiar colours can create such an image.
+ Words: Maria Kossman
Maria Kossman is a creative writer, essayist and blogger based in Edmonton, Canada. Passionate about sustainable living, minimalism, travelling, and anything antique, she focuses on advocating life that is inspiring, mindful and elegant.