The Runway Roundup: Trend Report from the FW22 fashion shows

Anna-Louise McDougall
March 25, 2022
5 min

t’s time we reflect on the Fall Winter 2022 month of fashion that brought buyers, designers, and shoppers the looks of the moment, and not without the ever-present goal to “be the moment”.

With the last leg of the big four fashion weeks coming to a dramatic end (hello, Burberry), it’s time we reflect on the month that brought buyers, designers, and shoppers the looks of the moment, and not without the ever-present goal to “be the moment”.

As a reflection on the outside world; the snow-globe spectacle that is runway season leaves us outsiders wanting whatever we can get our hands on - like, now. Whether it’s Bridgerton-inspired corsetry, Batman-esque gothic glamour, or traditional house codes brought back to life - the Fall Winter 22 runways wedged a well-heeled foot back in the door of our cultural consciousness, as we continue to question, “what’s next?”.

While luxe streetwear with the likes of baggy jeans, baseball caps, low-slung cargos, oversized cardigans, space-dye knits, and the simple white tank coming from major players like Bottega Veneta, Prada, Louis Vuitton, Chloé and Versace, the trends flying in aren’t exactly low-key.

There’s a significant uptick from razzle-dazzle styles reserved for all-nighters, dinner dates, and generally foraying back into nightlife (or day-to-day life, if you’re game). Shimmering scales, glittering mesh, gauze and lace, liquid-like satin, and shiny leather all had their place on the runway, with plenty of input from the Y2K resurgence, and even a bit of that indie resurgence everyone’s talking about.

Here are the top 11 trends we can expect to enjoy a season-long (at least) spotlight for Fall Winter 22, and some you can wear right now.

Sheer delights

Gossamer-thin and whisper-soft, sheer fabrications dominated the runways across everyone from Eckhaus Latta, Simone Rocha, Khaite, Prada, Miu Miu, and Versace, to name a few.

Shimmering transparent layers across skirts, tanks and slip dresses added an other-worldly purity to the undergarment style with Fendi doing it resoundingly best in Milan with wet-look hair and barely-there makeup.

Get set to wear pretty blouses, slip skirts, and tanks topped with tulle, spliced with opaque fabrics, or drawn out into elegant maxi dresses.

Tartan takeover

A lot of schoolyard reminiscing went down this month, whether that was the actual locker room at Coperni, or the man ties Louis Vuitton, nothing quite hit the high school note like preppy tartan at Marine Serre, Nicole Millar, and Miu Miu.

In varying check sizes and spliced colours, from the heritage homage at Thom Browne to Burberry’s iconically British windbreakers, pleated skirts and pencil dresses, and Nicole Millar’s tailored pants and blazers, tartan is settling in for the winter.

Gotham glam

When The Batman starring a grunge-clad Robert Pattinson and cat-suited Zoe Kravitz debuted halfway through Paris, the abundance of black leather, d rings, long lace-up boots, corsetry, studs, and dark duster coats was clear.

Fashion is embracing its darker side for the better, and it might have something to do with Hollywood’s Gotham obsession. Glamorous wet-look latex, head-to-toe leather ensembles, wide shoulders and sheer tights, high-rise platforms, emo graphic motifs, and goth-girl makeup make this one to look out for. As seen across the runways at Rick Owens, Balmain, Bottega Veneta, Versace, Ambush, Tods, and Diesel.

Medieval corsetry

Boned undergarments have got the green light for another season with Dion Lee leading the charge. Protective elements, structured corsetry, and thick waist-cinching belts have become a prominent theme, especially where Balmain and Dior are concerned with their metal bustiers and technical bodices.

Medieval-inspired corsetry has left the super-feminine flounce of puffy sleeves and billowing hems behind with a less-provocative, more stoic vibe. Versace flirted with those boundaries, while Gucci went a little more sporty with the Adidas collab.

Mini lengths, major impact

Miuccia Prada once again having the last laugh sending the micro-mini back down the runway, and this time (thankfully) with longer iterations for the faint of heart.

Appearing in more business-appropriate fabrics across the board, brands like Coperni, Courrèges and Off White ran with the Instagram-friendly look, the leggiest of their cast taking on mini-midriff sets in leather, tweed and sequins.

The bubble hem appears to be back for David Koma and Emilia Wickstead, while Supriya Lele, Halpern and Ahluwalia offered iterations for more than just a one night stand. Nensi Dojaka ruled the trend with delicate silhouettes and perfectly placed cut-outs matched with sheer tights.

Shocking pink

Elle Woods would be pleased.

FW22’s most mood-boosting hue, and potentially divisive amongst all that gothic black, is shocking, hot pink. Michael Kors, Carolina Herrera and Lanvin follow Valentino’s 48 head-to-toe looks (plus backdrop) as the brands spearheading the eye-watering shade into the mainstream.

Calling card coats

Statement outerwear was on heavy rotation during Paris fashion week, with the general feeling that cloakrooms are back. It felt like every collection had a fuzzy, fluffy or feathered showpiece ranging from coffee-coloured floor-length teddy at Tod’s, the shaggy cream confection at Jil Sander to the sewer-green feathers tufting out of coats at Prada.

Bottega Veneta presented a fuzzy robe with large golden studs (not to mention the Elmo-red fuzzy platforms), while Diesel ended the show with models teetering under enormous, floor-sweeping denim ‘fur’ coats.

Why wear your puffer for useful purposes, when you can go full Rick Owens and parade the midnight sidewalk, wear your trench as a dress a la Burberry, or show up in a glittering duster like the Dries Van Noten girl?

Elsewhere, impactful faux-fur clutch coats at Saint Laurent, giant robes at Acne or just cozy up in one of Chloé’s cocooning ponchos.

Leather forever

From Khaite’s neo grunge stiff and sexy leather jackets at NYFW to Hermès nipped blazers and Louis Vuitton’s oversized chocolate bomber worn by Squid Game star HoYeon Jung, leather was more than just luxe outerwear.

Dion Lee and Fendi’s bustiers, Givenchy’s full-length gown, and Isabel Marant’s fisherman overalls are just a few examples of leather crafted into more than mini skirts.

Did we mention those ‘white tanks and jeans’ in Bottega’s opening looks are leather? Indeed. The main takeaway: wear it head to toe.

Oversized blazers

Oversized blazers with pumped-up shoulder pads and tiny waists are nothing new to fashion lately, but certain brands gave the look a new perspective this season.

Balenciaga and Versace, Off-White, and Louis Vuitton were front-runners for major blazer tailoring in silhouettes that won’t be going anywhere soon.  Leave it to Saint Laurent to explore larger-than-life versions, while Coperni took the “over” to a whole new level.

Serious and sexy suiting

“Women are really interested in men’s suits,” said Alessandro Michele, as he, like many other designers drew on the codes of sport and sartorialism where we need it most; the 9am-9pm slot.

The story was similar at Prada where masculine jackets in boxy shapes and sharp tailoring was paired with pencil skirts and tulle, and at Fendi where ¾ length skirts and elongated high-waisted pants were shown with cropped blazers with tall collars.

Saint Laurent’s outing brought with it a new level of sinuosity and mystery to suiting - so precise in silhouette - one needn’t anything else except a pair of stilettos. Coperni showed sexy cutouts and a sideless blazer, while Balmain and Givenchy tightly nipped in the waist of satin and oversized suiting paired with knee-high boots.

Cocoa, coffee and chocolate

What a combo. Rich chocolate leather at Hermes, cocoa browns replacing black in evening wear at Altuzarra, Helmut Lang and Laquan Smith and sultry knitwear at Eckhaus Latta doesn’t even begin to cover the chocolatey outing at fashion month, set to become our new go-to neutral.

Want more Fall Winter 22 trends? Download your exclusive copy of the The Runway Roundup for more trends, tips on what to buy, and images to help with that pesky collection presentation you have to put together 😉

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