The Runway Roundup: SS23 Accessories Trend Report

Anna-Louise McDougall
October 20, 2022
4 min

Discover the shoes, bags and accessories trends from Fashion Week Spring Summer 2023 from the runways in New York, London, Milan and Paris.

Bags, shoes, and assorted accoutrement are the sign-off to the perfect look, and during fashion week it pays to pay attention to the ankles, hands, and necks of the runway models to spot the next big thing. In case they’re lost and buried beneath fun-loving silhouettes and textured fabrics, forgotten amongst the star-power of the clothing, or maybe simply too well styled to make an impact - we can’t forget it’s often the accessories lines that maketh the profit.

Some of the most recognized cult-status pieces in fashion history are shoes, bags and accessories. Think the Gucci belt, the Louis Vuitton Speedy, Margiela’s Tabis and 25 years of the Fendi baguette. In more recent memory, the runways have paved the way for Versace’s Medusa platform pumps, Chanel dad sandals, Jacquemus’ Le Chiquito handbag and Prada’s nylon bucket hat. Whether they have a lower price point or are simply more widely available - these items are a touchstone for many to have a piece of their favorite brand.

So, what’s on the menu for summer? Do we have a Bottega quilted mule on our hands? Hopefully, it’s not the Balenciaga Lays Chips bag that will spawn a thousand knock-offs.

Flatforms got an espadrille upgrade at Max Mara, Ulla Johnson, and Jonathan Simkhai, and clogs made note-worthy appearances at Balenciaga, Dior, Ester Manas and Etro. Utility bags attached to the body dumped their ‘bum bag’ beginnings to make serious sartorial statements at Miu Miu, Maryam Nassir Zadeh, and Ferragamo. And, if you needed a break from the strappy, tied-up, and barely-there heels, there were jelly sandals at Simone Rocha, Loewe and Coach.

Let’s take a look at five accessories trends gathered from the Spring Summer 23 runway season.

Give-it-to-me gloves

Gloves have been doing the rounds for a number of seasons now, but for SS23 they were pushed in new directions to make more of a statement than letting you know it’s opera night. Chanel finished elbow-length sets with bows, Dior’s and Dolce & Gabbana’s were imbued with a dark romanticism and A.W.A.K.E Mode played with volume. Even Paris Hilton closed Versace in a hot pink fingerless set.

On the net

Netting for the upper echelon. This season, footwear took to hosiery’s humble netting technique in feminine, mysterious and sexy ways. Nensi Dojaka’s matched woven basket net flats with lingerie lace, Stella McCartney's heels had an alluring sock-like appeal, and Chanel’s knee-high nets were built into the shoe - talk about convenience.

Puff piece

Pumps with personality. Padded, fluttering, and pumped up, the shoes of the season offered more than just a finishing touch. To counteract the practicality of the ‘ugly shoes’ like Crocs or dad sneakers, it seems the more impractical, the better - and way more fun. These conversation pieces ranged from Loewe’s pumps crafted from latex balloons, Dries Van Noten’s and Collina Strada’s frilly floral confections to match their collections, and Proenza Schouler’s puffy platforms.

Gold mine

Little nuggets of 24k clutch and moon bag magic were ever present on the runways, as the perfect gilded offering for the party-inclined. Pops of gold dotted many of the collections, including Gabriela Hearst’s glamorous bucket bag and Coperni’s metallic baguette. Michael Kors had a number of glimmering palm-sized wallets, while Chanel out-Chanel-ed itself with an iridescent pearl and gold trim carton.

Sole Focus

For many designers, a birds-eye view of footwear would have shown your average sling-backs, boots, and slides, as it seemed to be all about what lies beneath. Dries Van Noten transformed the wedge heel with inverted block heel shapes and golden sculptural heels while Louis Vuitton took the lug sole to a chunkier, more military level. Versace played with stacked wedges beneath patent leather Chelsea boots and sandals, and Bottega offered a balancing act on sharp pumps.

Sleepover club

Big enough to fit your pillow, or be your pillow. These maximum-room bags will satisfy the maximalist who can’t decide on one outfit for the weekend getaway. Oversized proportions came in all shapes and colors, and more notably, comfortable, squishy and furry textures for the holding. Notably, Marni and Louis Vuitton’s versions almost engulfed their carries, while others opted for classic shapes like baguettes and hobo bags, simply blown up. All the better to carry your staples with.

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