In 2013, fashion seemed tired of acting proper—and all our favorite stars endorsed the excitement. The odes to understatement and ladylike allure were long gone, and the style world was back to making entrances, turning heads, and being remembered. But instead of flash, the focus was on brilliant cuts, astonishing hues, dramatic lines, and inspired proportion. See our favorite trends of the year below.
The White Tuxedo: Designers like Stella McCartney opted out of classic black and sent tailored pieces in lighter hues down the runway. Tilda Swinton (in Timothy Everest) adopted the look on the red carpet, pairing her cream-colored suit with an optic white button-down and pumps. For a less-intimidating way to cop the trend, try a white tuxedo blazer first. Shop the trend.
Rainbow Leather: Who knew leather could be so pretty? Leather seems to have severed ties with its tough, biker origin. Kerry Washington (in Marc by Marc Jacobs) managed to make her red-hot leather shift look both sexy and ladylike. Aim for key colorful leather pieces, like those seen at Marni, that you can seamlessly ease into your wardrobe rotation. Shop the trend.
Animal Patterns: Look to the animal kingdom for inspiration: leopards, zebras, giraffe—anything goes. Christopher Bailey speckled Burberry Prorsum’s iconic silhouettes in leopard spots on the catwalk, and Ziyi Zhang (in Giambattista Valli Couture) earned her style stripes in zebra print. Go for a more casual look in a pair of animal print skinnies. Shop the trend.
Flame Dresses: Blaze the trail—literally. Take a hint from Rihanna (in Azzedine Alaïa) and Diane von Furstenberg's runway, and go for cardinal yourself. These looks are hot, hot, hot! Try out red on a smaller scale with bold, but still statement-making, separates. Shop the trend. MORE:
• You Can Do: Ladylike Leather
• Wear Red Right: 12 Pieces That Pop
• Our Ode to Gold: Shop 12 Pieces of Gilded Jewelry