PFW Spring 2013: Strong Shoulders
Posted by on October 4, 2012 | 1:25 pm EST

 (L-R) Stella McCartney, Elie Saab, Balmain and Chalayan

It’s pretty obvious that designers had a field day plucking out inspirations from decades past. As if dungarees, overalls and plaid showed enough sartorial variety to complete the kaleidoscopic trend flashbacks of spring 2013 season, Paris Fashion Week also brought back the iconic-yet-awkward shoulder pads of the 1980’s into the mix. From Stella McCartney to Balmain, many labels made sure their take on this trend was one that arrived with 2013 edginess.

The trend may be all about power dressing, but you won’t be seeing any pads hiding under the shoulders for it was instead a play between proportions and cuts. At Stella McCartney, curved shoulders took away the visual sharpness of the trend and gave it a more slouchy silhouette. This subtle approach was the same for Aganovich, although the latter went for exaggeration and volume.

  (L-R) Roland Mouret, Aganovich, Gareth Pugh and Lanvin

While subtlety seems to be all sorts of appropriate for the season, some labels also signed up for super strong lines that lived up to the “power” behind power dressing. At Roland Mouret and Elie Saab, sharply tailored blazers and jackets were spruced up for spring as the color palette offered an exciting variety of bright oranges, striking blues and more.

On the runways of Balmain and Chalayan, sleek structured shoulders resonated loudly as well. Since it’s one of the signature aesthetics of Balmain, they spearheaded the assembly of this in Paris, sending out looks that inarguably underlined this trend to perfection.

These Parisian labels may have taken the power dressing ideals of the 1980’s, but their modern and fashion-forward approach actually makes for a strong trend come spring. Sure, statement-making shoulders aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, but with the likes of Lanvin, Stella McCartney and Elie Saab successfully edging it up for 2013, we can hope for mainstream success.

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