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Flashes of winter elegance
Published in Al-Ahram Weekly on 10 - 01 - 2017

What are the latest fashion trends this season? This question jumps into the minds of many women at the beginning of each season and is often followed by a search of shops and fashion sites to find the answer.
“Velvet fabrics are top this winter, while bomber-style and velvet jackets, pleated skirts and trousers that are tight at the top and have wide legs are also booming this winter. Overall, 90s styles have come back strongly and are everywhere this winter,” says Nada Akram, a fashion designer and founder of Nada Akram Design.
She added that top colours this winter are dark red, pink, despite the fact that it is a summery colour, and metallic colours like silver and gold. “Definitely some fabrics and styles are also always fashionable, like leather jackets and trousers,” she added.
For fashion stylist and blogger Mariam Al-Kholy, this winter's trends are bold, edgy and a little bit boyish. “Casual wear this season has many styles, like puffer coats, extra-long sleeve cardigans and jackets, casual dresses layered with turtlenecks, overcoats, biker jackets and sporty jumpsuits,” Al-Kholy said. As for fabrics, satin, flower prints, embroidery, mesh, fringe and suede are all in this winter, she added. “Bright colours like yellow are a hit plus a combination of purple and burgundy. All the pastel colours are trending too,” she added.
According to certified visual merchandiser and brand ambassador Heba Serag Eldin, dark colours are trendy this season, especially the darkest tones like midnight blue and royal purple. “This winter is characterised by rich fabrics, especially shiny fabrics,” she said. “However, evening wear means pierced garments, bustier, flowy dresses, pleated skirts, coloured fur, high-knee boots, military jackets, suits, cropped pants, capes and embroidered shoes,” according to Al-Kholy.
Akram adds that velvet evening dresses are the latest this season, giving an amazingly elegant winter look. “Medium or miniskirts, velvet boots and socks, uncle boots and waist bags are very in this season,” said Serag Eldin.
“It's never about luxurious clothes. It's about the way you style them up. You can wear the most expensive clothes in the world but still not look good,” said Al-Kholy. “Always opt for looking simple and elegant, and remember that less is more.” Her tips are not to over-do makeup, and to keep in mind that an outfit isn't complete without the perfect hairstyle and makeup, as the three things go together. “You can wear a really good outfit but still not look good because your hair and makeup don't go with your outfit,” she said.
For Serag Eldin, make-up adds a lot to any style provided it is natural, especially in the morning. Make-up should highlight your natural beauty, not totally change your features and make you look like someone else, she said, adding that “dark and shiny light colours are the hits this winter. As for lip gloss, dark colours like blue and black are trendy.”
“Not everything you like is suitable for you. You must consider your skin colour, body shape and height,” Al-Kholy said. She explained that there are four types of body shape: the inverted triangle accentuating your hips, the triangle balancing your top half with your lower half while accentuating your upper part, the rectangle camouflaging the curves, and the hourglass accentuating them.
There are also three types of skin tone: warm, meaning you should go for orange, red, yellow, emerald green and burgundy colours, cool, indicating olive green, turquoise, and magenta, and neutral, meaning pastel colours in white, cream, black, red, purple and all shades of blue. “You should categorise your body and your skin type and then choose what is suitable for you based on your type,” said Al-Kholy.
Serag Eldin believes that your style is your signature: what you wear reflects your personality and makes you different from others. “Elegance comes before fashion, so you should wear the clothes that suit you, and not be obsessed by mere fashion,” she added.
Akram advises renewing your style and not being afraid of trying new ones. “Never judge clothes without trying them first,” she says. “You should play with outfits and choose cuts that hide any imperfections to get the desired look.”
Al-Kholy advises not being afraid to repeat clothes several times. “You can make tons of different outfits from the same garments. You can make evening wear outfits from casual garments and vice versa. You can do wonders if you don't limit clothes to only wearing what you think is in fashion,” she says.
For example, you can wear a dress as a top by tucking it into a skirt, add a denim jacket to an evening dress to turn it into a casual outfit, or alter college outfits by adding scarves or accessories, Al-Kholy adds. “Wear a pullover with a chemise or with a jacket. Try different jackets with the same pullover. Convert your mid-length pullovers into dresses by wearing a coat on top, leggings and knee or thigh-high boots,” she concludes.

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