Simple, no-nonsense and effortlessly flattering shirts have always been summer essentials. Shirts for S/S ’17 collections witnessed a wide range of manipulations induced in the basic shirt silhouette to make them even more appealing. With the influx of ’90s fashion, it is no surprise that Spring 2017 collections are being swathed with androgynous looks where women’s fashion has taken a serious masculine turn. Designers and exporters have successfully altered the ‘shirt’ to create cropped shirts, shirt dresses, varied blouse styles, all with added femininity to the archetypical shirt. Whether it’s an extra-long striped dress or a cool collared white shirt complete with ruffles, a generously cut shirt with new induced details is the ultimate style for this laid-back summer…
A shirt is the most common silhouette known. Originally an undergarment worn exclusively by men and women, it has become in American English, a catch-all term for a broad variety of upper-body garments and undergarments. In British English, a shirt is more specifically a garment with a collar, sleeves with cuffs, and a full vertical opening with buttons or snaps. While the year 2016 makes a swift shift in terms of developments, from A/W ’16-17 to S/S ’17, the fashion world is also bestowed by the beautiful couture creations on display by designers. “Versatility is one of the main reasons why shirts are getting combined with other silhouettes. Shirts are great to be worn all year round. From warm summer weather to chilly winter season; they never fail to create sophisticated winning looks. Being a decidedly less-dramatically-designed garment amongst everything else ‘the shirt’ is slowly and steadily becoming the silhouette of the summers and is gathering all the attention for design and manipulation,” avers Darshika Sharma, Assistant Designer, Bharatiya International.
The return of the shirtdress fits in perfectly with the current obsession for retro shapes. A classic silhouette with varied interpretations, have evolved over the time from one style to another becoming more of a basic in a woman’s wardrobe, as it adorns every body type and size, with endless possibilities of innovation. Not too structured and achieved with minimal tailoring, the shirtdress has been one of the most commonly produced items by Indian manufacturers and exporters now. With varied interpretations taking rounds on the runways, the shirtdress has become the summer staple.
Charles Youssef created a simple white shirt, giving it a revamp with pleated ruffles on the neckline and elongated cuffs. Josh Goot presented the most minimalistic shirtdress ever making no changes at all in the shirt silhouette other than elongating the hemline. Yune Ho gave a girly dressy feel to the shirtdress, complete with frilled hem and a tie option at the cuffs; on the other hand, Creatures of Comfort presented an amalgamation of best of two silhouettes by creating a loose fitted wrap shirtdress. Pankaj Sanon, Manager, A.P. Handicrafts, discussing about Indian interpretations said, “We are doing a lot of shirtdress styles for our spring collection in cotton and cambric. Geometric prints, patchwork, mix-and-match and using two-three different prints in one garment, is what is getting picked up by our buyers.”
Moving ahead from the shirtdress, the summer’s freshest trend now is the shirt-blouse. A shirt-blouse is an innovative combination of varied blouse silhouettes with the basic shirt. While some, like the shirts with frilled sleeves or half sleeve trench-inspired shirts, were instantly familiar pieces on the runway, others like the-off shoulder shirt-blouse and the cropped shirt, were entirely new styles noticed. These new styles welcomed the evolution of blouse trends merging with a shirt, making the resultant an instant classic.
Preen by Thornton Bregazzi played with asymmetry and layering in his shirt blouse interpretations whereas, Isa Arfen induced the off-shoulder effect onto the shirt complete with a huge bow panel going from shoulder to shoulder. Tibi stuck to the basic shirt and only played with the neckline by bringing it down to the shoulders; and on the other hand, Delpozo made an elegant comeback with their Nehru collar shirt complete with frilled pockets. Pushpa Shahi, Senior Merchandiser, Creatnet Services, shared that they are carrying out the same combination as Delpozo by merging collars and double pockets with heavy embroidery work. “We are making the product more feminine by using animal prints and shades like peach, lilac and orange which are apt for the summer,” informs Pushpa.
The Long Shirt
Long shirts are somewhere in-between the midi and the maxi, and are another fashion adaptation of the shirts. Although the standard length of shirts is up to the waist, modern designers such as Rag and Bone, Wendy Nichol, Zimmermann, Creatures of the Wind, and 6397 chose to lengthen them a bit. As Fall 2016 runways showcased a lot of scope for this trend, the fashion followers predict that the popularity will only grow further, and move ahead with a lot more interpretations. Talking about interpretations, there is an increased use of oxford, mélange, broadcloth and dobby along with cotton poplin, Egyptian cotton and stripes for these styles. Palmer Harding created a long shirt with a high-low hem bringing back the memories of 2014 summer, whereas, Noon by Noor, had the long shirt with intricate embroidered details on sheer. Mitesh Bhatia, Director, Vamani Overseas added, “Currently sweeping the markets are soft, elongated silhouettes which are one of the strongest emerging trends, an important reason why long shirts are an intelligent choice to produce for any exporter. Shirts are an all-time favourite style and it’s time that it gets revamped for the better.”