Ten years ago we’d more likely head to Bill Cunningham’s section in The New York Times for our weekly dose of street style, but fast forward to 2018 and we’ve got it on tap. A phenomenon so big, so powerful and so widespread that it’s become the crux of global marketing strategies and whole careers — hello, influencers — street style fashion is perhaps the most exciting way to see real clothes on real life people. Sure, some now-famous and appropriately coined street style stars might be dressed in head-to-toe brands, or, like Anna Dello Russo, complete couture, it doesn’t stop us from taking inspiration for our own wardrobes — straight from the street.
It’s a concept that makes more sense the more you think about it. Runways are great and all, but seeing how a fashion editor outside the show styles the piece is much more interesting to the everyday woman, right? And now, with fashion weeks happening almost every two weeks somewhere around the world, there really is no shortage of pictures to pin, save and copy.
Each has its own distinctive style; from Tokyo’s grunge-meets-girly; Milan’s colourful extravagance; New York’s eclectic, anything goes approach to trends; Paris’s undoubtedly chic (often Celine-clad) street style regulars; Copenhagen’s boundary-pushing cool girls; and the laid-back nonchalance of Sydney. Each city brings their unique style to the table, showcasing it to the best of their sartorial abilities as fashion week rolls around, pulling out their best, brightest and most innovative looks — birthing trend after trend with them.
In 2018, we saw thousands of street style looks, each of them varying in their own unique way. In Scandinavia, a rebirthing of thongs was witnessed, thanks entirely in part to the few fashion-forward cool girls who gave their coloured Havaianas a second chance. Just mere months later and thongs were all over the New York Fashion Week spring/summer 2019 runways. In Paris, we saw neon plastered on some of the city’s chicest women — cementing the tricky trend as one that can definitely be pulled off, if you just give it a little thought. All over the world, faux fur, chunky sneakers, top handle bags and beige were having a severe moment — all trends which have since showed up on high streets and in wardrobes worldwide. Even more cemented was our love of western-inspired pieces and animal print, both of which turned the streets into literal concrete jungles the season past. Fast forward to now and we’re guessing you own, or are at least considering owning, some form of animal print.
So, let’s take it back to where it all began. Starting in January, we’ve compiled our favourite street style looks from the year that past, because if we’ve learnt anything in 2018 it’s that sometimes you’ve got to look back in order to predict the future. Happy shopping!