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2023 Fashion Trends: Versatility, quality, functionality

Fashion in 2023 is all about versatility and quality, as functional, vibrant, and innovative ensembles blend into the hybrid lifestyle post-pandemic, according to the fashion predictions of giant trend forecaster WGSN, comprised of a team of over 250 experts and data scientists that curate an immense online library of insights and inspirations in fashion, retail and the whole lifestyle industry.

Refined resort look by Rue de Tokyo. Photo from WGSN

“Trends were more relaxed in 2022 as we all transitioned into the new normal. But 2023 trends are bolder, more expressive, and at the same time, functional,” started fashion designer and industry expert Ionica Abrahan Lim, an educator at the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde School of Environment and Design.

Fashion designer, industry expert, and Benilde Fashion Design and Merchandising educator Ionica Abrahan Lim

She noted that consumers are now wiser and have become more conservative with their purchases. For women’s wear, upcycled shirts and unfinished hems will be in, as they become more conscious about garment production.

“Consumers push for circularity, especially with the economic recession,” Abrahan Lim explained. “Fashion will be greatly influenced by popular hacks and tutorials featured in social media. Deconstruction and upcycling will produce more sustainable and less harmful garments, not to mention a boost in creativity and self-expression.”

2023 likewise bids adieu to the above-the-keyboard dressing, which was a hit amid the height of the work-from-home set-up.

Micro textures look by Odile. Photo from WGSN

“As hybrid settings continue to emerge, pieces that are easy for casual gathering but are still suitable for business meetings will create flexibility,” Abrahan Lim stated. “Layering is key for transitioning from day to party.”

For this category, she advised silky pieces and subtle yet feminine details, such as gatherings and sexy cutouts. Lingerie designs, sheer garments, slip dresses, and corsets with accents also pitch in a more interesting texture into that day-to-night look.

For a more youth-focused approach, statement biker jackets with boxy silhouettes and vibrant racer overalls make for a comfortable, gender-inclusive investment that can go from season to season.

Soft utility likewise goes for all, as the new year ushers in a braver approach to practical elements. For ladies, apparel with sporty silhouettes and softer materials is in. Fashion-forward cargo that offers roomy and detachable belt pockets provides a more futuristic look, especially when paired with modish mini bags.

Soft utility look by Loraine Holmes. Photo from WGSN

The same movements apply to gentlemen, as their wardrobe gets more experimental with new masculine identities and gender-inclusive themes.

Vacationcore now reigns the racks as travel goes back to normal. The women’s section is all about coords in more polished looks and vibrant prints that scream holiday. The menswear department joins in with smarter loungewear that can go from home to city to carefree trips.

Vacationcore look by The Lulo Project. Photo from WGSN

As textile innovations focus on quality rather than quantity, elevated basics are also back with micro textures on the spotlight. With redefined and interesting fabrication and volume, tailored apparel and familiar silhouettes are made more premium.

Elevated basics look by Bandoleiro. Photo from WGSN

Outdoor hats, bejeweled belts, oversized earrings, and hair claws are back on the accessory list. “Crystals and charms give a great boost to a party look—ready for celebrations,” Abrahan Lim beamed. “Still following last year’s joyful expression, these added elements in your wardrobe will champion mood-boosting aesthetic and nostalgia.”


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