New Spring Fashions Embody Retro
Themes, Nostalgia for Simple Life

New spring fashions embody acadian longings for a time of simple, innocent contentment. "Give me the simple life" could be the theme song for Spring-Summer 2015 styles.

From shirtdresses that evoke the Fifties, to fringe that heralds the Sixties, from country gingham to diaphanous evening gowns, to belts and coats inspired by the simplicity of the Asian kimono, fashion for Spring-Summer 2015 breathes new life into old favorites.

Denim, Gingham, and Lace: Country Standards Reincarnate

It's been a long time since denim migrated from farms and the range to become the world's fabric of choice, a a story we've covered.

Look for embroidery and other trims to upgrade this year's denim for spring and summer. Some designs push the limits of the familiar, but these often express in higher-end fashions.

A gingham blouse was the province of the country kitchen's curtains and tablecloths, and also made a beguiling blouse tied at the midriff of the country gal.

Midriff-baringtops are back with this crop of new spring fashions, another Fifties revival - and just when I thought the muffin-top was gone for a while. These are not for gals with love handles and tummies. You can fake a midriff waist by tying the tails of a blouse ever so slightly below your waistline so it doesn't creep up when you move exposing what you'd rather not show.

Gingham goes wild in dresses, slacks, and suit jackets. Those little red-and-white checks show up in abundant colors and magnified to become the size of plaid.

Lace was once a handmade trim, crocheted during quiet evenings in a time before radio and television. It is the perfect foil for denim's coarse texture. Find it on white tops -- or an entire lace top -- to contrast with your embroidered denim shirt or jacket.

Go BoHo Lite for Day and Evening

Diaphanous evening gowns are romantically embroidered, reminiscent of the oh-so-chic (and racy) evening wear of the Twenties and early Thirties.

Baby doll dresses recycle the late Forties and Fiftiesfor the inner (or outer Lolita) are spot-on for spring and summer.

Mb>One-shoulder cut dresses are another evening wear style turning up for this year's elegant events.

If you no longer have the body for see-through, temper the look by using lace and gauze fabrics only for lacy sleeves, an inset neckline, or gauzy back.

Colorful long flowing vests add a Bohemian look and disguise older figures. Add ethnic or rustic necklaces, earrings, and a hat. And there you go - Annie Hall with a 21st Century twist or two.

Relaxed fit and flared pants take you on weekend excursions with style and a touch of Seventies nostalgia. I've learned a bit of stretch in fabric keeps slacks looking trim and unwrinkled, enhances my figure, and is comfortable.

You are on your own when it comes to the baby doll look. It's not for me, never was. I am more likely to imagine it with leggings (and who wants leggings on a hot day?) or at home. Your body, your life, your choice.

Continental Drift: Kimono Inspires Coats, Sleeves, Belts

Japanese simplicity has been a style inspiration since at least World War II. This year, kimono-inspired coats provide the simple structured look that is flattering for the triangle-shaped figure .

The trench coat, with its epaulettes, flared yoke, and buttons galore on the torso, has never been the friend of a broad-shouldered woman.

Kimono-inspired raglan and batwing sleeves that drape downward from the shoulders are a good choice for blouses and dresses.

Fabric belts that tie at the waist, inspired by the obi, are another trend you can easily adapt from new spring fashions. Buy a length of wide brightly colored ribbon and use it to update any belted blouse or shift with the obi look belt.

Androgyny, Minimalism, and Military Colors Bring Simplicity to Urban Style

I associate the androgynous pant suit with Asian street style, and it makes a showing in spring-summer 2015 collections. Pinstripes, dark neutrals, and fitted looks prevail.

The simple shirt dress, styled with a top like a man-tailored shirt, is a favorite that moves from city to town with ease.

Asymmetrical hemlines also illustrate an Asian sensibility by using cut and structure to create a focal point.

Gone is the high-low dress with a trailing back. Having the wrong side of the dress fabric showing is not my idea of sophistication, so good riddance. There were some nice ones, and you may have had the good taste to find one!

The new asymmetry cuts across the front. Be sure the high side touches at a flattering point on your hip.

Military green infuses khaki and turns to rich jungle green, and rain forest prints for blouses and dresses.

I like this trend, because plain old beige-to-tan khaki has been favored for the past five years or so. I am already seeing more military green slacks on the racks and snapped up some painter's twill to add variety to my wardrobe of casual wear.

Big Bold Wallpaper Florals: Are They for You?

The big, bold, abstract florals of the Seventies are making a comeback in dress fabrics.

There are three considerations before diving into this style:

First, big prints look best on large-framed women. Petite gals, beware. This is especially true if you are a full-figured petite. A giant poppy stretched across your posterior may not be a good look.

Second, do the colors flatter your complexion? Be sure to review Fashion After 50's color coordination page.

Last, does this look appeal to your fashion aesthetic? I did not wear op-art flowers back in the day when I was young and sylphlike, nor did they appeal to my sense of what looks good on my walls.

If you were mod and loved op-art, have fun with these.

Fringe for Everyone from Flappers to Cowgirls

When designers use fringe this season, they are not fooling around. Visualize the Hawaiian dancer's grass skirt, and you get the picture.

Fringe cascades in long tiers from breastbone to knee in an updated flapper's dancing dress. Or it may form the entire skirt or top.

Over-the-top and obvious are watchwords for fringe.

Fringe isn't always suede of course, but the association is long linked in the Western wear tradition in the U.S.

Suede vests, jackets, and skirts are au courant and bridge the winter-to-spring transition months nicely.

Pink Out, Red In; Yellow's Back; Head-to-Toe White Evokes Abby Road Memories; Black-and-White and Blue, Too

Black and white prints and color blocking remain strong for new spring fashions. It's hard to go wrong with this combination. I find it a little boring after several years of finding this neutral palette everywhere.

I have been challenged to find nice dresses that offer a bit of color and in styles with sleeves and longer hemlines for the Fashion After 50 web site.

Marsala red, a deep red with a tinge of blue, is the color of the year, according to Pantone.

Yellow is making a comeback, but not the taxi-cab hue. Be careful when adding yellow to your wardrobe, especially if it will be around your face. It can make the skin appear sallow, and the particular shade can make a difference. Learn more about yellow here.

Blue is another strong comer for spring and summer. Think of sky blue and sea blue for the solid feel of the hues in favor.

Look for solid colors that feel saturated and warm, rather than pastels or neons that shriek look at me.

The white suit is a summer fixture, and all-white ensembles assume their place in the summer 2015 line up of style.

To sum it up, new spring fashins and summer style 2015 updates old favorites in fabrics and designs.

> Spring Fashion Trends

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