It may not have felt too much like spring in Milwaukee lately, with slushy snow and frigid temperaturess dogging us well into the beginning of the season.
But if there’s one foolproof way to melt the winter blues, it’s with a hot spring fashion trend.
Here are seven trends that will have you convinced summer is just around the corner.
Nothing chases away the blahs like a pop of yellow - and luckily, it’s THE color of this season, says Kim Koch of Matchless Image, LLC.
"I see yellow being a hot new color for spring," she told OnMilwaukee.com. "Goldenrod yellow, banana, soft pale yellow or cool lemon - which color is best for your depends on your base of color in your skin tone. All of us have either a blue base or a yellow base undertone in our skin tone."
It can be easily incorporated into casual or businesswear. "I see many retailers that have great looks in the store and online - fresh skirts, capris and soft, lightweight sweaters to shake up the boring or stuffy business attire," she said.
TREND: Pop of color
If yellow’s not your thing, go with another hue - and don’t be afraid to be bold about it. Adding a pop of color to the most unexpected place in your outfit will warm up your look.
"Spring is an explosion of color," says Kate Fitzgerald, owner of The Pink Shopping Bag Boutique in Genessee Depot and Delafield. "Mint, coral, royal blue and emerald steal the show."
Fitzgerald especially loves brightly colored accessories. "From chunky, chain jewelry tipped in pink to modern vintage necklace sets in peaches and off-whites, we are seeing the pop of color in a variety of styles," she says. "The bubble necklace is also a big trend in bright colors."
Everything’s coming up roses this season - as far as patterns go. Florals aren’t just for your grandmother’s tablecloth anymore. Designers are finding ingenious ways to give this old-fashioned staple a fresh, modern look.
Give your pieces some flower power by looking for patterns with pops of color and bold designs, like this Giverny Floral Dress from Francesca’s Collection (which has locations at Bayshore, Mayfair Mall and Brookfield Square).
This one’s especially fitting for Milwaukee, where it’s not exactly bare-shoulders season yet. Leather was a hot look last fall, and luckily it's a habit many designers found hard to break.
Classic black is always in style, but more on-trend for the season is colored or white leather. Look for easy ways to layer leather pieces, like with this Jennifer Lopez creation from Kohls.com. And check out the fabulous BaliBelts Stephanie Horne Boutique in the Third Ward posted on instagram a few days ago.
Fitzgerald says that The Pink Shopping Bag’s pastel blue leather wrap bracelet featuring a side cross (another hot trend) is flying off the shelves.
"It’s beautiful and easy to put on," she says. "These are selling out in our store like crazy."
TREND: Statement pieces
As we noted last month, it’s all about making a statement this season. The cleverest way to do it is by accessorizing boldly. Find a chunky collar necklace. Add some finger flare with an oversized ring, like this $4.95 piece from H&M. Stack and layer your metals, alternating gold and silver (an especially easy and cheap route to take with pieces you already own).
TREND: Rethinking the handbag
Stud it or shrink it - the handbag gets a makeover this season.
"Studs are showing up on handbags as well as jewelry," notes Fitzgerald. "Handbags are also going smaller, in the form of clutches. We love our striped, hard case clutch - perfect for lunch with the girls or a summer festival. It can fit your phone, lipstick, money and your keys."
The comeback of the scarf isn’t over yet.
"The scarf is back bigger than ever," Fitzgerald says. "We’re bringing over 200 scarves to our Spring Fling at the Zoofari Conference Center."
Plus, she says, scarves are an easy way to incorporate any of the previously mentioned trends - pop of color, floral, statement piece - into your wardrobe.
"Opt for an infinity style scarf made of cotton. It will be light and airy on a sunny spring day but give you that pop of color that you are looking for. We love our infinity in royal blue print."
Fitzgerald and the team from The Pink Shopping Bag will be at the Zoofari Conference Center Saturday, April 13 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. for their "Spring Fling" fashion boutique show. The event has free admission and parking and the store will bring an inventory of hundreds of handbags, pieces of jewelry, clothing and more.
Colleen Jurkiewicz is a Milwaukee native with a degree in English from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and she loves having a job where she learns something new about the Cream City every day. Her previous incarnations have included stints as a waitress, a barista, a writing tutor, a medical transcriptionist, a freelance journalist, and now this lovely gig at the best online magazine in Milwaukee.