BY CHITOWN FASHIONISTA BLOGGER NIKIA JEFFERSON
Chicago street style is a mixture of various regions, but there is always one central focus: function. Fashion-forward Chicagoans are known for using current trends to create effortless style. In a lakefront city filled with festivals and markets, mobility and comfort are ideal. Since we tend to stick to simple shapes and silhouettes, colors and patterns are key components to one’s individuality.
Here are a few trends that are currently garnering attention on the streets of Chicago:
These are the ideal combination of comfort and personality. Bright colors, cool graphics, and bold personal statements are the prominent characteristics of the Ts being worn by men and women across the city. Men are coordinating the Ts with classic denim, fresh “kicks” (those are shoes, by the way), and vintage sunglasses. Women, on the other hand, choose to play up their femininity by rocking their Ts with skinny jeans or full skirts. With several local designers launching T-shirt lines in the recent months, this trend may be around for awhile.
Stripes, by their very nature, are eye catching. To stand out from the pack, many people are wearing stripes in unexpected color combinations like yellow and gray, or pairing stripes with another pattern such as floral. The key to mixing patterns is to make sure they both include at least one common color to serve as the base. Another way to indulge in this trend is to wear items that create an illusion with a mixture of horizontal, vertical, or diagonal stripes. The dizzier it makes you, the better!
Patterned Maxi Dresses
Maxi dresses are extremely versatile and comfortable, which automatically makes them a winner for most women. In Chicago, however, fluid patterns in multiple colors are most prevalent. When wearing a patterned maxi dress, accessories are your friend only when kept to a minimum. Vintage sunglasses, belts, and statement jewelry are great for personalizing your look.
The initial appeal of crossbody bags is purely functional. We need our hands free to peruse the shops and markets as well as enjoy meals at the festivals and street fairs. What can I say? We love to shop and eat! Chicago trendsetters are taking it a step further and demonstrating their personal style by wearing bags with details such as studs, fringe, and contrast stitching.
For Chicago men, suspenders are now being used to accessorize outfits. Unique colors and patterns take them from practical to fashionable. Wear them with a T or button-down shirt, cuffed denim, and nerd eyeglasses to create a look that’s intentionally “geek chic.”
Colorful or Patterned Socks
Many guys are opting for socks in various hues and patterns (i.e. stripes, polka dots, and argyle) to balance out cuffed trousers and rolled denim pants. To step up your sock game, try patterned socks in the same color scheme of your outfit, or socks in a solid color different from but complementary to your outfit. Wear neutral shoes to anchor your look and maintain your cool factor.
The great thing about these trends is that you can mix and match them to create an outfit. A maxi dress with a crossbody bag, a screen T with a striped skirt, suspenders with a screen T and colored socks – the options are endless. Also, many of these items can easily transition into fall. Simply throw on a blazer, cardigan, or leather jacket and a lightweight scarf and you’re good to go. Women can take it one step further by adding tights or leggings into the mix.
If versatility in fashion is not a good way to stretch a dollar, I don’t know what is.