Ready To Wear: No woman should ever be dictated to by fashion

What does the Independent woman wear?

Ready To Wear: Poor Hedi Slimane, let's give the boy a chance

Fashion is a mercilessly fast-moving creature and even the most gifted designers step in and out of it only at their peril.

Ready To Wear: The future of fashion is bright, white, sporty and full of holes

To wear or not to wear, that is the question. Here are at least some of the trends that emerged at London Fashion Week, spring/summer 2013...

Ready To Wear: Is Barbie London Fashion Week’s most unusual backer?

It's a good season for cartoon heroines. As if it's not enough that Minnie Mouse is currently the source of inspiration for one-off designs by names including Giles Deacon, Richard Nicoll, Piers Atkinson and Meadham Kirchhoff (that's quite a roll call – and it's for charity), Louise Gray's show, which takes place at London Fashion Week later today, is sponsored by Barbie.

Purple may be the colour of the gods but both Christopher Kane (in London) and Miuccia Prada (in Milan) threw caution to the wind by covering their catwalks in it and sending out clothes to match

Ready To Wear: Purple reign: the regal colour sweeps in for autumn

"I am a mortal, a man; I cannot trample upon these tinted splendours without fear thrown into my path," Agamemnon tells Clytemnestra in Aeschylus' famed Greek tragedy, before stepping on to the purple carpet that signifies the beginning of his downfall nonetheless.

There's eyes for every fashion show, even the most innovative ones

Ready to Wear: Everyone should be exposed to the most innovative fashion shows

At the end of last month, the New York Times ran an article begging the question, “Are trends passé”? According to fashion blogger Garance Doré, “they are not as they used to be – the days when things were 'in' or 'out' are long gone”. And that's true: in a saturated market, there's something for everyone, which makes economic, if not always creatively inspiring, sense.

Crocs

Ready to Wear: 'My mum wouldn't be caught dead in Crocs. Me? I wear them to the shops'

"I can't believe you're wearing Crocs," says my mother, who is far too chic a woman to ever think of so doing herself.

These are not women who rely on being either pencil thin, preternaturally tall or studiously aloof to carry their clothes

Ready To Wear: The real beauty of carnival is being happy in your own skin

Unlike many of the residents of London's Notting Hill, I stay put at carnival time. No escaping to sunnier or rural climes for me on the occasion of this, the biggest street party of the year.

Geri Halliwell famously donned red, white and blue in the late nineties, perhaps taking it a little too far

Ready To Wear: I'm coming over all red, white and blue and – what's more – I like it

While the world at large has been moaning about the weather which, admittedly, has been remarkably inclement, not to mention the remarkable lack of security at the Olympics, something remarkably strange has been happening to my wardrobe. "You're wearing red, white and blue," says my friend and I realise that there's no arguing with her.

Moving on to Louis Vuitton – LV designer Marc Jacobs is another trailblazer par excellence – and for this autumn show too models descended a lovingly recreated early 20th-century steam train wearing vaguely directoire-line coats, tunics, jackets and dresses, finished with jewelled buttons and embroideries, and all worn over trousers cropped at the ankle.

Ready To Wear: Watch us go striding into a brave new tomorrow

Stating the obvious… For many years now, dresses have been fashionable. Now, though, it is the turn of trousers to dominate. Yes, it's that simple. And, to this fashion commentator's mind at least, it comes not a minute too soon. It all started with Miuccia Prada, whose signature collection shown in Milan earlier this year teamed every look with a pair.

Ready To Wear: Contrary to all rhyme and reason, couture is alive and kicking

Fashion is fuelled by mythology and stories so lovely that one could be forgiven for thinking they are imaginary – or at least heavily embellished, just like the clothes that go with them. The haute couture, however, is the last bastion of such romance and, contrary to all rhyme and reason maybe, it remains very much alive.

Ready To Wear: Dolce & Gabbana have long loved the beautiful game

Cue: outrageous stereotyping. There is only one thing Italian men love more than fashion, and that’s football.

Ready To Wear: With their own collections, right now it's all about men

It's all about men just now.

Ready To Wear: Grace Jones rocked but other Jubilee looks flopped

Leave it to the attendees of the Diamond Jubilee Concert to come up with every fashion faux pas in the book– and not just we, the sooty-faced, Union Jack-waving commoners.

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