Floral prints, blazers, and high-waisted bottoms rule the runway

Matching a floral dress with a loose-fitting cardigan is sophisticated and adorable. (credit: Meela Dudley | Pillbox Editor) Matching a floral dress with a loose-fitting cardigan is sophisticated and adorable. (credit: Meela Dudley | Pillbox Editor) This popular high-waisted cotton skirt can be purchased at American Apparel in a plethora of colors. (credit: Meela Dudley | Pillbox Editor) This popular high-waisted cotton skirt can be purchased at American Apparel in a plethora of colors. (credit: Meela Dudley | Pillbox Editor) Using a messenger bag for your books lightens the heavy look of your school oufits.  (credit: Meela Dudley | Pillbox Editor) Using a messenger bag for your books lightens the heavy look of your school oufits. (credit: Meela Dudley | Pillbox Editor)

With every change of season comes a change of wardrobe, and with the incoming warm weather this spring, be sure to update your closet with the hottest trends;

Wardrobe must-haves

The casual blazer
Whether fitted or loose, the casual blazer is the perfect addition to your wardrobe. Blazers work universally. When used as a light jacket, are perfect for those breezy spring days. This year’s most chic blazers can be found in the spring 2010 lines of Burberry, Phillip Lim, Zac Posen, and Chloé.

Females should, try a fitted blazer with dark jeans, high-heeled boots, and a frilled, colorful cami. The blazer should cinch at your waist to create an hourglass figure while adding a hint of urban sophistication to the colorful pattern of your spring top. If you’d rather wear a loose-fitting boyfriend blazer, try pairing it with a high-waisted cotton skirt, V-neck T-shirt, and a powerful
accessory. Your blazer will create a contrasting high-fashion vibe against to contrast casual cotton ensemble, and a colorful scarf, a hairpiece, or big sunglasses will perfect the look.

Guys should sophisticate their everyday jeans and white T-shirt combo with a casual blazer. Finish this look with a pair of high-tops or colorful sneakers. The double blazer was one of the feature aspects of Milan’s fashion week. Roberto Cavalli layered his spring 2010 blazers with denim and khaki in his Milan show, and inspired audiences with his scorched sand colors and exotic patterns.

Flowery sundresses and jumpers
Recently, our generation’s childhood wardrobes have inspired several reinvented fashion trends: large hair bows, pastel leggings, baby-doll cuts, and most relevantly, floral sundresses and jumpers. Brightly colored floral fabrics are hot right now; they can be found in the spring 2010 Christopher Kane, Erdern Moralioglu, and Ralph Lauren lines. Coincidentally, floral was a prevailing theme in this year’s Paris Fashion Week as well.

Marie Claire suggests pairing a floral dress with a leather jacket for a more rugged look, or with a loose earthy knit for a more bohemian feel. The most popular sundresses have wide straps and a soft, round neckline. Feel free to spice up a floral dress with a solid-colored pashmina and a classy pair of wedges.

High-waisted pants, skirts, and shorts
If you haven’t caught on to the high-waisted trend as of yet, now would be the time to do it. High-waisted bottoms have been all over the fashion scene ever since the spring of 2008. The high waist is flattering on a woman; it hugs the thinnest part of her torso and veils her hips in fabric. These high-waisted bottoms have been all over the catwalk in the lines of Nanette Lepore and Emilio Pucci, and were the focus of Laqui Demkiw’s most recent London Fashion Week collection.

When choosing a high-waisted bottom you have several options. You can try a narrow or full high-waisted skirt, either thin or full. A thin skirt protrudes less from your waist and is typically made of cotton or another soft casual material. This skirt is perfect for everyday dressing when paired with a V-neck T-shirt or colorful blouse. You can also try a full high-waisted skirt, which is usually given a bowl shape and made of a more formal material like a sheer or silk. Make sure to purchase a skirt with an elastic waist — the piece will be more comfortable and will move with your body. Avoid pairing your high-waisted skirt with ruffles or a top with extra fabric, as you don’t want your ensemble to look too busy.

Many designers have also become fans of the high-waisted shorts and pants. While pretty much anyone can properly pull off a high-waisted skirt, pants or shorts will only look right on certain body types. High-waisted skinny jeans are adorable, but it can be difficult to find the proper top and accessories to pair with the look. Keep in mind that if you choose a pair of high-waisted jeans, the heavier fabric will act like a corset and may become awfully uncomfortable on hotter spring days.

Trendy spring accessories

Messenger bag/purse
This fashion trend is both sensible and adorable. The tiny messenger purse or bag is the perfect size to fit all of your necessities — your cell phone, wallet, lip balm, and iPod — and, because it is strapped around your torso, it is the perfect city accessory. Messenger bags are safe as well as trendy; you always have your belongings in plain sight, and the bag itself can’t be lost when it is draped around your body.

Messenger bags can also make great book bags. Backpacks can load a lot of stress onto your back and often make you sweaty and uncomfortable in hotter weather. The bulkiness of a backpack can weigh you down and create a turtle-shell effect, while a messenger bag works with your body.

For men, a messenger bag can be the perfect final accessory for a collegiate look; pair it with a casual blazer and a pair of Vans and you’re ready to go. Urban Outfitters sells great casual messenger bags and purses, but The North Face makes some interesting bags that are very functional as well.

Elastic belt
In both the fall and spring 2010 fashion week catwalk lines of VPL, Marc by Marc Jacobs, and Proenza Schouler, the elastic belt may have been the most useful fashion accessory. Outfit feeling a bit shapeless? Strap an elastic belt around that hobo-boho sweater or baby-doll dress and watch as your figure magically reappears. Gather a loose-fitting jacket and cinch it gracefully at your waist to lighten your silhouette. The belted possibilities are endless. Consider purchasing a wide elastic clasp belt from American Apparel to strap around that blazer or sundress for a tailored look.

Unusual hosiery
Patterned tights may possibly be one of the most entertaining trends of the new season. Whether tattered and torn for the grunge look, or puckered and paired with a tutu, a festive choice of tights or leggingds is the perfect accessory to spice up your wardrobe this spring. “Allow us to introduce you to our latest leg wear crush: patterned tights. Semi-sheer and ’80s-inspired, these wispy stockings are turning up on lovely legs around the world,” raved fashion blogger Penny Lane of www.whowhatwear.com. “We adore the way they perk up an all-black outfit.”

Several designers have chosen to incorporate patterned or textured hosiery in their latest lines. Balenciaga featured polka dot tights in their spring 2010 fashion show, while the New York Fashion Week runways were littered with the accessory. Expect to see some pretty creative colors and patterns this spring.

Spring booties and heels
Everyone is bound to get sick of their flip-flops or their “reliable” pair of flats, but it’s hard to find shoes to wear when you’re sick of sandals in springtime. Think “high-heeled” by pairing your everyday ensemble with a bootie, wedge, or strappy heel. Boots were a popular trend this fall with an influx of new creative designs; however, the popular booties have carried us right into spring. These shoes cut at your ankles and are super adorable when paired with skinny jeans or sheer leggings. Do be careful, however, as booties tend to cut the length of one’s legs drastically.

For a more casual heel, try a pair of simple wedges or strappy heels. Wedges are often a popular choice, as they are sturdy and easy to walk in. Wedges were especially common in Milan’s spring 2010 fashion week, making appearances in the lines of Dolce and Gabbana, Fendi, Marni, Moschino, and Frankie Morello.

The snow has melted and it is finally time for your undercover fashion fanatic to emerge from hibernation. If you’re looking to reinvent yourself this spring, revamping your wardrobe may be the perfect way. Follow the lead of your fellow students and jump into the new season on a positive note with these trends. Together, we can all make Carnegie Mellon just a little bit more fashionable.