The Spring has sprung—so it's clearly time to chuck those scratchy woolens and shop for bright, new clothes.
At the Spring fashion shows last year, the overall mood for this season was a new sense of sobriety. Most designers pulled back on the reigns to show more comfortable, minimal silhouettes. Clothes were sportswear inspired, with a very chic, carefree, effortless sense of spirit.
Here's what you should be looking for:
SHORTS. They're back in every shape and length: short shorts, city shorts, utility shorts, boy shorts and tap shorts. The look is great when paired with a jacket.
WIDE LEG PANTS. All sorts of trousers went down the runway for Spring: High wasted, cropped, loose at the hip, tapered at the ankle. But the newest look is the wide leg trouser. A white version is a perfect base to build from this season.
TUXEDO JACKETS. The Yves St. Laurent-inspired smoking jacket won't only be a look for evening, but a key option for daytime.
ALL SORTS OF DRESSES. The slouch, no-fit dress was a favorite, but also popular were the long and lean variety with halter, tank, scoop and asymmetric necklines.
1950'S SKIRTS. Prepare to see lots of Fifties-inspired knee-length skirts, those with a full flare and defined waist.
LONGER LINES. The newest and most chic are from knee- to mid calf length. Longing for a mini? Not to worry, there still will be some available.
NEUTRAL COLOR. The color palette took two separate tracks. Most sophisticated were the neutral tones mixed with pale tints and whites.
BOLD COLOR. But burst of bold, shocking colors were also in evidence.
LIGHTWEIGHT FABRICS. Flowing fabrics heralded spring collections. Stars in this category were the transparent sheer fabrics that did not leave anything to the imagination. In real life,layer these over slips or wear them under a jacket.
PRINTS. In every shape, size and form, these added drama to collections. Geometric, animal prints, stripes, polka dots, foulards and floral prints are the newest vogue.
SENSIBLE SHOES. Hooray, they're back! Ankle-strapped wedges, espadrilles and flat shoes will get women out walking instead of cabbing it in Spring 2011.
Gwen Marder is the Fashion Director at Fox News Channel.