It all started a few seasons ago: you had the vague, yet strong feeling, intense enough to be perceived clearly, that you wanted to go to the mountains, have a walk in the woods, breathe clean air, wear a warmer sweater despite the good weather. You? Ever the beach bum, the girl who would turn the heating on when temperatures fell below 20C, who would never — ever — have considered a holiday over a 300m altitude, let alone 600? Yes, you. You clearly felt like you understood, and suddenly wanted to join, those friends who go hiking and organize ski holidays. It was uncanny, and you ignored it at first, thinking it would just go away at one point, like a common cold.
While the months passed, you found yourself noticing mountain details here, there and everywhere: on the catwalks, when out shopping for sunglasses, on fashion ads. Have you ever experienced being obsessed with something that you would rather forget, and suddenly you see this something at every crossroads in the city, in every book you open, in every movie you watch? You are trying to forget about that cute guy you met in Rome, and suddenly see Roman Holiday on TV; you receive Laura Biagiotti’s new edition of the iconic perfume she dedicated to her city, and clearly notice the “Romah” bit in Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance: it feels like your brain is conspiring against you, right? Though this time, that might not be the case at all — I mean it might not all be in your head, after all: even if it was never openly declared, this mountain thing is a new — or newly founded — passion for many, especially when it comes to fashion.
Let’s talk sunglasses, for instance: 2016 was the revival year of sport sunglasses shapes, especially for ski-goggle inspired designs. Think of all the orange and blue lenses, typical of ski goggles, and of how wraparound glasses — both in their sportier and more retro versions — became common even in the most unexpected of places, like in Dior’s collaboration with Rihanna, Givenchy and Tom Ford. Was it just by chance that Donatella Versace picked a snowy mountaintop as the location for her Spring Summer 2016 campaign photoshoot? Was it coincidence that Ms. Versace inaugurated her Instagram account with a selfie on the snow with Gigi Hadid?
Did our brains only make it up because it was suddenly craving snow and knitted sweaters? Maybe. But if you look at the Fall Winter 2016-2017 catwalks , the season’s collections really seem to confirm our idea that mountain style is a thing, and that whether we like it or not, we will soon all look like we are on our way to Chamonix, even if we’re actually just going to our office in via Montenapoleone in central Milan.
Here’s a telling example. You know those down jackets you blatantly ignored in the past years, swearing that you would never, ever own one, those jackets that made you swear you would rather die of extreme exposure than wear that? By the way, you really should stop that: never swear you will do or not do anything, when it’s about fashion. We all should have learned our lesson, by now. Anyway, now that you are eyeing the Balenciaga down jacket on the sly, and are wondering where you could get a low-cost jacket like that -get the red Bershka one, it’s 29 euro and it’s the bomb – you should also have a look in the dusty boxes of your old clothes. You might find the one you used to wear in high school, which would look just perfect this season.
And now, please, behold your feet. If you aren’t wearing a pair of gaiter pants — yes, like the ones skiers used to wear in the 1960s — you’d better hurry up and go shopping, because those will be the big winter trend. They are best worn with a shirt and high heels in the office, but they also work with oversize thick wool sweaters and high-necked zip sweatshirts, for a more casual-cool look. How about shoes? Well, since Winter Is Coming, you should definitely own a pair of hiking boots: maybe a leather, retro pair that you can wear with a skirt and thick knee socks, like at the Tod’s show, or fur ones, to tackle cold weather in style, if you’re feeling flamboyant. Keys? Chuck your old keyring, and put your keys on a hiking snap-hook, to be thrown into a bag with glacial prints.
Really, you’d better book your ski holiday, it might get sold out soon. The mountain trend is real and you, you can say safely that, are a true trendsetter. Be aware that, like all obsessions and trends, this too shall pass, and you will be able to go back to dreaming of the sea, of California and of Coachella. Summer is around the corner, isn’t it?