I know what you’re thinking: the combat, army-esque, military-inspired looks are “been there done that” and appear to most as cliché. I can just picture images of '90s grunge and army surplus jackets floating through your minds. But just when you think you’ve gotten enough of the androgynous military silhouettes, a magical thing happens — someone allows it to be feminine.
Today, the term “military” is thrown around loosely among designers to describe looks and collections with a tougher edge but that still retain certain qualities and features that allow a woman to, well, still look like a woman. BCBGMaxAzria, Diane von Furstenberg and Bluegirl all showcased looks in their Fall 2011 collections that carry elements of army trenches, padded shoulders and brass-button military coats, but still maintain feminine details and silhouettes.
I caught this Fashionista on her way to class on a brisk morning. Not quite ready to break out the heavy coats, but still wanting to dress for the winter season, she compromised on a light military-inspired trench. From a high collar featuring a fun zipper detail, to the cropped sleeves and cinched waist, this coat emanates a feminine touch while still staying tough.
With military-inspired pieces, like this Fashionista’s trench and boots, the most important factor in creating a fun and unique look is how and what you choose to pair it with. To wade through Auburn’s campus, she decided to combine the trendy trench with a dark-wash skinny jean tucked into a pair of worn-in, lace-up boots and a whimsical graphic tee she snagged on a recent study abroad trip. The loose-fitting top, complete with a quirky, over-sized bow detail, allows the outfit to not appear too rigid and adds a bit of spunk to the ensemble.
However, a military-inspired trench, like this Fashionista's, can be worn to do much more than schlep through campus. Paired with a swingy, patterned dress, tights and ankle boots, this trench could see a fun dinner date or a night out with friends. Simply adding bright accessories could even take this trench to an entirely new level.
There are endless ways to incorporate the military theme into your wardrobe this season. It’s up to you, Fashionista, to merge the trend and adapt it into your own unique style to combat the cold this winter.