In The Devil Wears Prada, Miranda Priestly schools Andrea on how trends are set by designers, decided upon by magazine editors before they trickle down to the mass market. While many saw it as another mean comment from Priestly, it was actually a statement on how trends for a particular season are decided upon.

This brings us to this season’s latest trends. Judging from what we saw at the Spring/Summer shows last year and early this year, the trends for this summer are prints, neon and pastel colours, sports inspired clothes. The peplum, ’20s and ’50s retro wear and for the brave gents, male leggings - they’re all in.

The Print

“Prints will be big this season. Prints on prints, animal prints, anything print…” a GQ editor said at London Fashion Week. He was right. Thanks to many fashion weeks and Solange Knowles, we’ve seen that various prints are IT this season. From paisley and bold, whimsical flowers and birds to tribal and Aztec; prints have been the overwhelmingly popular trend this year.

Designer and stylist Sindiso Khumalo agrees. “Wearing prints is one of the biggest trends this season and looking at the recent fashion shows in London and New York, it’s going to be even bigger next season.”

Khumalo recently took part in the Elle New Talent competition, where she was one of the finalists. She also used a lot of print in her range for the competition. But how does one wear prints? Well it depends on the person. Most fashion critics say it’s best to wear a bold print item and to keep the rest of your look clean. “Unless you’re brave and want to wear two different prints, keeping it clean and crisp is the best way to wear the print trend,” she said.

Colour

While last summer bright colours and colour blocking were all the rage, this summer it’s softer colour palettes that are in style.

“Colour is still very much a part of where we are in terms of fashion trends,” said Sandiso Ngubane, a fashion writer.

“Neon colours, pastel colours and smatterings of primary colours are the main colour trend this season. It’s more playful than just pairing a variation of primary colours. Play more. Mix neon, with pastel colours.”

Blogger Maque de Gorgeous agrees.

“The world’s our ‘oyster’ this season. The shade of colour is what’s the hot topic, and neon and sorbet colours are it.” From mint green, and neon yellow, to tangerines, colour is given a new lease on life. Like Ngubane said, the best way to wear these colours is by experimenting and mixing neons and pastels. “Another way to make a splash is wearing neon accessories with your pastel outfit,” he said.

Sport Luxe

Menswear designer Gregory Dladla said that sport-inspired clothes are one of his favourite trends for this season. “Sportswear maintains its influence into spring 2013, with baseball inspired clothes and accessories making a mark on the season’s accessory trends,” he said.

Mr Price had a sports-inspired collection designed by Cleo Droomer, which was popular. “These are clothes that fit a more casual and active lifestyle, but that are still appropriate in an urban environment for city wear.”

Clothing Styles

The peplum has been one of the huge trends this past year. “The ladies are loving peplums,” Ngubane said. “It’s ladylike and very flattering on most women.” For men, he says that he’s seen gents experiment more with leggings. “I’m seeing more men wearing leggings and this is not just gay men. It shows we are becoming more open-minded.”

Dladla says that fitted chinos are what most men are going for this season. “Classic, fitted chinos paired with denim or cotton shirts work well for gents.”

Maque said that he loves the shoe styles on offer this season. “Brogues with thicker soles in pops of colour excite me and I wish that the uptake would be of mass scale. It’d be interesting how people wear them.”

1920s and 1950s silhouettes were on the runways of many designers at the fashion shows this season. From flapper girl inspired outfits, in gold and black, to the feminine wide skirts of the ’50s, it’s a huge trend.

Personal Style

Now that you are armed with all the trends for this season, it’s up to you to give them a personal touch, to incorporate them into your own personal style. As Khumalo said it’s important to develop your own personal style and drop in various elements from the season’s trend into your unique look. “That way you’ll ensure you’re wearing it, and not the other way round.” - Sunday Tribune