fashion trends to avoid

Photo: Getty Images

Ladies, consider this my version of tough love: Do not—I repeat, do not—attempt these looks. If tall, skinny runway models can't make them work, mere mortals won't stand a chance.

Baby-Doll Dresses

If you were old enough to wear this trend the last time (aka the Kelly/Brenda/Dylan years), don't try it now. You are neither a baby nor a doll.
trends to avoid

Photo: Getty Images

Crop Tops
Do I really have to explain this one? Unless you are at the beach or getting a mud wrap, midsections are meant to be covered.
trends to avoid

Photo: Getty Images

It's either/or, not both. You run the danger of crossing over into kooky-aunt territory, and besides, no one needs this kind of extra volume at the hips.
trends to avoid

Photo: Getty Images

Writing on Clothing
I'm all for making a statement, but not when it's this literal. (And why would you want to broadcast this particular phrase?)

Photo: Marko Metzinger/Studio D

Now, onto the looks we love this spring:
These trends will leave you fashionably inspired.

That '70s Show

Think Carly Simon circa "You're So Vain": Wide-leg jeans, shirtdresses, and other classic pieces are super wearable in earthy colors; graphic prints add a boho touch. Cork and horn accessories keep the look grounded—and what's not to love about a fancy hippie sandal?

Red dress: Michael Michael Kors, $120;
Necklace: $195;
Cardigan: $99;
Pants: Rachel Zoe, $215;
Sandal: $258;
Bag: $128;
Print dress: $428;
spring fashion 2014

Photo: Richard Majchrak/Studio D

Good Sports
This is a more dressed-up version of the athletic trend that's been huge the past few seasons. These sleek, streamlined pieces make sporty elements—like neoprene, perforation, and contrast seaming—suitable for work, brunch,and just about anywhere but the gym.

Pants: $168;
Jacket: $795;
Dress: $240;
Tank: $180, Autumn Cashmere, Olive & Bette's; 212-206-0036
Sweater: $89;
Boot: L.A.M.B., $375;
Bag: $95;
spring fashion trends

Photo: Marko Metzinger/Studio D

Pretty Pleats
The latest pleats are soft, relaxed, and more cool girl than schoolgirl.

Wear it now:
  • A sweater adds warmth—and a casual touch—so you can wear the dress for more than cocktail parties.
  • A graphic print bag and shoes keep the look edgy, not matchy.
Wear it later:
  • Pleat-free hips are sleek, not frump.
  • Go classic with a gold belt and strappy sandals for warmer months.

Dress, $158; Sweater, $250; Bag, $358; Print shoes, $225; Belt, Stelios, $65; 203-866-4000. Strappy shoes, Alexandre Birman, $695;
spring fashion trends 2014

The Hottest Bags of the Season
The fastest way to update your wardrobe? A new purse in an of-the-moment shape. Here are the trends I saw on the runways, with options at every price.

See Adam's top picks

spring fashion trends 2014

Photo: Marko Metzinger/Studio D

Flower Power
Florals for spring are a no-brainer, but this year's crop really is groundbreaking: modern, sharp, and not too girly. Here are some fresh-from-the-garden-inspired pieces, along with real-life bouquets created by New York City event and floral designer Matthew Robbins.

Clockwise from top left:

Modern Country
If your thighs look good in these, by all means, wear them. Try them with a boyfriend blazer in blue or white. (Pants, $198;

Graphic Floral
The A-line shape glides over hips. Pair it with a fitted yellow top and kitten heels for a vintage look. (Skirt, Tracy Reese, $288;

Upscale Bohemian
Great for those who are afraid to wear color near their face. The black and white up top acts as a neutral. (Dress, $189;

Sophisticated Garden Party
This would look fantastic over a sheath or with a white top and khakis. (Jacket, $110;

Bold and Beautiful
Wear it with a crisp white shirt, a black tee, or, if you're in a colorful mood, one of the brights in the flowers. (Skirt, $248;

Tropical with a Twist
This adds a whimsical touch to everything from jeans to pencil skirts. Just make sure all other pieces are a solid color. (Bomber jacket, $98;
spring fashion trends 2014

Photo: Richard Majchrak/Studio D

Great Buys Under $100: Orange Crush
Orange will be everywhere this season. This particular red-orange shade look fabulous with every skin tone and haircolor.

Clockwise from top left:

Top: An exotic print, a tie bottom, and a flash of sequins make this flattering tunic extra special. ($99;

Pants: A gold belt ($65, Stelios; 203-866-4000) pairs beautifully with these cotton-blend trousers. ($30; for stores)

Bangles: Bold gold bangles look fantastic with orange—and let you channel your inner Wonder Woman. ($55 to $70 each;

Dress: Gold studs and a zipper detail make a shirtdress party worthy. (

Heels: Yes, you can wear orange accessories with orange clothing. Try it with this tangerine sandal. ($69;

Blazer & Top: Don't be afraid to layer brights: This well-cut blazer lets the embellishment on the orange peek out perfectly from underneath. (Top, $98 Blazer, $35, Merona;

Handbag: Orange you glad to put away your same old black handbag? This rich luggage-brown bag looks great with fiery clothing. ($80,

Top: This versatile top can go from weekend Audrey (paired with tapered pants) to workplace Katharine (worn under a trench or a blazer). ($68;
spring fashion trends

Photo: Richard Majchrak/Studio D

Matching Sets
These duos hark back to my grandmother's day—in a good 1950s glamour way. TO keep the look modern, wear the pieces with a casual outfit like rolled-up jeans and a button-down.

Animal Print: Shoe, $305 and Bag, $395;

Stripes: Shoe, $110 and Bag $65, Ostwald Helgason X Aldo Rise;

Floral: Shoe, $295 and Bag, $375;
spring fashion trends 2014

Photo: Marko Metzinger/Studio D

Mesh-Band Watches
Want a slinkier alternative to the ubiquitous boyfriend watch? Try this season's mesh-band timekeepers, available in various metals (and black!) to match everything else in your accessory wardrobe.

From top: $135; $675; Pulsar, $135; Mondaine, $350; $3,100;
spring fashion trends

Photo: Richard Majchrzak/Studio D

Get Shirty
Oprah loves a good shirtdress. Lucky for her (and you!) it's a big trend this season. The best part? It's less Laura Petrie, more modern and polished. Here are some fresh takes on the classic.

See Adam's 5 favorite shirtdresses
spring fashion trends

Sweetness and Lightness
These dusky pastels are so wearable. Think muted roses, blues, and purples—nothing too Jordan almond–y.

9 grown-up ways to gorgeously wear pastels
spring fashion trends

Photo: Richard Majchrak/Studio D

Textured Whites
Nothing says spring-summer more than white clothing. And in a twist straight from the runways, this season's whites are textured and patterned. Here are three key pieces at, at splurge and save prices.

From left to right:

The dress: $425; $35;

The blazer: $99; $428;

The skirt: $495; $88, 1.State; 646-562-4700
spring fashion trends

Photo: Richard Majchrak/Studio D

Nautical by Nature
Sailor stripes? Been there, done that. The latest take on anutical is much more literal, so say aye to clothing and accessories featuring anchor, sailboat and flag motifs. It's impossible not to smile when you're wearing one of these happy pieces.

Skirt: $295;
Clutch: Edie Parker,
Sweater: $30;
Top: $90;
Dress: S.I.L.K. $420, Tracy Brent; 203-458-9100

Next: The most stylish way to wear sweatpants