Amidst the dark and warm tones dominating fashion for fall 2012, there’s a bright and bold vision. A vision of red… a lady in red.

She doesn’t let the season’s disciplined guidelines dictate the colours in her wardrobe.  She travels to all four fashion capitals of the world, and gives the colour red a new meaning with every new city she sets foot in.

Fashionising.com takes a dive in the red sea of fashion, by looking at this colour trend for fall / winter 2012.

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Red. It’s the most emotionally intense color. It stimulates a faster heartbeat. It is the color of love. Ironically, red cars are also popular targets for thieves. Red is usually used as an accent in interior decoration. And news readers on television are addicted to the colour.

This primary colour is not just called a bold hue for nothing.

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Red on the runway at Moschino F/W ’12

Red clothing gets noticed. If a designer comes up with a red-only collection, the consumer would then the take the liberty to tag each item as a “statement” piece. How often would you hear a woman call her black straight-leg pants, a “statement” piece? Hardly ever. That’s just how the wardrobe works. Women see a red blazer as a statement piece as opposed to a classic black tuxedo jacket. Having a pop of colour in the wardrobe equals a significant personality statement. Confidence ensues, without a doubt.

On the fall / winter 2012 runway, designers didn’t just experiment with the various shades of red, but also died the colour in various fabrics, inducing more variety.

Statement-worthy fabrics: the textures

Leather

Red leather, yellow leather… This combination of fabric and colour is fierce. Leather, in itself, is a very statement-y fabric, with its body hugging and sculpting characteristics. So when you put a strong colour against an equally powerful fabric, you get a lethal combination, indeed.

The shades can vary from deep maroon to striking cherry red, as every colour takes on the fabric in a unique way.

The red leather seen at DKNY fall 2012 was more intense as opposed to the shiny fabrics from Tommy Hilfiger’s runway. Yogal Azrouel’s deep blood red combination is a great example for those who want something more mature.

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Burgundy red leather at Tommy Hilfiger F/W ’12

Fur

A controversial but surely a good one – the fall / winter 2012 shows saw an array of red and maroon fur walk down the runway. The beauty of red fur is in the union of its individual thread hairs. When the fur is dyed to a shade of red, each hair holds on to the colour, hence resulting in a profound colour for a final result.

House of Holland and Michael Kors used red-stained fur as an arm sleeve and a neck trim, which accessorised the outfit. However, DKNY and Jean Paul Gaultier’s approach to the fabric was more liberal, as they created an entire outfit from red fur.

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Red fur at DKNY F/W ’12

Velvet

Giving the outfit a lush glam and a casual look, the velvet revolution is peeping back at the fashion scene for autumn / winter 2012. Running in the lead are McQ McQueen, Emporio Armani and Temperley London, with their red velvet ensembles.

The unique factor about this fabric is that velvet makes a colour appear 3-dimentional, giving it the almost-live effect on a piece of clothing. Velvet, in itself, is a fabric of confidence and personality, so its marriage with the colour red is ought to be a good one.

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Red velvet pants at Tommy Hilfiger F/W ’12

Statement-worthy colours: the red family

As previously mentioned, the fall / winter 2012 shows presented a variety of shades of red for the coming season. While some rested against the tangerine orange family, others shades dug deep in the mine of red to reach find the gems within.

Fruity red

For this, the designers seem to have taken inspiration from the bright pigmentation in tomatoes, ripe watermelons and strawberries. They then used it to brighten up the colour palette of their collection, adding vibrancy and eye-awaking brightness.

This fall, many collections typically started with a dark monochromatic palette, and then instantly transformed by an injection of bright red colours. Carolina Herrera, Christopher Kane and Reed Krakoff perked up their line-up by adding only one or two red pieces amidst the noir theme of the collections.

This colour can be very confronting, and if you’re unsure about the colour red for fall, put this one on hold for now.

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Fruity reds at Carolina Herrera F/W ’12

Ruby red

Best associated with a gemstone, this shade of red is very rich and intense, and encompasses crimson tones to those almost bordering the lines of maroon and plum shades, as seen in Peter Som’s fall collection. All the red pieces seen in his show hinted towards high-maintenance luxury and class. And that’s exactly what you want from a colour that reflects back to a costly jewel.

To make a statement with this colour for fall, pair it with other gemstone shades like deep purple, emerald green or cobalt blue. Or you could keep it subdued and team other neutral shades with this red. Derek Lam paired the ruby red leather lights with a plain white singlet for his runway fall 2012 show.

Shades of berry and deep wine also qualify in this shade, as they meet ends with the ruby tones of red.

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Jewel tones at Peter Som F/W ’12

Accessories

Another thing to keep in mind is that if you’re anxious to add red in your wardrobe, then start with accessories. Similar to the red velvet gloves seen on Miranda Kerr at Chanel fall 2012. Adding a hint of red of your look wouldn’t dramatically change your overall look, but it would slowly warm you to this colour of the season whilst adding life to your ensemble.

And if all else fails, put on some bright red shoes (or red-soled shoes) and paint your lips in a striking red lipstick colour. No one will ever question this look!

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