Mapping Out Fashion Month By Color: Fall 2013

Last season we decided that seeing one collection and one look at a time was not a good enough way to determine color trends. You can't remember everything all at once. (At least, those of us who haven't been blessed with a photographic memory cannot.) So what's one to do? Put all the collections together, of course.
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Last season we decided that seeing one collection and one look at a time was not a good enough way to determine color trends. You can't remember everything all at once. (At least, those of us who haven't been blessed with a photographic memory cannot.) So what's one to do? Put all the collections together, of course.

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Last season we decided that seeing one collection and one look at a time was not a good enough way to determine color trends. You can't remember everything all at once. (At least, those of us who haven't been blessed with a photographic memory cannot.) So what's one to do? Put all the collections together, of course.

The experiment yielded some very interesting and very pretty results for spring 2013. Blue was in (isn't it always?), purple was not. Seafoams, mints, and emeralds were also popular in almost every city--but you know what they say about seasons changing. In case you missed it--we have no idea how you could have--another four frenzied weeks of fashion have passed, giving us a whole new season of color to work with and analyze. So let's get straight to it.

Compared to last season, every city welcomed darkness into its color palette for fall. Of course, you don't need to be a fashion genius to know that light colors will dominate spring while dark colors dominate fall. But it's nice to actually see evidence of it.

In other obvious news, the number of all-black looks went up (way up), while shades of blue slayed once again snatching at least 30% of the color looks in every city--note the big blue blotch on our map above. Meanwhile, shades of red came in second. Green was last season's popular runner-up (emerald was chosen by Pantone as the color of the year), but its presence was missed at the fall shows. As the saying goes, it ain't easy being green.

While shots of purple went up since spring, the color still didn't exceed 10% of the looks in any city. What is everyone's aversion to purple, exactly?

For a closer look at each city, click through. Don't forget to click on each map for a bigger version!

Photos: Style.com, StyleBistro.com, Vogue.co.uk

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NEW YORK

The overloaded New York schedule provided plenty of everything. Shades of blue and red (check out that pocket of oxblood) came in first and second, respectively, and the darker colors were spread across the board. There were a lot of navy blues, military greens, and neutrals. The bright colors of last spring are pushed towards the top, almost off the map. And that tiny dollop of green proper? You'll notice this as a common theme this fall.

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LONDON

London wasn't going to let the somber mood of the other three cities bring it down, turning out to be the brightest of the four. Blue had its biggest competition here, with red (again, all that oxblood at shows like Burberry Prorsum, Felder Felder, and Marios Schwab) coming in a close second place. London had the biggest pocket of bright orange from shows like Richard Nicoll and Joseph Conran. You'll find that Milan and Paris don't have the same enthusiasm for the color.

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MILAN

Last season, Milan had a well-balanced diet of pastels. For fall, however, the city is almost entirely devoid of any proper green or orange, both of which veered to the side of yellow-toned. As a result, there were plenty of mustards and camels to play around with. But then, neutrals are typically more popular for fall, and it's something we saw in every city. Dark blues? Check. Lots of red? Double check (thank you, Dolce & Gabbana). Moving along...

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PARIS

OK. Pointing out the sheer volume of dark blues is just beating a dead horse since it's happening in every city. It's like saying that Paris designers show a lot of black (which they totally did, outnumbering the all-white looks by about 4 to 1), or that the new Pope is Catholic. But having said that, Paris definitely had the largest percentage of blue in every variety, comprising over a third of the color looks. There was an especially large section of dusty blues thanks to designers like Louis Vuitton and A. F. Vandevorst. Green and orange were predictably absent as well.

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And finally, for your viewing pleasure, a quick overview of the bright colors of Spring 2013 and the darker hues of Fall 2013. Pretty, right?