The Biggest Trends from the Spring 2016 Runways

These are the recurring themes we saw from New York to Paris.
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These are the recurring themes we saw from New York to Paris.
From left to right: Stella McCartney, Chloe, Balenciaga, Fendi, and Christopher Kane

From left to right: Stella McCartney, Chloe, Balenciaga, Fendi, and Christopher Kane

After four long weeks in New York, London, Milan and Paris, the spring 2016 collections have finally come to a close. There were ups and there were downs, but most importantly, there were trends — a whole lot of them, actually. We've already covered what each city specialized in this month, and now it's time to take a look at the bigger picture. You may remember that the biggest trend of fall 2015 was the '70s, and while this did continue into spring, the nostalgia was a little more spread out this time around. For those of you who aren't as enamored with all things retro, don't fret — there was a lot more to the season than simply looking to the past. Read on to get a full rundown on spring's top trends.

'90s

From left to right: Calvin Klein Collection, Betsey Johnson, Acne Studios, Giamba, and Rag & Bone

From left to right: Calvin Klein Collection, Betsey Johnson, Acne Studios, Giamba, and Rag & Bone

Fashion is feeling pretty nostalgic these days, but of the decades referenced this season, the '90s were the biggest story — especially in Paris. Rave culture, minimalism, grunge and fanny packs all made appearances. You have been warned.

Ruffles

From left to right: Marques'Almeida, J.W. Anderson, Luisa Beccaria, Lanvin, and Gucci

From left to right: Marques'Almeida, J.W. Anderson, Luisa Beccaria, Lanvin, and Gucci

Ruffles lined garments on an impressive number of catwalks. They came in many shapes and sizes, but most designers used them sparsely — and to great effect.

The Cold Shoulder

Shoulders were the go-to erogenous zone for spring 2016. If a designer had a chance to show them off, they took it. From off-the-shoulder tops to shoulder cutouts to asymmetrical necklines, it felt like no runway was left out of this trend. See below for examples of each.

Shoulder cutouts

From left to right: Bernard Chandran, Guy Laroche, Andrew Gn, Issa, and Milly

From left to right: Bernard Chandran, Guy Laroche, Andrew Gn, Issa, and Milly

Off-the-shoulder

From left to right: Paul & Joe, Peter Pilotto, Chloe, Michael Kors, and Francesca Liberatore

From left to right: Paul & Joe, Peter Pilotto, Chloe, Michael Kors, and Francesca Liberatore

Asymmetrical necklines

From left to right: J JS Lee, Christopher Kane, Antonio Marras, Sacai, and Versace

From left to right: J JS Lee, Christopher Kane, Antonio Marras, Sacai, and Versace

Crumpled Fabric

From left to right: Margaret Howell, Bottega Veneta, Givenchy, Alexander McQueen, and Nina Ricci

From left to right: Margaret Howell, Bottega Veneta, Givenchy, Alexander McQueen, and Nina Ricci

Ironing can be a bit of a hassle (especially if you're bad at it), but even if you're a pro, there is probably a more productive way to spend your time in the morning. Luckily, the answer to this is simple: pre-creased and rumpled clothing, of course.

Micro Pleats

From left to right: J.Mendel, Gabriele Colangelo, Sonia Rykiel, Giles, and Stella McCartney

From left to right: J.Mendel, Gabriele Colangelo, Sonia Rykiel, Giles, and Stella McCartney

In a season where pleats were a big story, many designers sculpted their spring silhouettes through micro pleats.

Victorian

From left to right: Emilia Wickstead, Fendi, Zimmermann, Erdem, and Etro

From left to right: Emilia Wickstead, Fendi, Zimmermann, Erdem, and Etro

High necks, ruffles, bows and broderie anglaise were just a few of the common elements for one of spring's most popular trends — Victorian-inspired looks. This is one you may recall being popular for fall 2015 as well.

Trailing Tassels

From left to right: Boss, Marc Jacobs, Derek Lam, Michael Kors, and Joseph

From left to right: Boss, Marc Jacobs, Derek Lam, Michael Kors, and Joseph

Like a tail trailing from a comet, tassels (wide, thin, fabric, string, etc.) seemed to adorn every other look on the runway. Some were the result of a bow or some other utilitarian knot, others were just there for decoration. Either way, they left an impression.

Pajama Dressing

From left to right: Natasha Zinko, Creatures of Comfort, Balenciaga, Loewe, and Sonia Rykiel

From left to right: Natasha Zinko, Creatures of Comfort, Balenciaga, Loewe, and Sonia Rykiel

You know that feeling after you get home from work and change into your comfiest clothes? Designers clearly want this to be a constant sensation for their customers come spring, and they showed more than enough daytime pajama options for everyone.

Latin Influence

From left to right: Blugirl, Proenza Schouler, Oscar de la Renta, Osman, and Roberto Cavalli

From left to right: Blugirl, Proenza Schouler, Oscar de la Renta, Osman, and Roberto Cavalli

Ruffles, flamenco skirts and the color red came together in the many Spanish-inspired looks for spring 2016.

Deconstructed Oxfords

From left to right: Zac Posen, Palmer Harding, Jacquemus, Delpozo, and Fyodor Golan

From left to right: Zac Posen, Palmer Harding, Jacquemus, Delpozo, and Fyodor Golan

There was a time when humans believed that there were only so many ways to wear an Oxford shirt. That time was before spring 2016, as designers showed endless creativity with this staple garment. Warning: Not all of them are work appropriate.

For more spring 2016 trends, click here.

All photos from Imaxtree or from the brand.