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 Fashion Trends 2005

Spring 2005 & Summer 2005

5. Designers

By Pauline Weston Thomas for


Fashion Designers Spring & Summer 2005


Designer Ideas

A brief look at spring summer 2005 ideas from a small selection of world renowned fashion designers in the autumn 2004 prêt-à-porter ready to wear shows.   Some of the main fashion statements made can be summed up with the words lace, embroidery, crochet, safari/tribal/animal effects, ruffled refined romantic feminine fashion and tiered long maxi skirts.  Fur has always been a symbol of rank and privileged circumstances. Design houses of Roberto Cavalli, Dior, Gaultier and Fendi all use fur in their designs.


London is the city to find shows with witty, inspiring clothes that outrage and shock.

Jasper Conran

He had polished tailoring, stunning colours, lustrous dresses, seventies sparkle fruit colours of lime, watermelon, Clementine, kiwi and watered lime.

Roland Mouret

Mouret featured shrunken cropped jackets in light turquoise tweeds and contrast textures. Like the shrug,  cropped jackets don’t have to do up, but just slip over the garments beneath.  Silver brocades and textured slubby silks make them garments that add a flourishing enhancing decorative touch.  Dress and coat outfits and suits, with an update on the boat neck highlighted a strong sense of understanding fine tailoring.  He favoured using mint green, silver grey, pale gold and rose pink.

Betty Jackson

Betty Jackson never fails to make an impression producing wearable clothes that her clients love.  There were Bohemian touches throughout her show.  Her Knitwear featured a hint of Navajo amid feathered trimmings. Her evening wear focused on dresses which glowed with Moroccan silver embroidery and beading.   Soft flesh coloured kaftans were delicate and easy.  An unusual combination was the pairing of striped sweaters with full skirts of taffeta, wrapped with sashes and bowed at the waistline. 

She was also inspired by both the 70s and 30s and Jackson's floral frilled chiffon, high waisted dresses took us to a world of voluptuous cleavage and lazy dreamy afternoons. Jackson showed leaf printed coats a line also followed by Proenza Schouler in New York.   One feature likely to be a big hit were her studded belts.

Julian MacDonald

MacDonald concentrated on his first textile love of knitwear, producing a very commercial range which buyers loved.  His cardigans were pearl embroidered and perfect as covers for clothes inspired by 1940's flamenco where he used ruffles and flounces and showed a very commercial frilly cleavage blouse.  He also had dresses with tiers decorated with fabric flower in their hundreds.  Sequinned halters, satin and Lurex pants or fine accordion pleated skirts meant that he created looks loved by buyers and fans alike.  The 1940's feel was emphasised by Betty Grable Victory Roll styling to the hair.


Milan catwalks last autumn were inspired by African and Indian styling.  This spring summer 2005 we will see the dramatic melting pot effects of the Milan shows as we adopt folkloric/ethnic/peasant/tribal and even Polynesian details that initiate exotic spectacle in dress unseen for years.  Afghanistan, Romania, Japan and even the Amazon were the sources of bright ideas from designers such as Roberto Cavalli, Rifat Ozbek, Molinari, Dolce & Gabbana, Gianfranco Ferre and Prada. 

There was no holding these designers who trotted the globe for stimulation.  On the other hand the globe is now at everyone's fingertips so it is hard for them not to be influenced by the need to appeal to a wider customer base.  There real is nothing new in this approach. The house of Yves St. Laurent looked to the Russian steppes and other places for inspiration some 40 years ago and designers like Poiret looked to the orient for inspiration 100 years ago.


Rifat Ozbek

Rifat Ozbek created a slim silhouette with his elegant slender skirts and Nehru stand collar jackets embroidered with traditional Indian silver embroidery.

Roberto Cavalli

Roberto Cavalli opted for Garden of Eden prints on his gypsy skirts and looked to even more exotic themes with his kaftans in lavish tiger prints.  Using earthy tones he managed to make crochet look sophisticated as he worked it into evening dresses that reminded one of early 1970s macramé bikinis from Corfu.  His use of semi precious material like coral for a halter neck suggests that designers are striving to stay ahead of mass producers that rip off their designs before the designers themselves can really market them to their once exclusive clientele .


Dolce and Gabbana took animal prints like zebra and tiger onto chiffon and continued the exotica theme with use of crocodile, python and other reptilian textures.

Miu Miu

Miu Miu favoured high waisted dresses and this look is sure to be widely copied by mass manufacturers. 


Donatella Versace showed more refined far less vulgar clothing than usual shows with less bling than earlier fashion shows concentrated on.  Her days by the sea influenced designs of coral prints, sarong knot dresses in fluid silk jerseys and starfish flip flop sandals will suit her jet setting, sun tanning clientele as they lounge on yachts or cruises.  Her colours were attractive in aquamarine and peach tones.


New York

Generally in September 2004 New York shows showed a lot of shorts.  Some styles for this forthcoming summer will be tailored with cuffs, others sharply creased and teamed with jackets and high heels. 

Marc Jacobs

Marc Jacobs is very highly regarded as the innovator and face of young fashion ideas. He changed direction last autumn to produce a show with full skirts and crisp taffeta prom dresses.  Ladylike was the look he did well with memorable bold tweed check coats.

Michael Kors

Gave us whisper grey wedges and the skinniest white jeans and used bright colours like his blue glass like shiny python jackets ideal for strong sunlight on the Riviera.   He also favoured sulphur yellow green, turquoise sea, and opted to show plenty of gold bling making his pieces perfect for his cruising customers who jet set and like to show off.

Matthew Williamson

Matthew Williamson created 1970's Ibiza inspired hippy bohemian clothes.

Anna Sui

Anna Sui's white ruffled gipsy skirts were reminiscent of the life of idyllic girls on the prairie.  Fringed suede, slouchy cowboy boots and north American Indian embroidery or Navajo jewellery produced some translatable winning ideas.

Zac Posen

Posen was notable for joining in the current ethnic inspired shows and did mirror image Aztec style prints well.

Oscar de la Renta

At Oscar de la Renta paired short voluminous skirts with ikat prints in bright colours on coats and jackets.

Narciso Rodriguez

He enchanted with glamorous evening wear that referenced  swimsuits.  He also showed wispy flesh toned v necked empire dresses just above the knee. Peep toe pink heeled sandals low cut shoes.

Luella Bartley

She did cropped jackets and shorts that were rolled up.  This was an interesting look.

Proenza Schouler

The New York team Jack McCullough and Lazaro Herandez showed brocade skirts topped with liquid gold bustiers overlain with foliage printed swing coats.  Toe cleavage was evident with low cut peep toed silver shoes.  Metallic shoes are set to be a big hit globally.

Ralph Lauren

Hollywood style twenties and thirties inspiration and revived nostalgic luxury dressing ideal for movie stars was the theme of this design house.



The House of Balenciaga showed a look which was full and voluminous on the bottom and narrow and fitted on the top, with the front and sleeve hemlines of a jacket studded with jewels.  There were also high waisted narrow cut loose trousers with button front sailor style panels and all worked in a restricted colour palette. Jackets had a military French Revolutionary air and gold worked buttonholes as a decorative feature with no function were a highlight


At Lagerfeld’s own gallery collection his glitzy designs included Jewel cuffed coat dresses in taupe, pink, cappuccino, algae greens.  Clothes were teamed with high gold sandals everywhere.  Kaftans embroidered in coral sprigging gave an air of relaxed glamour dressing that was serene and luxurious at once.  Halter neck dresses, suits and jackets abounded.  

Alexander McQueen

Alexander McQueen added Indian embroidery to Chantilly lace, embellished sheer layers on wispy dresses with gorgeous carousel horses and continued the decorative elements with smocked tailoring and knife pleating.

John Galliano at Dior

Galliano used black denim and crochet to create decorated commercially translatable pieces that buyers loved.  He abandoned his extravagant ideas in favour of clothes for people in the real world which somewhat defeats the point of being a Paris fashion house.  But evening extravagances included devore velvet trousers and flower embroidered georgette skirts.

Jean Paul Gaultier

Jean Paul Gaultier favoured the Romany gypsy dirndl skirt look with bare off shoulder tops and tailored jackets with ruffles.

Alber Elbaz Designer at Lanvin

Lanvin is now a very hot label.  The house showed silk padded jackets, languid shifts full of Grecian pleats and fine accordion pleated skirts.

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