This autumn, we’re going back to the basics. After several years in which we saw the rise of vibrant dopamine dressing and all manner of risqué Y2K-era ensembles, things are getting simpler this season—much simpler. In fact, if you look beyond the current season, you’ll notice a larger paradigm shift from exuberant, OTT dressing to the reassurance of classic silhouettes brought about by the quiet-luxury aesthetic.
This “return to the classics” mindset can be seen in everything from what celebrities are wearing to the logoless designer bags of the moment, but nowhere is this shift more apparent than on the autumn/winter 2023 runways. Dubbed “fashion realism” by Matches in its A/W 23 report, it’s all about a return to clothes that are meant to be worn by real people in their real lives. The concept is so on the nose it’s almost silly to call it novel. Of course, clothes are meant to be worn in real life! But after seasons of pendulum-swinging extremes, it’s refreshing to finally be able to see yourself among the parade of models from the runways of fashion’s top houses such as Bottega Veneta, Miu Miu, Loewe, and Ferragamo.
“This approach to dressing resonates with so many women, including myself,” says Liane Wiggins, head of womenswear at Matches, who reports that key everyday items like flats, sneakers, and denim are all spiking in growth at the retailer. “It is less of a trend and simply more reflective of how women are dressing for their varying lifestyles. From Miu Miu’s coats layered with hooded sweatshirts and leather jackets to Gucci’s relaxed denim, this is clothing we can see ourselves wearing straight from the runway.”
Not only is the fashion realism movement producing clothing that will actually take us throughout our day, but it’s also a valuable lesson in the building blocks of a functional, long-lasting wardrobe. Ahead, we’re highlighting the 10 autumn/winter 2023 runway looks that translate the best IRL and how to re-create the vibe of each.