A few weeks ago, it was time for our annual market adventure to seek out the spring’s anticipated trends. We made our way down to Chicago, which meant we were in for a… ROAD TRIP! Most of the eight-hour drive was spent prepping for the market, but we also made room for a little fun, like the challenge of making every tollbooth operator smile or stopping at decked out gas stations scoping out gift ideas or the best cheese.
We were welcomed into the Windy City by our favorite Chicago sights and scenes: Michigan Avenue’s window shopping and retail, the Chicago River, and bikers zipping down the edges of the city streets. And the food—the food—every corner seems to feature a unique restaurant with cuisines from all over the world. We made it a point to step out of our pizza routine and ate at an awesome restaurant, Nico Osteria in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood. We even got to have an evening with Tayva Vollan, one of our fabulous former employees, and her husband Yeong Heo to enjoy dinner at Duck Duck Goat, a fabulous Chinese restaurant in West Loop.
Finally we arrived at our destination—Stylemax, a market in a beautiful building downtown. We took the elevator up to the seventh floor, which was packed with reps from New York, California, Chicago, and across the Midwest. In the sea of clothes and exhibits there’s a huge variety of fashions at different price points, which we scope out for our lovely and loyal customers back home at The Happy Sol. After a few meetings with representatives for different manufacturers to maintain and build new relationships with our favorite brands, we sift through the hundreds on hundreds of styles and whittle them down to a few looks for brand that we know our customers will love.
And after hours of working our way through Stylemax, we have a good feeling about the trends coming into our store this spring. Including…ankle pants! We ordered ankle length styles from denim lines, dressier pants, even comfortable ankle length sweatpants styles. There will be no shortage of ankle pants at The Happy Sol this spring. And because ankle pants are in, so are great shoes! We fell in love with the new looks from Fly London, Pikolino, and Bernie Mev, so of course we added them to our spring order! From Fly we’re expecting a champagne slides, and from Bernie Mev some stylish sneakers; white with a glitter toe and olive green with perforated leather were two of our favorites.
Floral and pastels are also in! The focal colors are going to be blush, soft blue, light greens, and happy yellows. But here’s a shocker: red is back baby! And we are HERE FOR IT. We’re also excited that athleisure is still in style, which has evolved from leggings and baggy sweatshirts to more joggers and put-together pullovers! Varsity stripes show up on everything from dresses to joggers, so be on the lookout for the classic line that is most commonly associated with letter jackets and memories of high school homecomings!
We also unveiled a few summer trends, which surprisingly included shorts! (they are back!) This year expect to see plenty of embroidery, clean denim, and different twills, all in a variety of lengths and different fabrics. And the style has shifted to cleaner denim, with released hems and slight distressed detailing. Don’t worry everyone, high rise is still in! We also love that the resurgence of the OVERALL- arriving soon J
All in all, our trip to Chicago was a huge success, and we are so excited to show our loyal customers at The Happy Sol what we found at this year’s Stylemax. But for now, you’ll just have to wait and see…