These Are the 2021 Trends I'm Trying Secondhand

Like most fashion lovers, come fashion week, I love pouring over the runway images and finding major and microtrends, patterns, and general sartorial themes. For S/S 21, though, this felt like an especially strange task considering the fact that designers were working during lockdowns, in isolation, and many chose to not show at all or lived streamed their collections to the world through our screens. And yet there are still trends! Despite everything, designers like Molly Goddard's fun-filled collection, for example, found a way to create universes for us to imagine our future selves getting dressed. 

So with the spirit of getting dressed again in mind, I will continue to do what I love to do: discover which trends I love and where to try them out secondhand. This is also a favourite habit of mine as it allows me to try trends right away, rather than wait until the collections come out. As an affordable way to try trends too, secondhand is also fabulous because you go to the source of inspiration for new collections. Here's my take on the next season's trends, from major to micro, and where to buy them secondhand.


2021 Trends Secondhand and Vintage: Kitsch Knitwear



The kitsch knitwear trend is funny because I feel like it started gaining traction because of vintage Instagram accounts and was reinvented in some of my favourite new season collections, like Shrimps and Alexa Chung.

So here we all, full circle and I will share with you my favourite secret. I almost didn't tell you, but the very niche root inspiration of most knitwear pieces you see stem from traditional Austrian cardigans. Searching "Austrian cardigans" will get you LOADS of stunning pieces with fun patterns, popcorn bobbling, peplum waists, mutton sleeves, and embellished buttons. 


The floral embroidery. The sleeves! The little collar. Everything about this is to love. 

For those looking for the most kitsch of all, the embroidered-scenes-on-a-cardi look, I see you. This is for you.

The rosebud appliqué is so sweet. 

This is just a warm hug in a cardigan. Pair with a pearl slide and knit track pants and you're off. 


SS21 Trends Vintage: Princess Diana wearing Mondi


Getty Images

Thanks to the perennial interest in Princess Diana's personal style, everything she has ever worn is trending at some point or another. For next year, I predict her late-80s prints and matching sets will fit the mood best. And the most untapped part of her wardrobe will hit fever pitch: the brand Mondi. As GQ writer, Rachel Tashjian pointed out in her style reports from The Crown, Mondi is the Escada diffusion Princess Diana wore on repeat. The best part? It's all over Etsy! 


This looks to be the exact skirt in the famous photo above. 

Oversize knits were also one of her key pieces. 

Is there anything more Princess Diana than a skirt suit?

If someone doesn't buy this, I will! 

Princess Diana loved a bright hue on the slopes.


2021 Trends Secondhand and Vintage: 80s Party Dresses



According to our SS21 trend report, next season's dresses will all be about "Full skirts! Embellishment! Layers of tulle!" And what do those three words sound like? Well, the 1980s. Nobody did over-the-top occasion wear like designers of the '80s so why not dive into a prom dress hole and see what unique wonders are to be found, especially if they come in bright pink... the predicted favourite colour of next year?


Vintage Laura Ashley reigns supreme. 

Quite Cecilie Bahnsen-esque, no? 

This dress. I have no words. Just... love.


2021 Trends Secondhand and Vintage: Classic Luxury Handbags



An odd thing to announce as a trend, I know, but they are! Between the return of Gucci's Jackie bag and the instant cult-status of Prada's Cleo bag, classically gorgeous leather bags are oddly the most trending accessory pieces.

I bought an old old Celine one (from the 1980s) two years ago that I wear almost daily and get repaired so it lasts forever. Lucky for us, the contradiction of classic item being a trending item means we can hunt down vintage versions and invest in them, knowing they will increase in value with time. I think the box bags will be the next big thing.

I love a navy leather from time to time, it feels a bit different while staying classic.

I've loved my Jackie bag for years, and it's definitely an everyday item that makes it worth saving up for. 

Old YSL is a deeply untapped part of the vintage market—I almost didn't want to share it with you! Isn't this bag just gorgeous?


Calling all boho chic Sienna Miller fans. The return of the tiered skirt, or prairie skirts, has been a slow but definite burn. A noughties nod to the '70s, the look is steeped in nostalgia, yet it is so massively versatile and fresh. Style in the cooler months with stockings, jumpers, and boots and float around in the summer months in oversize tees, or lace-trimmed blouses.

The best bit is that there's one for anyone, from minimalists (like Maryam Nassir Zadeh) to maximalists (Etro). And they are just so easy!


For the minimalists out there.

Patchwork has made its comeback this year and I love it.

Anything by Laura Ashley will be an instant favourite.

This is very Batsheva! A little lace trim goes a long way. 

Cover photo: @luciazolea

Next: The Only Designer Bags You'll Need to Know in 2021

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