Quiet Luxury, Who? 6 Maximalist Spring Trends You Need to See

Lately, it seems impossible to scroll online without stumbling upon the terms “quiet luxury” or “old money” as the fashion aesthetic has taken over everywhere. I’m not sure about you, but some trends get tired really quickly for me, especially when they’re inescapable on the internet. Don’t get me wrong—I’m a stickler for good staples as much as the next girl. But minimalism’s overwhelming popularity feels almost antithetical to its very ethos—an idea that’s all about embracing items that outlast the trend cycle. All of this is to say that while minimalism may be having a moment, a wardrobe full of too many basics can feel, well… boring to me. After all, what makes fashion fun is finding that fine balance, baby!

One way you can break free from the grip of “quiet luxury” is by taking a few risks with your spring wardrobe. By no means do you have to become a devoted maximalist overnight. However, if you’re in desperate need of a break, opting for a few bolder spring trends is the right move for you. In an effort to give you that much-needed respite, we spent hours combing through the Spring/Summer 2024 runway collections to identify the six best maximalist trends. Whether you need to spice up your staples or are an anti-minimalist to your core, there’s something ahead for everyone.

a collage of runway images featuring the maximalist spring trend: embellished clothing

(Image credit: Launchmetric Spotlight; PICTURED: Tory Burch; Calcaterra; Dries Van Noten; Schiaparelli; Versace; Prada)

One of the guiding principles of maximalism is the notion that “more is more”—i.e., embracing the maximum amount of prints, textures, and colors. However, if you’ve never necessarily abided by this principle, then it’s likely that you’re unsure of where to start when it comes to embracing the aesthetic. Enter embellished clothing into the chat. Across S/S 24 collections, we saw designers use trimmings to give everyday silhouttes a little something extra. For example, classic separates such as tailored blazers and trench coats were covered with chain hardware, tiny sequins, and pearls at Schiaparelli and Dries Van Noten’s shows. Similarly, at Calcaterra, a sheer black button-down and white trousers looked normal from afar, but one could see embellishments all over the pieces up close. And then, there were Prada, Versace, and Tory Burch’s collections, which adapted classic dress silhouettes by covering them in beads and chain netting. Although each look featured different embellishments, the through-line seemed to be the designers’ dedication to making maximalism meld effortlessly into anyone’s wardrobe.

a collage of runway images featuring the maximalist spring trend: sheer sequins

(Image credit: Courtesy of 16Arlington; Launchmetric Spotlight; PICTURED: 16Arlington; Emilia Wickstead; Proenza Schouler; N°21; Missoni; The Attico)

In addition to the wide embrace of embellishments, another trend was impossible to ignore, so we had to give it a name. Let us introduce you to what we’re referring to as “totally transparent”—aka sheer sequins. Arguably an amalgamation of previous popular trends, we saw sheer textiles given a more maximal spin with the addition of iridescent sequins this season. While some forms of sequin and sheer clothing have been a mainstay in the going-out repertoire, pairing these elements together gave them a new feel. On top of that, designers expanded the concept of sheer sequins outside of the eveningwear category by using them to recreate staples. For example, at Proenza Schouler and 16Arlington, the “simple” midi skirt was given a shiny upgrade when covered in colorful iridescent sequins. Similarly, Emilia Wickstead, The Attico, and N°21 made more classic dress shapes feel cooler because they were all opaque. We haven’t even mentioned the sheer sequin tank at Missoni! Basically, they all prove that some of the most “impractical” trends can be pragmatic if you’re willing to see them in a new light.

a collage of runway images featuring the maximalist spring trend: voluminous dresses

(Image credit: Launchmetrics Spotlight; Courtesy of Christopher John Rogers; Courtesy of 16Arlington; PICTURED: Coperni; Christopher John Rogers ; 16Arlington; Prabal Gurung; Balmain; Rotate)

Consider this permission slip to skip out on sparkly things if they don’t speak to you. While many maximalist-leaning collections used textiles and trimmings to transfix audiences, it wasn’t the only method on display this season. In various S/S 24 runway shows, designers took the quintessential sundress and gave it a maximalist spin by adopting voluminous silhouettes. There wasn’t necessarily one type of dress per se, as much as it was about using different tailoring techniques to create a shape that would make someone whisper, “va-va-voom.” For some designers, that meant adapting the classic a-line shape through puddle hems, box pleats, plissé material, or plenty of ruffles—refer to 16Arlington, Prabal Gurung, and Rotate’s spring shows. In contrast, others chose to take the hourglass shape more literally by creating rigid dresses with waistlines that darted out dramatically (including Coperni, Balmain, and Christopher John Rodgers). The overall result was a series of dresses that not only took up space but also made space for a new crop of stylish people to embrace maximalism.

a collage of runway images featuring the maximalist spring trend: color blocking

(Image credit: Launchmetric Spotlight; Courtesy of Balmain; PICTURED: Gucci; Officine Générale; Gauchere; Balmain; Fendi; Valentino Couture)

You can’t really talk about maximalism without mentioning color! Unlike minimalism, this movement is about embracing every shade of the rainbow (not just neutrals); therefore, it’s no surprise that we’d include them in our maximalist trend report. However, it’s worth noting that designers this season weren’t just sticking a few vibrant shades into their collections; they were embracing color theory. That’s most adeptly reflected in Officine Générale’s menswear presentation and Valentino’s haute couture show—pops of purple and cerulean were used to accentuate crisply tailored separates. At the same time, we saw other brands lean more heavily into color-blocking by pairing more than two contrasting colors together (see Fendi, Gucci, Balmain, and Gauchere’s shows) to create visual intrigue. No matter how designers choose to style colors this season, the takeaway is that by embracing them to the max, they managed to embody the ethos of maximalism.

a collage of runway images featuring the maximalist spring trend: fringe

(Image credit: Launchmetrics Spotlight; PICTURED: Bottega Veneta; Tom Ford; Calcaterra; The Attico; Jil Sander; Alexander McQueen)

One of the most surprising ways we’ve seen designers embrace maximalism this season isn’t through silhouettes or shades but by embracing the senses—most notably, touch. Although all textiles are influenced by texture in some way, none are as tactile as the trend we’ve seen take over S/S 24 shows: fringe. Yes, you read that correctly. While most might associate this trimming with festival fashion, it’s become a pivotal part of high fashion for the past few seasons—especially as designers have found new ways to reinvent it by playing with form and fabrications. With the former, we saw that reflected in the spring shows of Alexander McQueen, The Attico, and Tom Ford. No longer a decoration relegated to the hemline, designers draped fringe all over the body to highlight the female form—thereby creating some of the chicest fringe in current history. But the creativity doesn’t end there, as we also saw designers play with fabrics as a way to make fringe feel feistier—whether through creating fringe from leather as seen at Bottega Veneta or prickly-looking sequins at Calcaterra and Jil Sander. By getting a bit craftier, designers have created a spring trend that’s begging to be touched (at one’s own risk).