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2010 fashion forecast: Denim, ruffles and more

Tired of oversized bags or the exaggerated shoulder style? You might be excited to hear what's in store for 2010. TODAY Style editor Bobbie Thomas tips you off on the trends to watch in the coming year, with influences from "Nine" to Alexander McQueen.
/ Source: TODAY contributor

Although we haven’t had our own “Flash Forward” blackouts to show us what we’ll be wearing six months from now, we do have runways and red carpets to help us predict the future of fashion. As we enter a new decade, styles start to shift. But I’ve put together an extensive cheat sheet to get you all geared up for the new year.

Bobbie Thomas, TODAY Style editor and author of The Buzz column for In Touch Weekly, takes a look at 2010’s biggest trends.

Designer deals and celebrity style
In 2009, we saw fashionistas lining up for the Matthew Williamson and Jimmy Choo lines at H&M, and 2010 promises even more exciting designer collaborations with mainstream retailers. Hot off the heels of Rodarte, Jean Paul Gaultier and Zac Posen are already poised to produce lines for Target. Also, more celebs are stepping into the role of designer, including budding beauty Selena Gomez and bohemian trendsetter Nicole Richie, while Sarah Jessica Parker has been tapped to contribute creatively for Halston. Considering that red carpets are just as influential as runways are today, it’s no surprise that notable personalities continue to attract consumers seeking to emulate their personal style.

A strong dose of denim
Stella McCartney, Ralph Lauren and Jean Paul Gaultier all sent head-to-toe denim down the spring runway. While this drastic denim look is usually a fashion no-no, be prepared to break the boundaries and take this fabric to the extreme. From mixing different colors, trying various combinations, and wearing jackets, shirts, vests, shorts and skirts in the material, denim is a definite “do” for 2010.

Arts and crafts
The special handmade feel of fashion has never been hotter. The trend toward imperfect, raw pieces will be strong, so look for items with patchwork, inside-out seams, bled watercolors and even purposeful “stains.” Whether you decide to DIY your own item, or buy something with that look, crafty creations are tres chic.

Mixed motifs
Thanks to daring designers and a fashion-forward young generation, anything goes. It’s OK to break all the rules and experiment with mixing different patterns or different influences. Ethnic can work with preppy, tribal prints can be put with florals, and retro styles can pair well with romantic pieces. Even try blending different eras and color combos in order to create unique ensembles that will surprise and delight. 

Cutouts and slashes
From Michael Kors to Gucci, Max Azria to Jill Stuart and more, designers played peek-a-boo on the spring runways. This trend is sexy, sleek and striking — revealing without being overexposed. The detail can look dramatic, but it’s best to try it in serious tones like black, charcoal and navy. This is just one more way designers are displaying the “imperfect” theme through their clothing.

Frothy and feminine
Designers like Marc Jacobs and Christian Dior layered underwear as outerwear for a romantic feel. Sheer fabrics, ruffles, corsets and nightgown-inspired silhouettes will steal the style show this coming year. Look for lingerie influences a la the burlesque-dancer wardrobe of the ladies from the movie “Nine.” Try slipping on a satin camisole under a sharp blazer, or let a slip peek out from under a dress. Flesh-colored hues are haute too, from beige to blush, cocoas to creams. Remember, it’s all about the subtle seductress! 

Baby bags
Expect to be reaching for an easy-breezy bag this year. 2010 will be all about being smart and responsible, and that idea is represented in our everyday accessory — the handbag. This is the antithesis of the oversized bags we’ve seen the past few years. They may be small, but tiny bags will be a big trend thanks to the no-fuss, grab-and-go movement they symbolize. These bags will come in all shapes, colors and styles, but long chains and straps for hands-free cross-body wear have an effortless modern appeal.

Boy boots
Masculine-style boots will continue to march into stores, just like they did in 2009. These biker-chic styles are a great contrast with feminine fashions, and add edge to any outfit. But their continued popularity may also be due to function as much as to fashion. After all, the key to these flat, androgynous boots is that they’re a practical, posh way to dress down delicate luxe looks.

Wood, wedges and wicked detail
In a refreshing look we haven’t seen recently, wooden shoes were all over the runway for spring. Look forward to new shapes that somehow still feel retro, like the clogs that were shown at Chanel and Louis Vuitton. These shoes will add character to any outfit. 

And finally, get “pumped” for hoof heels and avant-garde details — wicked shoes, as I like to call them. Wild, ornate and eccentric, think over-the-top, fashion-forward shapes (e.g.,Alexander McQueen’s runway shoes ) that keep footwear as a major focal point. And these artsy ideas will influence the mainstream, so expect to see even your favorite footwear brands be bold in the year ahead.