Hot fashion trends for summer 2013

It's been a long time coming but spring is finally here, and that means it's time to pack away those winter woollies and get your summer wardrobe in order.

Jil Sander spring summer 2013 collection

Pic: Getty

We check out the key trends from the spring/summer catwalks to keep you fashionable during the warm weather.

The hot pattern trend for the summer is for stripes or checks in black and white. Monochrome was big on the autumn winter catwalks, with geometric prints topping the list of must-haves, and a similarly bold take on checks or stripes is in order for spring and summer. If you've got the figure for it, try out a pair of striped skinny trousers, and you'll be bang on trend.

Elsewhere, designers were looking very much to the Orient, with Prada, Roland Mouret, Galliano and Lanvin all showing off vivid prints and satin-style fabrics, with eastern inspired silhouettes in the shape of kimonos and loungewear.

For a simpler summer look, it's worth investing in a crisp white shirt or tuxedo jacket. The likes of Jil Sander, Victoria Beckham and Preen all showcased minimalist, starchy white shirts, while white tux jackets with masculine strong shoulders were hot on the Dior, McCartney and Braganza catwalks.

If you prefer a little more colour in your wardrobe, think in extremes. Sweet and pretty pal pinks, violets, lemons and baby blue shades were popular with Christopher Kane, Mulberry and Valentino. The flip side to that was the continuing trend for neons. Hot pink was huge in the autumn, and for summer you can add cobalt blue, orange and bright greens to the list, as per Missoni, Antonio Berardi and Matthew Williamson.

Whatever your preferred colour, a key item to purchase this season is the pencil skirt. From Alexander Wang to Oscar de la Renta, this chic look with front split to show a little leg was everywhere and looks set to hit the high street in no uncertain terms. Skinny, cropped trousers are perfect for those who prefer to stay covered up.

The bomber jacket is the ideal cover-up should there be a chill in the air, either elegantly embossed for a feminine touch, metallic for modern fashionistas, or simple and sporty.

Finally, more than a few fashionable females will be no doubt pleased to hear that low-heeled shoes are the way to go throughout the season. Gorgeously feminine kitten heels were all the rage at Anna Sui, Marc Jacobs and Louis Vuitton, though you will still need to endure the pointy toe. However, if your feet are really suffering, be brave and team your pretty summer dress or stylish cropped trousers with a pair of neon-bright trainers. At last, some comfort to go with that style.