Knots Are Trending for Spring, and Admittedly, It's a Little Weird

Based on celebrity street style stars and the Spring 2014 runways, knots appear to be in this season — and not the type you have when you don't brush your hair. You may associate the knot with the type of preppy, patterned wares Zooey Deschanel might call "modical," but this season the knot is standing on its own as a sartorial statement.

Look around you at what's trending: Skirts are knotted at the waist, dresses are artfully ruched and twisted, and don't even get me started on the abundance of tied-up shoes. So, the real question: Are you in?

Spring 2014 Fashion Week brought us oodles of knotted ensembles to fawn over. Michael Kors displayed the trend to beautiful effect in his knotted, floral dresses for the season, which Naomi Watts showed off for the film premiere of Diana. Céline's artfully knotted scarves on the Spring 2014 runway inspired a .gif over at InStyle. And I dare you to find fault with Burberry Prorsum's elegantly knotted, pastel skirts.

Not only did the trend graced the runways at Spring 2014 Fashion Week, but it's also been all over the red carpet on some of Hollywood's most stylish stars, and captured all over the streets on some very fashionable bystanders. Shailene Woodley stepped out in knotted Balmain at the MTV Music Awards, and Coachella was overrun with models and celebrities rocking the trend, where Melodie Monrose and Brittany Snow fared especially well in channeling the look. The Other Woman actress Leslie Mann took on the knot in a more traditional way with a tie-neck blouse at the film's Australian premiere.

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Odd as the trend may seem, knots are as utilitarian as they are stylish. If you're in love with the idea of a maxi dress but dread shapeless-bag syndrome, try a version with a knotted waist. For long skirts that get in the way of everyday movement, knotting the side provides a functional and chic solution. And in true '90s-throwback fashion, a sweater or button-down knotted around the waist is suddenly cool again.

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Before you get your stomach in a twist — a knot — over the thought of attempting the knot trend without veering into Britney Spears circa 1998 territory, remember that this is as much of a trend as it is a style hack. If you're low on inspiration or funds for a spring wardrobe mixup, just add a knot to your favorite button down or maxi skirt on your way out the door, and your ensemble is suddenly worthy of street style documentation. Nice.