Oh, autumn and winter are coming and I haven’t a thing to wear! DAVINA ST CLAIR reveals the finest selection of excuses to go shopping this season…
SPOTS, STRIPES AND CHECKS
Stripes not only inhabit their usual territory of ‘nautical’ (blue and white) and ‘burglar’ (black and white) but also a landscape of rich, lush candy colours. Miu Miu’s fall/winter catwalk show was full of fine stripes mixed with polka dots on bubblegum pink and pillarbox red, as well as more subtle greys and blacks. Over at Prada, big, fat statement stripes and chevrons in mustard, turquoise and plum, together with a generous fistful of checks in similar hues, smothered the runway. The fantastic thing about this is that striped pieces are the ultimate go-to items when you need a dash of timeless style, so what you buy with stripes today you can wear for years to come. (I still fall back on striped pieces in my wardrobe that are older than my bank manager, an accomplishment for which he regularly congratulates me and begs I extend to my other buying habits.)
Flowers are in – and not just flowers, but riotous mêlées of eye-popping, Technicolor blooms that even the bravest and most devil-may-care might need a stiff Martini or two before tackling. Basically, the key thing to remember if you are determined to embrace this trend is: yes, you will look like wallpaper, but in a really good way.
PUNK AND ROCK CHICK LUXE
If you want to flirt with edginess and rebellion without going all Sandy-at-the-end-of-Grease, then this is the autumn/winter trend for you. The catwalks, most notably Yves Saint Laurent, were generously sprinkled with chunky boots and black leather, but always combined with the luxurious and the delicate, such as chiffon skirts, lace dresses and fur jackets (opt for fake, always). Declare your membership of Club Bad Girl with chic black driving gloves, a tartan wrap or shirt, or a jewelled cuff in soft leather.
Lace is a trend that’s sticking around, but if you want a fresher, classier look then opt for a piece with sheer panelling. It’s the ideal way to be as daring as you like without revealing too much: a backless or sideless dress, a micro-skirt or crop top can all be made far more wearable and flattering, for those of us who aren’t lucky enough to be Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, with the addition of some judiciously-placed chiffon.
Anyone who’s had a weather eye on street trends over the last couple of years has seen this one coming a country mile off. Yes, boyfriend coats have finally hit the catwalks in a veritable tidal wave of fat lapels, fingertip-skimming sleeves and wide shoulders, with Stella McCartney head of the vanguard. However, the original street style, inspired by simply pinching and wearing a man’s overcoat, is what you should take your cue from on this one rather than its evolution into the over-tailored, exaggerated silhouettes seen on the fall/winter runways. And this is great, because it means you can pick up a £60 coat with a subtle boyfriend influence from, say, Topshop, and look better wearing it than if you’d shelled out nearly £2k for the origami-shouldered, doorway-bothering McCartney version.
JEWELLED LEATHER CUFF, £60