What’s Going On This Winter?
Halloween has to be my favourite time of the year; I have a real thing about fancy dress, and anyone who thinks they can just draw some whiskers on their face and say “oh, I’m a cat” loses some serious fashion points in my opinion. Fortunately, I seem to know a great deal of people who have as much time to paint their faces and don stupidly terrifying costumes as I do, and I have been to several very colourful, very scary parties over the past week which have kept my creative juices flowing!
Sadly, Halloween crashes right into November, which must be one of the dreariest months of the year; you wake up on the 1st to mushy pumpkins, pores clogged with face paint, and a vague feeling of nausea thanks to all that Halloween chocolate (or, more likely, all that homemade Halloween punch, which seemed like such a good idea at the time). Skies are grey, it’s probably raining, and you realise that the inevitable has finally happened; the day has come to get out your winter coat.
Personally, I have a real love/hate relationship with coats; they are a hassle to have to wear and carry around all day, but, at the same time, I can’t get enough of them! I am really struggling to save my money this year and make do with all the coats I already have, rather than buying a new one, but there are so many beautiful pieces and trends out there, I am finding it hard to resist!
This season, designers everywhere have given the coat some extra TLC, meaning the options are endless in terms of pattern, colour, shape and texture, and that any number of winter looks can be created.
One of my favourite trends this winter is the oversized coat; not oversized like baggy, I-stole-this-from-my-boyfriend oversized, but oversized in a much more shapely, feminine way, with softly dropped shoulders and a fitted, hourglass silhouette. The wrap coat, with or without a belt, is sure to be a popular choice for many, as it flatters any figure by drawing in the waist to provide a sleek, perfectly proportioned silhouette. It is also a fairly easy coat to work with when layering in scarves, turtle necks or sweaters. Take a look at how Angelina Jolie wears this classic style, layering different textures and shades of grey to create a deceptively simple look, all tied up with a casual grey belt which nips in her waist to emphasise her tall, slim frame.
Or how about taking a hanger out of Blake Lively’s wardrobe, and finding a thousand different ways to wear the same classic style; Miss Lively brings a new vibe to that belted coat look every time with a variety of scarves, boots, or heels.
Another of my very favourite winter warmers, not just this year but every year, is the cape; they’re stylish, comforting, and wonderful for layering. A dress or skirt with tights and high-heeled shoes or boots can add a soft, whimsical touch to what is otherwise a very structured, sleek silhouette. With oversized coats or capes, its always a good idea to keep every other aspect of the look slim and fitted, to avoid looking like an 80s snowman. Below, Lily Collins adds a red handbag to a monochrome cape which I just love from Emilio Pucci’s pre-fall 2013 collection.
Of course, you could always find the mid-ground between the more fitted, oversized piece and the trapeze silhouette of the cape, just as designers such as Stella McCartney (below left), Alexander Wang (below centre) and Marni (below right).have done.
This androgynous look really makes a statement, and looks especially chic with a pair of heeled ankle boots and slim fit trousers. Indeed, with a statement coat like this, you almost don’t need to worry about anything else; so, if you’ve overslept and don’t have the time to jazz up your hair or pick out a nice dress, a big, bold coat over a blouse and a pair of jeans will rescue you from the realms of boring dressing, and shoot you straight back to effortless chic. I should know; the art of dressing after one has overslept is one in which I am well-versed.
The structured, military look (as above) is also in, complete with buttons, belts and padded shoulders. I must admit, this is not a look I would typically run towards; the Cruella Devill in me is much more attracted to the ongoing trend of fur (or rather, faux fur, that being more in keeping with my vegetarian lifestyle). A faux fur coat is an effortless way to bring an air of glamour and sophistication to any outfit, at any time of day or night, and with the amount of variety out there, the possibilities truly are endless. Kate Moss swings from classic chic to oversized, statement pieces; she was spotted a few days ago in Paris, adding a pop of colour to an otherwise neutral outfit with a red fur jacket and scarlet nails.
Obviously, the same old classics return in brand new drag, and nothing is stopping you from adding your own twist to old favourites such as the trench, the camel, or the blazer; try leaving your arms loose, draping the coat or jacket over your shoulders for an effortless, casually elegant feel; just as Miranda Kerr does for a walk with her son below.
To summarise; this winter, there are no rules. Style, cut, colour, texture, shape, pattern – whatever. If it’s warm, and if it looks good, it’ll almost definitely be bang on trend.