It is is late August, which can only mean one thing: we now declare the new fashion season open. Here’s how to use the upcoming trends to help you achieve your best autumn ever.
If you want to get promoted … wear red
Why: It is the colour of ambition
Buy: A pair of red boots
There’s lots of talk this season about the appeal of tonal dressing – ie wearing the same shade head-to-toe. The Kardashians have been on this for ages, but the catwalk moved it on by spinning the colour wheel to red, AKA the no-brainer 80s-worthy symbol for power. It’s indisputably the colour of the season and the death knell for the ubiquitous millennial pink. A pair of red boots puts a pleasing full stop on any office look on a day when you haven’t got the bandwidth for Dulux-style colour matching.
If you want to have 10 minutes extra in bed every morning … wear a long-sleeved dress
Why: One-stop dressing that is pure AW17
Buy: A floral dress with sleeves
Seen everywhere from Erdem to Michael Kors and Dries Van Noten, the long-sleeved floral dress is not only pretty, but it is also joyous, because it is so useful. The satisfying life hack of a dress versus separates – no rummaging for the right T-shirt to go with the tweed skirt – plus the statement of the floral print means you have a look without thinking about it. This is win-win dressing at its best. Invest immediately.
If you want to demonstrate your cultural prowess … wear the Americana trend
Why: Calvin Klein’s subversive twist on making America great again channels Richard Prince, Ed Ruscha and Andy Warhol
Buy: An indigo denim jacket to wear with jeans
To get a take on the US now, with intellectual weight, Raf Simons – a Belgian who references rave and collaborates with artists including Sterling Ruby – is a good shout. His debut for Calvin Klein was all cowboy boots and denim with one model wearing an American flag as a skirt. His ad campaigns, meanwhile, feature models on a deserted highway, with – keep up – a Calvin Klein billboard in the background showing other models looking at Andy Warhol’s Elvis. If that sounds meta and knowing, so is your conscious choice to wear an indigo denim jacket and jeans, as seen in Simons’ collection.
If you want to take your hangover look outside … wear a duvet coat
Why: Eiderdowns were a thing on the catwalk at Preen and Mulberry
Buy: A longline padded jacket
You know those Sundays when you don’t leave the house until 5pm for a trip to the local shop to procure Hula Hoops? They are totally fashionable this season. Mulberry brought duvet days on to the catwalk with a selection of eiderdown jackets worthy of the Queen tucking into a box set at Balmoral. A longline padded jacket is the norm’s version – and handily doubles as a blanket when you get back from the shop.
If you want to look vaguely on trend but basically wear the same jeans you always do … wear a double-breasted blazer
Why: A piece of XXL tailoring is a stealth statement
Buy: Anything in Prince of Wales check
Newsflash to those still wearing athleisure: tailoring, and general smartness, is back. But this doesn’t mean the kind of pointy shoes and bobble-prone neat black suiting typically worn by a first-jobber. Instead, make sure your tailoring is oversized and somewhat 80s in flavour. Think Princess Di off-duty – she owned the jeans and blazer look and is the first retro fashion reference to trip off the tongue of any self-respecting millennial in 2017.
If you want to do party dressing without the faff … wear chainmail
Why: It is the Vogue-approved after-dark look with a 90s reference – see Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell in 1999
Buy: A silver chainmail slip dress
Forget about the dry-cleaning issues – party dressing is a yolo kind of affair. A chainmail dress brings drama to any autumn 2017 dates in your diary and is surprisingly chic, in a 90s Met Bar kind of way. For inspo, Campbell and Moss walking the runway together at the Versace show in 1999 is everything here.
If you want to feel the benefit … wear a hat
Why: From Dior’s berets to Marc Jacobs’ oversized Kangol-like shapes, head-based statements now go far beyond the beanie
Buy: A beret
Expect to see guides to avoiding hat hair soon – headgear is essential for AW17, and not just because of the long-held parental theory that you lose heat through your head in winter. The beanie is over but take heart, the beret is your friend this season – it is a subtle nod to your wokeness in hat form. Che Guevara is an icon of the beret, after all.
If you want to up your Insta game: wear a T-shirt with a quote
Why: The selfie is the perfect place to let your clothes do the talking – see Rihanna in the Gucci “Common sense is not that common” T-shirt
Buy: A T-shirt worthy of the thinking face emoji
Moving on from the “We Should All Be Feminists” T-shirt of last season, the newest sartorial sandwich boards are less about female empowerment and more a way to show off your cleverness. Enter the highbrow T-shirt. Rihanna’s Gucci tee appealed to philosophy graduates with a Baudelaire quote, while others reference song lyrics and Bible verses. Forget the band T-shirt’s rock’n’roll vibes – this season, your T-shirt is the #sorrynotsorry way to show how well read you are.