At school it was so simple wasn’t it? Autumn Term meant overcoat and tights and Summer Term meant blazer and short socks, even if it was still really cold in the mornings. But back in the seventies and eighties the seasons were more clear cut and let’s face it, if your mum said to put a vest on or take a cardi, mostly you did, if only for a quiet life.
These days it’s not unusual to be lulled into a false sense of security by an unseasonal April heatwave only to be faced, once you’ve done away with tights, with a cold wind early on the Monday morning – as if Monday mornings weren’t troublesome enough. I for one have abandoned my coat and I’m not going back to it until October because for starters it now looks sad and old and the colour – grey – simply doesn’t work now we are in spring, even if it is chilly until midday.
So what is the alternative? Layering is all very well but for the working week or evenings out, a proper outer garment is required, even if only to get from your front door to the Uber. It’s tricky to find something as all encompassing and slick as a winter coat there’s no denying it, but this spring season there are more options than usual so here’s what’s out there currently. As always, to find the best piece for you, you need to consider three things which should narrow your choice down nicely:
- Which is the most flattering colour for my sun starved face?
- Which shape suits my figure best?
- Which style will I get the most use from?
Arm yourself with the answers and then take a look at the lovely pieces below..
Blazers have had a renaissance in 2017 but since most of us have used it as a go-to with jeans and boots when we’re late for a do and can’t be bothered to think of anything cleverer, you should have at least one in your wardrobe already. If you’re a curvy type then look for an open neck and minimal buttons like the Boden one here and if not then a more boxy style will work well.
There is not a spring season in existence where the trench coat hasn’t been hailed as the must-have cover up. There is a reason for this – it’s practical, versatile and about as classic an item as you are likely to get. A trench coat will never date and whether belted or loose, long or short, it will always look effortlessly stylish whatever your shape. You’ll never regret buying a trench.
The so-called shacket is the brunch of outerwear. It’s not quite a jacket for one reason or another (too short/too lightweight/too casual) but it does the job. The only question is, will it see you through ’til dinner? Only you know the answer to that.
I’m allowing the biker jacket in even though it feels as if it’s been overly done. I should be pleased because I invested in a leather one from Whistles when my son started school nearly three years ago so I’m getting my money’s worth. However at one mummys’ drinks evening, my friend Becs not only pointed out that at least fifty per cent of the mums were wearing a biker jacket, but found that at the end of the night someone had gone off with her own rather lovely Mint Velvet one leaving her with a similar (cheaper) Oasis one*. All this put me off a bit but the biker simply refuses to go away. I’m including it on the condition that you wear it in an unconventional colour or fabric – see the two shown here.
All these hybrid cover ups can be worn with jeans, over a dress or skirt or as a statement piece in its own right. All three will be really useful for work but will do equally as well for cocktails afterwards; anything that pulls in at the waist is great for those with boobs and hips with the longer length wraparound particularly flattering for larger hips. The neat Chanel inspired cardigan is better for a more boyish shape.
Have a fabulous chocolate filled long weekend everyone and if anyone’s asking I’ll have the belted wraparound Zara jacket please…
*It was an innocent (drunken) mistake which was soon rectified. Also it has to be said that Oasis does excellent leather goods, but not as good as Mint Velvet.