It’s that time of the ‘summer’ (I’m still using that word loosely, as the much-touted heatwave has not yet appeared over here in West London) when thoughts turn from wafty sundresses and shorts to trans-seasonal outfits that can work for now and also be layered up for next season. So essentially, ‘wear now, layer later’. I’m hoping you already have many of these items in your arsenal as I’m pretty sure I’ve written about lots of them before.
I’m not advocating busting out the big coats and the cords just yet; we shall have plenty of time for that over the next few months and, oh, how I love the move from summer to autumn when it comes to clothes, but it’s too soon for that. We must not wish our time away. We did enough of that last year – remember all that “I can’t wait for 2021, it’s got to be better than 2020”? Not sure it has been, tbh, but there’s still four months left; who knows what surprises it has in store yet? Cue the Tarquin Farquhar variant and lockdown part 472…
TANK TOP OVER NICE BLOUSE
Call it what you like: tank top, sweater vest, gilet, jerkin, knitted vest, waistcoat, it’s all the same to me. This little piece of knitwear is your late-summer friend when a big woolly pullover is not needed right away. If you’re anything like me, you might have bought one (or three) last winter when they were becoming a ‘thing’, or were they just a thing for me? I even attempted to knit my own. I had to restart three times before I gave up and got my mother to finish it off for me. I might have to stick to knitting scarves. I don’t think I’m going to reach Tom Daley levels of creativeness any time soon. Anyway, I think the knitted vest is a trend that’s set to continue.
BOWS AND BLACK BLAZERS
I’ve had quite a few requests to do a ‘back to work’ post, which I will do soon, as I know a lot of you might be heading back into the workplace over the coming weeks and may have forgotten what is considered appropriate in the office. I’m of the opinion that, “If in doubt, get the blazer out.” If there’s one item of clothing that can make you look instantly more put together, then it’s the classic black blazer. Or navy. But for the purposes of today, I’m sticking to black. Now that I have hair of early David Lee Roth/Sebastian Bach proportions, I spend a lot of my time tying it up. Consequently, I’m always looking for hair adornments. My favourites are the ribbon scrunchie and the big bow clip. Makes the back of your head much prettier. Not that you ever see it but everyone else does, so think of it as a gift to those stood behind you.
YOUR GOOD DRESS WITH OR WITHOUT BOOTS
Don’t forget that the dress you’ve not had much use out of this summer can be transformed into an early autumn number with just the addition of a pair of boots. When it gets to late autumn, add some secret leggings. In early winter, throw a tank top over it. Bleak midwinter, add tights and an oversized jumper. I’d say this plan works best with darker coloured dresses, so don’t pack those summer dresses away just yet.
A LIGHTWEIGHT LINER JACKET
Perfect for the chillier evenings that will be upon us soon. This lightly quilted ‘liner’ style. So called because they were originally made as an underlayer to traditional army jackets in WW2. These days, look for oversized styles that can be worn over T‑shirts now and with more chunky sweatshirts and jumpers later. I got an excellent reversible one from Zara last year. Sadly no longer available, but there’s this blogger favourite from Frankie Shop (comes up VERY big, apparently) and there’s still this one in the sale section at Hush that’s also oversized. Check out Etsy for vintage styles.
1. New Look white Fanta logo T shirt
2. New Look Vancouver print sweatshirt
3. The Frankie Shop oversized quilted jacket
4. Albaray authentic dark wash relaxed leg jeans
5. Converse leather snake print hi tops
THE ALL-SEASONS BARBOUR JACKET
I’m a recent convert to the traditional Barbour jacket. I bought one in the sale last summer and it’s served me well through all seasons. Right now I wear it on drizzly damp dog walks, but in the next few months I’ll wear it on colder, but still drizzly and damp dog walks with a big fat wool jumper underneath. The classic waxed Barbour jacket is fully waterproof, heavyweight, but not too heavyweight, and has at least five pockets. Mine actually has six! If you have a dog, you know you need ALL those pockets. Treats, poo bags, phone, air pods, ball, rain hat, they all fit into those pockets and they are DEEP. I wouldn’t be without it. My advice would be not to go for any of the fitted styles – look for oversized versions or, even better, get a men’s one.
STRIPES ON STRIPES
I can’t not mention the classic stripe jumper. Just because it’s something that works for all seasons. I assume you all have one. I like the idea of layering it over a pale blue stripe shirt, or any shirt really. If there are two things in my wardrobe that will never ever date, it’s a stripe top and simple shirt. Even jeans come and go. The slight changes in fit over the years can make all the difference. I wouldn’t reach for a skinny fit jean now, or a bootcut, but I used to live in them. I thought I was so cutting edge in my Topshop Baxter jeans worn with Ugg boots in the early 00s. Maybe we’ll look back at our Vejas and straight legs in the same way in ten years’ time.
I hope if you have a child who got their exams results this week that you’ve managed to cope with it all. It’s been very stressful in this house. Although a fantastic Friday night at the football has certainly helped!