It's officially autumn-come-winter, the SS14 shows have left us hankering, again, for bare leg wearing climes (fellow #StylistWeLove Amy takes us through them in her round-up feature here, and I'm betting you're having a bit of a panic-up, right? Looking at the ol' wardrobe, at least year's intarsia knits, darker denims and ankle-boots-you'll-love forever, everything seems just a little bit, well..meh, right? As a Personal Stylist I can talk Capsule Wardrobes until I'm blue in the face, and the beautiful Katie of The Wardrobe Insider already gave you a fabulous feature on what that all means last month…here, I'm talking about this season's Game Changers; the pulse-point pieces, the single strong items which somehow, wonderfully and oh so fashion-forwardly, make tired looks totally 'now' in an instant. You know the ones I mean. Those purchases that almost immediately become investments regardless of price because you want to wear them all the time. With everything. Even in bed. That's their magic, they make every outfit modern, adding a seasonal spin to those transitional fav's you love.
Here are a few of my musts for an instant autumn pep-up...
The Leather Biker
Never, ever before has this model off-duty staple been such a hot cake. Look in every shop right now and there's a token biker leading the jacket league, guaranteed. A lover of the boy-meets-girl silhouette, my search was for something a little oversized and heavily buckled; Whistles finally came through for me last winter and I haven’t looked back since. The season’s obsession with all things grungy and punky is evident everywhere, but this outfit elevator goes further than the trends. It's about wearability, strength and that covetable easy-cool finish. Effortlessly thrown over a checkered shirt, jean and biker boot combo and you're A/W personified; then slouch it over the shoulders of a delicately laced shift and you've given something verging on too sweetly twee, a tougher touch.
I know, two jackets? I just can't leave this one out for my own selfish reasons. I LOVE them. Comfy, weirdly cosy and androgynous, they're to autumn what the denim jacket is to summer. Starting on the streets, they again represent the crossing-over of the genders, adding volume to slim, lean silhouettes and topping off boyfriend jean and pointed pump looks faultlessly. I have no idea what I was wearing before them. My go-to white shirt and distressed denim combo has never felt so now. I’ve gone for a classic navy version, it off-sets all my blacks, whites and gold metallics with just the right amount of neutral I like, but there are SO many styles to covet. Printed, textured, zippered, embellished. Go on, you HAVE to.
The Ankle Strap Heel
On every slender ankle out there, these beauties simply aren’t shifting. Popping up on every catwalk back in February, they’re going nowhere next summer either. Hedi Slimane for Saint Laurent popped his kitten heels over sparkly metallic thread socks, and Christopher Kane finished his lust-worthy sweatshirt and skirt looks with high-ankled, rounded toe courts. Elegance is the key with these. Fashion’s continuing obsession with the lady means the chicest of shapes are in. Made modern with varying sizes of strap, sharper toes and touch-me textures, choose a two-tone suede pair for a punchy pop of colour.
Bold and brilliantly fierce, safari inspired prints make even the most minimal looks statement. From leopard to zebra, coats to bags, it’s all about picking one piece. So new against autumn navys, dusty pinks and greys, it’s no longer solely for the fashion brave. A leopard clutch or a furry heel can lend day-to-night appeal to all your old autumn combos, think an oversized knit, indigo jeans and a sharp stiletto, or a printed faux fur coat over that love-worn denim shirt. Slick with leather too, I love it with a grey marled tee, leather skirt and trusty battered Converse.
The New Knit
Dreamy, loose and sumptuously soft, this super fluffy separate will be the loveliest thing you'll buy this season. Turtle-necked at Stella McCartney and cropped at Celine, there's a shape and size for all tastes, worn best it seems, with skirts. Choose a shade you normally wouldn't to really make it fresh for you; try a chalky pastel, a hot orangey red or of course, anything pink. Comfy yet really quite luxurious, it's a fabulous day-to-night saviour; slimmer, finely knitted styles can be rocked under tailored blazers, whilst more cocoon-like fits are easily prettified with something Gucci-esque at the neck.