In the midst of challenging times, where the world seems to be in turmoil, you might be wondering why you should care about fashion. With concerns ranging from political changes to economic struggles, fashion might not be high on your list of priorities. However, as the seasons shift, and we prepare for the arrival of autumn, there's a compelling reason to explore the world of fashion. It has the remarkable power to lift your spirits, keep you warm, and offer a fresh perspective on life.
Fashion: Your Mood Booster and Warmth Companion
Picture this: as summer gracefully fades away, and the days grow colder, you find yourself in need of something to brighten your outlook. That's where fashion steps in. The arrival of September brings with it a new season, but this time it's not just about fleeting trends that come and go. It's about making intelligent choices that will stand the test of time and classic styles that might already reside in your closet. Let's embark on a journey through the world of autumn fashion, a guide to elevate your mood, maintain the perfect temperature, and be budget-friendly.
Dopamine Dressing and Wearapy: A Paradigm Shift
Fashion is no longer just about blindly following trends; it's about embracing "dopamine dressing" or "wearapy." This represents a significant shift in our perception of clothing. Instead of being slaves to fashion, our clothes are now our allies, working hard to support and uplift us. The key tool in this transformation is colour, and it's a powerful one at that.
Studies have shown that colour can fine-tune your mood. Longer-wavelength colours like red, orange, and yellow send signals to your brain, encouraging sociability and liveliness. On the other hand, shorter-wavelength colours like blue and green promote a sense of calm. But the real secret to choosing the right colour is simple: wear the one that makes you smile when you see it. This season, Barbie pink takes centre stage as the "It" colour, making a sophisticated and elegant comeback after gracing the runways of Paris Fashion Week. However, Gemma Hyde, the head of design at Whistles, suggests a different approach. She advocates for embracing traditional rich autumn shades, such as vibrant greens, warm chocolates, bold heathers, and tomato oranges. These timeless hues promise chic looks that will endure season after season.
Fashion Brands Embrace the Vibrant Palette
Leading fashion brands are wholeheartedly embracing the concept that colour can enhance your mood. Take Reiss, for example, a brand renowned for its mature and neutral clothing. This season, Reiss has transformed into a vibrant rainbow of colours. Picture a burnt-orange trouser suit paired with a coral silk blouse or separates in a zesty apple green. Jo Sykes, the creative director of Jigsaw, is exploring citrine and electric blue, as well as Schiaparelli pink. Meanwhile, Boden has transformed loafers into a versatile day-to-night staple. These chic shoes effortlessly complement jeans and tailored trousers. To make them truly stand out, Devina O'Neill, the brand's head of womenswear design, suggests pairing them with colourful socks for an extra pop of personality.
Colour as Your Guide in Secondhand Shopping
Navigating charity shops and vintage boutiques can be overwhelming due to the sheer diversity of eras and styles. However, colour can be your guiding star in this treasure hunt. Let your eyes lead you to the colours that resonate with you, narrowing down your choices to a manageable shortlist. While you explore secondhand treasures, keep an eye out for two items that are experiencing a high-fashion resurgence: cowboy boots and varsity jackets. Cowboy boots, from the Hermes catwalk to Dua Lipa's Instagram, are everywhere. Varsity jackets, a favourite of the late Virgil Abloh, exude an off-duty Princess Diana vibe that's currently irresistible. Plus, you're more likely to find unique and original versions of these items in preloved condition than in any high-street store.
Versatility: The Trend of the Season
In the midst of a cost-of-living crisis, versatility is the name of the game. As autumn ushers in fluctuating temperatures, the best outfits focus on layering. Karen Peacock of Albaray, an independent British brand founded alongside two former Warehouse directors, emphasizes the longevity of their collections. By adding a few well-considered and well-made pieces, you can invigorate your look, boost your confidence, and inject some optimism into your life. Consider investing in a sleeveless knit this season—a versatile addition that extends the usability of lightweight long-sleeved dresses into autumn and winter while adding cosiness to a white shirt. For the pinnacle of versatility, explore the offerings of British brand Me + Em, known for their meticulous attention to detail. Many of their knits, including the luxe Merino cashmere chevron cable knit, come with a detachable, button-in snood that transforms them from crewnecks into cosy funnel necks—a fashion innovation that truly works.
The Triumph of Trouser Suits
This season, trouser suits are having their moment in the spotlight. They offer a high-impact look that promises far more wear than a typical party dress. At John Lewis, the new fashion design director, Queralt Ferrer, is placing them front and centre. Whether you're drawn to power pink or the double-breasted version in deep forest green, these suits are "hard-working wardrobe staples" suitable for various moments in life. Marks & Spencer echoes this sentiment, emphasizing the versatility of suits that effortlessly transition from day to night.
Opt for Party Skirts
Instead of the traditional party dress, consider investing in a party skirt this year. Boden's metallic tulle tiered skirt, priced at £90, pairs beautifully with an old sweater and your favourite boots for autumn weekends.
A Shift to Smarter Dressing
2022 has witnessed a subtle shift from the ultra-casual vibes of the lockdown era to smarter dressing. This transition is particularly evident in outerwear choices. Stores are now promoting a double-layer look, combining something warm and casual, such as a hoodie or quilted jacket, with a smarter, lighter coat like a trench. Notably, fashion editor Erica Davies has introduced a pink and coffee jacquard wool coat with resin and crystal buttons in her collection for John Lewis. While this coat may cost over £50, its versatility allows you to layer it when the weather gets colder—a practical choice for the unpredictable British climate.
As the autumn season dawns and challenges loom on the horizon, remember that fashion is not just about clothing; it's about embracing color, warmth, and mood-enhancing choices. By choosing colors that resonate with you and investing in versatile pieces, you can elevate your mood, stay warm, and remain stylish throughout the season.
- What are the key color trends for autumn fashion?
Autumn fashion is embracing rich and vibrant colors like Barbie pink, vibrant greens, warm chocolates, and bold heathers.
- How can I make the most of shopping in charity shops and vintage boutiques?
When shopping in secondhand stores, let your eye be drawn to colors that speak to you, making it easier to narrow down your choices. Keep an eye out for trendy items like cowboy boots and varsity jackets.
- Why are trouser suits so popular this season?
Trouser suits are in demand because they offer a high-impact and versatile look that can be worn for various occasions, making them a valuable addition to your wardrobe.
- What's the significance of layering in autumn fashion?
Layering is essential in autumn fashion as it allows you to adapt to changing temperatures. It's a practical way to stay warm while maintaining a stylish look.
- Where can I find versatile clothing options for the autumn season?
Brands like Albaray and Me + Em offer versatile clothing options designed to stand the test of time and keep you looking stylish throughout autumn.