• Sara Marsden-Shreeve

My Savvy Fashion Picks For Autumn/Winter 2020


Fashion doesn't need to be followed, just noted.

As I’m sitting here writing this post, I’m looking out of the window and thinking… “Where the heck did Summer go”?


Don’t get me wrong we were lucky with the sunshine whilst we were locked down and thank god, because it saved me from many a stress break out, sitting in my garden and watching the birds in the trees and the bees going about their business. Brings a little grounding!


Obviously, I had still done my seasonal Spring Summer 2020 round up of the trends which, with hindsight, was pretty pointless really… But at least those of us who did partake in the odd wearable purchase, went out with more of a smile.


Happy and Out Out

Now, with the season turned and the high street trying it’s best to recover, let’s hope that the rich Autumnal colours, cosy knits and warm tailoring can bring us a little comfort. I for one, love the colder months because I’m such a coat and boots kinda girl! You see, having a little ginger in me makes me sweat in the shade from May through to August.


Anyhoo, let’s get this wearable trend show on the road and try and get you feeling a little less… meh and apathetic! Flip flops away, shoes that cover toes, on.


As always I filter through the damn right fantasy stuff and cut to the chase with things you would consider wearing next year, after all longevity of clothes in the current world is paramount, no need for frivoloty.


Colour Hits


I always like to start with colour because it’s such a mood enhancer, lifting the spirits and bathing you in feelings of “ooh” I like that one and “ahhh” that reminds me of…


It’s also a great way to get you searching your wardrobe for any matches or start browsing the high street or online shopping platforms to fill any gaps.


Maybe you need a new winter coat or a perky piece of knitwear in a new colour? Maybe, Sandra from accounts is always frickin messing with the air conditioning so you need to think layering pieces to stop you freezing or prevent bouts of sweating and you're sick of wearing black?

Whatever colour floats your boat, know this… Red is queen followed closely by any shade or tint of beige or even better wearing them together.


Yes, the neutral everyone usually brands as “boring as hell”, no longer is. In fact, it’s chic and super easy to mix in your outfits as a hard working neutral, plus, it’s a little more stain forgiving than white if you have young kids… or always miss your mouth (maybe that’s just me?).


To be honest, I can’t wait for the chance to be actually invited somewhere to wear some colour, though it’s pretty likely I’ll be donning it on zoom instead. Oh well peeps, let’s make sure they have sunglasses to protect their eyes from my monitor crashing rainbow tops.


If bright colour scares you, then don’t be afraid to try it out in small doses, like in a piece of jewellery, accessory or nail polish. Many a happy time have I spent painting my nails in a wild colour whilst sipping a ‘vin rouge’ and watching a n y t h i n g with Tom Hardy in it!!! Don’t judge me.


Orange with green can be a vibrant but polished hit if tried in a neat print, because the two compliment each other and aren't too in your face. A very grown up way to wear two colours you probably wouldn't think of putting together without feeling like a pumpkin.


Just one last thing I want to mention too, as this covers the festive season, is that the metallic of choice this year is silver. So if you love a glitzy twist to your attire, then cool flecks and additions of the sparkly good stuff will be rife.


Oh and the offering of white in shoes and bags this season does not appeal to my practicality but you may disagree.


Print & Weave


Now, it wouldn't be Autumn or Winter without a check now would it? The "ole reliable" of the print world, once again struts its stuff in the editorial reels bringing you anything from a monochrome houndstooth to a vibrant plaid and even a cheeky gingham.


If you love a cape, scarf or coatigan then fill your trolley because this baby is going to keep on rolling for colder seasons to come. It's the print that just keeps giving, never goes out of fashion and great for cost per wear.




The trick is to find one that goes with all your simple block separates and colour palettes that sit in your drawers and hang in your wardrobe. If unsure, keep it simple and monochromatic.


Next up, is the spot which to be honest is like Marmite, you love em or hate em. Personally, I adore a polka dot because it makes me feel a bit cooky and well… me.


A good style tip is to wear the spot that's in keeping with your overall frame if you want a flattering look… So the more petite you are the smaller the dot and for a larger frame, a bolder and bigger one works better. But, hey, if you don’t care about all that and adore breaking rules, then wear any size you fancy!



Last, but not least, I want to give patchwork a mention for all those boho queens at heart. You can find it in the usual fabric scarf print or mixed pattern or it's also been applied as a technique to a patched suede skirt, boot or bag.


Let’s talk weave now.. So one of the fabrics of choice for those times you want to sexy things up a bit is leather. Whether it’s a skirt, glove, trouser or jacket you just can’t go wrong. Unless of course you’re trying to dust off your shoulder padded lovely from the 80’s, as that won’t quite work this time around.


Before you start shaking your head and thinking “pricey”, don’t feel you have to buy the real thing. There’s many a faux or vegan variety to whet your whistle and help ease your purse strings or ethics, plus the synthetic alternatives are much more pliable and can suit a more curvaceous bod.


Interesting knitwear with a bit of a texture or colour kick is another fabric hit especially if there's any additional decoration or sleeve focus going on, that way you can tick two trend boxes in one outfit swoop.


Our wardrobes can benefit from finer more interesting knits to layer up with or add oomph to a trouser too for those sneaky after work drinks or even better a small party of three (if we're allowed). Save your chunky knits for the sofa or dog walk.


Oh and don't forget the cardigan this season, they're making a statement just as they are... Small and buttoned up worn as a top with print skirts, trousers or jeans or, try a longer one that comes with a belt or add one of your own because belted jackets and the like are in. Nice….


There does seem to be a bit of an excitement around knitted vests come tank tops but I just can't see that working for the majority of us.



Oh and don't be shy to wear over another knit. I love this matchy look from Next.



Themes

I always find it’s important to paint a visual scene of how the runway looks season to season so that you can get a sense or feel of the outfit inspirations they put together in a kind of imaginary ‘lookbook’ if you like.


There are two main tribes I've noticed and it's purely based on fit…. Neat and slinky or fussy and forgiving, across all aspects of garments from silhouettes, to patterns and details.


The former is all about coloured tailoring, interesting collars, cinching waists, neat heritage checks and going luxe on the shape skimming knitwear and separates department.


Even dresses have gone a bit more form fitting, but not so tight you can see your dinner, ooh and with the occasional cut out here and there for interest.



The latter camp is quite the opposite with long dresses, freeform fits, puffy sleeves, fringing, pussy bows and faux fur and chunky soles. A bit more 70’s glam with colour power and fun at it’s core but with a modern more sensible twist.

To be honest, I would mix them up and go fitted where I feel comfortable and more floaty garments paired with structured layers.


I like the Marks and Spencers show reel to paint a lovely picture of look inspirations.




Style Additions


As you probably know by now, accessories are the cheapest and easiest way to update any outfit and are always an effective way of showing your personality. Some like a neat and grown up bag in a neutral colour that will last a lifetime and some like to buy the occasional pop of colour in a different shape or style to liven their evening or daywear up a bit.


The same goes for shoes and jewellery, so whichever camp you pitch your style tent in, there’s always something to put a smile on your face.


This season is no different and there might be something that peaks your interest.

If you like a soft and simple bag then a hobo could be the ticket and if you prefer a little more structure the tote shape is always on offer.




If you’re not bothered about shape and just prefer a textural beaut to add a bit of bling to your festive outfit, then quilting, faux croc, velvet and beaded embellished lovelies are available.


For those of you, who like me, just want to know the main attractions of the season so that you can apply it to anything from clutches to shoes, then chains, tassels and fringing are the main players. I would stick to short and rigid varieties though, as no one wants to be untangling themselves from a chair or their shoes. I’ve seen threadlike fringing on dresses and skirts - yikes!


Capes are back, but I like to dig out my blanket scarves and drape them accordingly, saves on the cash. Talking of scarves, those little silk square lovelies are popular this season and probably for the foreseeable future. They are very versatile and you can wear them round your neck, ‘French style’, wear them as a headband, tie them round your wrist or pop them on your bag for an instant update. Good eh?


For your feet, it seems to be all about the sturdy and chunky shoe, which is good news for my gammy toe and anyone who doesn’t like high spindly heels. Flat lovers will find the loafer on the high street in large numbers and in all varieties.


The over the knee boot is also rife, but my legs don’t feel long enough to entertain them and I always get flashbacks of ‘Pretty Woman’, so I’m going to stick to knee level personally and maybe a versatile laced up ankle number.


The big hitters in the jewellery jig this season are pearls, chains (again), chandelier earrings, animal themes, charm styles and chunky cuffs… ooh a pandora’s box of lovelies to suit any taste.


Ok, so what will be my chosen few for the coming few seasons and beyond… Well here’s my pickings along with a good example I could find online. No affiliations included.



My Top 5


1. A Checked Trouser


You can be free to go with the shape you prefer to suit your figure. Straight and slim are good for curves provided the yoke is deep and the material has some give and the tapered styles are good for straighter hips too.


I would suggest that if you like to wear a funky flat, like a posh trainer or brogue or you have heels with ankle straps, that you try an ankle grazer or cropped style.


2. The Riding Boot



I picked this particular version because of the colour but any neutral is worth investing in and I like the sensible heel and slinky shape as it's more versatile with skirts and dresses.


If you are worried about knee boots fitting then look for vents, elastic panels and stretchier fits around the calf area, there are plenty of stockists that work with a wider fit now thankfully.


3. Party Knitwear

Even if we don't manage to get out as much to gatherings, a little bit of bling on a wearable piece is always worth a spend. I love the colours on this sweater and will perk up any mood.


4. Chain Jewellery



I love the look of this set, not too in your face but still makes a statement. Very outfit friendly and you don't have to always wear both at the same time, though the price might make you want to wear them to bed as well #costperwear but hopefully you get the gist of the sort of look that would be timeless.


Layering with other pieces is also a great option and can look amazing, even with different coloured metals.


5. A Long Sleeved Midi Dress



This one is a great colour combo so there's a little splash of subtle red and it will work with your favourite black accessories, though brown, red or grey (even silver) will still work beautifully. If you don't like this print, they do it in other colours and prints.


If you want to check out more Outfit Inspirations then visit my Pinterest Board for more visual morsels, always appreciate a new follower.


Also, remember that it's so important to give yourself plenty of love and not be so self critical of the body you have.


Clothes can be your friends not your enemy when you know what works and feels good. Learn to Rock What You've Already Got with me by booking a session or Style Journey.

Alternatively, you can get yourself on the road to positivity and look to gems in your wardrobe, all at home, with my FREE Intro to the E Course below when you join my newsletter subscribers. on the website pop up or click here


For the full E-Course at only £39 for a limited time only, click the image below


See you soon and thanks for reading.


Feel free to leave your comments below.


Byeeee Sara xx



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