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Trend of the Season: Ponchos, Capes, and Really, Really Big Coats

While there are many great trends for us all to focus on during the frosty winds and rain of AW14, none have got me quite as excited as the oversized outerwear trend. Be it ponchos, capes, or coats, I swear each winter the size of our outerwear is swelling, and this year, it’s definitely a case of the bigger the better. That doesn’t, however, make puffy marshmallow coats ok. Ever. Even if some brands, such as Wood Wood and Stine Goya try to convince us otherwise. It is on the list of regrettable fashion choices, and so do not give in to it just because it may be a fad trend. Stick to capes. Capes are cool.

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However, as much as I’m sure most of us would love to be able to buy one of Burberry’s already iconic blanket ponchos (especially if we could have a monogrammed one.. please?), sadly, very few of us can afford to splash out the needed £900. Therefore, I have been scouring the internet for the best bargain buys, so that even if, like me, you can’t afford Burberry, you can still feel amazing in a big coat… because nothing feels quite as good during cold winter days as a really, really big coat. Best of all, I’ve stuck to a budget of £100, to show that anyone can look amazing in a statement coat this winter.

topshop

Topshop: Checked Cape. £32.

river island

River Island: Camel Colour Block Waterfall Jacket. £70.

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River Island: Dark Brown Faux Fur Lined Waterfall Jacket. £85.

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ASOS: Cocoon Coat in Pink. £85.

Also available in camel.

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ASOS: Coat with Faux Fur Collar. £80.

retro

Beyond Retro: Vintage Wool Coat with Fur Lining. £54.

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ASOS: Cape in Black, Camel or Cream. £25.

freepeople

Free People: Sunset Hooded Ruana. £58.

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New Look: Cream Chevron Tassel Hem Blanket Wrap. £24.99.

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New Look: Green Check Faux Fur Coat. £64.99.

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H&M: Coat in a Wool Blend. £79.99.

Remember last year when we were all being told to choose a pastel coloured coat for AW13? Well, apparently that trend hasn’t died entirely, seeping through into H&M’s AW14 collection. While I haven’t been a pink coat fan since a rather disastrous pink puffer jacket fiasco of mine – yes, my earlier advice is based on personal experience – ten years ago, this one is a winner for me, and I think it looks to be worth so much more than £80… probably not the coat to choose if you have a ‘one-coat-for-every-look’ mindset.. pink is rather picky, after all.

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By Zoe: Cape with Fur-Lined Hood. £87.40.

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Very: Savoir Longline Shearling Coat. £89.

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Very: Rochelle Humes Fur Collar Wrap Coat. £99.

This one just manages to scrape into our £100 budget, sparing you a precious pound for your savings. It is a beautiful coat, from Rochelle Humes’ Very Collection, and once again harks back to last winter’s pastel coat trend. Oh, I want it so badly.

Also, while I know, this post has become a bit more of an ode-to-ASOS than I intended, for those of you looking for a great bargain (aka, all of us), you have to see this… ASOS is currently selling a range of beautiful Helene Berman capes for £98, reduced from £170, available in a range of colours. You’re welcome.

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Tips of the Trend:

1. Silhouette should no be abandoned entirely. While this is a trend that revolves around baggy, oversized garments, give a moment to think about your silhouette. You want to find a coat that still nips in slightly at the waist. A fur lapel will help to create a natural hourglass figure. A defined silhouette also prevents the oversized look from becoming frumpy-hobo. It’s simply more flattering.

2. The same rule applies to what you are wearing underneath. For example, when wearing a blanket cape, your outfit will be visible, and so don’t swamp your figure in a shapeless, oversized shift dress, unless you’re deliberately going for the maternity chic look…

3. It’s all about the details. Toy with chunky waist belts over a blanket cardigan, pin a fur lapel to your coat, sew (with tiny tacking stitches) a statement necklace to the plain neckline of your poncho to really give your outerwear the same wow-factor as the rest of your outfit. Just because you’ll be taking it off the second you arrive at your destination, doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t look amazing. You never know who you’ll bump into in the street, after all.

4. If you are going to break the silhouette rule, show of your skinny pins with a great pair of heels, and avoid wearing anything that sits below the knee.

5. Have fun. Experiment with colour, patterns, fur… try things even if you’re not sure that it will suit you. That’s the great thing about shopping for outerwear – you don’t have to queue for hours like cattle to be hurried into a stuffy, generally quite dirty dressing room (unless you can afford the champagne-inclusive luxuries of design houses, of course) – every shop includes a scattering of handy mirrors around the shop floor, and so you can just try on every option right there, between the knicker aisle and the wall of hats.

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If Only: Outfit of the Day 29#

Is this a going out outfit? A day wear outfit? I’m not quite sure yet, but I know that I love it, and I would happily wear it day-in, day-out… it just looks so comfy, and yet, throw on a pair of amazing heels, and it’s perfect for a night of dancing wildly… even if replacing slippers with heels does make it a bit of a contradictory statement…

8-sep

1. Toga Satin-Trimmed Crepe Jumpsuit. £340. Available here.

2. NastyGal Runs Deep Crop Top. £23.38 £6.98. Available here.

3. River Island Beige Bow Front Leopard Toe Cap Slipper Shoes. £25. Available here.

4. Diesel Likke U S Fur Shoulder Bag. £470. Available here.

5. Wallis Gold Cut Out Cuff. £12.50 £8.75. Available here.

6. Chloé Triple Stone Ring. £250. Available here.

7. ASOS Snake Chain Necklace. £15. Available here.

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If Only: Outfit of the Day 15#

I’ve spent the last two days day and a half at Notting Hill Carnival, and on Saturday, it was lovely, sunny, generally warm but for a few gusts of a chilly breeze. As expected, it was cloud, chaotic, the air thick with the smoke of a thousand BBQs as everyone whose homes lined the carnival route made the most of the event, selling everything from jerk chicken to curry to sweet treats to raise a few pounds for themselves. I even saw people advertising their bathroom for public use – for a small fee. Today, however, the heavens opened, and the plastic, neon disposible rain macs that for some reason become acceptable the moment a person either a) travels to a rainy country, entering stereotypical tourist territory, or b) a person attend a festival/carnival. Personally, I hate them, and so I couldn’t help but focus today’s ‘if only’ outfit around the chicest plastic mac that I could find, as my own classic beige trench only served me well for about an hour.

Ah, England, what is it with you and rainy bank holidays?

25-Aug

1. ASOS Long Line Rain Mac with Spot. £35. Available here.

2. ASOS Premium Full Skirt in Bonded Satin. £70. Available here.

3. Topshop Lace Bralet. £22. Available here.

4. H&M Knitted Cardigan in White. £7.99. Available here.

5. Kurt Geiger Bettie Black Boots. £75. Available here.

6. Marc by Marc Jacobs Classic Q Karlie Textured-Leather Mini Shoulder Bag. £222. Available here.

7. Alexander McQueen Skull Bead Bracelet. £365.65. Available here.

8. Topshop Oval Stone Ring Set. £12.50. Available here.

9. Topshop Plain Black Cord Bracelet. £14.50. Available here.

10. River Island Gold Tone ‘Cute as a Button’ Bracelet Set. £7. Available here.

11. Accessorize Long Bobble Rope Necklace. £15. Available here.

12. Accessorize 2x Bordeaux Sparkley Stretch Set Bracelets. £10. Available here.

13. Vision Star Dome Umbrella in Clear. £19.99. Available here.

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If Only: Outfit of the Day 14#

Firstly, sorry for posting this one several hours later than usual – this morning’s wifi would not co-operate, unfortunately. It’s been an up and down day, a day where layering is necessary because sunburn is just as likely as drenchings. Apparently it’s also a day of silky, skin-kissing fabrics, big hats and big heels with big attitude.

24-Aug

1. River Island Rose Gold Textured Satin Blazer. £60. Available here.

2. Topshop Tie-Back Crop Top by Love. £32. Available here.

3. Levi Tailored 501 Jeans. £90 £62.90 £53.90. Available here.

4. Zara Gussetted Shopper Bag in White. £29.99. Available here.

5. Timberland Beige Glancy Heeled Boots. £119.94. Available here.

6. Mango Bone Metal Necklace. £14.99. Available here.

7. Jung ee eun Drippings Rope Bracelet. £88.50. Available here.

8. Forever 21 Double Chain Bracelet. £2.50. Available here.

9. Forever 21 Stackable Midi Ring Set. £3.50. Available here.

10. ASOS Felt Floppy Hat. £20. Available here.

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If Only: Outfit of the day 13#

The trend of layering a lace trimmed slip under a baggy fit jumper-dress has spread like wildfire since last year, and while I love the lace-and-knit, wool-and-silk look, I’ve been trying to think about how to do things just that little bit differently, and looking to those in the street who already do. I’ll always have room in my wardrobe for silk or lace kimonos, but it’s reached a point of being just that little bit too chilly to wear them alone. I’m looking for the perfect knit cardigan collection to layer over a growing kimono collection; some tacking or pinning of the customary sleeves of kimonos will be required here. A fur gilet would also look great; or layered over the cardigan and kimono. It’s sunny today, so I’ve opted for simple flats, but if the weather turned gloomy, I would switch for baggy, thick knit socks and a great pair of lace up boots.

23-Aug

1. Whistles Aya Tie Waist Skirt in Ivory. £195. Available here.

2. Topshop Satin Soft Crop Button Top. £26. Available here.

3. Topshop Ruffle Soft Lace Kimono. £60. Available here.

4. Vero Moda Long Open Cardigan. £23.97. Available here.

5. Zara Flat Shoes with Bow in Navy. £19.99. Available here.

6. Ted Baker Botanical Bloom Print Lady Bag. £109. Available here.

7. My Flash Trash Amethyst Slice Silver Chain Necklace. £14.50. Available here.

8. River Island Silver Tone Encrusted Leaf Thumb Ring. £3. Available here.

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AW14: How to wear… Folk Fairy Chic

You don’t have to look hard at this season’s runways to the heavily layered influences of folk and fairy tales. From romantically dark, Grimms brother-esque graphics to sheer, floating florals, woodland decals and Germanic prints, all __ atop a deep pallet of emeralds, navy’s, rubies and deep golds. This trend compliments the overruling trend of statement coats, capes and ponchos perfectly, combining to create a romantic, whimsical look which will send us all harking back to those childhood days of playing make-believe as our favourite fairy tale characters.

Alberta Ferretti

Alberta Ferretti

D&G

Dolce & Gabbana

Emilio Pucci

Emilio Pucci

etro

Etro

Mary Katrantzou

Mary Katrantzou

Temperley London

Temperley London

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Valentino

valentino 2

Valentino

Get the look…

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1. Traffic People. £100 £58. Available here. 2. Topshop. £55. Available here. 3. Topshop. £55. Available here. 4. Free People. £58. Available here. 5. ASOS. £38 £15. Available here.

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1. Mata Traders. $79.99 $55.99. Available here. 2. ModCloth. $59.99. Available here. 3. American Apparel. £12. Available here. 4. Mantaray. £29. Available here. 5. ASOS. £60 £30. Available here. 6. Topshop. £14.50. Available here. 7. My Flash Trash. £22.50. Available here. 8. River Island. £8. Available here. 9. River Island. £3. Available here.

To recreate this look this winter, opt for keeping warm with thick tights, rather than packing away your dresses and skirts; have you ever seen a fairy tale princess in trousers, after all? As the air chills, swap light, floating fabrics for thicker fabrics like velvet, wool or flannel; brocade, embroidery and gemstone shades are all in. Team with leather accessories, and keep yourself snug in a thigh-skimming cape. If you find one with a hood, even better, but if not, pinning a fur collar will complete the look.

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If you’re a fashion minimalist and so not a fan of the woodland-animal themed motifs and extravagant florals that have flocked to the runway, you can still inject some folk influences into your look. Stick with block colours as your base; such as this dress or this skirt and top combination, teamed with folk tale themed jewellery such as this or this and a laser-cut leather handbag, such as here or here. Keep yourself with a blanket cardigan such as this or this coat, while this scarf would look great tied in a bow around the handle of a leather tote. A cute pair of leather boots, and of course, don’t forget those thick winter tights (or socks, if you’re feel you can brave the icy winds), and your look is complete.

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If Only: Outfit of the Day 10#

When I was at school, I used to worry about how depressing it must be to wear office attire – a limited variation between black, navy or grey, pinstriped or plain, suit trousers or pencil skirt. I was convinced that, if I ever found myself working in an office rather than living the dream as my own boss (*touch wood and hope that it’s a dream that I can continue forever*), how would I be able to find a reason to keep a smile on myself if I could not experiment? Yes, these were the sorts of things which concerned sixteen-year-old me, and yes, I got over it, partly because I learnt the joy of experimenting with business attire and finding ways to express myself through my wardrobe, while not looking inappropriate during meetings. Today I shall be speaking with stylists, designers, MUAs and hair stylists, brainstorming with them and we put together the first of my personal Sleeping Maidens project, and therefore while it’s not a serious work-related meeting, it will hopefully lead to some amazing opportunities, and so if I could raid any shop in the world, taking what I choose free-of-charge, I would choose something playful; a colourful bow tie and a bright, floral skirt.

20-Aug

1. Warehouse Floral Brushstroke Pencil Skirt. £30. Available here.

2. Nasty Gal Cut Class Top. £28.70. Available here.

3. Charlotte Olympia Kitty Embroidered Velvet Slippers. £365. Available here.

4. Zara Two-Tone Leather Tote in Yellow. £99.99. Available here.

5. American Apparel Sheer Patterned Socks.$12. Available here.

6. American Apparel Unisex Silk Bow Tie in ‘Gregory’. $36. Available here.

7. ASOS Fine Multi-Row Bead Necklace. £8. Available here.

8. Whistles Necter Pyramid Cord Bracelet. £20. Available here.

9. ASOS V Stacked Rings. £8. Available here.

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