Are you a summer dresser or a winter dresser? Floaty chiffon maxi dresses or a tweed shift dress? Bohemian sandals or chunky suede knee-high boots? Do you love the fact that you can leave the house in summer without a jacket or can you not bear to be without your cosy shearling coat?
For me, winter definitely precedes over summer in the style stakes. The bobble hats, the blanket scarves, the array of coats, and definitely the layering of lots of cosy materials!
Whilst layering is not only a practical choice when the weather starts to get seriously chilly, its also a great way to to look effortlessly stylish. However there is always a potential with layering to add on weight to yourself with all the heavy knitwear.
Here are some tips to ensure that you layer yourself up perfectly this winter!
Layer contrasting materials.
The key to avoiding adding weight to yourself through layering is to use contrasting materials and textures. If you layer a cable knit jumper with a cable knit cardigan, there is no gradual layering, you are just going from thick to thick!
Always go from thin to thick- this way the most light-weight, breathable materials are next to your skin, and the thicker materials are on your outer body, protecting you from the winter elements. You’ll also keep a better shape and silhouette this way. Just make sure when layering your contrasting materials that each element does still work by itself, as you may need to take layers on and off throughout your day.
A great idea for everyday layering is to combine a shirt with a jumper, completed by your winter coat and some cosy accessories. This is an effortlessly stylish look and a practical one. It’s also suitable for work or play- crisp whites with neutral knits make for smart-wear, whilst denim with striped or coloured knits make for great casual-wear. If you’re not that confident experimenting with colour or pattern, layering is a great way to introduce something more fun to your wardrobe. You can start with adding the colour or pattern to your under layer and once you feel more adventurous, you can move it to an outer layer. Saying that, this look can also look sleek and sophisticated when used with neutrals and monochrome!
Adapt your dresses.
If you love a good dress and pine for the summer days where you could wear your sleeveless one with no worry about the weather, fear not! Why not try layering your favourite dress to take it from summer to winter? The easiest way to do this is to use a blouse or a pretty shirt. Add some chunky cable knit tights with winter heels and finish off this feminine look with a little waist belt and a statement necklace. This is a great way to keep wearing parts of your wardrobe which you thought you couldn’t because of the season change.
Don’t hide away!
As we’ve seen, layering can look effortlessly stylish and flattering, but its also easy to hide your best bits and to add on unnecessary weight when layering. The key to avoiding this is to make sure you are still showing off a silhouette.
Blanket capes are everywhere this season (just as they were last year), and their fluid, draping style makes for perfect layering. To ensure you keep a feminine shape, cinch in your blanket cape with a waist belt and slimline your bottom half to balance out the cape. Skinny or slim jeans would work best here but the universally flattering bootleg style will also work to streamline your body.
These rules will apply to most other forms of layering too- where you are wearing chunky styles on top, wear slimmer styles on bottom and try to create a waist for yourself where possible.
So how will I be layering this winter? I’ll be wearing long sleeve striped tops under jumpers, belts over chunky knits, soft fluffy socks over knitted tights and peter pan blouses under shift dresses. I can’t wait!