In recent years, my shopping habits have changed quite dramatically. As someone who used to over-shop, I now take a more considered approach and think about what I really need to add to my already-overflowing wardrobe. This often means I now skip over some trends, and I'm okay with that. Whilst I love seeing all the new season offerings, I only buy into the ones that suit my personal style. Which is why when 'quiet luxury' started trending on TikTok (it now has over 288 million views), I knew it was one for me.
I of course had to head straight to COS to try on this oatmeal suit I had spotted online.
It's all about luxury being a style type rather than by the brands you buy. And although labels such as The Row, Khaite and Tove illustrate the fuss-free aesthetic to perfection, the look can easily be put together by investing in key expensive-looking pieces. With this in mind, I headed to the high street to try out all the new season pieces that are made from more premium fabrics, have could-be-designer detailing or just have the desired silhouette of a more expensive looking item that'll work hard in your wardrobe.
I've put quiet luxury outfits together from some of my favourite high street brands—including COS, Arket, Zara and Mango—and reviewed each of the key items for autumn. And for reference, I'm a size 10 and 5'4.5" (the half an inch matters), so you know for sizing.
1. Zara Scarf Jacket
My Review: I have to admit, when Totême created the cult scarf jacket, I wasn't convinced. As someone who dislikes scarves (they make me feel weirdly claustrophobic), I just thought I would skip this trend entirely. That is, until Zara delivered this soft, non-bulky style for autumn 2023. It feels less restricting than some of its designer counterparts, the scarf doesn't feel too weighty on my shoulder and it just looks effortless. It's also good to know this item has become more of a timeless piece over the years. I'm sold.
Jacket size: S-M
2. Mango Trench Coat
My Review: I may already own a couple of brilliant trench coats that I dig out each season, but I couldn't resist this style. Fresh from the new Selection collection at Mango, it's a classic that'll never fail. I tried it in a medium but I would buy in a large so it's slightly more oversized. This is my favourite drop from the higher price point edit so far, and wearing a full tonal look always looks more premium.
Coat size: Medium
3. H&M Co-Ords
My Review: Generally, quiet luxury tends to stick to a neutral colour palette. But as a fan of colour, I wanted to show how it can work with different shades. It's all about sticking to expensive-looking hues, though, from dusty pink and burgundy to butter yellow and even red if it's kept fuss-free. This knitted two-piece would work so well with a trench coat or wool coat to keep it looking polished.
Jumper Size: Medium
Skirt Size: Small
My Review: If there's one colour I'll be wearing top-to-toe this season, it's grey. Never failing to look smart, I love how this baggy shirt and wide-leg trousers look together. I added an oversized wool blazer, which may I add, feels as expensive as it looks—I would definitely wear this outfit to the office.
Shirt Size: Small
Trouser Size: 10
4. Cos Knit Dress And Suit
My Review: Firstly, this picture doesn't do this dream dress justice. The detail is so impressive, it stopped me in my tracks as I was wondering around the COS store. It's made from a heavy knit, so the weighty material hangs really nicely without being too clingy. The splicing gives a cut-out texture (without being revealing during the chillier months), and the tassels on the hemline are the cherry on top of the sartorial cake. Simple, yet amazing, a brilliant knit dress is an easy way to try out quiet luxury.
Dress Size: Small
My Review: I couldn't choose between the dress or the suit, so I tried both. As soon as I put the blazer on, I knew I would be a fan. It felt structured but not too corporate thanks to the cropped length. The trousers, well, these just topped it off. Usually I find a lot of trousers are too long for me, but these were the right length even with flat loafers. If you do need items tailored, I spotted in-store that you can have your new items altered by The Seam to make sure they're the perfect fit.
Blazer And Trouser Size: 38
5. Reiss Straight Leg Jeans
My Review: I have no idea how I've never tried Reiss' jeans. I'm always on the lookout for straight leg styles I can wear as part of my everyday uniform, and these felt so nice on. The colour makes them look luxe, I approve of the the high waist, and although I could have them shortened, I quite like the way they bunch a bit at the bottom. I've belted them and added a double cashmere knit to keep the look understated.
Jeans Size: 29
6. Arket Striped Jumper
My Review: This is one of those Arket pieces I've been thinking about for a while. But as we all know, you have to act fast before the dreaded 'out of stock' notice. Although striped knits have been a staple for quite some time, this vertical style feels fresh. And this is how I'm going to justify buying yet another monochrome striped jumper. It's quite a heavy thick material so I would wear it more fitted than oversized. Keeping it matchy-matchy when it comes to the rest of the outfit is a way to ensure the outfit isn't OTT.
Jumper Size: Small