For 2021, my aim is to be as self-disciplined as possible when it comes to trends. While I think designers should keep pushing towards a more timeless approach to design that prioritises longevity, it can be too easy to demonise the concept of trends as a whole. Ultimately, reinvention is what makes fashion so exciting. The key is to just focus on styles that remain true to your personal style and that don't run the risk of being worn once and then discarded. With this lens in place, I've been passing my eye over the trends that are coming up for autumn/winter 2021 and making a shortlist of styles that I feel will slip into my pre-existing wardrobe with ease. My first point of call? The waistcoat.
I would forgive you for experiencing '90s and noughties flashbacks at the sight of a waistcoat, but this isn't Sienna Miller's and Kate Moss's tassel-clad bohemianism. Rather, I'm viewing this tailored piece as a more interesting alternative to my usual autumn layers this season. I primarily plan on wearing it with wide-leg jeans and loafers while the weather is warm, then layer it up with a long-sleeved top and trench come winter. If I'm feeling particularly fancy and have a smart-casual event to attend (remember those?), I might go all out with a pair of matching tailored trousers.
There are plenty of waistcoats to be found on the high street, and the majority are stocked at the likes of Cos, & Other Stories and Mango. However, if you're on a budget, I would also recommend looking at vintage options—I've included a few in my edit below. Another top tip is to check out the men's department at high-street brands, where you're far more likely to find beautifully tailored styles at reasonable price points. You might need to just experiment a little with sizing.
Of course, if your budget is a little more generous, then you'll find countless options on Net-a-Porter and Matches. Gucci's logoed waistcoat has been popular amongst the fashion crowd, but I have also been coveting Acne Studios cinched-in style, which would feel very '90s Gwyneth Paltrow with jeans and chunky sandals. Scroll down to see and shop my full edit of autumn-ready waistcoats. Happy shopping!
If you fancy a more slouchy iteration, take your cues from Sylvie Mus, who opts for a long-line, deep-V style.
This Jen Wonders pic was one of the first looks that made me fall in love with the waistcoat.
Add a matching blazer and tailored trousers to create a statement-making suit-like finish. Oh so dapper.