I Just Tried On So Many Good Autumn Pieces at COS, Arket and & Other Stories

Stepping into an actual changing room still feels like a novelty after years of online shopping, so this month, to celebrate the reopening of shops, we are attempting a try-on-athon. We will be going into several changing rooms to road-test new autumn trends and give you our honest takes on the items that are actually worth investing in.

On the high street, there are three stores that really excel when it comes to autumn dressing, and it's no coincidence that they are all Scandinavian and have mastered the art of layering. I went into COS, Arket and & Other Stories to try on the new autumn collections and focused on easy-to-style staples that will make up a clever autumn capsule. I found an incredible trench coat, dresses you can wear now and later and so many beautiful cardigans and jumpers.

Keep scrolling to see the 19 autumn staples I love from COS, & Other Stories and Arket. 

COS

1. Trench Coat

Best Autumn Fashion Buys

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

I loved everything about this trench coat. The details on the cuffs, the buttons running down one side, the length and the pointed collar are all interesting touches that make it look really expensive. For those of you unsure about the length, I am 5'6", and this fell above my ankles.

Autumn Fashion Buys From COS

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

2. Baseball Cap

Best Autumn Fashion Buys

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

I'm really not a T-shirt-and-baseball-cap kind of girl, but I challenged myself to try these COS minimalist staples. I loved the zip-up knitted vest, as it is both sporty and sleek thanks to the collar. 

3. Knitted Vest

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: knitted vest

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

4. T-Shirt Dress 

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: t-shirt dress

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

I loved this dress so much that I think I'm going to have to buy it. It was really comfortable due to the loose silhouette, so it is the perfect everyday summer dress. It would also look fab with chunky boots or knee-high boots in winter. 

Best Autumn Fashion Buys

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

5. Gathered Dress

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: gathered dress

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

I've included this dress in my weekly shopping picks, but this was my first time seeing it up close, and I was really impressed with how it looks compared to the model shots. It is really oversized, however, so it's for those who aren't afraid of dramatic silhouettes or an excess of fabric. 

:Best Autumn Fashion Buys: gathered dress

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

6. T-Shirt Dress

Best Autumn Fashion Buys

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

I loved this T-shirt dress so much I tried it in two colours—this beige version would look lovely with a trench coat and chunky boots.

Best Autumn Fashion Buys

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

& Other Stories

7. Red Cardigan

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: cardigan

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

I am always a sucker for an & Other Stories cardigan, and this red cable-knit cardi gets a big tick from me. I styled it with the checked boxy blazer for a Parisian look. 

8. Checked Jacket

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: checked jacket

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

9. Button-Down Shirt

Best Autumn Fashion Buys

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

Now this is a duo I loved. I wish you could see how beautiful the texture is on the fabric of this oversized shirt—it's expensive at £95, but it feels really premium. 

Best Autumn Fashion Buys

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

10. Knitted Vest

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: knitted vest

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

11. Denim Dress

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: denim dress

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

Next up, we have this cute denim minidress. It feels very casual thanks to the shirt-style fit, but the collar and puff-sleeve detail make it more impactful. I'd personally wear this in September with tights and chunky boots. 

Best Autumn Fashion Buys

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

12. Embroidered Cardigan 

Best Autumn Fashion Buys

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

As I said, I'm a fan of & Other Stories' cardigans, and I love the pretty floral embellishment and bobble details on this knit. I paired it with the store's now-iconic Keeper Jeans, which are called keepers for a reason.

13. Jeans

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: jeans

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

14. Quilted Jacket

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: quilted jacket

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

Quilted jackets are trending this year, and I loved how this is lightweight enough to be handy for now and layered underneath a big coat in the depths of winter. It’s simple but lovely.

Best Autumn Fashion Buys

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

Arket

15. Striped Jumper

This jumper has been yo-yoing in and out of stock and is popular with our readers, so I was excited to try it in real life. It’s a little boxier than I thought it would be, so you might want to size down if you don't want the oversized look.

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: striped jumper

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

16. Zebra Shirt

I personally found the fit of this shirt a little too big and would have preferred it to be less oversized. However, I do love to see Arket playing with prints. 

Best Autumn Fashion Buys

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

17. Blue Tracksuit

I know we should all want to be out of our tracksuits right now, but this is what I wanted the most from Arket. The colour is fabulous, and it was so comfortable. I'm sold.

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: tracksuit

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

18. Pile Jacket

A fleece isn't something fashion editors would normally get excited about, but this is like a teddy-bear jacket that manages to still look good. I love the hood and the zip-up details, and I would like to live in this throughout autumn.

Best Autumn Fashion Buys: pile jacket

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Emma Spedding for Who What Wear

19. Black Dress

Unfortunately, this dress doesn't look as good in my photographs as it does in real life—I had 2% battery left at this stage! I think it'd be one of those items that will be really handy, as it's the perfect throw-on-and-go dress.

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