Here at Who What Wear UK, we're all about delivering the latest and greatest shopping edits, as approved by our team. That's why we've created The Joy of Shopping, a shopping column which will see me, Joy Montgomery, discussing the brands, buys and ideas that are preoccupying my mind this month. Think homewares, outerwear and everything in-between. Is there something you'd like me to cover? Make sure to tweet or Instagram me your requests!
Dear readers, I want to just apologise on behalf of the fashion-magazine industry for our overuse of certain phrases. The trouble is, there are only so many ways we can say "this is a nice top," so we default to flashy buzzwords as shorthand for really quite simple concepts. For example, the term "wardrobe basics" is essentially our way of saying "you're going to wear this item of clothing a lot, it won't look out of date in 12 months' time, and it will be so easy to style that you can forgo your usual outfit-induced morning meltdown." But of course, that's far too long-winded to type out.
So when I say that blazers are my go-to item of clothing within my "basics arsenal," all I really mean is this: "I like blazers, I wear a blazer at least once a week, I think blazers are an item of clothing that will never go out of style, and I think you should consider getting yourself a blazer." Good, I'm glad we got that straightened out.
Like any good fashion editor, I'm going to tell you that there are many different types of blazers, from oversized and double-breasted to hourglass fits and cropped lengths (To quote The Devil Wears Prada, "It's a tough call; they're so different"), and it's not unreasonable to say that my growing personal collection covers most of the above. I've been adding to said blazer collection for years now, sourcing from an array of stores, websites and brands. We're talking clean-lined styles from Arket, pinstriped charity-shop finds and the odd high-end buy.
Each one possesses its own personality, which is then imbued into any given outfit. A pop of colour from an '80s blazer will summon a particular "Upper East Side matriarch" vibe, while a double-breasted corduroy number will make me feel like Alexa Chung, if just temporarily. If that isn't a testament to the transformative and escapist powers of fashion, then I don't what is. So yes, of course, I will tell you that blazers are my ultimate "basic," but really, images speak louder than words, so scroll on down to see the blazers that have brought me joy over the years. Here's to many more decades of blazer love.
Style Notes: I always get compliments on this Bouguessa blazer whenever I wear it. Coming in a boxy, oversized fit and two-tone rust hue (the back is a shade darker than the front), it's a real statement piece, especially when cinched with the contrasting belt.
Style Notes: I was shamelessly influenced by Angela Scanlon to buy this & Other Stories blazer last year, and I haven't looked back. With a scoop neckline, shoulder pads and a subtly cinched waistline, it can be worn as a blazer or alone as a top.
Style Notes: There are so many amazing second-hand blazers to be found in both charity shops and vintage stores. This green number was from Royal Trinity Hospice, and I was instantly drawn in by its preppy stripes and school-uniform feel.
Style Notes: I know "borrowed from the boys" is a bit of a fashion cliché, but in this instance, it's quite accurate. Menswear blazers can be a great option to look out for, as they often come in high-quality fabrics and are great if you want a more oversized fit. This tuxedo jacket was borrowed from my husband, and it looked great belted and styled with skinny black jeans and chunky boots.
Style Notes: While less ubiquitous right now, the double-breasted blazer will always have a certain old-school charm that I can't get enough of. This corduroy style from Aspiga has plenty of Alexa Chung appeal and would look just as good with a miniskirt and knee-high boots as it does with matching trousers.
Style Notes: Another day, another vintage blazer. This time, it comes in a satisfyingly eye-watering shade of neon green. Very Upper East Side matriarch. I like to tone down the brightness with dark denim and a checkered base layer.