First comes the rain, then comes the chill. Boys, consider this your autumnal countdown.
With a bit of planning and some wise investments you can stride through the transitional period in style. This year more than any, the autumn/winter period requires buying less and choosing wisely. Start with a trawl through the closet and take the time to reconsider things you’ve written off: you’ll be happy to hear that your dusty cords and old rugby shirts are sure winners this year. Then see where to spend for a shrewd style upgrade.
As Tony Cook, a fashion director at Man About Town magazine, tells us: “Avoid a winter wardrobe overhaul — think about add-ons to your existing collection.” These are our five picks to source now.
The leather racing jacket
Motorcycle jackets came out of the garage and onto catwalks last year. This autumn, expect to see the trend rev up once more. The top fashion houses have splashed logos across them in vintage fashion, but the true style set have scouted golden oldies. Start in the vintage shops, I found a well-cut style in Rellik on Golborne Road last week, or Massimo Dutti do a great one in brown.
For searching online, a spokesperson from preloved seller Vestiaire Collective has top tips. “Go for jackets without hard protections inside the lining to avoid stiffness. And get creative when searching keywords — try the race sponsors like Marlboro.”
Racing jacket, Vintage Leather, vintage-leather.co.uk
Brown nappa leather jacket, Massimo Dutti, £269 massimodutti.com
The Adidas Gazelles
They are the shoe every fashion editor is talking about. Adidas’s Gazelle style first dropped in 1968 and were a hit with handball players before being championed by Noel Gallagher in the Eighties. Now they are booming again thanks to another A-lister. Harry Styles has taken to wearing the Adidas x Gucci Gazelles for the majority of his latest tour. Those will set you back £575, but the classics and Spezials, which come in muted green and blue suedes, are yours from £80.
Adidas Spezial, £80, adidas.co.uk
Adidas x Gucci Gazelle, £575, gucci.com
Adidas Warszawa, £90, adidas.co.uk
The rugby shirt
“You may have an old rugby shirt lying around from your days face down in the mud,” says Cook. But if not, “they have had a new sea on facelift with acid colour pops.” On the high street, find them at Ted Baker and M&S, and if you’re looking for something special, try Rowing Blazers. “We make ours on vintage knitting machines so they’re heavyweight and old-school but luxurious,” says founder Jack Carlson. “They have a rugged, sporty heritage, but thanks to its crisp white collar they offer a polished aesthetic that keeps you warm.”
Rugby shirt, Ted Baker, £66, tedbaker.com
Rugby shirt, M&S, £29, marksandspencer.com
Rugby shirt, Rowing Blazers, rowingblazers.com
The cashmere pullover
Nights are already a little nippy, and there’s no better remedy than a butter-soft cashmere jumper. If (like me) you’ve worn out the elbows or had an issue with moths, your first call is to repair. The Restory is the mending service the fashion set use. If you’re buying new, splash out on one of Begg x Co’s luxury crewneck cashmere or N Peal’s knit ¼ zip ups. If you’re after the soft fit for less, Land’s End and Uniqlo are the street go-tos.
Cashmere sweatshirt, £320, beggxco.com
Cashmere 1/4 zip swaeter, N Peal, £385, npeal.com
Cashmere sweatshirt, Begg x Co, beggxco.com
Sleek corduroy slacks will be staple from the City to the Cotswolds. Their charm is in versatility and all-ages appeal. Independent label Ahluwalia g a v e t h e m a chunky cool-guy twist in olive-green on her AW22 catwalk, while Erdem made them a mainstay of his debut men’s collection. It’s also good to stick to tradition. “Once the autumn weather sets in, swapping out jeans or chinos with a well-cut pair of needle-style cords is a clever and practical style choice,” says Annika Purdey of Purdey, the heritage British label which makes them in muted shades. “They have lost their slightly stuffy image, and look just as good with trainers as with leather boots or loafers.” We’re sold.
Cords, Erdem, £135, matchesfashion.com
Cords, Purdey, purdey.com
Cords, Ahluwalia, ahluwalia.world