I love my fluid and oversized fits because they’re comfortable, relaxed and fashionable. But I’ve been wearing them a lot over the last couple of years and, inspired by the tailored silhouettes that came down the runway for Spring 2015, I think I’m ready to reintroduce more tailored pieces into my style. This particular outfit, with the crisp combination of trousers, shirt, blazer and coat is a good illustration of that.
I enjoy combining new pieces with older ones. Here the trousers, loafers and clutch are new. The shirt, blazer and coat are old. The result is a layered outfit that is practical to wear in our unseasonably mild Winter weather.
One of my style goals for this year is to add more tomato red to my wardrobe, and to continue exploring the wonderful world of trousers (I’m a trouser gal at heart). I achieved both when I found and fell in love with J.Crew’s Maddie bi-stretch wool pants. I love their tailored fit, length, self-colour tuxedo stripe, and non-scratch wool fabric. The side entry pockets are genius because the linings don’t show through to the front of the pants. The shade of orange-red is my favourite. And although they’re dressy, I feel like I can do anything in these pants because they aren’t precious.
The tapered hem of the pants is extremely practical for our wet Seattle climate. Narrow pant hems also look great with flats. I tried these trousers with heeled boots and pumps and did not fancy the combination nearly as much. Somehow, the tuxedo pant looks most on trend paired with flats, which makes my white Paul Green Vince loafers a good option. White shoes aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, but since I wear a lot of white, white footwear works well with my wardrobe. Wearing nude knee-highs keeps my feet warm and creates the effect of not wearing socks.
The shadow stripe shirt is an Ann Fontaine golden oldie and my favourite white shirt of all time. It fell out of favour for a while because it’s fitted, and I was into the baggy boyfriend shirt vibe. I kept it because it’s an impeccable piece that I love, so happily I was able to shop my closet. I tuck in the shirt to create a longer leg line with flats and a high contrast top. I buttoned the shirt right up to the top for a dramatic effect, and left the statement collar inside the jacket for a neater touch. I also preferred a white skinny belt, which I haven’t worn for years. My wide white belts looked too casual and rugged with the refined fabrications and silhouettes of the pieces.
I’m wearing my ink blue Theory blazer because its shorter length lengthens the leg line, compensating for the shortening effects of the high-contrast pieces and the flats. There is a bit of a nautical vibe to the combination, but that was unintentional. No sleeve scrunching because its too cold to bare forearms, and because I’m enjoying the cleaner look of a sleek, smooth sleeve.
I topped off the outfit with an ink blue military coat, which I leave open in mild temperatures because I like the way it drapes and swings as I stride. I buy my coats roomy enough to fit a streamlined jacket, shirt and thermal undies underneath. I find these layers comfortable and extra warm. I also feel polished when I remove my coat to showcase the blazer.
I accessorized with a new L.K. Bennett patterned patent clutch to add a graphic touch. It’s very matchy-matchy, but so be it. Why not! No jewellery required other than a watch, wedding ring and green specs.
Wearing crisp and high-quality tailored pieces in luxurious fabrications and high-contrast colours feels like eating ultra nutritious food. I don’t want to wear this combination all the time, nor do I want to give up my casual slouch. But I do want to wear tailored looks more frequently in future.