Vanessa Kirby and Claire Foy’s turns in The Crown may or may not have had something to do with it but the past few years have been dominated by a particularly lady-like aesthetic, or as we like to call it, grandma’s dressing-up box. You know the look: all freshwater pearls, tightly cropped cardigans, pleated hoop skirts and silk scarves. Everyone from Gucci to Burberry championed the return of feminine formality, with kitten heels, trench coats and brooches taking center stage on the catwalks of fashion month.
Now, though, we’re turning to another grandparent for sartorial brownie points. Gone are the trappings of lady-of-the-manor femininity; for AW19 it’s all about old man dressing. Borrow your grandad’s slacks and reading glasses, add a sweater vest, upsize your current cardi and replace dainty mules with chunky oxfords. There are no strict rules, but silhouettes are generally slouchy, shades of gray have replaced beige, and comfort comes first (ideal for cozying up as autumn settles in).
We’re looking to JW Anderson, Victoria Beckham and Preen for heritage argyle knits, ASAI and Alexachung for tweed blazers, and fast fashion favorites Zara and & Other Stories for relaxed trousers. Mainstays like Churches and Prada are the places to find your last-forever oxfords, although Dr. Martens and COS have plenty of leather and vegan alternatives, too.
Here’s to loose-fitting silhouettes, hibernation-appropriate fabrics and heritage prints. Move over, grandma – AW19 is the season of grandpa style.
The Sweater Vest
Sure, you might associate the sweater vest more with Chandler Bing than the sartorially switched-on, but this season, everywhere from Burberry to Zara has a sleeveless knit on offer. The beauty of this versatile winter warmer is that it can be styled with almost anything. We’re wearing ours over plain white tees, crisp white shirts, printed ’70s blouses and black rollnecks.
It’s time to park your flared denim and make way for a new kind of trouser. The slack should feel like something Diane Keaton might wear in Annie Hall: a loose-fitting silhouette in a durable material such as tweed or brushed cotton. Chocolate, slate, dove, sand… No matter what hue you choose, your shirt, knit or tee should be firmly tucked in and preferably secured with a vintage leather belt.
Huzzah! The traditional Scottish pattern is no longer reserved for dads on a golf weekend. Look to Molly Goddard’s jazzy color palette for a contemporary take on the print or stick to classics like Pringle of Scotland; the brand synonymous with argyle recently collaborated with H&M on a fantastic range of cozy jumpers. Our favorite color pairings are mocha and pink or acid shades like green and yellow.
The blazer is nothing new but colorful ’80s power shoulders and sleek Saint Laurent cocktail jackets have made way for all-out gray. The bigger the lapel, the better, and this season we’re adding silk pocket squares, not glitzy brooches, to the jacket. Layer over everything from your favorite knit to a plain white tee.
The Graduate-esque corduroy is having its moment in the sun thanks to brands like Gucci, Alexachung and ASAI. Sure, pastel hues and ice cream shades are sweet, but we’re sticking with autumnal colors, from ginger nut to hot chocolate. Quality is key here: seek out fabrics with the deepest of ridges.
The Glasses Chain
What would your reading glasses be without a thoroughly grandpa-style chain? Influencers and editors alike were seen with chains attached to their sunnies during Fashion Month in September; now that the sun has well and truly disappeared, move them over to your specs instead. We’re going for Staud’s tortoiseshell number.
Ah, the classic Oxford. Daintier shoes have dominated the past few seasons – think kitten heels, mules and naked sandals – but the return of stomping boots brought a more masculine approach to footwear. We’re rolling up our trouser hems and wearing with argyle socks and patterned tights.
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