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Art of Style

These 6 staples promise maximum style mileage for tricky trans-seasonal dressing

At a time when some countries are beginning to ease lockdown restrictions, it’s prompted many of us to reconsider our daily style. After months of wearing sweatpants, dressing from the waist up and generally disregarding entire sections of our closets, it’s time to sharpen up. However, if there’s one thing that life in isolation has taught us, it’s the value of elegant yet effortless pieces that work for countless occasions. These six fail-safe pieces promise to elevate your on- and off-duty look for years to come

Tamu McPherson (black shorts), Pernille Teisbaek

Bermuda shorts

No longer the preserve of middle-aged men, the Bermuda short has had a haute makeover and become a true closet staple. Although it might not seem like an obvious addition to your wardrobe, thanks to the clean lines, knee-length cut and gently cinched waist, the classic style is universally flattering. Of course, shorts come into their own during summer, when you can accentuate their androgynous overtones by pairing them with a simple tank top and square-toed mules – but, styled with knee-high boots and lightweight knits, they also make for an ultra-chic trans-seasonal look.

L–R: Chloé Harrouche, Yoyo Cao, Nina Sandbech

A utility shirt

In certain contexts, the word ‘utility’ can imply a lack of style or finesse in favor of practicality; this is not the case when it comes to the utility shirt. Few pieces can claim to be truly enduring, but, as a staple of summer and winter collections alike, the utility shirt is deserving of the title. Understated yet sophisticated, there’s a good chance it’s already part of your lockdown uniform; if not, you’d be hard-pressed to find a sounder investment. Pair your utility shirt with blue jeans and luxe sandals for a low-key look, or give it a polished spin by coordinating with tailored shorts. When the weather turns, consider heavier cotton styles as an alternative to your usual mid-season jacket. Simply shrug on over summer dresses to give them an insouciant edge – and year-round appeal.

A classic shirt dress

A mainstay of women’s wardrobes for almost a century, it goes without saying that the shirt dress has staying power. No matter what occasion you’re dressing for, consider this classic piece a sartorial savior thanks to its clever blend of prettiness, practicality and polish. Our top tip? Opt for a maxi style that subtly cinches the waist for an ultra-flattering and chic silhouette. In summer, finish with luxe leather sandals and a basket bag for an elegant look, and when the temperature drops, layer over wide-leg pants for a fresh update.

Victoria Lee (brown belt), Sophia Roe
L–R: Athena Calderone, Amy Sall, TyLynn Nguyen

Timeless tailoring

You’d be forgiven for thinking that there’s no way a pant suit could slot into your off-duty closet – but, opt for a louche, modern style, and you’ll have a whole new perspective on this classic design. Far from looking overly polished, a slightly oversized cut is as laid-back as it is luxe, making it a non-negotiable when it comes to contemporary summer dressing. Simply finish with a white tee and this season’s must-have x Birkenstock sandals for a chic, low-key look that will translate seamlessly to the office, too (when the time comes). Of course, there’s no need to style these separates together: chunky knits make the perfect accompaniment to wide-leg pants in winter.

Elizabeth von der Goltz

A second-skin knit

For an industry that is constantly accused of being obsessed with ‘newness’, fashion is actually remarkably cyclical, and the latest era to enjoy another moment in the sun is, of course, the ’90s. This season, designers across the board championed the featherweight knits that defined the decade. The allure of these understated pieces is their wearability; they promise to slot effortlessly into your closet. Let yours add a soft contrast to jeans, or pair with sweatpants to elevate your lockdown look. Later, when dinner dates and drinks with friends are back on the agenda, pair with a silk slip skirt and baguette bag for the ultimate ’90s ‘cool girl’ outfit. This unassuming piece is guaranteed to become a closet cornerstone.

L–R: Olga Nikitina, Kate Foley Osterweis, Anna Ewers

A jumpsuit

The ultimate one-stop ensemble, in recent seasons the jumpsuit has made the transition from statement piece to closet staple, thanks to its infinite versatility. Designed with the modern woman in mind, and uniquely well suited for days that jump from Zoom meetings to supermarket expeditions and daily constitutional strolls – our routines might have changed over the past few months, but the jumpsuit is as wearable as ever. As a piece with year-round appeal, when the weather is fine, pair yours with nothing more than a chunky chain and simple sandals, and later, get the better of tricky trans-seasonal weather by layering it over a turtleneck and finish with chunky boots.


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