Can't live without them. Here's a rundown of reinvented old faves to brand new shapes.
Now this is a trend we can wholeheartedly jump on board with. AW13's ode to the trusty fisherman's knit. No more freezing in the name of fashion. This winter's all about staying warm and snuggly in the chunkiest and hardiest of seafaring sweater. And we've no pretenders in our boat. All the way from Nordic shores there's Mads Norgaard for the girls, working traditional patterns with a fluoro twist, SNS Herning for the boys with their clever heat preserving 'bobble' knit and Andersen & Andersen with beautifully simple and weighty cable knits.
Ankle boots are still everywhere for AW13 but they're trickier to pull off than you might think. Lucy's finally found her perfect pair (Hudson's Mirar), but it took extensive research so we thought we'd share what she sussed out along the way.
1. Ankle boots have the ability to bisect the leg at an unflattering, ankle-obscuring point. Be prepared to try on lots of pairs to find the length that works best for your leg length. Shorter legs tend to suit the super cropped versions whereas those blessed with longer limbs can pull off the high-top styles.
2. Most important of all is that we need to see the boot. You want your leg to look streamlined so absolutely no excess fabric flapping around.
3. Skinny jeans are the ankle boot's best friend. This way the boot become an extension of your leg. Tights are good too, especially as ankle boots have a great nack of steering a pretty dress away from smart or prim.
4. We're also loving a slouchy boyfriend jean right now. To make these work with the ankle boot, roll up into a neat cuff. If you're ankle boot has a zip then it's absolutely acceptable to leave the top of the zip slightly undone to accomodate a bit of cuff.
5. Unlike mid calf or knee high options, ankle boots offer great opportunity to up the interest thanks to their neat proportions. Have fun with colour, zips, buckles and texture. Wooden heels are back this season too.
The Hudson team rocked up to install their pop-up shoe shop in our project space last Friday. Among them was Les - the brand's resident shoe expert (they have an 'Ask Uncle Les' on their website). There is no shoe-related question this man can't answer, so we took the opportunity to grill him about what we should be wearing on our feet this season (and a few less serious matter too).
Tell us a bit about the collection you've put together for The Hambledon pop-up?
I think the collection is reflective of the store; it's a range that is simple and effortless in style. I think there's a pair of shoes in there to suit everyone's taste and you'd be hard pushed not to find an essential pair to compliment the key pieces in your wardrobe for the A/W season!
What are the girls wearing on their feet this season?
This season the girls will be sporting androgynous and punk inspired boots, block wooden heels and an array of textures. The 90s are back!
And how are they wearing them?
The boots look great lending a masculine edge to a feminine dress. Or styled up with oversized coats and a pop of colour. The shoes, made up of patent loafers and hi-shine flats, lend themselves to the continuing ‘prep’ trend.
Favourite new style of the season for the girls?
Impossible to choose! But the Mirar Ankle Boot and Paddi Brogue would be up there.
Favourite new style of the season for boys?
Toecap Fenway in Tan. No question. Would look fantastic with a pair of Norse Projects chinos.
What will be on the Hudson playlist at The Hambledon?
Daddy You're a Fool to Cry by The Rolling Stones.
Where are you hanging out in the Hudson manor?
(Hudson are based in East London)
I like to get home to Leigh on Sea. I love it there.
What's your favourite thing at the moment?
Dixie Lee and Coops. (Les has a brand new baby daughter to go with his lovely son Cooper)
London footwear brand Hudson launches its first ever shop within a shop in September. And it's here. At The Hambledon. Doors open on Saturday 31st August.
Autumn 13 is the season of the ankle boot and Hudson have every angle covered. Watch out for Plath (contemporary with lizard detailing), Stanford (ultimate preppy penny loafer), Mirar (modern and easy), Horrigan (coveted by star Millie Mackintosh for its bohemian charm), Riley (a little bit urban cowboy) and Sefton (elegant covered wedge).
Hudson has been putting its best foot forward (and other terrible shoe puns) for more than two decades and we are delighted to welcome them, and their loveable supremo Uncle Les, to The Hambledon. There'll be more from Uncle Les next week as he opines on shoes for our news pages.
The Hambledon/Hudson Project runs from 31 August - 29 September. Extended until Sunday 13th October.
We've gone glam with the leather goods thanks to our first AW13 drop from Beck Sondergaard. Say hello to glossy eelskin, supersoft leather printed up with gold stars, subtle metallics and sophisticated shades of mushroom, charcoal and 'fuzzy peach'. The perfect bit of sparkle and colour to break up those heavy blocks of autumn/winter colour. Plenty useful too with straps and pockets in all the most thoughtful of places.
Bellerose AW13. We're calling it 'thrift store chic'. It's that clever, fearless and effortless kind of dressing you long to pull off but struggle with where to start. Bellerose have made it easy with this collection. No rifling through piles of outcast garments here. Just reserve all caution and mix it up like crazy.
A washed out flannel plaid skirt with a diamante trim collar silk shirt and cropped quilted jacket. Why not? Americana high school jersey layered up with grandma style cable knit. Definitely. Bright orange polka dots with leopard print fake fur. Hell yeah.
We've been big fans of Chinti & Parker since the beginning and have loved watching how the brand has evolved since launching back in 2009. Here, as we take delivery of their AW13 collection, we talk to co-founder Anna Singh, pictured left.
Describe your typical working day?
I’m not sure there is a typical day as both my partner [cousin Rachael Wood] and I are extremely hands on; we direct all aspects of business, so a single day might include planning the next collection, conducting sales appointments and press interviews, managing any number of ecommerce projects, and a fair bit of number-crunching and business strategy. The common thread is a fairly early wake-up call via my two sons, and a healthy amount of ribbing from Rachael who is a bit of a comedienne.
Who or what couldn't you live without?
My family, Wagamama’s chicken Katsu curry and a sense of humour.
What do you like most about what you do?
I’m building something extremely personal, and when people respond positively to it, it’s hugely rewarding.
Tell us a bit about how Chinti & Parker has evolved since launching in 2009?
I like to think we started out small, but perfectly formed. We launched with a capsule collection of high quality, well-designed basics in organic cotton and cashmere. Since then, we’ve expanded considerably, and now offer a well-versed collection of luxury casualwear with a strong focus on knitwear that combines classic cuts with fashion-minded details. I like to think we create the sort of pieces you’ll return to year in year out, but always feel stylish in.
What has been your proudest moment to date?
There have been a lot of highlights in the last year or so, including amazing press coverage and high profile collaborations with Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop and cult pattern studio Patternity. However, I’m most proud of the fact that we’ve grown our business considerably in the last year and have subsequently been able to double our team and output. For a young business, this is no mean feat.
What has been the most important lesson learnt?
The bigger your company and profile gets, the easier it is to become distracted from the essence of your brand. Having constant checkpoints in place to keep you focused is crucial.
Who or what inspires you?
We take inspiration from everywhere: a childhood jumper, a tile pattern we’ve seen on our travels, the colour of sun-bleached paper, and any number of style icons past and present. It’s a constantly evolving, eclectic thing, and subconsciously I’m always looking for triggers.
What is team Chinti & Parker's guilty pleasure?
Oh gosh, too many to list! Definitely something edible… probably a mid-afternoon sugar fix in the form of Krispy Kremes. And we’ve been known to check out the Mail online.
And finally, tell us a bit about a few of our favourite pieces from this season's collection...
This season is a balance of graphic intarsia knits, charming handmade prints and versatile separates that do office, evening and off-duty. We loving the Aztec sweater as it lends instant nowness to jeans and a jacket, while the voile shirt is a pretty dress-up, dress-down piece that’s chic without being overdone. For print, the box tee in our handmade ‘tooth’ print is a great way to do pattern in an understated way.
Welcome back to the comfort zone that is autumn/winter dressing. This season we're wrapping up in layer upon layer of texture. Fine silks and chunky knits to statement fake fur and eye catching print. Burnt oranges, icy blues, mustard yellows and plenty of charcoal.
The new season starts in haste with a catch-it-while-you-can collection from Marie Sixtine. The ratio of design and quality vs price still has us in a state of disbelief. Knits from chunky to fine featuring zips, stars, silk panels, pockets and elbow patches; basic tops blending cotton, wool and silk; a super cool quilted fleece dress and one beautifully fitting standout jacket, all zips and pewter lurex panels. Here we go...