We can’t avoid it any longer. Let’s talk about velvet.

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You know sometimes all the fashion magazines declare something to be the latest must have, and then five minutes later it’s disappeared without trace? That’s kind of what I expected to happen with velvet. A couple of mentions in the more adventurous fashion pages, then a rapid sinking.

But apparently velvet is here to stay, for a season or two at least. And why not? It’s luxurious, perfect for party dressing and comes in a wealth of rich colours. Of course, it’s not exactly the most wildly practical fabric anyone ever invented, but you can’t have everything.

It is also not the easiest thing to style. Assuming you don’t live in a world where a co-ordinated burgundy velvet suit is de rigeur, the chances are that you’ll need to go for a more subtle touch in your outfits this winter, but believe me, it’s worth it. A nod to trends like this (without necessarily going burgundy velvet top to toe) will help your wardrobe feel fresh and current rather than fashion victim-esque.

The best ways to introduce velvet:

  1. Keep it to one item – a camisole or tshirt, or even just a choker or skinny scarf if you’re feeling nervous. Favourite among the fashion types is velvet footwear, but if you have to walk anywhere in the great British weather this may not be the ideal option.
  2. Layer up – a velvet camisole is a great way to access this trend, and can be made stylishly wearable by actual humans (as opposed to slim and long limbed 23 year old models) by layering a dark colour over a slim fitting roll neck in one of your best light neutrals.
  3. Try pairing a long tunic/short dress with simple leggings and ballet flats, for an absolutely effortless way to get some velvet into your life.
  4. Keep the rest of your outfit casual, unless you’re at a party! Velvet works incredibly well with a certain laid back insouciant sort of look, but can easily look over-done for daytime wear. Of course if it’s a party, then please ignore me entirely.
  5. If you’re not a Winter, keep an eye out for velvet in soft greys, camel and other neutrals – there is a bit of a dearth of velvets in accent colours for any season apart from Winter, so keep an eye out for some more unexpected colours or neutrals from your palette.

 

Details of all items shown can be found on the Kettlewell Polyvore page here

2 comments

  1. I was told by my wonderful House of Colour consultant all those years ago, to avoid textures like tapestry, velvet – real or fake – velvet brocade, fuzzy, fluffy mohair or anything like that. If it’s too fuzzy or fluffy or too woolly, then it’s mostly a lost outline. And I’m looking at the book from 1998 as I write. It has served me well in spite of fashion this winter – velvet everywhere!

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