10.03.2017

#AskSuperbalist: Warm-weather layering

How to work texture trends, with or without cold weather

I get how I'd wear textured pieces if this was the middle of a London winter, but I live in Durban and there are a maximum of three days a year when it's viable even to wear a scarf. How do I wear the cosy textures I see in Fashion Week street style shots without sweating to death this autumn?

Kaylee, 24, Durban

As Paulo Coelho wrote in his 20th century version of Eat Pray Love, “Remember that wherever your heart is, there you will find your treasure.” Why long for the textures and tones of London and New York winters when your treasure is right in front of your eyes, at Snake Park Beach, the Natal Sharks Board and Johnny's Roti? As much as you’d love to indulge in a high-neck puffer jacket or a cashmere cape, you live in a literal humidifier, so it’s time to give up on that dream.

That being said, you can still make the most of textures, knits, fabrics and feels, even in tropical winter. In fact there’s nowhere better to do so these days, now that the fashion capitals of the north are swiftly turning into the wasteland settings of late capitalism’s death throes (a conversation for another time, certainly another blog, but the point is that at least everyone suffering up there looks simply fabulous).

As for your question, here are some suggestions on how to dress the part for an East Coast winter: Go for lightweight polo necks, tees or knits under slip dresses to achieve the layered look without the added bulk. Also, lightweight knits and open cardigans are a must for in-between weather, and help to create a flattering definition with texture when tied around your waist or draped over your shoulders.

Sleeveless knit tops and dresses offer the best way to fake the cosy, layered look, especially when worn under jackets you can take off later. Be sure to pick a breathable weave to avoid overheating. Essentially, for people in warmer weather, the task boils down to how one chooses to layer one’s hemlines. Pair a longline side split top with a lightweight denim jacket, or a waterfall cardigan with skinny jeans, and reap the style benefits.

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