The classics, reworked - 5 autumn/winter trends to get into.

trend report, autumn/winter '23, fashion, style

Words by Lesego Ntsime | Images: Getty

A coat that promises longevity, boots made for warmth and walking and the gift that keeps on giving - layering. Although autumn/winter fashion is characterised by the function of warmth, this season we are motioned towards renewing our love for the classics we often conclude to be banal in their reliable practicality. Denim receives a cheeky makeover, knitwear re-enters the scene and it’s all about the knee-high boot. 

With fashion week currently underway, we look to the runway to inspire a renewed sense of style for the season ahead. Nostalgia, personal taste and imagination dictate where our wardrobes are headed as the temperatures drop. 

Here are our five trends to get into this autumn/winter: 

autumn/winter '23, trend report

Forever a wardrobe staple, denim has reverted back to that space beyond functionality; opting for slightly more daring silhouettes and interpretations as Y2K trends continue to pervade our wardrobes (remember when Britney and Justin Timberlake showed up to the red carpet draped in head-to-toe denim?). At Diesel, denim fell from shoulders to feet in distressed coats, dresses and skirts while Alaia and Mowalola experimented with proportion and fit.

Denim will always have a place in our hearts and wardrobes, however, this season calls for a valiant approach to one of fashion’s most practical items of clothing. Think big and think bold. Go full-on denim! Pair jackets with skirts or jeans and accessories or take it a step further and play clash of the washes.

trend report, style, fashion

From elegant cardigans and preppy vests to chic dresses, knitwear remains a key player in the autumn/winter game. More than just your grandparents go-to texture, this season’s knitwear revels in its modernisation. Mmuso Maxwell exploited the inherent simplicity in wool with a fringed, cut-out two piece that alludes to longevity while Lukhanyo Mdingi offered a refreshing mixture of colour, pattern and texture for their Burkina collection. 

As autumn/winter fashion has displayed in previous years, knitwear is here to stay. This season, it sees a refreshing take with minimalistic cuts and an emphasis on craftsmanship. Play preppy and pair cardigans and vests with skirts or well-tailored trousers, slip into comfortable sets and dresses. For a retro look, hero knitwear by contrasting it with denim for an elevated everyday-look.

knee high boots, trend, autumn/winter '23

Synonymous with iconic Y2K looks, the knee-high boot struts confidently into our wardrobes this season. From retro square-toe styles to chic pointed ones, this flattering silhouette is exactly who she thinks she is. Take notes from Bottega Veneta with their slouchy, knitted rendition of the knee-high or slip into pointy designs for a slight edge (we’re still swooning over that Thebe Magugu Sunday Best Boot). 

Paired with skirts that flow above and below the knee, statement-making coats and different denim styles; this autumn/winter essential is sure to add a chic element to your toasty looks. Layer your outfits with shirts, jerseys and outerwear and complete your ensemble with these statement-making shoes for a modern twist. 

PU, faux leather

Ah, good ol’ leather. Notorious for providing a sharp edge through jackets and trousers ‘80s rockstar style, this hardcore textile is reworked with feminine touches this season. Think playful bralettes, body-hugging silhouettes and timeless tailoring by Brandon Maxwell and Gucci. However, this feminine takeover does not negate the superpower of punk-inspired leather pieces, and the resurgence of Gothcore attests to such a statement with tight leather trousers making a comeback of their own. 

Beyond a fad or trend, leather shares that certified realm of classics with denim. Sometimes the best of something is revealed through taking risks. Style your leather pieces together to make the ultimate statement or keep it subtle with supercool pieces like jackets and trousers paired with wardrobe staples like a white tee and jeans. 

fashion, trend report, style

In the words of Emily Vancamp: Tailoring your clothes makes all the difference. An artform often limited to menswear; the past couple of decades have seen tailoring influence womenswear in monumental ways. Rewind back to ‘80s power dressing, revisit Phoebe Philo’s Céline or channel The Row energy as examples of tailoring done right.

With functionality and minimalism continuing to drive fashion choices forward, tailoring reconsiders silhouettes like culottes and palazzo pants this season. Oversized blazers and classic trench coats prove some of the most popular outerwear pieces while oversized shirts contribute to beautifully-layered looks. Whatever is this season, go for the item that’s perfectly tailored for you.

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H&M Studio
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