For those of us who are into fashion, but not silly stuff – you won’t read about the little bag that’s too small to hold a phone here – there are some fashion terms that raise suspicion.
A sleeveless coat is one. The carrot-shaped pants another, and the one that is coming back a lot at the moment, the spring knits.
What’s wrong with spring knitwear? Maybe it’s the fact that they seem a bit unnecessary. It can also be the suggestion of Easter bonnet pastels, award-winning cardigans, short sleeves – none of which look appealing. But maybe we should give spring knitwear a shot.
Kendall Jenner (pictured) in a cropped knit top in NYC. Shane Watson says she recommends the sleeveless sweater or tank top
First of all, we live in a country where even when the weather warms up, you’ll usually need more than shirt sleeves under a jacket. For this reason, I wholeheartedly recommend (not for the first time) the sweater or the sleeveless tank top because they are so useful and will remain so in winter.
If you don’t already have a couple, I bet it’s because you think they’ll make you look fat. They won’t, and if you’re fat, get one with a deep V, like Cos’ Crochet Knit Long V-Neck (£69, cosstores.com).
Jade Thirlwall (pictured) in London opting for a knit cardigan paired with a large blue shirt. Shane describes this look as perfect for summer cocktails
In fact, a slouchy sleeveless jumper can be hugely flattering, and if you have toned arms, they’ll look smart off the shoulders topped with a deep V-neck cashmere waistcoat (£125, cosstores.com ). These swooshy wide leg pants are your sorted early summer cocktail party look.
Left: Amanda Holden in a black knit cardigan and leather-look pants for a smart-casual look. Right: Ann Marie in a brightly colored ensemble including a cropped knit cardigan
Sleeveless jumpers add a layer of preppy, Annie Hall-style insouciance, especially in cream of cricket whites (£59, crewclothing.co.uk); and a striped tank top (£16, weekday.com) under a trouser suit jacket makes him look younger. I like to wear a navy cotton v-neck tank top (£125, meandem.com) with a bright blue Nrby shirt to spruce up dark jeans, and a plain tank top warms up a summer dress while giving it an edge. at 2022 level (£55, market.com).
The second category of spring knitwear is the 1970s short-sleeved top, which also looks very much like something an earth girl would have worn on a special Sunday (pretty but also simple). I bought one last year in textured navy and white with three quarter poof sleeves from Me + Em and have worn it more than anything else. The new version comes in orange and cream stripes or cream chevron stitch (£125 and £135, menandem.com).
I will wear the stripe to work with high-waisted navy pants, under a trouser suit, with a denim midi skirt or khaki pants.
I will also wear it in the evening with silky trousers, perhaps in a blue and white print. For me, the volume in the sleeve and the extra length make it much more flattering than a regular short sleeve knit, but if your arms can handle it, there are some smart tee styles out there, including this Breton-inspired one of Kos. stripe (£39).
KNIT: THE 2022 RULES
- Look for contrasting texture and trim
- Pouf sleeves are more flattering than simple
- Wear a bright knit to bust all the white
- Oppose a striped knit to a print
This one has a navy blue top, beige collar and navy band over cream stripes that ends just below the ribs and looks chic enough to wear with a Chanel suit.
Almost as useful is the new clash cardigan. An old print dress looks instantly modern if you add another print to the mix, and the easiest way to do that is with a bright striped cardigan.
New Look’s candy pink and scarlet style (£19.99, newlook.com) is not just a nod to the season’s hot color combo, but a clever way to refresh all sorts of prints . To face off successfully, you just need to match the tone and go boldly.
Finally, there’s always room in your wardrobe for a simple long-sleeved sweater in a sorbet hue that you can wear around your neck for a pop of color. (If the prospect of wearing all white or cream seems daunting, this is your safety net item.)
Cos has a yellow or green cashmere crew neck (£135), the ice pink crew neck from Marks & Spencer will set off the reds or blues nicely (£19.50, marksandspencer.com) and the sweater Nrby’s spacious coral (£99, nrbyclothing.com) the spot.