Ask any fashion expert the key to unfussy autumn chic and they will utter two fateful words: ‘Layering, darling.’

But there are three problems with the style cognoscenti’s love of layers.

Firstly, crisp-collared shirts, superluxe knits and coats with detailed trims cost money — and an update of every piece in your mid-season wardrobe is bad for sustainability, too. Secondly, for those of us with curves, the added bulk of the layered look does few favours to one’s silhouette.

Alexandria Dale shares hacks to keep you on top of the trends this season. Pictured: Collar a brand-new look: jumper, £85,

Alexandria Dale shares tips to help you stay on top this season’s trends. Pictured: Collar a brand-new look: jumper, £85,

Thirdly, it is still a bit too hot outside to be comfortable.

The solution? It’s time to fake it.

Add-on accessories are a must-have. You can update your outfit with add-on accessories, like shirt tails that you tie to your waistband. From just £15, these style hacks will keep you on top of the trends this season.

1 Give your coat some luxe lapels 

Collar, £44,

Collar, £44,

A classic tailored jacket is a wardrobe essential, whether it’s a Crombie or a pea coat. Chances are you’ll have an old favourite you wheel out from the back of your wardrobe each year once the mercury drops.

Brands including Shrimps, Khaite, Saks Potts, and Charlotte Simone have all added furry accents to this season’s coats at the collar and sleeves. You can update your coat without spending a lot of money on a new coat by adding faux fur collars and cuffs.

2 Pop on a collar

For the past few seasons, the Peter Pan collar has been featured on the catwalk at brands like Jacquemus and Chloe.

People pounced on the collar trend during the pandemic when Zoom presented the chance to show off the style, and it’s just as popular now.

Lyst, a shopping platform, reported that searches for Peter Pan-collar shirt have increased by 32 percent since September. You can choose a jumper with a faux collar or a completely detachable version.


  £15 Shop

Tailoring that’s all in the wrist

Cuffs, £21,

Cuffs, £21,

ME+EM, a British brand, has been synonymous with relaxed, tailored style. These broderie layering cuffs achieve the statement sleeve look for less than a third of the price of the brand’s ornately-cuffed shirts.

Slip under sleeves with the frill peeking from the wrists.

A backless shirt is the best option

Many of us have spent much of the past 18 months in loungewear thanks to our work from home. It can be difficult to adjust to formal workwear when you return to the office. Created to be worn under knitwear and jackets to give the appearance of a smart shirt, without bulk, the blouse insert is an easy way to nail this season’s layered look. The style is super-chic, even if the elasticated straps to keep the insert in place are anything but (and you can’t take off your jacket or jumper). But this will quickly become the hero item you didn’t know you needed.

A hoodie is the perfect way to indulge your love for loungewear

If you can’t bear to part with your loungewear completely, achieve that smart -casual balance by layering a structured blazer over the top of a hoodie.

There’s no need to fork out on a whole new item of clothing, especially if you have drawers of hoodless jumpers.

Look for a knitted sweater that can be tucked in at your neck to achieve the same look. It will add warmth and layers without the need to coordinate the colours or design.

It’s a fun and trendy alternative to your beanie hat.

Fake a shirt tail

An oversized shirt is a wardrobe essential, in classic white, blue, and striped. This season the look is a 1990s-inspired boxy silhouette, like the boyfriend shirt (£85) from With Nothing Underneath, layered under a sweater.

If you don’t own one, or if your existing one is too short, fake it with a faux shirt tail. It has an elastic waistband that allows you to adjust the length. It can be teamed with a jumper to create the illusion of stylish layering.

7 Bibs aren’t just for babies

Open side vest, £69,

Open side vest, £69,

Bibs , collars, tabards, whatever you want to call them — if you haven’t got your hands on one yet, what are you waiting for?

They cover the chest, back, and are available in different lengths. Some have open sides and can be tied, while others can be fastened. These unfinished tank tops can be worn under jackets or coats as an additional layer, with roll-neck designs and zip-front styles. Jacquemus and John Galliano for Maison Margiela have released their take on the trend, and the high street has followed suit with Cos and H&M offering some purse-friendly options.