At the start of every new season, there are always certain non-negotiable basics I know I’ll be wearing in the coming months regardless of what the trends are. In winter, the list includes a warm coat and lug-sole boots. Spring might involve some new dresses and sandals, summer always requires a trove of white tops and basic linen, and autumn, of course, comes with its own set of essentials—all of which you’re about to read about below.
While the 2021 trend agenda has plenty of fun and directional looks to play with, I think the key to having a successful autumn wardrobe is being able to balance out the more of-the-moment pieces with an edit of never-date basics. This will ensure every outfit you wear feels timeless and not too trend-specific.
I like to keep on top of my basics, only replacing them when required. But to help you assemble your own edit of reliable autumn basics, I've chronicled them for you below. To see my must-haves in action, I've called upon some of my fashion friends for help, as they perfectly demonstrate the importance of autumn basics with their flawless outfits. Scroll on to see them and to shop my picks for each category along the way.
1. Cosy Cardigans
Style Notes: The cardigan's massive comeback is probably my personal favourite of the last several years. Go for thick cable-knit for a classic take or a sleek collared number that feels very now.
Hollister Ribbed Cardigan (£35)
Bottega Veneta Ribbed Collared Cardigan (£1140)
Marks and Spencer Merino Wool Collared Cardigan With Cashmere (£59)
2. Classic Jeans
Style Notes: I simply cannot wait for the summer heat to die down and get myself into a pair of rigid cotton jeans this autumn. Straight-leg is my personal preference, but as long as you opt for never-date blue hues, any jeans style can be considered classic.
H&M+ High-Rise Mom Jeans (£18)
Arket Cropped Stretch Jeans (£59)
Monki Wide-Leg Jeans (£40)
3. Trench Coats
Style Notes: Everyone should own a classic (and/or fashion-forward) trench, and if you're going to buy a new one, there's no better time than just before the start of autumn, when the best are still in stock.
& Other Stories Relaxed Trench Coat (£165)
Totême Double-Breasted Cotton-Blend Gabardine Trench Coat (£650)
COS Oversized Trench Coat (£150)
4. Flat Boots
Style Notes: Because there's really no better category of shoes, am I right? While heeled boots are just as sleek, it's flat boots I can't live without during the fall months.
H&M Chunky Leather Boots (£80)
Ganni Chunky Recycled-Rubber Chelsea Boots (£195)
Bottega Veneta Lug Leather Boots (£810)
5. Knitted Dresses
Style Notes: Dress trends come and go, but knit styles will always be relevant in the colder months of the year. My only requirement when shopping for them is that they pair well with boots and mules.
ASOS Curve Knitted Dress (£32)
Raey Recycled-Cashmere Blend Belted Crew-Neck Dress (£395)
Mango Canali Ribbed Jumper Dress in Beige (£50)
6. Shoulder Bags
Style Notes: If you're going to buy a new bag for the coming season, it should really be one of the shoulder variety. Not only are they still very popular, but they also allow you to keep your hands tucked into your pockets in the chill. Right now, I'm quite taken with slouchy styles.
The Row Everyday Leather Shoulder Bag (£1875)
COS Pleated Shoulder Bag (£45)
& Other Stories Leather Shoulder Bag (£120)
7. Anything Leather
Style Notes: Leather is to autumn what linen is to summer, and I love thinking up new ways to wear it. Leather blazers currently dominate my wish list.
Arket Oversized Leather Blazer (£290)
Karen Millen Curve Leather Five Pocket Straight Leg Jean (£240)
Warehouse Short Sleeve Real Leather A Line Shirt Dress (£185)
Next up, the biggest autumn 2021 fashion trends to know
This article originally appeared on Who What Wear
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