Fashion Trends

Back To School: Office Workwear Trends For Autumn 2012

The dawning of September marks the grim commencement of short days and dreary weather, with kids back to school and the summer holidays over for another year. Nevertheless, the autumn/winter 2012 fashion catwalks hold promise for an exciting season. By taking inspiration from these key catwalk highlights, you can select pieces to mould your perfect fashionable work wardrobe.

The colour:

Cobalt blue was prominent on the A/W catwalks this season, featuring bright blue tailored dresses and trousers. Although cobalt is a particularly bright shade, blue is naturally considered to be sensible and functional, ideal for the office.  It also offers a bold step away from classic navy and black. Lanvin showcased a sleeveless, tailored cobalt dress which would be an ideal staple for a work wardrobe, particularly if layered with a black blazer. For this look, keep accessories to a minimum.

The shape:

Trousers featured prominently on the catwalks, particularly of a cropped, slim shape. Layer these up with turtle necks and a trench coat for feminine winter style. On the high street, Whistles offer a wide range of tailored trousers in black and grey tones for basic, classic work wear.


Oversized garments also made an appearance as cocoon coats and billowing sleeves dominated the Chloe, Jil Sander and Proenza Schouler catwalks. But if you’re not quite brave enough to attempt the oversized trend, an oversized jacket in a neutral colour could be a staple piece to reinvent your wardrobe, ready for the upcoming season. On the high street, Reiss offer a range of oversized jackets with wide collars and rolled sleeves.

The accessories:

Femininity is important for autumn/winter 2012 and the best way to achieve this is through carefully chosen accessories. A pair of sunglasses such as Chloe CL2180 would be ideal for shading eyes from any later autumn sunshine and with a classic cat eye frame, they perfectly channel prim, ladylike chic. Team with a pretty pea coat to complete the look.

Waisted belts were also popular for the upcoming season as designers cinched in waists to create feminine silhouettes. These were worn over peplum jackets to highlight curves and over tailored dresses for a smarter take on the look. Christian Dior’s show featured soft, slouchy trousers with an elasticated belt held around a tweed jacket. This look can be easily adapted for the office with a pair of tailored trousers and smart shoes.

The materials:

Country style was an important feature of the catwalks for autumn/winter, primarily defined by the textures and fabrics of the garments. Utilitarian tailoring meant corduroy and plaid jackets were juxtaposed with brown fur collars and knitwear. If you’re going to invest in one item to attempt this look, a plaid trench coat would be a great way to start. For the rest of your work wardrobe, choose all-over earthy colours layered with creams and grey.

So when you’re choosing your wardrobe essentials for autumn/winter, consider the upcoming trends to ensure your work wear is functional and stylish.

Victoria writes fashion articles for online retailer of round glasses, Direct Sight.


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