The Beginners Guide To Dressing Practically
Dressing practically is something that might seem rather obvious, but as someone who wore a pleather jacket in the depths of winter for far too many years clearly, some of us put style over practicality. I know even when I was in my early twenties I truly believed that if I was to dress practically that would mean I would also lose all sense of personal style and that isn’t the case at all. Nowadays there are a plethora of brands out there that combine the need of feeling warm and dry as well as feeling good about what you’re wearing. These are my favourite practical style discoveries and are true staples in my A/W wardrobe.
Some people love buying handbags, some shoes but for me it’s coats. In the UK it’s pretty cold for the majority of the year so that means my coat is the main part of my outfits and wearing the same thing day in and day out does get slightly boring for me. And not one coat suits all occasions so I like to have a few options and for the practical segment of my wardrobe these are my favourites;
Barbour Beadnell Jacket: This my go-to jacket all year round, it’s stylish, practical, has a plethora of pockets and is most importantly waterproof. The only downside to this is that I don’t find it the best option for me when it’s seriously cold although you can purchase a fleece liner for it which would make it super snug if you’re only interested in having one coat for all year round. I truly don't think you can go wrong with the classic Barbour style.
Craghoppers Josefine Jacket*: The parka that got me through last winter was this lovely option from outdoors brand Craghoppers. It’s got the highest warmth rating that the brand does and that system, in general, is incredibly useful when shopping. Faux fur lined around the hood and chest which is where I find I struggle with the cold the most then the coat itself is wind and waterproof.
Roxy Puffa Jacket (similar linked): I have no idea if I’ll be able to find this coat online as I discovered it in TK Maxx and I call it my duvet coat, see me wearing it in this IG post. It keeps me seriously warm and cosy whatever the weather and because it’s that little bit longer it keeps my bum warm too. I like that I can wear this on a dog walk but also for cold days in the city too as often I find some coats look a little too outdoorsy. I recently attached an old faux fur trim to it too and it’s upped the comfort level even more, let’s just ignore the fact that I actually can’t see where I’m going when I put the hood up though.
Regatta Saffira Waterproof Insulated Jacket*: This is the latest addition to my practical coat collection and I feel like you can never go wrong with a classic parka jacket. A rich green with a faux fur trim around the sensibly sized hood with snuggly soft velour on in the inside, again what I love about this is that it’s just long enough to cover my bum. And, you can cinch it in at the waist so it adds some shape back to your body which none of my other coats do. As well as looking nice it’s practical too as it’s windproof and waterproof, a must have for me after being caught in the rain far too much lately.
From around the end of August to the following May you can find me in some sort of jumper and I’ve been slowly adding some really sensible but beautiful knits to my wardrobe lately. I’m trying my hardest to steer clear of grey at the moment which is way harder than you might think, it just goes with everything!
Uniqlo Melange Crew Neck Jumper: I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect blush pink jumper for what feels like forever (H&M did come close earlier in the year) but this lovely (and affordable) jumper from Uniqlo is beautiful. It is slightly itchy so I always wear it on cold days when I need a thermal underneath anyway so it doesn’t bother my skin at all. This is a piece I can either wear for a smarter occasion with leather look leggings or dressed down for a day out with Josie & Edie. Uniqlo is somewhere I really rate for their basic but timeless pieces, I know they always have a lot of stripes on offer and their Oxford shirts are perfect.
Fat Face Sophie Textured Block Jumper*: I’ve been referring to this as my fancy practical jumper as it keeps me incredibly warm considering how lightweight it is and it's a little chicer than the rest of my knitwear with the colour blocking. Burgundy and blush pink isn’t a combination that I thought I’d love but it’s absolutely perfect together. The mixture of the different textures and materials used makes this jumper an absolute standout on my clothing rail right now and I’m very tempted by the other colour combination it comes in. Fat Face is a brand that I’ve come to absolutely adore over the last year, their Breton’s, in particular, are absolutely fantastic!
As well as being the girl who wore a pleather jacket in the depths of winter I also wore extremely impractical footwear for many years. How I did it is beyond me but now I’m very practical, I’m rarely out of my boots and here are my favourites at the moment;
Ugg Kilmer Boots*: These are my serious cold weather boots as they keep my feet incredibly warm and dry. Last year I wore them throughout all the serious snow we had and not once did I get cold feet which is saying something as we had so much of the white stuff. They’re incredibly comfortable even on really long walks and don’t require super thick socks either as the lining already provides that warmth and comfort for you. I’m always so fearful of slipping over in the snow but these boots give me enough grip thankfully. And for a chunkier style, I still find them flattering on the leg which is something that is really important to me.
Dr Marten Chelsea Boots: For months and months, I hunted for a good pair of Chelsea boots and I cannot take any credit for finding these as my best friend and the lovely people of Instagram did. I’m new to the Dr Marten brand and was so terrified of never being able to bed these boots in after hearing so many horror stories but I got away with one tiny blister and ever since they’ve been incredibly comfortable. I love that they’re practical and smart enough to be worn generally but on dog walks too as that was my main gripe, I could only find boots that were suitable for one thing when I want something for both. They were a big investment for me but I’m hoping that I’ll be able to wear them for years and years.
Fat Face Lytham Suede Ankle Boots*: When I’m not walking the dogs and it’s not an absolute monsoon outside I’ve been wearing these beautiful grey booties from Fat Face. I love boots that sit low on the ankle when I’m wearing jeans and jumper dresses as I find some of the most flattering on the leg. The low heel gives me enough lift and a little extra height but it’s not so high that it makes them uncomfortable for long periods of wear which is key for me. Suede is typically something I avoid but this is super tough and hasn’t shown up any marks at all which is pretty incredible considering all the rain we've had lately.