by Milly Logan-Wilson
Our guide to this season's hottest trends and how to make them work for you
Evolved animal prints and winter florals are two of the big trends this season as shown by Nikki Hill in our new statement Vinia devore silk dress, @charlotteloves in our new leopard print emma coat and our new Sally printed floral silk wrap dress
After the hottest summer in recent memory, Autumn is finally here and we’re now well and truly ready to step away from the sundresses and embrace the fabulous trends this new season offers. While you may have been away or perhaps enjoying some incredible sunshine here in the UK this summer, our design team have been hard at work analysing the winter catwalks and developing an incredible new collection combining the latest trends and the most luxurious new silks with some sassy new styles that have been ingeniously tailored to flatter unique body shapes. For this blog post we're looking into this season's two key print driven trends and providing insight into key styles and garments from this season's catwalks.
For our prints this season we are honing in on two mega trends: evolved animal and wonderful winter florals.
Without a doubt one of this summer’s hottest trends has been the emergence of animal print, with catwalks and high streets simply teaming with a variety of leopard, and zebra offerings not seen since the set of Zulu. And it’s good news you’ve caught a dose of animal magnetism. These fabulous prints are set to continue well into winter and beyond. Like Tom Ford, many designers have evolved the animal look for this season, adding an injection of bright jewel colours to traditional animal prints. The trend has also been elevated for autumn/winter by mixing different sizes and shapes of print in an outfit.
Wild prints dominated this season's catwalks with bold Zebra at Balenciaga (L) and coloured leopard print at Tom Ford
And the traditional floral is no longer just for Spring. Gucci and Oscar De La Renta sent their models down their winter catwalks in layers of vibrant floral silks. Whilst ditsy micro florals were the thing for summer, winter florals are bolder and more defined. The key is also in the materials here: silks and diaphanous silk chiffons are a more glamorous take on summer’s printed linens and cottons. What’s more, wearing silk at this time of year has other benefits- its temperature regulating properties keep you warm outside on colder days, but it is equally cooling in environments where the heats turned up for winter. For more information on the magical properties of silk, check out our The Silk Scoop Blog from earlier in the year.
Eclectic silk floral maxi dresses from this season's catwalk shows by Gucci and Oscar De La Renta
Animal Print: How to wear it
At Ridley, we have some really unique animal prints to get excited about this season including incredibly beautiful new takes on leopard, zebra, snakeskin, and peacock feathers that you’re not going to see anywhere else. To make a statement, at Ridley we have leopard and ostrich printed silks shot through with gorgeous, vivid colours in this season’s jewel palette.
If this is not your natural habitat, don’t be alarmed, animal print can be more subtle, and so much more wearable than you may first expect. To quote blogger Chloe Samwell-Smith (@ChloeLovestoShop) “a print like this can truly work as a neutral”, especially when teamed with coloured accessories. Or for something to make a statement, at Ridley we have leopard and ostrich printed silks shot through with colour. To get the most out of this season’s key print, one must shop with versatility and specific wearing occasions in mind.
For Day-time Casual
Whatever you're doing animal print can inject a touch of instant chic and update the most functional of every day wardrobes. Influencers including Alexa Chung are embracing the trend for leopard print teaming blouses with jeans for an effortlessly laid back style. Or try going for animal print scarves over neutral knitwear and overcoats. Leopard spots and zebra stripes work particularly well with black as shown here by street style blogger Caroline Daur uses her silk leopard scarf as a head wrap to keep off the New York showers.
Alexa chung teams her leopard print silk blouse with jeans for an effortlessly laid back style. Meanwhile blogger Caroline Daur wears her leopard print silk head scarf with an elegant all black look and matching leopard print bag. The new luxury leopard print silk Laura blouse and matching leopard print carmen maxi crepe silk skirt by Ridley London
For Day-time Occasion
Whether you’re heading to a meeting or a leisurely lunch, a bold animal print dress in relaxed midi style is bang on trend for this season. A mid-length wrap style is both smart without being too fussy, and the wrap style a universally flattering shape.
Leopard was widely spotted at Copenhagen Fashion Week last month with this gorgeous leopard wrap dress and straw bag being one of our favourite combinations. Our friend naturopath Nikki Hill teams our new printed midi silk Vinia wrap dress in luxurious satin devore animal, with classic black pumps. Meanwhile Cassie Anderson of Harper’s Bazaar steps out in style at New York Fashion Week in a leopard wrap dress teamed with a black cape overcoat and bag.
For Casual Evenings
For a laid back evening like dinner with friends, try an animal skirt worn with a neutral coloured top. This look is a current favourite with a number of leading fashion bloggers as it effortlessly bridges the gap between casual and occasion wear. And is a great way to sharpen up those serviceable classics in everyone's wardrobe. For an extra injection of chic, we'd recommend choosing a neutral collared shirt or blouse over the skirt rather than a plain t shirt. Again dark silks compliment leopard spots. And when temperatures dip take a leaf out of Vogue’s Sylvana Durrett book and match a classic black roll-neck sweater with the skirt. Dress these looks up and down with the addition of heals, pumps or boots and add some extra edge with a pair of Stan Smith style trainers or black motorbike or cowboy boots.
Fashion blogger @lifeofboheme looks put together in a leopard silk skirt and white collared blouse. While Vogue’s Sylvana Durrett opts for Parisienne elegance, matching her leopard print skirt with a classic black rollneck, heals, bag and simple gold jewellery for a timelessly sophisticated look
For Evening Occasions
For that showstopper look for special occasions, animal print is the perfect choice. Timelessly glamorous, animal patterns have always been the choice of the most stylish and celebrated. The print really comes into it's own when combined with a carefully chosen cut and tailoring that really flatters and accentuates our best features. Add the right heels and you'll exude confidence and exotic glamour. Which makes animal print dresses perfect for all year round wearing. And as the tone is neutral it's easy to update your look with a spectrum of contrasting accessories in each season's hottest style and colour. For that effortlessly chic look, we strongly advise avoiding busy shoes or matchy accessories and simply wear with classic strappy heels and your finest jewellery.
Rachel Zoe at the Cartier NYFW party last week, in a vintage inspired leopard print statement silk maxi dress. A reveler at the YSL Beauty Party in NY last week, in floor length leaopard print with heels. Our Ridley Carmen maxi skirt and Laura silk shirt in matching leopard look fantastically glam when worn together
For Day into Night
If you’re continuing a busy day and heading straight out, make sure you’re wrapped up in this season's hottest accessory: a faux fur animal print coat. Incredibly versatile, from jeans, jumpers and trainers to heals and dresses, this coat really works with any look. Our new Emma coat is tailored to fit so it will naturally enhance your silhouette, whatever your look. For the most elegant style, we'd always recommend wearing simple block colours like blacks or reds, as seen on Olivia Culpo. Or for the more sartorially brave opt for this season's 'mismatch' trend by wearing it with juxtaposing prints.
The ever glamorous @charlotteloves modelling the new Ridley London tailored emma coat in leopard faux fur. Every Ridley coat is individually made to measure for a perfect fit. Model actress Olivia Culpo goes native in Paris with a chic black outfit and leopard print jacket. Street style: leopard worn with clashing prints can look amazing...even outside of Shoreditch!
Fabulous New Florals: How to wear them
We love a floral pattern at Ridley and this season our collection features some really unique new floral silk designs, that you're not going to see anywhere else. This season's catwalks have seen florals given a new lease of life by moving away from the chintz of this summer's micro-floral craze towards bolder, more vivid buds. The best news is that floral prints can really suit everyone and enhance every physique. for curvier body shapes, we recommend densely packed and larger flowers. For the petite amongst us, stick to a slightly smaller print so as not to overwhelm your frame.
For Day-time Casual
Floral’s print fabrics and garments are surprisingly versatile, so they work dressed down as well as glammed up. and you can create so many stylish looks with one garment. Bring a stylish edge to a day out with the family by rocking a winter floral top with dark jeans, boots and biker jacket. Or add a silk skirt or even palazzo pants for a more refined on trend look. We would always recommend pairing this season's bold winter florals with plains. So if you're wearing a floral print skirt, keep your top simple and fuss free. Try layering up with a black or grey cashmere sweater on cooler days.
The fabulous Becky from @bricksandstitches rocking one of our new silk maxi skirts with a simple navy cashmere jumper from Wyse London also stocked in our Ridley & Co boutique in Barnes. Meanwhile floral silk maxi skirts feature prominently with the blogerati at New York Fashion Week this year.
For Day-time Occasion
Whether you're heading to work or an event, this season's looks have so much to give. And office attire no longer needs to be safe and dull. With more emphasis on individual contributions, it's never been a better time to stylishly stand out. So ditch the plain corporate colours and introduce a splash of individuality to your wardrobe with some of this season's sublime floral silks. We'd always recommend striking the right balance by combining bolder prints with more refined cuts. Witness the rise of the floral midi-dress. Combine with simple heels and pared back makeup like Nicole Kidman for an effortless on-trend look.
For Casual Evenings
With versatility now the watchword in every wardrobe, look out for pieces that can be easily dressed up or down for every occasion. This season's collection of floral silk dresses fits the bill perfectly. For a more edgy relaxed look, toughen up your silk floral dress with black boots and a leather jacket.
Selena Gomez at a Coach fashion show, wearing her silk hankerchief dress with cowboy boots and a biker
For Evening Occasion
Sublime dresses in a spectrum of gorgeous winter florals have been all over the catwalks for this season. And to add a real touch of winter glamour, silk satin is bang on trend right now. The key thing here is to exude confidence so ensure you find a dress that really accentuates your best features. As celebrity stylist Claire McNestry puts it "the secret to looking and feeling really fabulous is finding the right styles, cuts and colours for your unique body shape and skin tone." So if you're a pear shape embrace this season's trend for ruffles to add volume and detail onto your top half. If you're slender look for something you can easily clinch in to bring more definition to your waist. If you're looking for something a little more relaxed and easy, our new collection of stunning silk wrap dresses has been designed with flexibility of fit in mind. The easy wrap design enables unlimited adjustment and a near perfect fit for every shape and unique physique. No wonder its still such a fashion icon.
Actress Thandie Newton pictured at an event yesterday evening in a stunning silk satin floral gown. An attendee at last week’s YSL beauty party wows in a showstopping ruffled floral number. Political staffer Huma Abedin in decadent floral dress at Ralph Lauren’s 50th Anniversary show on September 7th
For Day into Night
If you’re looking for a transitional outfit to take you through the day and night, a floral dress can be styled up or down. Actress Katie Holmes and fashion consultant Roopal Patel look fresh and smart-casual at a Sak’s party earlier this month in their floral dresses. Roopal’s playful white heeled pointed boots keep the look on the casual side. To dress up a winter floral, add heels and accessories- simple!
Roopal Patel accessorises a red floral wrap dress with white heels. Katie Holmes looks put together without appearing overly dressy in an abstract floral print. Rosamund Pike at a Canadian film festival this month, dresses up her floral chiffon humber for a premier. Model Charlotte Wiggins at Mulberry, elevating a classic floral dress with cool accessories
Whatever the occasion, there's an easy and perfect look out there for everyone this season. Just make sure you select a style that works with your natural physique and accentuates your best features. And always question how easily a garment can be dressed up or down for a variety of events. After all we want to get the most out of our purchases.
if you're looking for any specific advice on what could work best for you this season or have any questions, please feel free to call our stylists or pop into our Ridley & Co boutique in Barnes. Our team would be delighted to show you our new collection of unique made to measure silk dresses, silk jumpsuits, tops and coats for this season. And help you find the right style, colours, prints and a tailor made garment that will bring out the very best in you. For seasons to come.