Winter is coming, and we’re ready for it. The days are getting shorter, the weather is getting colder and before we know it, we’ll be putting up our festive decorations. With every new season comes a sense of new beginnings, and this feeling extends to our mindsets as well as our wardrobes. If you’re a regular reader of Who What Wear UK, you’ll know that we’re all about the capsule wardrobe, because whilst we’re inspired by trends, we always like to invest in pieces that have longevity and can be worn in multiple ways, for many occasions.
As such, when it comes to this time of the year, we don’t descend into a frenzy of buying. Instead, we like to consider the categories of our clothing that need some attention in order to get the most wear out of our existing pieces with just a little refresh. For me, the core categories for this time of year are always knitwear, outerwear and party pieces, and a brand I come back to time and again for all of the above is French Connection. As a key fixture of the high street, French Connection has carved out a brand DNA of high-quality styles offered at affordable prices that seamlessly balance timelessness and design in perfect harmony.
Winter is a demanding time for our wardrobes. There’s a sense of juxtaposition that comes from the combination of functionality required to beat the changing weather, and the excuse to celebrate and get dressed up as we move closer to the festive season. And French Connection’s new collection smartly bridges the gap between the two.
To start, there’s cosy knitwear to ease us into the cooler days, one layer at a time. With a finger on the fashion pulse, French Connection has identified the key colours of the season and noted them in its knitwear collection, as you’ll see from the bursts of red. Cosy layers are about to become the cornerstones of our everyday wardrobes, so French Connection has honed in on these versatile layers, from pared-back neutrals to easy-dressing co-ords and a particularly fun striped style.
After the sudden temperature drop, it’s time for outerwear to come into its own, with French Connection’s collection ensuring that both style and function work in harmony. To ease us into the new season, classic autumnal shades of dark green and brown come to the fore, and alongside great design is an intuitive aspect to each creation. For example, the Aris Quilted Coat has detachable sleeves to allow for various ways to wear, and the faux fur gilet is equipped with pockets set into its trims for a streamlined silhouette.
It isn’t just the elevated everyday that French Connection has honed in on—with the adornments and twinkling lights of the festive season ahead, you may find there are gaps in your wardrobe for dressier styles to suit upcoming celebrations. As ever, French Connection has all bases covered. For the minimalists, Juliette showcases a sleek strapless dress in faux leather with a bold zip running through the centre to add intrigue to the style, or look to the classics, like the simple shift that has playful faux fur trims and an elegant keyhole cutout. And if you’re a maximalist looking to up the ante, there are sequins and colour mixes galore, though these feature classic silhouettes to ensure longevity in your wardrobe.
And with that, keep scrolling to discover the best pieces (in my humble opinion) from these three wardrobe categories.
Style Notes: With fresh winds setting in, having hard-working layers in our arsenal is most important, and French Connection has a plethora of styles to cover all preferences. You’ll find cosy layers that can be added or subtracted with the unpredictable weather, in both neutral shades and bolder hues to allow you to find your match this season. Caroline (pictured above) styles up the cosy roll neck with black jeans and classic boots, creating an elevated minimalist look for every day. If you’re searching for a balance of chic and comfortable, take note from Naomi’s pairing (pictured above) of fluid plissé trousers, striking jumper and wear-everywhere loafers. Luxe styles have also been considered, with this especially fun striped lurex top that Karina (pictured above) has styled with the matching trousers. With so many plans ahead, French Connection is adding ease to our wardrobes with ready-made outfits like the jumper-and-skirt co-ord, a symbol of autumn when paired with knee-high boots.
Style Notes: Come winter, outerwear holds a greater importance than ever. As the outer-most layer of our looks, finding a great coat is key, and this collection covers all the reliable styles our editors always turn to, allowing you to snap one up now and rewear it every year. Special mention goes to the cleverly constructed Aris coat worn by Naomi (above) that converts into a sleeveless style, allowing your outfit to change as quickly as the weather does. On the same note, gilet styles are a staple for the winter season, and Caroline (above) shows how the denim maxi you wore through summer can translate into this cold-weather look. You can also explore cosy yet relaxed borg jackets and a selection of expensive-looking blazers to bolster your wardrobe for work, coffee dates or evening plans.
Style Notes: From weddings to birthdays, and yes, Christmas parties, the celebratory season will soon be upon us, and there’s no time like the present to get ahead of the game. Forget shuffling pieces around in your wardrobe the night before an event—we’re planning ahead with sleek, elegant styles that will tick off our party-season needs. For the dedicated minimalists, there’s classic silhouettes in muted tones, yet each with a striking detail (interesting cutouts and playful fabrics to name but a few) to make an impact this party season. If you’re keen to dip your toe into rainbow shades, Karina (above) shows your accessories can be just as playful, with metallic shoes rounding off the look. Looking to shimmer? This collection has a night-out look for all aesthetics. What’s more, there’s an emphasis on eternally chic silhouettes to ensure these peices hold their own in your wardrobe for years to come.
Discover more of French Connection’s A/W 23 collection here.