Before we get into it, I need to preface this column by stressing the importance of investing in timeless pieces, especially if you are in the infancy of your style journey. I say this because each of these fabrics feature in on-trend pieces that will date quickly and could leave you regretting the purchase. For example, there is a trend where shearling or faux shearling is used in the construction of basics like hoodies and sweaters. In principle, there isn’t anything wrong with these pieces, but if you’re starting out and want to wear the trend, do so with a piece that won’t date, like a shearling-lined denim jacket, for example.
Here are Theo Ngobeni’s five essential fabric trends for winter:
This fabric is durable and functional in equal measure. Considering that it was first used to line air force pilots’ jackets, it is certain to keep you warm. I have already mentioned one key shearling-lined piece – the denim jacket – but pea coats and bombers are great go-tos for winter as well.
If you’re 30 and over, you’ll most likely have been dressed up in corduroy throughout your childhood. Alas, sir, your childhood returns, albeit in a mercifully slimmer-fitting guise for suiting, coats and shirts. A corduroy trucker jacket is a smart way to wear the trend, but my favourite piece is brown or tobacco slim-fit pants that one could rock with everything from a denim jacket to a sports jacket.
The lumberjack’s staple gets an urban lifeline here. I’m loving flannel suits right now, because they mean you won’t have to compromise on style or warmth. Three-piece variants are especially slick. Flannel shirts are a winter essential, while checked versions remain very popular on the streetwear scene. These are great for warmer winter days that take you into cool evenings because they can function as a lightweight jacket. Personally, I love wearing flannel shirts with double denim looks. Try it, thank me later.
I enjoy pieces that I’m able to layer comfortably and lightweight merino wool polo necks have been a favourite among these. The fabric is comfortable on the skin and looks great worn on its own as well. I’m also really into quarter-zip sweaters, which one can wear in a look that incorporates a suit jacket or sports jacket as well as with a straight shirt-and-tie combination.
This is quite simply winter royalty and that is reflected in the steep price of any cashmere piece. It just looks and feels luxurious and if you have the financial means, a cashmere overcoat is going to give you many blissful winters of wear. Jerseys, sweaters or cardigans are a more accessible entry point for most, and will make great additions to any wardrobe. But be warned, though, that these pieces can’t be washed with the rest of your laundry. You have to be willing to drop some extra cash on a high-quality dry cleaner.
Photography: HM Images