Life

Underlying trends for autumn

What's underneath counts – especially when it comes to your wardrobe. Katie Wright uncovers the new season smalls with big potential

Parfait Estelle Black Balconette Bra and Briefs, available from miodestino.com

THE right undergarments can make all the difference to an outfit, and with the profusion of sheer fabrics and off-the-shoulder styles in the shops for autumn/winter, it's more imperative than ever that your lingerie isn't left to chance.

Invest wisely now and you won't be left scrambling at the last minute to find a bra that flatters your shape – and your new season purchases.

Give your autumn wardrobe the support it deserves with these unbeatable undies.

DECENT EXPOSURE

Bardot necklines, strappy camis and 'cold shoulder' tops - unless you intend to go bra-less - all call for a supportive strapless bra.

Moulded, non-wired bras offer the smoothest silhouette (so ideal with silk), but if you're used to a bit of added oomph, look for underwired padded styles.

For larger cup sizes, longline strapless bras offer maximum support.

:: M&S Collection Superhold Lace Non-Wired Padded Strapless Bra, £28; Firm Control Waist Sculpt Cincher, £30 (www.marksandspencer.com)

:: Ultimo Fuller Bust Ivory Low Back Strapless Bra, £36 (Figleaves.com)

:: Simone Perele Wish Strapless Plunge Bra, £78 (www.harrods.com)

REVEAL YOUR DARK SIDE

The masses of black lace, tulle and high-necked ruffles seen on the AW16 catwalks have now hit the high street, with the Victoriana blouse the key piece of the season.

The gothic glamour trend demands a suitably dark bra or two that you don't mind peeking from beneath your sheer shirt. Luckily, that won't be a tough shopping task, as the autumn underwear collections are full of ebony, burgundy and berry shades.

:: Lepel Fiore Full Cup Bra, £22 (Figleaves.com)

:: Parfait by Affinitas Estelle Black Padded Bra, £34, and Briefs, £15 (www.miodestino.com)

:: Boux Avenue Toyah Non-padded Triangle Bra, £22, and Brazilian Thong, £14 (www.bouxavenue.com)

SHOW OFF YOUR BEST ASSETS

From gothic glam to velvet to modern heritage, the autumn trends are a goldmine for curvy girls, you just need the undergarments to suit.

Make sure your silk slip or velvet midi dress clings in all the right places by pairing a smooth balconette bra with high-waisted briefs.

Heritage fabrics like tweed and brocade aren't quite so clingy, so you can indulge in lacy styles underneath your co-ords or tailored blazer.

:: Panache Envy Balconette Bra, currently reduced to £32 from £42, and High Waist Shaping Briefs, currently reduced to £25 from £35 (www.littlewoods.com)

:: Freya Fancies Bright Red Longline Bra, £30 (LeiaLingerie.com)

BE A GOOD SPORT

Victoriana vibes may rule on the catwalks, but back in the real world, the athleisure trend isn't going anywhere – and with workout gear increasingly featuring cut-outs or open backs, sports bras now count in the 'underwear as outerwear' category.

Contrast is key here: if you tend to favour black and grey fitnesswear, pick a neon or print bra, and if you love bright prints, a minimalist colour palette is the way to go.

:: Only Play Lola Training Bra, £18 (Little-Mistress.com)

:: Sweaty Betty Virasana Padded Yoga Bra, £40 (www.sweatybetty.com)

GET THE LOOK

And the gong for best dressed at the TV Choice Awards goes to... Susanna Reid, for her on-trend ruby red cold-shoulder gown. The presenter looked a million dollars, but her dress is actually high street and in John Lewis stores now: the Phase Eight Amail Maxi Dress, £150 (www.johnlewis.com).

BUY IT NOW

Jewellery virtuoso Dominic Jones brings his characteristic eccentricity to the high street this month with a capsule collection for River Island. Inspired by the venus fly trap, the nine-piece range includes necklaces, earrings and hair accessories adorned with blue bottle flies – the carnivorous plant's unsuspecting prey.

:: Dominic Jones x River Island Design Forum Blue Bottle Necklace, £45, and Blue Bottle Earrings, £40 (available September 19, www.riverisland.com).

FASHION FLASH

:: ARE VLOGGERS THE NEW STYLE STARS?

They attract millions of followers and command huge appearance fees, now a new survey reveals that bloggers and YouTube stars hold more sway on young people's style than film or TV stars.

The survey, by The Clothes Show in association with Alcatel, found 42 per cent of women aged 18 to 24 admit bloggers and vloggers most influence their fashion buying decisions, compared to actors (29 per cent), reality stars (21 per cent) and music acts (8 per cent).

And with nearly half (49 per cent) saying they look at blogs or vlogs at least four times a week, that influence is surely set to rise.

:: KEEP UP WITH THE CATWALKS

To mark the biannual style spectacular that is Fashion Month, digital magazine and newspaper subscription app PressReader is offering a week of free access.

You'll be able to read titles like Vogue, Elle, Grazia and Marie Claire on your smartphone, tablet or laptop, so you can keep up with all the news from the catwalks, backstage and the front row. Go to Tiny.cc/pressreaderoffer and sign up before the end of Paris Fashion Week on October 5.

STYLE STEAL

Want to revamp your lingerie drawer on a budget? Peacocks' new season range features luscious autumnal colours and pretty lace detailing, with prices starting at just £2.50 for thongs and £5 for bras, so go grab yourself a BRA-gain or two.

:: Peacocks Red Lace Back Bra, £6; Burgundy Helenca Lace Thong, £2.50 (www.peacocks.co.uk)

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