Fashion: Five essential tailoring tips for women
Fashion experts set out the style rules to know, by Katie Wright...
WOMEN'S tailoring has gone through a major evolution in recent years.
Once the staple of straight-laced office workers, suits have gone well and truly mainstream. Everything from relaxed tailored looks and chic skirt suits to bold blazers have been embraced by fashion-forward teens and red carpet celebrities.
Way beyond a flash in the pan trend, suits are here to stay. It's easy to find the perfect fit for you, whether you're looking for understated daytime separates or jazzy party pieces.
Fashion experts run down their top tailoring tips for women…
PLAY TO YOUR STRENGTHS
The beauty of tailoring is everyone can find the right cut, colour and style to show off their best assets.
“If you have great legs, showcase them with a closely tailored pair of trousers,” says designer Heather Griffiths-Benhrima, founder of Kasbah Clothing (kasbahclothing.com).
“Alternatively, if you don't love your legs, a wide leg trouser creates a chic silhouette and draws focus away from the leg shape.”
When choosing a jacket, she says: “Those with a bigger bust look great in a V neck – it draws the eye down and creates a more elegant shape. If you carry weight in your mid-region, an A-line cut will skim the figure.”
CONSIDER YOUR SILHOUETTE
Oversized blazers are a major trend at the moment, but if loose cuts aren't appealing, opt for a more sleek silhouette.
“Careful placement of the waistline is incredibly important,” says Jet Shenkman, creative director of Eponine London (eponinelondon.com). “A waistline that sits too low can kill an outfit, as it cuts someone in half – rather than elongating the body.”
Griffiths-Benhrima agrees: “Use well-cut pieces to accentuate your figure and create a stylish silhouette. If you want to accentuate or create a waist, for example, use a belt or a tailored jacket to really focus in on that feature.”
FIND THE RIGHT BALANCE
While a matching suit jacket and trouser set is the easiest way to do tailoring head to toe, contrasting cuts can be really flattering.
“If you're opting for a loose cut trouser, create a great shape by teaming it with a shorter, more tailored top,” says Griffiths-Benhrima.
“Similarly, if your trouser silhouette is tighter, opt for a looser cut top to balance out your proportions.”
YOU DON'T HAVE TO FOLLOW SEASONAL TRENDS
New tailoring styles crop up all the time, but if you prefer classic cuts and colours over edgy styles, you don't have to follow every trend.
To give traditional shapes and fabrics a modern twist, Shenkman suggests “more trendy accessorising, like trendy boots and tights in clashing colours”.
EMBRACE COLOUR AND PRINT
“Don't be frightened of bright colours, throw them all together and enjoy the result,” says Shenkman. “It will brighten your day!”
Fashion fans have gone wild for fuchsia recently. The trend looks set to continue into 2023, so a hot pink blazer or suit would be a great investment.
As for sparkly suit jackets, sharp trousers and trendy tweed skirts? Don't just save them for special occasions.
Shenkman says: “We tend to spend most on occasionwear, but wear it the least. We firmly believe the beautiful clothes in cupboards should be worn as much as possible.”
Roman Wine Premium Stretch Sleeveless Jacket, £32; Black Long Sleeve Crew Neck T-Shirt, £20; Wine Premium Stretch Split Hem Trousers, £28
Be Beau Pink Co-Ord Blazer, £27; Be Beau Pink Co-Ord Trousers, £19; Be Beau Pink Platform Heels, £16.10 (were £23), Matalan
Kin Black Plain Single Button Blazer, £135; Black Plain High Waist Wide Leg Tailored Trousers, £85; Gemini Black Leather Flatform Loafers, £65, John Lewis & Partners