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My money is on granny-chic cardigans and I’ll challenge anyone who says otherwise


by Niamh ODonoghue
31st Aug 2018
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For style kudos this coming season, the secret is in the cardi


Welcome to s-autumn-er; the in-between season where summer hasn’t yet fully passed, but temperatures are erratic. Have you been outside today yet? There’s a real back-to-school feel about the weather. Unlike holidaymakers basking in the Azores, I’m getting to grips with the fact that our sunny reign might have actually ended. The shelves that I cleared to house my summer clobber may now be redundant. I felt chilly – cold, even – on my morning commute, and the idea of dainty spaghetti straps and open-toed sandals are less-appealing by the minute. So, here it goes: I’m ready for long sleeves, soft Merino wool pullovers and delicate cotton flannels. Yes, knitwear season is finally here and I’m sitting by my fireplace ready to welcome it with open arms.

Luckily, there is a plethora of styles and shapes to choose from, but if I was to distil the vibe for AW18 knitwear down to one key reference, I’d say to take inspiration from granny’s favourite tea cosy-style cardigan. Of course, it’s far from actual autumn (which starts on September 23rd), but a cardi will prove as the perfect substitute during the interim between now and then – when the weather can’t quite make up its mind. Crochet is cool, bobbles are the business and patchwork is the pattern of choice. If you need further convincing that cardis are cool, take a look at these fashion-savvy ladies below and steal their style with three ways to wear this season’s favourite knit.

XXXL

London Fashion Week, source Jason Lloyd Evans

Make an entrance worth talking about with an extra-large statement knit. This astounding aqua full-length knitted cardi with a large embroidery motif caught all the right attention during London Fashion Week. And the colour? It packs the perfect punch. A piece like this really brings the adage “go big or go home” to mind.

Try

Intarsia mohair-blend cardigan by Loewe, €1,200 at net-a-porter.com, metallic thread cardigan, €49.95 at zara.com, oversized boyfriend cardigan, €30 at boohoo.com

Intarsia mohair-blend cardigan by Loewe, €1,200 at net-a-porter.com, metallic thread cardigan, €49.95 at zara.com, oversized boyfriend cardigan, €30 at boohoo.com

Heritage knits for cocktail hour

Scandinavian stylist Emili Sindlev expertly shows how to take the humble grandad-cardi to the catwalk by pairing it with a clashing pair of green extra-long, boot-cut trousers, charming statement red sunnies and bag, and a delicate jewellery. The mixture of patterns and texture, together with smart accessorising – which she makes look so effortless –gives a new perspective on this slouchy style.

  Emili Sindlev wearing Marc Jacobs, source @emilisindlev 
Emili Sindlev wearing Marc Jacobs, source @emilisindlev
 Try
GG cotton lurex cardigan, €950 at farfetch.com, pocket cardigan, €40 at topshop.com, alpaca and merino cardigan, €89 at arket.com
GG cotton lurex cardigan, €950 at farfetch.com, pocket cardigan, €40 at topshop.com, alpaca and merino cardigan, €89 at arket.com

Colour challenge

Swap muted and dusky tones for crips and bright exciting ones instead. Make a colourful statement in new-season Gucci, like this rainbow stripe one, below, and look mellow in canary yellow from Zara, also below. Though earthy colour and textures can be synonymous with the changing season, vibrant pink is the fresh and modern autumn update you didn’t know you needed. Ramp up your colourful prep with a pair of tailored pants and loafers for a complementing (and equally preppy) aesthetic.

Leopard jacquard-knit cardigan by Baum Und Pferdgarten, €102 at theoutnet.com, oversized yellow cardigan, €39.95 at zara.com, striped cashmere and wool-blend cardigan, €1,100 at matchesfashion.com

Leopard jacquard-knit cardigan by Baum Und Pferdgarten, €102 at theoutnet.com, oversized yellow cardigan, €39.95 at zara.com, striped cashmere and wool-blend cardigan, €1,100 at matchesfashion.com

Another point to note about cardigans is that they really are chic at any age, meaning anyone can try this trend with ease and reassurance. Borrowing one from an older friend or relative? Bring it into the new-season with exciting flares, exaggerated pussy-bows and sophisticated heels. And don’t forget that cardigans have serious sex appeal (yes, cardigans are sexy! Or have you forgotten about Cameron Diaz’s bombshell character in There’s Something About Mary?). Experiment with buttons and open and close as you see fit. Though I think I’ll keep my navel concealed from the world for now…

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