Dressing for random spring weather
With less predictable weather, a good trans-seasonal wardrobe is fast becoming a must.
Long, long ago, in a distant fashion past, the concept of trans-seasonal dressing might have meant purchasing a raincoat or an extra pair of ankle boots – but with the lines of distinct fashion “seasons” blurring and New Zealand’s seasonal weather and temperatures growing equally indistinct and unpredictable, a good transseasonal wardrobe is fast becoming a must.
Trans-seasonal dressing means different things to different people – whether it’s more literal (you need pieces that work when it’s not too hot but also not that cold), as way of freshening up your wardrobe and getting your shopping fix between main collections, or as an opportunity to source pieces that speak more to longevity and value than fast fashion.
For me, the first tactic to nail the “betweensies” is considered layering – you’ll need a topper, but also be prepared to take it off, or at the very least keep the layer closest to your skin something light and cool like a T-shirt or blouse.
The second is balance, to keep you at optimum temperature and not left looking ridiculous if the weather packs in. Longer sleeves and higher necklines work best with shorter hemlines on pants and skirts, which work best with more enclosed footwear like an ankle boot. If you’re going for a midi skirt or ankle-length trousers, pick a peep-toe or mule to let your skin breathe.
Starting at the top, my picks of trans-seasonal must-haves would be a lightweight coat (extra points for waterproofing and breathability) such as a trench or duster coat, a relaxed-fit blazer or kimono jacket in cotton or linen and a classic denim jacket.
Blouses and shirts are also an essential – if you’re heating up you can undo an extra button at the neck or roll up the sleeves.
Vintage-style jeans (which I’ve recently sung the praises of in this column) are the perfect transseasonal denim, as the versatile hue and forgiving shape work with pretty much anything. I’ve also had great year-round wear from simple dress trousers in mid-weight cotton, which can be cuffed on warmer days.
To finish, an ankle boot almost always works, as does a classic loafer, or if there’s no sign of rain and the temperature is on the milder side, tap into the mule trend – winter smarts at the front and summer cool at the back.