The Early Adopter's Guide To Fashion & Style In 2019

From boiler suits to the new ballet pump, and every shade of beige, Charlie Gowans-Eglinton reveals everything you need to know about style for the year ahead


Killing Eve star Jodie Comer in a pink tulle Molly Goddard dress. Photo / @killingeve Instagram

50 Shades of Beige
This year’s colour of choice — beige — may sound dreary, but take heart: it’s easy to pair with most other colours, and can be flattering against the skin (though if you’re very pale, look for beige with a pink undertone to avoid looking washed out). A knee-length, beige wool coat is elegant and often looks more expensive than it is, so it’s an easy way to spruce up workwear or your off-duty jeans and jumper staples. The most modern way to wear the colour is top to toe, as seen on the catwalks at Dior, Burberry, Max Mara and Tibi, and championed by the Duchess of Sussex, who has quickly claimed beige — and biscuit, ecru, ivory, sand, buff and caramel — as her signature colours.

Jasmine Savoy paits animal print with a statement hat at the 9th annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Los Angeles. Photo / Getty Images

Box Ticking
Jodie Comer’s Killing Eve wardrobe, and that pink tulle Molly Goddard dress, gave fashion with a capital F a place on prime-time telly — now, series two promises a stylish follow-up. Meryl Streep is joining the already impressive cast (Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon, Zoe Kravitz) of Big Little Lies for the show’s second series. Expect more glossy Californian mum (and grandmother) style inspiration there. And while you’ll have to wait until the end of the year, series three of The Crown sees Olivia Colman take the monarchal baton from Claire Foy and — more excitingly, from a fashion point of view — Helena Bonham Carter steps into fashion-loving Princess Margaret’s shoes.

Royal Baby Watch
What will Meghan wear to leave the Lindo Wing? What will royal baby Sussex (RBS for short, not to be confused with the bank) be swaddled in? Does Meghan’s go-to fashion house, Givenchy, offer sizing from 0-6 months? RBS is due in March or April, and it seems I have a lot of questions. The Cambridge three — Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis — have set shopping trends ever since a newborn Prince George was first seen wrapped in an Aden + Anais muslin on the steps of the Lindo Wing, causing a 600 per cent increase in sales.

READ: Why Royals Have To Be Fashionable

Since then, their retro outfits of chunky knit cardigans, dungarees and smock dresses have proved equally popular, and RBS’s wardrobe will no doubt influence childrenswear trends too. Then there’s Meghan’s “mum-style”: can we expect a more relaxed, off-duty era of style for the Duchess? Will she swap the slick newsreader dresses and neutral colour palette for Princess Diana’s mum jeans and polka dot blouses? Cue pregnant pause.

Clean Living
If you haven’t heard of Mrs Hinch, then clearly you get out more than I do. Sophie Hinchliffe, a hairdresser from Essex, began sharing cleaning tips alongside pictures of her home (lots of grey and silver, looks a bit like a Wayfair advert) on Instagram; she now has 1.5 million followers and a debut book, the seemingly non-ironically titled Hinch Yourself Happy, due out in April. Just the thought of the amount of chemicals she uses brings me out in a rash, but competitive mopping will make a welcome change from all those #ootd (outfit of the day) selfies on my Instagram feed.

Bow Ties
The idea of a bow might smack of the saccharine but, on the catwalks, designers are pushing the motif miles away from any Little Bo Peep associations. At Miu Miu, large black satin bows smartened up blue denim; at Erdem, they added texture to party coats. Emilia Wickstead dabbled with both large — like the black minidress hidden under a XXXL pink bow that trailed down the red carpet when worn by supermodel Alek Wek — and small, tying satin bows at the top and bottom of impossibly perfect ponytails; the latter can be achieved with a trip to the haberdasher’s.

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Supersized Weddings
If Lady Gaga’s tour-drobe for A Star is Born (think candyfloss pink feathers, crystal-studded veils and even a starched Elizabethan ruff) is anything to go by, her wedding dress will be quite something. Elsewhere, we can expect supermodel attendees to match the bride at Emily Ratajkowski’s nuptials, and perhaps a little healthy competitive spirit at singer Joe Jonas’s wedding to Game of Thrones alumna Sophie Turner. Jonas’s younger brother, Nick, married actress Priyanka Chopra last month with not one but two jaw-dropping ceremonies in India, so the groom’s side of the church, at least, will have high expectations. All of which is more than enough reason to buy a hat. Which brings me to...

Killing Eve star Jodie Comer in a pink tulle Molly Goddard dress. Photo / @killingeve Instagram

Big Hat Energy
Following the pomp, ceremony and spectacular hats of last year’s royal weddings, it’s no surprise that the hat is back on the catwalk, and there is plenty of inspiration to be found for this year’s weddings and race days, from jauntily angled saucers at Moschino to veiled-verging-on-beekeeper at Erdem and Simone Rocha. But the beret doesn’t stop there: the everyday hat is making a comeback. Ease yourself in with an alice band: the Duchess of Cambridge has a growing collection of Anne Boleyn-esque toppers, which she wears in lieu of a tiara: think “off-duty queen-in-waiting”. You can find versions everywhere from ASOS to Prada.

This summer, the oversized straw hats shown at Valentino, Chanel and Jacquemus will go with almost everything in your wardrobe, and protect your skin better than any SPF. Cheeringly, the shades to go with them are equally oversized: Balenciaga launched sunglasses for the first time this week and they’re at least three times the size of the tiny, pointy, and singularly unflattering sunglasses that were so popular last year.

Boiling Point
Why has it taken fashion designers so long to realise that women like pockets? And not just “show” pockets but ones that you fit an iPhone and a tissue and a bank card in? At Fendi, there were pockets on jackets, handbags, even dangling from utility belts: it seemed that Karl Lagerfeld has been stockpiling pockets for the past few years and is now giving them to us all at once. Still, don’t look a gift horse in the mouth — buy a boiler suit instead, and revel in the hands-free-dom of the latest designer iterations, which combine pockets with the one-step-outfit ease of a jumpsuit. Try slouchy, almost pyjama-y styles in cotton and linen — particularly appealing at this time of year — worn with trainers or flat sandals. Dark denim or tailored options can be paired with heels for a dressier take.

Summer Camp
If 2018 was a good year for Elton John — from his collaboration with Alessandro Michele at Gucci to the John Lewis & Partners’ tear-jerking Christmas advert — then 2019 looks to be ever better. First, there’s Rocketman, a biopic starring Taron Egerton, produced by the man himself (released in May). Then there’s the theme of this year’s exhibition at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute: Camp: Notes on Fashion. As the exhibition also provides the dress code for the Met Gala (basically the fashion Oscars), and with this year’s hosts including Gucci’s Michele and Lady Gaga (the godmother of John’s two sons), we can expect theatrical fashion homages — and the man himself — on the red carpet.

No-Fuss Flats
The trainer trend is still going strong, but in 2019 there’s a contender to the goes-with-everything shoe throne: the ballet pump. The Sloane Ranger look is making a comeback. Ballet pumps look good with jeans or skirts of any length, and they’re more flattering on the calf (at least, on my calves) than a pair of trainers. I’d recommend leaving ribbon-straps to the more balletic of figure and look for a good solid sole as thin cardboard ones can be agony on your shins.

— The Daily Telegraph

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