Last week’s visit, to check out the wardrobe of one of the UK’s most stylish women Noreen Goodwin, blew me away.
I don’t often say that but it was a game changer.
I was feeling a bit tired of the trends and lacking in fashion inspiration, but no more!
Culottes, dungarees, jumpsuits- not to mention distressed denim and trainers- were all I was focusing on and now I feel empowered to look beyond the trends and focus on real style.
Noreen has sartorial style in my book. By this I mean she has found a look that suits her to perfection, that is cutting edge enough to be exciting but classic and practical enough to work in the real world. She also is brave enough to mix it up and have fun with her wardrobe.
So enough chat, let’s get down to what we found! I was accompanied by Deborah Sheridan Taylor, who loves fashion and is one of the only people who get as carried away by it as I do.
Let’s start with the most hard working item in anybodies wardrobe… the coat! It doesn’t matter what you have underneath, if you throw on a great coat you are dressed.
In this post we are looking beyond the coat and re-examining the cape. Along with a great wool coat, parka and trench, a fabulous cape will work so hard in your wardrobe.
When you put this cape on you should feel like you can conquer the world, and it will be your armour.
The cape has come and gone- but after being inspired by Noreen it is going to take centre stage this season.
The Bluemarine cape featured below encapsulates what both Deborah and I love about Noreen’s style.
It is a simple colour, the material is beautifully soft and it is a classic shape.
The tassel and bobble detail elevate the look and you cannot but be happy putting this piece on.
The key is to get the right length- too short and a cape is not flattering. This season they should be mid-thigh or my favoured length- calf length. The latter is probably easier to carry off if you are taller.
This cape is multifunctional, it will look as fabulous over wide-legged white trousers as it would jeans, and, best of all, Noreen found it in a sample sale.
A piece from Lilly e Violetta has long been on my wish list. I love that Noreen has selected green astrakhan and not played safe with black- this colour works so well with her colouring. I adore black but finding a great colour that breaks it up adds warmth to your wardrobe.
The last cape, and the piece de resistance, is from one of the hottest designers of the moment- Vilshenko.
Noreen picked a cloak rather than the a dress, setting her apart from the fashion pack.
A lot of us would have shied away from the rose detail, but this is what makes this look work. Without the flowers there is a danger the look would have edged into Darth Vader territory. The roses make it contemporary and, again, when worn with black, the flower detail lifts any outfit.
If you are worried about being drowned by a long cape, think about the cape jacket. The one below, which Deborah is holding up, is perfect as it has the WOW of the cape with a wearable jacket shape.
I came away obsessed about finding some amazing capes. I have spent hours checking out all the sites and below are my top finds.
Noreen, thank you for welcoming us to your home and sharing your amazing sense of style.
You are a true real life muse and lovely to boot, not to mention the mother of eight children.
I am inspired and I look forward to sharing her take on statement coats, skirts and shoes with you all in the next month. Next week is the turn of the skirt.
If like me you are now obsessed by owning a statement cape, here are some options to get your search started. I could not resist this well priced Tara Jarmon red cape, which I am going to have embroidered by Hand and Lock.
Unfortunately you cannot seem to buy Tara Jarmon online unless you are in France. But call (020) 3445 0378 to order,-it comes in black too.
I have selected lots of different price points, and you can go for a longer version.
The first one is worth buying as it is now down to just over ten pounds! I have recommended it to so many people as a great way to dip your toe into the world of capes. I have my eye on a full-length black vintage one on Vestaire Collective. May the cape obsession begin!