The first time I spotted this knockout retro number was on a seasonal TV advertisement (influencer critiques eat your heart out, turns out we’re not supersaturating the market to a complete trump). The second time was impatiently riding the escalator at my local Asda superstore attempting to squeeze past the oblivious family blocking my view of the apparent display. And then I guess you could say the third was carrying the two piece treat through to the fitting rooms pleased as Punch and about to be swept off my feet when transposing the suit from hanger to body.
Indubitably buying was the easy part, it was figuring out how to style it which was the chore. I surfed the web on a window shop inspiration mission; sifting through the fashion model features and the editorials, noting what was underneath the torso and below the trouser trail. I Google image searched and had a second look at the digital tailoring. I even headed over to Instagram – habitually opening Megan‘s feed like the sartorial stuttering morning newspaper – and then lastly I lurked on a #checkedsuit hashtag. Still, none the wiser.
Turns out it’s all experimental. As simple and stress-free (and pretty self explanatory) as that. You search through your capsule wardrobe for any pieces which naturally slot together in your mental mood board. You storm the high street with the suit readily packed away in a shoulder bag for trial and error mix and matching. Then you begin a neophyte quick changing act until that eureka moment chimes.
In the end, for me, it was in M&S. Just as unexpected as finding a power suit which fit like an absolute glove in a supermarket clothing section. Their £8.50 soft, stretchy and sustainable cotton tops are such a dream I nabbed two – and miraculously both paired perfectly with the sharp blazer and wide leg trouser combo.
I truly believe turtlenecks are the fail safe option, the crown jewels, the benchmark for an outfit plan, the shell to an elevation of layering and a bonus point of warmth in the brisk November winds. I knew straight away as soon as I worked the clashing contrast of prints and the bold cobalt blue against the correlative darker check together with an AHA I would have to delineate an entire autumnal scene and grab the opportunity of a full fulvous backdrop (quite literally) by the collar.
Luckily I picked a crisp, sunny afternoon of post daylight saving blue skies to go out shooting which meant I could encompass the lavish feel of a power suit along with a deflection of shadowy light, deciduous trees, crunchy leaves and golden amber hues. The epitome of autumn in the aura of both fashion and nature which had me galvanised with a rush of confidence because there’s nothing that quite lifts me up with an extra side of panache like suiting and booting does. Initially there might be that gasp of terror wondering how you’re going to pull off the entire ensemble but then you wear it once and everything clicks into place.
What I love the most about a strong, safety blanket of a suit is how the options are left open for you to create a bespoke, go-to look whilst slotting in with the latest trends. Ready made for you to wear how you want and where your mood takes you with the added perk of the pieces still sheathing the sass when styled separately, It also means it becomes a timeless investment you’ll never get tired of revamping and refreshing.
I absolutely adore the print on this beauty. It stood out to me as soon as I saw it; literal love at first suit. The banding of browns and blues both forming a fab, distinctive grid design and producing a checked classic which nails a key trend of AW/19 and beyond. I’m always a little iffy dealing with straight down square silhouettes but these kecks were the ultimate complement to the open front blazer without drowning me in material.
Now I’ve cracked the code there’s all sorts of styling ideas swimming around my head. A shirt underneath the darting lapel tucked in tight to the belt and finished off with some statement shoes. A tee base for a more casual, breezy vibe – and keeping that relaxed fit with some trainers perched beneath the flared bottom. Or switching it completely around as the suit lends itself for an evening out situation with a touch of elegant chic – a dainty cropped blouse and a fierce pair of heels. You name it, I’ll be giving it a go.
One suit, two polo necks, a fall paradise and a whole load of versatility.
(The (unfortunately sold out online) original winner is here and here but I’ve also linked a few alternatives below for you to get style happy with at a time when grabbing some discount is contracted at first click. Merry mad shopping weekend, folks!)