“Put a jumper on” is a phrase I’ve already got used to hearing and it’s only early autumn. In truth, I’m a jumper queen. I even wear them in summer. While fashion people love to rave about cashmere (which I do love too), it’s not the be all and end all and it’s certainly not the warmest.
My go-to for warm knitwear is Shetland and mohair. Thanks to Michael Williams (of A Continuous Lean fame), I’ve just learnt about ‘Shaggy Dog’ sweaters. These fuzzy Shetland wool sweaters seem to be everywhere on the menswear circuit; Mr DRG likes the Drake’s version (below), while Williams recommends the endless colourways from J Press (below). Meanwhile, I spotted some good womenswear Shetlandesque examples in the Mackintosh* store a couple of weeks ago. UPDATE: I’ve been alerted to the wonderful ‘Modern Shetlands’ that are Skippers Mill sweaters. Available in 31 colours, they come in brushed or unbrushed wool, are made on waste free machines with renewable electricity and the palette is superb. I’m torn between the cornflower blue, spruce green and stormy greys.
Sunspel’s classic lambswool crew necks may look and feel like cashmere, but their softness comes from being washed in Scottish spring water. I have a bright blue one from last year but for AW22, the green* and port* get my vote. If you need an extra insulation layer, put a white rollneck underneath, Prada-style (below). (Try Uniqlo* or Petit Bateau.)
Actually, Miuccia Prada is quite the style icon this season. Her Harper’s Bazaar look of short-sleeve knit and midi skirt (below) went viral and is easily replicated. John Smedley’s merino knits are just the right degree of boxy cut and soft drape and play nicely under a cardigan. I like the John Smedley Caley* in an array of colours.
Or if you prefer a chunkier knitted tee, have a look at the & Daughter Wicklow tee*, a slouchy fit, with voluminous sleeves in supersoft geelong lambswool available in navy, oatmeal or The-Devil-Wears-Prada-style cerulean blue. Alternatively, for cashmere heads, there’s the very well-priced Zane cashmere T-shirt from eco brand Les 100 Ciels. (It’s technically men’s but doesn’t come up too big). Just add a straight skirt* and heels or loafers* to complete the Miuccia transformation.
Finally, I can never resist a cable knit. Chinti and Parker* and Weekend by Max Mara* are a good shout if you want something slightly loose and not too long. & Daughter’s Aran crew neck* in 100% undyed British wool is more of a boyish fit. Or at the money-no-object end of the scale, keep an eye out for Connolly’s hand-knit cable cardigans, edged with wabi-sabi patchworking by Japanese artisans (below).
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WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: & Daughter; Drake’s Shetland sweater; J Press/A Continuous Lean; Prada AW22; Miuccia Prada/Harper’s Bazaar; Connolly AW22
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