Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Grab a Gilet

The queen of the gilet, uber-stylist Rachel Zoe
I know a gilet can sometimes make women a little nervous. Surely it’s just a continental way of saying ‘body-warmer’?! And as much as they may have their place halfway up Snowdon...body-warmers are not the chicest apparel on the average street. And anything that adds extra bulk around our middles doesn’t tend to have us skipping to the check-out!

But gilets are different to the body warmer...even though if you search any website they will bring up a few classic rambler garbs amongst the sheepskin and faux fur! I also think they've evolved past the boho trend of a few years back. Even if you’re not a boho-lady (and I don’t tend to fall into that category) they can still work with your wardrobe.

I bought a black knitted one last year from the Sonia Rykiel collaboration with H&M. I loved it in the changing room but there was a small seed of doubt that I looked like I’d got a bath mat tied around my middle! However, I wore it constantly last winter and it went with almost everything in my wardrobe. Sometimes it was a little too bulky...certainly under some blazers it didn’t feel quite right...but on the whole it was definitely a fashion win!

I tend to hate the way a lot of the gilet’s are styled on shop’s websites...too boho or randomly putting some faux fur with a t-shirt and jeans (yes, you, M&S!) but imagine them over a black jersey dress, or with skinny black trousers, a spotty blouse and big necklace. It gives you a hint of bohemian but still with some tailoring and grown-up accessories.

And when you’re freezing your arse off in the depths of winter, it’s an extra layer between you and the chill!

These are some of my favourites...I’m particularly tempted by the Topshop number.

Topshop sheepskin gilet - £58

Dorothy Perkins Black Mongolian style gilet - £41

Oasis drape gilet - £60

M&S faux fur open front gilet - £45

Next neutral faux fur belted gilet – £45

Warehouse faux racoon gilet - £50 

Debenhams stone shawl collar gilet - £45 (though a little torn on this one...worried it looks a bit Del Boy Trotter...but giving it the benefit of the doubt!)


  1. I remember you in the gilet a lot last winter!! always looked chic and swish...and warm! xx however i think one needs to be a certain shape to carry them off...although who knows, i may try one on anyway! xx

  2. You should try a few on! Honestly, I think they can work with any body shape...even if you're not as flat-chested as me! Try ones that are not as boxy and the fabric is not as stiff. Maybe one of softer fur ones and perhaps one that is a little longer length. I think the Dorothy Perkins one would look great on you Lise xx


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