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Blue coat and blue handbag

Tap into the new season’s must-haves with our essential style guide

From bold checks to sparkling sequins, our AW21 trend report will keep your wardrobe on point.

Collage with light coloured woman clothes
From Centre Left: Cos Scarf, £79; & Other Stories Roll-neck, £45; COS Cashmere Jumper, £180; Dune London Trainers, £70; Whistles Jumper, £149 at John Lewis & Partners; Uniqlo Trousers, £39.90; River Island Jumper, £48; BOSS Hoody, £239; The White Company Jumper, £159; Zara Skirt, £29.99; Zara Hoody. £29.99; Reiss Poncho, £168; Zara Bag, £29.99

Closely Knit

Who doesn’t love a cosy sweater? For AW21, knitwear is all about luxury – think butter-soft cashmere, chunky cable knit jumpers and elegant knitted dresses in neutral shades. Also trending are embellishments, appliqués and fringe detailing, which elevate plain knits to something more distinctive and unique.

Colourful women clothes
From Top Left: Tommy Hilfiger Small Crossover Bag, £180; Hobbs Jumper, £79; John Lewis & Partners Beret, £40; Stradivarius Faux Leather Jacket, £45.99; Dune London Knee-High Boots, £195; Armani Exchange Trenchcoat, £330; Kurt Geiger Slingbacks, £129; Monki Trousers, £25; John Lewis & Partners Cashmere Jumper, £89; Monki Earrings, £6; Weekday Turtleneck, £20; H&M Dress, £12.99; River Island Blouse, £50; Coach Tabby Bag, £395; Guess Naya Mini Crossbody Bag, £79; River Island Coat, £90; Uniqlo Trousers, £34.99

Colour Riot

Last season’s calming neutrals made way for mood-boosting pops of colour at the AW21 shows. From bold vermilions at Marc Jacobs to cobalt blues at Prada, colour re-energised the runways and injected a welcome sense of optimism that we want to bottle and keep.

Darkcoloured women clothes
From Top Left: Whistles Cape, £199 at John Lewis & Partners; Marks & Spencer Shoes, £35; BOSS Coat, £525; H&M Tote Bag, £39.99; River Island Shorts, £40; KG Kurt Geiger Boots, £119; Arket Skirt, £69; Uniqlo Coat, £109.90 From Bottom Right: Ted Baker Coat, £250; All Saints Mila Bag, £169; Berksha Jacket, £49.99; Zara Gilet, £27.99; Coach Lunchbox Top Handle Bag, £450; Ted Baker Scarf, £50; Tommy Hilfiger Gilet, £50; Monki Gilet, £35

Quilt Crusaders

From full-length coats to skirts and oversized tote bags, designers and the high street are championing all things quilted this season. For AW21 Miu Miu showed an entire collection of ski-slope-ready quilted pieces, while Raf Simons offered up voluminous quilted coats that were nonchalant and oh-so cosy.

Checkered coloured women clothes
From Top left: BOSS Shirt, £369; Gant Scarf, £90; & Other Stories Dress, £129; Monki Trousers, £30; Berksha Trousers, £27.99; Stradivarius Cardigan, £25.99; Zara Dress, £25.99; Ted Baker Jacket, £349; Tommy Hilfiger Coat, £320; H&M Coat, £39.99; Zara Tote Bag, £59.99; Marks & Spencer Jacket, £59

Keep It In Check

A master of reinvention, the check trend reappears season after season, each time under a bold new guise. For AW21 the pattern has had a modern update with monochrome checks and checkerboard squares leading the way. Spice up a simple outfit with a statement tartan jacket or opt for all-over clashing grids for a winning look. Check mate.

Women's suits
From Top Left: All Saints Belt, £79; Zara Blazer, £49.99; Zara Trousers, £89; COS Square Toe Loafers, £135; Arket Blazer, £135; Arket Trousers, £89; John Lewis & Partners Hobo Bag, £109; Whistles Blazer, £199 and Trousers £119, at John Lewis & Partners; BOSS Slingbacks, £139; H&M x Toga Archives Blazer, £119.99 and Trousers £79.99; Zara Blazer, £59.99 and Trousers £29.99; Kin By John Lewis Brogues, £79; & Other Stories Waistcoat, £49 and Trousers £69; Armani Exchange Tote Bag, £105

Well Suited

Sharpen up your back-to-work look with this season’s essential: the suit. In keeping with our newfound love of loungewear, designers have kept the overall vibe relaxed and slouchy with wide-leg trousers and longline jackets. For those craving a little more opulence, Stella McCartney and Chanel elevated the classic suit with tactile fabrics including tweed and sumptuous faux fur.

Women's party clothes
From Top Left: Ted Baker Top, £349; Zara Belt, £27.99; Russell & Bromley Knee-High Boots, £595; Aldo Earrings, £15; Zara Dress, £29.99; Ted Baker Trousers, £149; H&M Top, £9.99; Kurt Geiger Shoreditch Bag, £189; Reiss Sandals, £185; River Island Top, £40; Prada Sunglasses, £284 at Sunglasses Hut, Zara Mules, £59.99; Reiss Jumpsuit, £238; Accessorize Earrings, £12

High-Octane Glamour

Reflecting our renewed lust for life, designers delivered a heady dose of showstopping sparkles. From floor-length sequin gowns at Michael Kors to slinky metallic mini dresses at Versace, the AW21 catwalks were positively glistening with spangles. Maximalists, this one's for you.

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