Careless glister

Insouciant glamour for the party season

Yo, mooks. And, also, ho, ho, ho mooks. For, lo, the baby Jesus is upon us and He’s a total stickler for what we wear, favouring twinkling this and glittering that, and a whole lot more coruscation going down.

At this point, please insert the usual line about sequins destroying the planet. Then, add more deets about some coves’ spangles (Aspiga’s, for instance) being recycled. Next, say that we should be purchasing five garments or fewer a year to save old Mother Earth, when we’re actually caning 28.

Can I go back to perving over clothes now? These can totally be clothes you already own. In fact, my sense of what one might sport this Yule is basically what I proposed last year, only still more supine.

Not only is Planet Fashion increasingly slow-mo trend-wise, but also, who cares? The goal is something sumptuous and warm that you can put on in November, then remain in until March. We’re talking decadent, but insouciant, to see you through all the ghastly social occasions humanity can muster, then on into your New Year coma.

The insouciant part is key. Fashion folk spend a lot of time telling us what to wear, very little proposing how. At Christmukkahkwanzaa the how and the what must meld, or buttock-clenching embarrassment will ensue.

At this point, I start having flashbacks to all the “lavish, five-star experiences” I have attended that turned out to be a horde of awks Brits looking mortified in their BHS finery. Don BHS finery — I certainly do — but sport said swank with the nonchalance of James Bond in his dinner suit, or don’t do it.

There certainly appear to be four billion bashes this year. I’m not showing off here — it’s a lament. I shall securing in July. It’s incredible: structured yet relaxed, machine-washable, a cinch, yet makes the wearer appear rangy and impeccably elegant.

Jigsaw still has smalls available, for which read a size 10, or hire XS to XL incarnations from My Wardrobe HQ (from £6 a day,

Aloft this, I will festoon the Zara Silver Fringed Sequin Cape that I chose not to purchase the summer it was in store, reasoning: “It’s fabulous, but you’re not a 17-year old drunk at a festival,” then purchased in October using the logic: “It’s still fabulous, and you’re still not, so get involved.”

When I wear it, strangers of all denominations chase after me in the street to lavish it — and me — with praise

There are zillions of them unworn on eBay for 80 quid, when the original price was around £69.

Haggle a bit and they’ll come down, then wear it forever/be buried in it because these paillettes definitely won’t be of the eco variety.

Mint Velvet boasts a cream silkbacked version should you prefer (Silver Sequin Mini Cape, £89,, in addition to a gunmetal.

Otherwise, velvet, and more velvet. The black, organic cotton Belted Jumpsuit & Other Stories (£120, is seriously bloody lovely, and would look equally dashing with the aforementioned cape.

Ceffin, Reiss, Wyse and Aspiga have some cracking velvet bits and bobs. While, if you didn’t invest in Jigsaw’s Ashby Velvet Blazer (£240, left) and co-ordinating Mason Velvet Trousers (£160) when I fangirled them last December, then do it, yield, succumb. In raisin and teal, they are all shades 70s YSL/90s Tom Ford going full Gucci.

The brand’s Winter Hibiscus Silk Velvet Dress (£385) is pretty fabulous too, plus the model about to throw herself off a window ledge is utterly Yule (see left). Alternatively, there’s its Glitched Ikat Velvet Dress (£285) should you suit sludgier hues.

NRBY’s Pattie Velvet Shirt (£150, is the most flattering garment I possess. The colours are sublime, the
silk velvet ravishing. Full disclosure: I have three, in the Holy Trinity that is navy, cherry and blackberry (there’s also a khaki). Meanwhile, NRBY’s Odette Velvet Opera Coat (£335, left) has inspired religious feelings, in myself and others.

When I wear it, strangers of all denominations chase after me in the street to lavish it — and me — with praise. It’s almost irritating. No one I’ve paraded it in front of has failed to acquire one. However, supplies are limited, so act now or forever hold your peace.

I’ll be rocking mine with Never Fully Dressed’s Embellished Navy Velvet City Mules (£99, Then, I will stuff my hands into my pockets and party/slumber my way into 2024 without a moment’s further thought. Drinks all round.

This article is taken from the December-January 2024 issue of The Critic. To get the full magazine why not subscribe? Right now we’re offering five issues for just £10.

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