Sep 12, 2018

Getting retro and feeling inspired with colour

When done right, wearing a retro look gives you a classic, stylish vibe. The key to creating a killer retro look is to choose pieces inspired by past eras while leaving some room to incorporate your own personal style. Start with these staple pieces to build your fabulous new retro-inspired wardrobe.

Pencil Skirt and Pumps

Pencil skirts are absolutely essential to create a chic retro office look. Start with a basic black or tweed pencil skirt to build your new look; later on, you can experiment with different colours and patterns (think chequered) to add some flavour to your retro wardrobe. A pair of pumps looks great with a pencil skirt. Add a little colour in your shoe choice to make the pairing pop.

Cardigans, Blazers, and Silk Blouses

The great thing about pencil skirts is that they work with a variety of tops—from blazers and silk blouses to cardigans and fitted shirts. These are all vintage pieces that still look great in the modern office. Cardigans and blazers create a more modest look, while silk blouses and fitted shirts emulate that “sexy secretary” style.


The frock is another staple of the vintage look. You can go for a classic A-line frock—notched collar, cap sleeves, and a row of buttons over the centre bust—or choose frocks with a more unique fold-over or cowl neck collar. Emphasise your curves with a coy-banded or cinched waist.

Denise Johnson from clothing company Wiseman Clothing adds to this point by saying;
“You can also slightly update the look with a pair of printed leggings. These work great when rounded out with a cute pair of ballet flats.”


Pull your retro office look together with a few well-placed accessories. Start by buying one timeless piece: a classic silk scarf. A scarf is a great accessory to add some extra flare to any look. Other must-have retro accessories include pearls, crystals, brooches, and a pair of leather gloves.

Don’t Forget the Prints

Once you have the basics down, dress up your new retro office wardrobe by adding some printed pieces. Plaids, checks, and polka dots are all patterns that make the retro look come alive. The Guardian has some great suggestions on picking out vintage and retro clothing items.

You can try more unique patterns with birds, butterflies, and other quirky designs to really personalise your new office look. Make sure to pair a pattern with a basic piece to really accentuate the pattern.

Think retro meant no colour? Think again!

Your wardrobe doesn’t have to turn dark and drab just because the summer season is coming to a close. In fact, carnival-inspired fashions are trending for autumn/winter 2018, meaning that you’ll see plenty of colour and flare on the shelves this season.

Bold Colour

Brighten your wardrobe this autumn by adding a splash of colour. There are plenty of fun shades trending this season, from tangerine tango and honey yellow to cobalt blue and this season’s hottest hue, regal purple.

This is great news, as you can transition brightly-coloured summer pieces like dresses and skirts into autumn by pairing them with dark leggings. Add a trench coat in red or orange to your autumn jacket collection, or a pencil skirt in bright blue to jazz up your muted work wardrobe.

Coloured trousers were a big trend in spring/summer 2018, and expect that trend to continue into autumn. For best results, balance out the look with a neutral top. If you’re looking for a quick fix to incorporate colour, try a few good accessories: a bright scarf, purse, or flats in this season’s hottest hues will help update your look.

Metallic and Glitter

Metallic is trending this season in pieces ranging from tops and dresses to gloves and handbags. Particularly trendy for autumn/winter 2018 is metallic leggings in flashy golds and silvers, which can be paired with a neutral-coloured, loose-fitting top and a pair of pumps to balance out the ensemble.

If you want something fun but not quite as flashy, accessorise with metallic: purses, gloves, and shoes all look great in metallic. Shop shoes at H&M to find the perfect metallic footwear to fit any occasion.

Metallic colours like gold and silver look a little more lavish when paired with another of this season’s trends: baroque-inspired pieces. Look for pieces with embroidered patterns in silver and gold to incorporate the style into your wardrobe.

Closely aligned with the metallic trend is glitter, which popped up all over the runway at London Fashion Week 2018 a few months ago. Models were wearing it as lipstick, but we suggest something a little less bold for your day-to-day look. Make a glitter statement by using a nail polish or eye shadow with a glittery base. These look great when you’re headed to a special occasion, or just out for a night of drinks and dancing with the girls.

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