Style.Devine: How to make the most of your autumn wardrobe

In her first column for Velvet, Cambridge-based stylist Maggie Devine tells us how to create the ultimate autumn/winter wardrobe - by mixing, matching and making the most of the clothes we already own


As the autumn/winter fashion season approaches, personally, I am finding it hard to contain my excitement. As a stylist, this is my favourite fashion season. Cosy knits, gorgeous coats, anything leather, scarves, hats – I mean, the desire to ‘add to cart’ and impulse purchase is beyond tempting. However, while the allure of a new purchase is undeniable, it’s crucial to remember the importance of maximising what we already have in our closets. Before splurging on that must-have cashmere knit or the latest trendy piece, take a moment to evaluate your existing wardrobe and consider how any new additions will complement your current pieces.

When working on capsule collections for my clients, I always emphasise the significance of revisiting their closets. You’d be surprised by the hidden gems and versatile pieces that may have been forgotten or overlooked over time. By exploring what you already possess, you can create a well-rounded and eco-friendly fashion outfit without compromising on style. With that in mind, here are four key pieces worth digging out of the closet this season. . .


The legging
One of the wardrobe staples that most of us have is the legging. Often underestimated, this simple-yet-versatile piece can be your best friend during the autumn/winter season. It serves as the base for countless stylish outfits. Pair an oversized button-up with black leggings and complete the look with ballet flats or unexpected sneakers, and you’ve effortlessly achieved a timeless, chic, and polished look.

The knit vest
Another piece that’s frequently abandoned in the back of closets is the classic knit vest. This understated gem offers a touch of intellectual chic to any outfit and deserves to be brought to the forefront. Don’t hesitate to layer it over long or short sleeve tees, Oxford shirts, or even rock it on its own with jeans, trousers, or skirts. The possibilities are endless, and you’ll be amazed at the new life these knit vests can breathe into your style.

The maxi dress
And let’s not forget about the maxi dress, which in my opinion can be used in every season. The key to transforming it into an autumn/winter look is all in the layering. Throw a cosy knit over your maxi dress and pair it with some over-the-knee boots or cute booties. This look is particularly great for those transitional weather days.

The belt
Here’s a top tip to elevate your outfit game even further. If you want to create the trendy tucked-in sweater look with a dress, here’s how: take an oversized sweater, belt it around your waist, and then gently pull the sweater out over the belt just enough to cover it. This clever styling trick cinches the jumper in, giving your outfit more of an hourglass shape, versus that of a shapeless sack of potatoes!


By making the most of what’s already in your closet, you’re not only embracing sustainability but also unleashing your creativity in styling various outfits. Mix and match your existing pieces, experiment with layering, and challenge yourself to create unique and fabulous looks from what you already own.

Sustainable fashion can be fun, rewarding, and most importantly, a positive step towards a more eco-conscious wardrobe (which we all need to be taking). So, this autumn/winter season, breathe new life into some of those pieces from past years. Happy styling!

For more styling advice and outfit ideas follow @style.devine on Instagram or have a look at

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