How to do ‘jeans and a nice top’ in 2019
The look that defined Going Out Out in the early 2000s is back. But can we wear it without looking like extras in Bend It Like Beckham? Yes – if we heed the advice of the Stylist fashion team 
Polly Knight, fashion editor

Like many women, comfort is currently at the top of my style tick list; I have no desire to be all trussed up. So I’m not surprised to see the return of the easy ‘jeans and a nice top’ combo; I just had to recondition how I thought about it.

For example, I wouldn’t wear low-rise skinnies with skyscraper heels and a slinky top (too early-2000s cosplay). But I would do a backless top (£155, Harmur) with wide-leg denim (£59, Arket), barely-there kitten heels (£49, Office) and gold chain bracelets (£175, Missoma). There’s a touch of noughties nostalgia that makes me want to dance around my handbag – but with a grown-up, sophisticated edge. 

Arabella Greenhill, fashion director

I don’t really do fitted tops or anything that shows lots of flesh. For me, a ‘nice top’ is all about fabrications: a shirt made from butter-soft, toffee-coloured leather (£249, Whistles) or minimalist silk (look to Equipment for great ones).

I’d amp up this pared-back look with lots of layered gold jewellery – hoops, necklaces and stacks of bracelets – starting with a simple polished earring by Maria Black (£71). Then I’d add 90s stilettos (£89.99, Zara) and ankle-grazing black kick-flares (£55, Topshop Boutique) to show them off.

Helen Atkin, fashion assistant

To me, light silky fabrics and sleeve detailing are the key components of a “dressy top”. This pleated, crinkly-crêpe floral blouse (£100, Ganni) is perfect – but it could easily feel too summery/daytime-y for November.

To avoid that trap, I’d wear it with mid- to dark-wash denim (like these cropped indigo Gap jeans, £49.95) and luxe accessories that you’d never see at a picnic in July. Charles Keith’s navy velvet stilettos (£49) and Chylak’s mock-croc, feather-trimmed tote (£215, Net-a-Porter) will add an elevated evening feel to any look. 

Every wardrobe needs at least one pair of shoes that can withstand rain and cold, says Stylist Loves’ deputy editor Moya. Enter: Allbirds

I love autumn, but I’m not so keen on wet feet. The other day, I stepped in a puddle and rainwater immediately began seeping through the toes of my favourite ankle boots – a sensation grim enough to make anyone consider moving to Singapore. 

So Allbirds’ new eco-friendly, weather-resistant trainers are a treat. Called Mizzles (after the frankly adorable Cornish word for light rain), they’re lined with merino wool for cosiness and sustainable thermoplastic to keep water out (the soles, made from renewable sugarcane, are also supremely bouncy and comfy). They’re not as waterproof as wellies – but on drizzly days, my feet have stayed toasty and dry. Delightful. From £115, Allbirds   

Christmas shopping just got a whole lot happier: this vegan marketplace is filled with goodies that are kind to both people and the planet 

Ever wished you could shop without constantly having to squint at labels to see if they contain animal ingredients? Then you’ll love Carma, a newly launched online marketplace filled with 100% vegan fashion, beauty and lifestyle treasures. You can browse by your personal values too, whether you want to go palm oil-free or zero waste. We’re putting this colourful bamboo pyjama set, organic cotton tee and linen shirt on our Christmas wishlist pronto.

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