With fashion in a frenzy over the fuzzy fabric, Victoria Moss shows how to wear it this winter
The velvet trend has been bubbling under for a few seasons, but now it has seriously hit its stride.
Victoria Beckham made delicate, pretty crushed velvets in glossy lilacs and sea-foam green the core of her spring/summer 2017 collection, as part of her bid to make the fabric feel relevant again.
This winter, if it moves, it comes in velvet. Lyst.com, the e-commerce site that lists more than 9000 brands, has noted a 45% increase in stock from last year, and currently offers 4200 velvet pieces. But where to start with such a plethora of choice?
Reassuringly for anyone with an eye for a classic, many labels have re-imagined old favourites in velvet – offering an update, but not a complete upheaval.
Chloé’s elegant scallop-edged ballet flats and block-heeled courts now come in delicious burgundy velvets, as do the ever-popular Susanna three-strap gold-studded ankle boots.
Toga has re-imagined its buckled ankle boots in black velvet, while Aquazurra has turned its Christy flat (the shoe that launched a thousand imitation ghillie-style tie-up point flats) into very evening-friendly velvet and embellished versions (they are one of Lyst’s most searched-for items).
Posh sportswear has also co-opted velvet.
Founder of avenue32.com Roberta Benteler is calling it “decadence for daywear”, while buying director of matchesfashion.com Natalie Kingham advises that “it teams well with tweeds, silks and denims – it’s very easy to wear and comfortable, so it appeals for many different occasions”.
The idea of a velvet tracksuit may bring back uncomfortable memories of the Noughties velour Juicy Couture, but the new incarnations are far removed from that. Chloé’s tracksuit jogging bottoms have proven to be a cult hit.
Velvet trainers are winging their way up the winter wish list and other sporty items include bomber jackets – which are a fun update on the blazer.
Practicalities are a keen consideration when wearing velvet. Expensive silk mixes will be dryclean-only whereas polyester or viscose mixes tend to be hand- or machine-washable – always check the label so you know what you’re committing to.
If buying trousers – loose, wide-leg versions are very flattering – look for a hint of elastane, to stop them bagging.
“Always hang velvet clothing, because folding can flatten the pile,” advises group buying director at Harvey Nichols Anita Barr.
“If you need to get rid of any creases, use a steamer and never an iron, and make sure to steam from the inside out.”
Another trick is to use a clean, new toothbrush to extricate any stains before cleaning (brush in one direction).
Velvet boots, if worn away from downpours and carefully brushed after wear, should be fairly durable.
There are plenty of velvet bags around, too – Prada and Zara box clutches are the ultimate – and in practical terms, a smaller velvet bag is less likely to get damaged than a bigger day bag, which may run the risk of balding if slung around too much. – The Daily Telegraph