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We had the opportunity to discuss with fashion educator and stylist, Donna Tweedale, about her key considerations for building a conscious wardrobe.
She guides us on what to consider for key categories within our wardrobe, from trousers and outerwear to tailored pieces and quality denim.


A versatile mid-wash can be casual or more elevated, and is work-appropriate in relaxed environments. It's estimated that there are 3.1 billion pairs of denim in the global market*. With so much quality denim in the pre-loved and vintage market, it's important to source responsibly. Denim choice is deeply personal, as your wardrobe should be. A good starting point for most proportions is a mid-rise relaxed cut straight leg. This fit is comfortable for long periods of seated time and for moving around. Quality denim supports other pieces by offering a simple shape and silhouette that works with different footwear options. Your denim should feel versatile.


A relaxed, almost oversized chambray blue or stripe can work well with other prints and tones. It's suitable for layering under knitwear or sweatshirts, wearing alone, or open as a cover-up on holiday. A cotton silk blend will behave beautifully on all levels. A poplin might bulk or crunch - you need more fluidity for a piece with multiple uses. It should tuck in well and feel relaxed when worn open, creating interesting moments no matter how it's worn.


A relaxed fit, higher waist wide leg trouser can be paired with a sweatshirt and trainer, a shirt, a t-shirt and a blazer, or knitwear. It should have a hem length that works with a sandal or boot, and can be worn formally or casually. A tailored trouser is worth the extra investment in a seamstress to ensure a perfect fit off the hips and hem length. Search for the best vintage offerings in the men's section for simplicity in pleating and a wider leg. If you're unsure, always size up slightly to allow a seamstress to make necessary adjustments.


With a blazer, you can lean into a print like a Prince of Wales check or herringbone, with elements of colour threading through. Look for a common thread you're drawn to within your wardrobe and tones you wear often, and choose a base that supports those. If you wear a lot of brown tones, you could select a blazer with a brown base tone and hints of blue, red, or pink. Opt for a square hem to a length that's below the hips as opposed to on the waist. This will allow you to layer and pair it with many pieces without creating more fuss and noise.


Choose a longline coat with minimal fuss, in a deep tone. Try to move away from black as a first choice, as it can feel jarring in everyday wear. Opt for navy, deep brown, or grey. A longline piece, regardless of your height, will anchor whatever you're wearing. The sleek simplicity in the silhouette will balance proportions and minimise fuss around hem lines. In winter, opt for wool cashmere blends, and for spring, consider the same aesthetic with a trench. With minimal button detail and subtle pocket placement, a double-breasted cut is great. For the female frame, a men's piece will deliver a naturally more oversized shape. If the shoulders are too distracting, you can remove the pads for a more dropped shoulder feel. This is a powerful player in any wardrobe

Further information.

Figures gathered from 2022 - published April 2023 Statista

Donna Tweedale is an educator with 10 years of experience in stylising for both men and women. She is also a writer and advocate for slow-paced, supportive fashion that caters to individual needs.

You can find her here


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