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Cosy up with winter workwear


You've all heard me discuss my hatred of air conditioning and the challenges it poses for summer workwear. Now it's time to meet winter's equivalent - dressing for a range of temperatures in the office. Whether your office starts off freezing and warms up through the day, starts the morning like an oven then cools down or you simply have a chilly commute to a warm office, getting your workwear warmth levels right can be a real struggle during the colder months. We all know about layering for more casual looks, where a bit of 'I just threw this on' scruffiness is perfectly acceptable (nay, desirable), but how to apply the same principles to a smarter look to keep warm this winter? And how to achieve all of that while still embracing and celebrating colour without going over the top?

We've got a couple of secrets up our sleeve at Kettlewell HQ, where huge windows along the full length of our office mean amazing light, but occasional wildly varying temperatures. And of course, we're all obsessed with colour and how it plays in our outfits and with our skintone.

To share our secrets, I've put together a five step checklist for layering up, workwear style. Each step, apart from the first (unless you work in a very laid back office!), can be added or removed to adjust to the temperature in your space. And of course, all of our layering tips can apply whether you're in the office or out of it.

Think about the colours

This is your first step. Do you want to go tonal, bold, neutral, pattern clashing or something else entirely? If you're not sure, I would always suggest starting with neutrals and adding a pop or two of colour somewhere in your outfit - it's a great way to get out of your comfort zone without pushing yourself too far.


Start with a base layer

There are a couple of important things to consider with your base layer. Firstly, you want to go for natural fibres. Almost all of our products are made from natural fibres, occasionally with a bit of elastane for stretch (remember, viscose and modal are both natural fibre products - no plastic in these fabrics!). I like to start with a Silky Roll Neck for a super-cosy but super-slim fitting base layer. If you don't need quite so much insulation, a simple cami base layer (either plain or lace) is the perfect place to start. If you're wearing a skirt this is a good point to think about opaque tights, which can be incredibly warm.

Add a top

Our Faux Wrap is a bestseller for a reason. It layers easily over a Camisole and the flattering waist ruching means no worries about creases in the layer underneath showing through. Go for a neutral shade against a brighter cami for easy colour contrast.

Add merino

Merino is the best; that's all there is to it. Smooth, soft and ultra-warm, our pure merino knitwear is my number one recommendation for keeping the chill off this winter. If you're feeling bold you can go for another bright shade here, or keep it neutral for an elongating effect.

Top it off with a scarf

The finishing touch? One of our gorgeous Cashmere Gauze Stoles worn as a scarf. Smart enough for the office, they can be worn as a neat scarf by knotting at the neck or wrapped around the shoulders an extra cosy shawl layer. If the gauze stole feels too bulky for you, try our bestselling Florence Infinity Scarf for a final pop of colour and dose of warmth.


Luce Craig on Dec 03, 2018 3:03 PM

Jo thank you for the 'temperature tips'.......and especially thank you for the full outfit suggestions and images. This is exactly the help I need in putting together my daily outfits. 😊Luce