My top 6 fashion buys of the year

If you're a bit of an auntoholic, it's worth putting things on your wish list, says Lisa Armstrong - Sarah Brick

If you’re a bit of an auntoholic, it’s worth putting things on your wish list, says Lisa Armstrong – Sarah Brick

In August I moved to a place so small that friends called it Pixie Mansions. It took my retail strategy to a new level of rigor. I fell in love with tons of items this year – occupational hazard – but did I buy them all like I tried to do in the old days? I do not. In our house there is one entrance, at least one exit.

If you’re a bit of a chooholic, it’s worth putting things on your wish lists so that by the end of the year you can giggle wisely at all the things you thought you must have at this time – and have since forgotten about. Here are the pieces that made the cut for me and what I learned from them.

Navy wool dress, Raey

I wore this minimalist dress everywhere in the fall, including to the office - Sophie Brick

I wore this minimalist dress everywhere in the fall, including to the office – Sophie Brick

Easy to style with jewelry and slippers, I wore this minimalist dress everywhere in the fall, including to the office. Narrow in the body with a twill skirt that glides over the thighs, it is very good on high beanstalks or smaller pears. It was too long for me and because there is so much fabric at the bottom it cost more than usual to shorten it – around £30 – but now I wear it with sweaters, boots and short jackets so it was good money spent.

Lisa wears: Woven jacket, by choice, Eponine London; wool crepe dress, £525, Raey (fashion matches.com); velvet sandals, £199, Penelope Chilvers; earrings made of lab-grown diamonds and recycled gold, by choice, Kimai

Geometric print cropped jacket from Eponine London

It was a fraudulent purchase that I needed to stop everything from being too safe. Scattered sequins make it sparkle at night, but not so shiny that you can’t wear it during the day.

Red silk dress, Me+Em

This dress was my go-to for easy-care drama - Sophie Brick

This dress was my go-to for easy-care drama – Sophie Brick

I’m not a huge fan of ruffles, but during this hot summer, and even now, under a black velvet jacket, cropped vest or oversized sweater, this has been my go-to for low-maintenance dramas. Red is flattering and an easy way to up the ante.

Lisa is wearing: Silk Dress, £247.50, Me + Em; suede boots, 445 pounds, Russell and Bromley; brass earrings, £115, Strathberry; all the other jewelry that belonged to Lisa

Red polyester puff top from Essentiel Antwerp

Puffed sleeves add a fashionable chic, and the collar looks impressive sticking out of the contrasting fabric.  - Sophie Brick

Puffed sleeves add a fashionable chic, and the collar looks impressive sticking out of the contrasting fabric. – Sophie Brick

A gem for your weekend bag, useful for refreshing jeans or velvet pants. Short sleeves, but loose on the body, so there is room for insulation. Puffed sleeves add a fashionable chic, and the collar looks impressive sticking out of the contrasting fabric.

Lisa is wearing: Puff sleeve top, 116 lbs. Essentiel Antwerp; velvet trousers, 270 pounds, Cefinn; velvet sandals, 245 pounds, Russell and Bromley; brass earrings, £115, Strathberry; pearl and gold plated bracelet, £315, Works completed

Cream tweed jacket, LK Bennett

Step away from label snobbery with this LK Bennett - Sophie Brick jacket

Step away from label snobbery with this LK Bennett – Sophie Brick jacket

Lovely with high waisted pants, jeans and dresses, I can imagine wearing it for years. I tried on the Celine versions about 10 times, tracked them on vintage sites, but they were still nine times more expensive, and to be honest, the LK Bennett version fits me better – and I love the buttons. Get away from the snobbery of labels and open your minds.

Lisa is wearing: £230 tweed jacket L. K. Bennett; velvet trousers, 270 pounds, Cefinn; velvet sandals, 245 pounds, Russell and Bromley; brass earrings, £115, Strathberry; pearl and gold plated bracelet, £315, Works completed

Velvet flares in navy blue, Cefinn

Re-buying is allowed when you turn to something so often that it wears out. I didn’t expect everything I bought this year to be navy blue, red or cream, but that means everything goes together.

Read last week’s article: What not to do as a guest this Christmas

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