You Should Wear Racing Stripes



Not too long ago I did one of my usual biannual "wardrobe clear outs" which effectively means things have got out of hand and I can no longer move for piles of clothes dotted here, there and everywhere. There are very few things in life I'd like to think I do in excess but clothes are definitely the exception to this rule. Just to give you a vague insight into the magnitude of my clothes addiction and a really good idea of my all time favourite wardrobe staple- I own(ed) over thirty striped tops (I should add small print here- this does not include knitwear). Yes, thirty. That's not a typo and you read it correctly. You're eye's aren't playing trolls on you here... THIRTY. That's obscene isn't it? I know, I really know. But what it is about the striped top which makes it such a failsafe?

In my defence I think my stripe collection has escalated over time as I continually search for THE perfect one. I blame some of my all time style icons for my love of stripes such as Jean Seberg in Breathless, Edie Sedgwick, Baby in Dirty Dancing, Madonna in the Papa Don't Preach video (The Immaculate Collection was a favourite of mine since the age of four) and Audrey Hepburn's "off duty" casual style. There's something about adding stripes to an outfit which immediately gives the illusion of a timeless look and that Parisian cool we all aim for. Stripes are the essence of classic, chic and effortless all rolled into one. A wardrobe 'must have" up there with stone washed, straight leg jeans and a black leather biker jacket. This season in particular stripes have most definitely made a come back... Not that they ever actually went away but more like they've had a slight image overhaul and reemerged in full force! No longer will your wardrobe be satisfied with just a simple monochrome stripe, oh no. Instead there are three very important stripes you will love this season and most likely need in your closest. So let's break them down.

Retro Stripes

This stripe trend has been doing the rounds now for well over a year and I STILL can't get enough of it so keep 'em coming!! It's in my opinion one of the easiest trends to style and great if- like me- you prefer a more casual look. It comes in a bazillion variations from horizontal and vertical, to thick mixed with thin stripes and in an array of colours. I love wearing this trend in the day for a boyish, Seventies style with a cropped flare or my dungarees, an army jacket and of course my Converse. For this kind of styling go for faded tees in washed out orange, browns and mustard tones. This particular style is spot on in summer for that Californian, beach bum vibe and is ideal for when you want to make minimal effort i.e. There's no need for bothering with make up or even brushing your hair if you're not in the mood!
Alternatively this stripe trend can be worn dressy too! Think less Seventies skater and more retro office attire. It's about grabbing yourself retro stripes in a pussy-bow detailed dress, silk shirts and midi skirts. Go for more jewelled clashing tones such as forrest greens and yellows, or burgundies mixed with cornflower blue. Team with contrasting knitwear, preferably a turtleneck and a clunky, chunky heel! Workin' nine to five...

Multicoloured Stripes

A few years ago Gucci deigned THAT multicoloured stripe jumper complete with matching skirt and we all suddenly realised there was a rainbow shaped hole in our wardrobes. Ever since then block colour stripes have been in abundance from most brands and I love it! The really great thing about this trend is there are quite literally a million different combinations to choose from. The possibilities are endless! Pastels, Earthy, primary or clashing tones- the look you're aiming for is completely up to you. Now away from Gucci- who are Gucci and can do no wrong- an alternative designer who seems to have got this trend spot (or should I say stripe) on is Ganni. They have fast become the masters of knitwear and this includes multicoloured stripes. But do not fear! I realise Ganni knitwear is rather on the pricey side but there are soooo many doppelgängers on the high street right now. And they all do equally- if not a better- job!
Multicoloured stripes is another ridiculously easy look to achieve and style. Simply team a slouchy rainbow knit with your favourite pair of kick flares and you're good to go as the most stylish of them all. Or take it to the next level and really make your outfit colour pop with contrasting pastel suit pants or a vibrant midi skirt.

Classic Stripes

And last but by no means least it wouldn't be a blog post about stripes without discussing the classic Breton! We're all well aware of what this looks like; jersey fabric (preferably thick jersey), loose fit, boat neck and in a navy/black stripe. They are always worth mentioning because they ain't go anywhere! I feel like I've spoken about this wardrobe staple a ridiculous amount of times but it really is my style hero. This spring I'm already seeing some new, rather exciting variations though! From alternating colours to embroidered slogans, you can easily keep this look fresh and current. For me personally I like to keep mine super duper classic and wear it under some stoned washed dungarees as my ultimate uniform. Tip of all tips- Wear your boatneck backwards for a much higher, "slit neck" look. Trust me, I've been doing it for years and none of you ever noticed! *evil laugh*


This summer will be just another year we look to stripes for style inspiration but with just a little twist at least. From retro to somewhere over the rainbow, the sky the limit for your stripe collection...

Not that I need any encouragement.

Sophia x

Outfit Details- Striped Zip Detail Top- Urban Outfitters, Flared Zip Detail Dungarees- Alexa Chung at My Theresa, Black High Tops- Converse, Beaten Silver Hoops- Maya Magal


Photography- Rosie Butcher


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