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What to wear right now: the posh sweatshirt

— by Alyson Walsh

Silk sweatshirt, ME+EM

The humble sweatshirt is a hugely underrated item of clothing. Of which, I’ve long been a fan. An enthusiasm that goes back to teenage years spent tomboyishly kicking around in jeans, trainers and an oversized Snoopy ‘It’s great to be a superstar’ cotton jersey top. Talking of which, Good Grief Charlie Brown: the enduring power of Peanuts exhibition at Somerset House is lovely. Charles Schulz’ original artwork and comic strips are superb and all the issues explored by Schulz feel relevant, as ever, today: the human psyche, happiness, feminism, society and politics (Snoopy for President!). And there’s a great selection of colourful sweatshirts in the gift shop. I was very tempted by the khaki version with Lucy on the front.

Designer Kim Jones’ collection of vintage Peanuts sweatshirts at Somerset House

Charles Schulz comic strip. Photos: Somerset House

But these days I prefer a posh sweatshirt; a subtle statement rather than a slogan. There’s something pleasing about a simple, round-necked top, souped-up with an eye-catching pattern, interesting sleeves or a luxurious fabric. The kind of thing that works with a just-below-the-knee pleated skirt, tailored trousers or luxury jogging pants, for dressed-up daywear that slips smoothly into evening. I have a small selection of posh sweatshirts souped up with sequins, animal print, Lurex and one of my favourites is a beautiful midnight blue velvet, super slouchy style. Perfect over slim black trousers under a tuxedo jacket. This is the season for a silk sweatshirt, the one in the top photo is from ME+EM, (available in khaki – and orange HERE). Silk is warm in winter, cool in summer – and quite possibly the perfect way to achieve elegant layering, all year round.

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The humble sweatshirt is a hugely underrated item of clothing. Of which, I’ve long been a fan.