For those of us who grew up in the 90’s, get ready for a major #throwback moment because corduroy, the staple fabric of the 80’s and 90’s, is back in a big way. Toeing the line between soft yet structured, this highly textured fabric is great for adding dimension to your outfit without breaking a sweat, and the best part is, since designers have been all over it, you can get corduroy everything.
But wait, what is corduroy?
Let’s rewind for a minute for those who didn’t grow up stroking this irresistibly fuzzy fabric.
Corduroy (or ‘cords’, as we used to call it) is a highly durable fabric that resembles velvet in appearance and is oh-so soft to the touch. It is made of twisted fibers that when woven, create dimensional “stripes”, which is where its quickly recognizable texture comes from.
Corduroy per se does not refer to any particular fabric, but the structure of the fabric itself and can be made from natural or synthetic fibers. It is usually made from thicker cotton, which makes the material a little warmer and highly ideal for fall and winter temperatures – but relax, that doesn’t mean you can’t rock this retro trend in sunny Singapore.
Here are our top corduroy picks for the season.
Dresses and rompers
From left to right: Asos White cord utility jumpsuit, $116.94; Missguided grey cord skater shirt dress, $56; Sid Neigum twisted corduroy dress, US$431.49 from Net-a-Porter
Don’t let the warm weather stand in your way of rocking a full-on cord outfit – you just need to pay attention to the amount of fabric you’re wearing. If your cord dress (or romper) of choice has full sleeves, then keep hemlines shorter and vice versa.
The wonderful thing about wearing corduroy dresses or rompers is that you instantly look dressed up because of the fabric’s sheen, which makes it one of our favourite boardroom-to-bar picks.
From left to right: Altuzarra cropped flared pants, US$545.32 from Net-a-Porter; Missguided cord skinny jeans, $50; Asos Design belted wide leg trouser, $50.31
Ok, so corduroy can give off retro vibes, so if your concern is looking too much like a blast-from-the-past (and not in a good way), opt for cord pieces with sharp tailoring and juxtapose by keeping the rest of your get-up super modern.
If your cords piece of choice is trousers, just take note that since there will be so much fabric, you’ll want to keep the rest of your outfit and accessorizing as minimal as possible.
From left to right: Missguided navy cropped drop shoulder cord jacket, $60; Liquor N Poker cord jacket, $98.95 from Asos; Suited and Booted corduroy blazer, US$40 from Nastygal
You know how you’re always complaining that the air conditioning is too cold at work? Swap out your boring hoodies and sweatshirts for a stylish corduroy jacket instead.
The natural detailing of corduroy will instantly elevate even the simplest t-shirt and jeans combination, making it perfect for casual Fridays or those days you hit the snooze button one time too many.
From left to right: Brixton Baker boy hat, $68.37 from Asos; Isabel Marant cap, US$153.95 from Net-a-Porter; Urban Outfitters tote bag, $40
Corduroy is a naturally hardy fabric, which makes it a great option when it comes to accessories that tend to get more wear-and-tear, like bags and hats. Simply swap out your boring leather bags or cotton hats for something made of corduroy for a fuss-free way to refresh your look.
Like shoes, don’t forget that protective spritz to help them last even longer.
From left to right: Loeffler Randall copper corduroy ankle boots, US$454.43 from Net-a-Porter; Afrodita platform heels, $427.87 from Revolve Clothing; Puma platform trace corduroy pink trousers, $152.92 from Asos
If going full-on cords feels a little too intimidating at the beginning, the simplest way to rock this trend is to wear it on your feet. Shoes are a cool and rather unconventional way to wear corduroy and can be both formal or informal, depending on the style of shoe.
Think boots, heels or loafers for work and sneakers for play. Just remember to spritz a coat of protector before wearing them out to keep them safe from the elements.