As I write, the country is in the midst of a heat wave.
The kind we have been dreaming about – like lost Arctic explorers driven insane by snow-blindness and the baleful howling of huskies – for two long years. Today the fickle sun is upon us, and so we are cramming as many summer activities as possible into the scant time we assume the scorching orb will gift us its benevolent rays.
As one, the nation is hoovering up pints of Pimm's, mainlining Fabs and pretending pavements are a comfortable place to sit on a night out. Andy Murray even won Wimbledon, to make the whole thing seem more like a summer from a Hollywood film, although he somewhat disappointingly failed to propose to his girlfriend straight afterwards (partial credit, Murray).
It feels churlish, therefore, to look beyond the golden moment we currently inhabit to a time when the empty azure sky will be cluttered with clouds, when dressing won't seem appealing but rather an inconvenient necessity. Today, I think you and I should stop what we're doing, take everything off and run into the sea. But when autumn comes and it's time to put your clothes back on, here are the trends that will be jostling for space in your wardrobe – and ones you should actually buy…
Grunge is the first big autumn trend to hit the high street. Hedi Slimane's California grunge collection for Saint Laurent Paris met with acclaim and opprobrium in equal measure. The one thing everybody agreed upon was that this is a very commercial look (for some, that was the problem). Empress of grunge Courtney Love gave it her seal of approval, and that's good enough for me.
If you're looking for an investment purchase, channel some of the Hitchcockian glamour that was on show at Gucci, Prada, Erdem, Antipodium and Jonathan Saunders, where the runway was more about poise than punk. I'm dreaming of Erdem's crepe de Chine and Antipodium's leopard dress, but visit Oasis for ladylike midis at more manageable prices.
Your autumn/winter coat should be a cape. Sharp silhouettes were seen at Victoria Beckham, Peter Pilotto, Valentino and Chloé.
For a special occasion like a winter wedding, dip into the historical trend. At McQueen, Sarah Burton's muse was the Virgin Queen; Valentino infused his collection with baroque details; and medieval and Renaissance art inspired Dolce & Gabbana. In small doses, pieces like these are stunning. This proliferation of opulent details spilled over into accessories. Heel devotees might like to try these Carvela marvels, and fans of flats should head to Hobbs.
So there you have it, the new season in a nutshell. Hopefully it won't arrive too soon, but at least when it does it's going to look fabulous.
Follow Lauren on Twitter @LaurenLaverne
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