Are you ribbing me? Today we’re looking at one of the biggest trends for next season….

If you type the word “ribbed” into the Topshop website it comes up with 269 results – which is a sure sign that ribbed clothes are going to be huge this season – or next season – whichever way you look at it. From ribbed cropped tops, to ribbed cropped trousers and from ribbed jumpsuits, to ribbed swim suits anything and everything is ribbed.

All things 90’s are in the midst of a huge revival, so be warned! By its very nature ribbing is not terribly forgiving. On the other hand, it can add curves to a chest where perhaps there are none and it also gives a really nice neat silhouette. With a little careful styling, ribbing can work beautifully. So before you write it off as a trend that’s not going to work for you, there are a few tips worth bearing in mind…

  • One of the easiest ways to wear ribbing is as a layer underneath something else. A ribbed top would work fantastically well under a faux fur gilet or suede waistcoat (fringing isn’t compulsory) with just the sleeves peeping through.  I recently bought this jumper from Topshop (£28) which I will layer under all sorts of things when the colder weather arrives. The other great thing is that it will add warmth without lots of bulk. 

  • Another way of layering a jumper like the one above is to wear a jacket over it, maybe a leather one or a blazer, just leaving a vertical strip of the jumper showing at the front. With some smart culottes it’s a great work look – still smart but very modern. Layering a Peter Pan collar underneath it on a bib makes for a preppy look. Or, a ribbed top can make a statement in its own right, such as this asymmetric top from Topshop (£32)

  • Long line cardis are a huge trend for the season and buying into a ribbed one of these isn’t so much as buying into a “look” as adding a cardi to your wardrobe, which just happens to be ribbed. Given the fact that they can be quite fine knits, it’s necessary to watch what peeps through from beneath – jeans for example can leave bumps where the buttons are. Leather leggings would give a smooth silhouette. Another offering from Topshop is this cardi, for £39.

  • For anyone who fancies it, ribbing can be embraced as a full on look in many ways, from a jumpsuit to a dress. I love this two piece outfit from Topshop (£78) which comprises ribbed cropped trousers and a long line tunic.

  • Or Zara has this ribbed dress (£15.99) which reminds me of Kate Moss in her early modelling days. See what I mean about the 1990s?

  • Autograph at Marks and Spencer has this two piece ribbed dress and long line cardigan in olive. Somehow, seeing the outfit on a more mature model makes it easier to relate to as a trend. The cardigan is currently sold out and the dress is available in limited sizes, presumably because it has featured in Vogue. Not so good for us but I’m happy for M&S! Each piece is priced at £55.

  • And another little gem from Autograph – this fabulous ribbed jumper and trousers ensemble. Now if I could wear this from October until April – and look as good as the model in doing so, I wouldn’t mind winter approaching. The tunic top is £49.50 and the trousers are £45.

  • Or maybe try a jumpsuit? Zara has this great option. Yes? No? Maybe with a white shirt underneath??

Personally I could quite happily be persuaded on any of the above. But as to a ribbed swimsuit? Maybe that’s a 1990’s Baywatch type step too far. So, to rib or not to rib, that is the question? I love the clean lines and muted tones of these outfits which are all quite Scandi looking. What do you all think? I predict quite a cosy winter. x


  1. Anonymous
    August 17, 2015 / 5:08 pm

    Great post, I found this so informative, thank you. I'm excited to hear about ribbing being in fashion. I can't quite get my mind around the new (very) long cardis though, am worried about frumpiness. Also all sorts of practicalities, getting it shut in the door of the car on the morning school run being the first that comes to mind! (Please tell me I'm not the only one having problems with velcro book bags ruining my lovely scarves in the chaos that is early mornings in term time!) Thanks again Elizabeth

  2. StyleGuile
    August 18, 2015 / 3:08 pm

    Hi Elizabeth, I'm so pleased that you enjoyed the post and that you found it informative. Ah velcro – useful in so many ways but such a pain in so many others! I have a few posts coming up with ribbed pieces in them so see what you think. Why not give the long cardi a try and see what you think? I reckon that heeled boots will help! x

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