The Ultimate Style Guide to Winter Fabrics

You open your front door and a chilling gust of wind almost makes you want to close it firmly shut again. Looks like winter is finally coming! As temperatures start to lower, and the prospect of snow becomes a reality, it’s time to ensure your winter wardrobe is ready to keep you stylishly warm.

Discover the best fabrics to wear in winter – and pick up some styling tips to help you master the art of winter layering.

The versatility of wool

Wool is the queen of winter fabrics. The natural material is available in many variations including cashmere, Merino and tweed, as well as synthetic versions such as fleece.

Merino
One of the softest wools available, the breathable and lightweight wool of the Merino sheep works wonderfully well as a base layer under your clothes and for fine gauge knitwear. The ultra-lightweight yarn also creates a luxuriously soft material that feels almost invisible against your skin, and has a refined, smooth and delicate look. Choose Merino wool jumpers for warmth without weight.

Cashmere
This superfine, delicate wool is shorn from the eponymous goat, and is incredibly warm and insulating. At Lands’ End, we only use the finest white hairs from the underbelly of the Inner Mongolia Kashmir goat (renowned as some of the best in the world) giving all our cashmere knitwear an even more luxurious feel. Light yet incredibly warm, our cashmere jumpers are the ideal layering option under a winter coat.

Tweed
Tweed is one of the roughest of natural wools. Its strong, hardy yet flexible qualities make it perfect for suits, coats and jackets. Smarten up your winter workwear by popping on a tweed blazer over your blouse for a cosy, stylish look.

Fleece
While not a natural wool, fleece is a versatile synthetic material that provides a useful layer of warmth. Soft, comfortable and lightweight, fleece usually takes the form of casual tops,  jackets, hats and scarves.

Napping in flannel

Nothing beats the warm softness of a brushed flannel shirt when winter rears its icy head. Equally stylish on men and women, flannel shirts are the ultimate in casual winter wear. For extra warm trousers, try our men’s flannel lined trousers and jeans (also available for boys).

Flannel is a soft, woven fabric made using wool or cotton. Its distinctive appearance and irresistible softness are the result of brushing the fabric with a fine metal brush to raise the fibres (creating a ‘nap’).

The breathable warmth of flannel makes it perfect for winter slumber. Our women’s sleepwear collection features plenty of flannel pyjamas to keep you cosy at bedtime.

Winter cool in corduroy

Thick, soft yet highly durable, corduroy is the perfect fabric for those looking for winter warmth. First made popular in the 60’s and 70’s, the fabric is made of raised cords woven in vertical lines and brushed to raise the ‘nap’.

Corduroy works well in all sorts of clothing but if you’re looking for some serious winter cool, a classic pair of corduroy trousers or cord jeans makes the perfect starting point. Wear with a crisp white shirt for a smarter look, or pair with a cardigan and an oversized scarf on top to keep you warm while looking undeniably cool. If rain or snow seem blissfully absent, pop on a pair of suede boots to help complete your outfit. For men, there’s also the option of our beautifully soft baby cord shirt in a range of colours.

Elegance in fur and faux fur

Looking for winter opulence? Look no further than the luxurious cocooning warmth of faux fur. A high-quality faux fur made with synthetic fibres can look and feel deceptively similar to the real thing. For a simple touch that instantly elevates your outfit, try our fluffy faux fur gilet or our range of coats and winter boots with faux fur trims. At Lands’ End, we also have a gorgeous range of snug faux fur blankets to keep you ultra-comfy through those chilly winter nights.

Versatile chic in velvet

One of the most endearing qualities of velvet is its sumptuous softness.

Made using natural or synthetic fibres, the silky texture of velvet is created by evenly distributing cut threads into a short, dense pile. Velveteen and velour are similar to velvet, and, though distinct in stretch, shine and thickness, are often used interchangeably.

Soft to the touch and reassuringly warm, velvet, velveteen and velour are winter wardrobe staples suitable for all occasions. If you’re dressing for a special event, look for deep colours such as burgundy or navy, and accessorise with metallic accents. If you’re looking for an even comfier fit, check out our stretch velvet trousers and velour dresses.

Armed with the knowledge and know-how of the best winter fabrics, you’re sure to stay stylish and warm whatever the British weather throws your way.