Casual French-Inspired Winter Chic (With Added Leopard)

Casual French-inspired winter chic: Catherine Summers of Not Dressed As Lamb wearing a yellow longline coat, leopard knit tank top, stone baggy trousers, black flatforms, black beret, Orla Kiely stems backpack | Fashion Over 40

Throw a beret into an outfit and it’ll always have a touch of French chic. Add a BLACK beret and it’s begging for a Breton top and string of onions.

Not really… but to be fair, I wouldn’t wear a black beret in France for fear of looking (feeling) pretty daft. But in deepest, darkest Southwest England? Bring it on.

And a beret – or any hat – does the best job ever of hiding your two months worth of undyed roots. Many people think I’ve changed my hair colour to a warm blonde, but I haven’t: this is just the colour it goes when the Olia rose gold fades. I’ll be pink again hopefully by the end of the week. I decided to have a Christmas of not stressing about anything, including the fact that I didn’t find time to dye my hair.

 

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Casual French-inspired winter chic: Catherine Summers of Not Dressed As Lamb wearing a yellow longline coat, leopard knit tank top, stone baggy trousers, black flatforms, black beret, Orla Kiely stems backpack | Fashion Over 40

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And talking of Christmas… I’ll be featuring the dress I wore on Christmas Day next week. Again, I didn’t stress about not getting the photos done to feature them here yet. I’m on it and I’m chilled about it.

But what IS perplexing me is what to call the knitwear I’m wearing here. You can’t tell it’s sleeveless, but it is: what item of clothing is it to you? Having searched online for more of the things for you (see the end for choices) I’ve found that we don’t call them one thing over here in the UK. With a fair amount of US influence, we’ve got ourselves confused about what we call this knitted top that doesn’t have sleeves.

I’m old-school British and I still want to call it a tank top. What can I say, I grew up in the 80s. That’s what we called them. But we now know that our US friends call our vest top (sleeveless t-shirt) a tank, and a waistcoat here is a vest there… confused yet?!

So here are all the versions I can think of, which is yours?

Sweater vest
Jumper vest
Tank top (the classic British description in the 70s and 80s)
Sleeveless vest
Sleeveless knit
Sleeveless jumper
Knitted vest
Knitted tank top
Knitted tank
Knitted waistcoat

Or if you call it something else then you HAVE to tell me in the comments (or have I now confused you and you’re not sure what you call it at all? Like when someone asks me how I say “scone”; I don’t actually know which I say, Skonn or Skoan)…

Anyway here’s my French-chic outfit with a great yellow coat, leopard sleeveless knit (!), black beret and some baggy trousers that I’ve been wearing on repeat all winter (don’t ask me how everything is still available, nothing’s particular new). Plus my Orla Kiely backpack* is the most perfect choice colours-wise. I kinda loved this outfit.

Is it a sweater vest, a tank top or a sleeveless knit? What do YOU you call it? Skonn or skoan? ; -)

 

Stay safe, XOXO

Catherine signature

Casual French-inspired winter chic: Catherine Summers of Not Dressed As Lamb wearing a yellow longline coat, leopard knit tank top, stone baggy trousers, black flatforms, black beret, Orla Kiely stems backpack | Fashion Over 40
Casual French-inspired winter chic: Catherine Summers of Not Dressed As Lamb wearing a yellow longline coat, leopard knit tank top, stone baggy trousers, black flatforms, black beret, Orla Kiely stems backpack | Fashion Over 40
Casual French-inspired winter chic: Catherine Summers of Not Dressed As Lamb wearing a yellow longline coat, leopard knit tank top, stone baggy trousers, black flatforms, black beret, Orla Kiely stems backpack | Fashion Over 40
Casual French-inspired winter chic: Catherine Summers of Not Dressed As Lamb wearing a yellow longline coat, leopard knit tank top, stone baggy trousers, black flatforms, black beret, Orla Kiely stems backpack | Fashion Over 40

Coat: La Redoute
Sweater vest/sleeveless knit/tank top: Daisy Street (there is a UK14 left, or this is similar)
Trousers: Asos
Shoes: Amazon
Beret: Asos
Backpack: Orla Kiely*

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Other sweater vests/tank tops you might like:


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Linking up to… Monday: Stylish Monday (second Monday of the month), Inspire Me MondayMy Glittery Heart, On Mondays We Link Up || Tuesday: Style With a Smile, Trend Spin/Walking in Memphis in High Heels, Turning Heads Tuesday, Spread the Kindness, Confident Twosday, Happy Now Blog Link Up || Wednesday: WowOnWednesday || Thursday: Chic & Stylish, Ageless Style Linkup (third Thursday of the month), || Friday: Neverending Style, Fancy Friday, On the Edge, Fabulous Friday’s Link Up

Casual French-inspired winter chic: Catherine Summers of Not Dressed As Lamb wearing a yellow longline coat, leopard knit tank top, stone baggy trousers, black flatforms, black beret, Orla Kiely stems backpack | Fashion Over 40
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29 Comments

  1. 14 January 2022 / 10:11 pm

    I like the combination of colors , those tones make a good contrast with the environment , especially in the afternoon … the only thing that does not look so good is the pants , they look very baggy , they hog the attention , and are lost by complete the silhouette , body is a unique canvas with its own artist , that is why fashion was made for us , to enhance our own beauty , not us for it .

    • Catherine
      Author
      14 January 2022 / 10:39 pm

      =SIGH=

      I guess you’ve missed my #iwillwearwhatilike hashtag? And all the women who believe in it?

      I’ve heard it all before – I like my trousers like that. I’m not bothered about what you think! It’s 2022, not 2005 – we’re long past the time when people give others unsolicited advice (you’ll be surprised how many women these days don’t need to be told what to wear and wear whatever the hell they like). Please use this as a learning experience and realise where grown up women are these days…!

  2. 8 January 2022 / 12:00 pm

    I would probably call it a sleeveless sweater purely because I have no idea lol! I’ve got a couple, but none as fabulous as yours. Maybe I’ll find something in the sale next week (the sales have been delayed here in Portugal because of Covid—I kid you not. The Government forbid any sales from starting until 10th January!!)
    I’m totally digging the colour combination here, and the addition of the black beret is simply divine. I bought a raspberry coloured one to wear during our Christmas holidays to the UK, but they were cancelled, because of the restrictions. Bummer.
    Happy New Year, Catherine!
    Hugs
    Suzy xx

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 11:42 am

      Prince would be proud, Suzy… a raspberry beret?!!!! 😉 Oh and sales not allowed to start till 10 Jan?? Ours start BEFORE Christmas these days, even before Covid!!

      Thanks lovely, HNY to you xx

  3. 7 January 2022 / 8:16 pm

    Such a chic look!

    Danielle | thereluctantblogger.co.uk

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 11:45 am

      Thanks Danielle 😀

  4. Pilar
    7 January 2022 / 6:51 pm

    In Spanish we call it CHALECO, and Google says the translation is just VEST.
    I have a love/hate relationship with vests. I am a 90s kid (10-18) so I wore them knitted and not knitted at various times. BUT the main thing is that if I have my arms uncovered I get cold!!! So I don’t wear them at all anymore. I do have a couple of puffer vests that I can wear over pullovers and sweaters.

    I am dying for those shoes!!!! I NEED THEM!!!!

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 11:54 am

      Oh I layer them up with tops and shirts, Pilar – I can’t bear cold arms either! Glad you like the shoes, they’re so comfy: probably why I have about four pairs in different colours…! x

  5. Lise
    7 January 2022 / 5:00 pm

    I also called it a Tank Top in South Africa in the 70’s. I saw a blogger refer to it as a Grandpa Vest the other day which also seemed right. You look fab in this fun outfit.

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 11:56 am

      Oh that’s interesting that they were called tank tops in South Africa as well, Lise??! I do like ‘Grandpa vest’, seems fitting! lol 😉

      And thank you x

  6. Ruth
    6 January 2022 / 9:52 am

    When my brother first saw me wearing mine he asked me where I got my “gansey”. It’s been my preferred word for it ever since.

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 11:59 am

      I have NEVER heard of gansey, Ruth!! I Googled it and found this on Wiki:

      “A guernsey, or gansey, is a seaman’s knitted woollen sweater, similar to a jersey, which originated in the Channel Island of the same name, sometimes known as a knit-frock in Cornwall, especially Polperro”

      – so it’s named after the island of Guernsey (and become gansey) – plus I’d not heard of a ‘knit-frock’ either! Two more for my list, hehe 😀

  7. Sarah Clarke
    6 January 2022 / 8:47 am

    Hello! For some reason the word “jerkin” sprang to my mind! Happy New Year, lovely to see you rocking your outfits!

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 12:00 pm

      Oh my goodness Sarah I know it’s childish but that did make me snigger, LOL!!

      HNY to you too, and thank you x

  8. 6 January 2022 / 8:15 am

    Looks super together, I love the colours. I’ve also heard them called a ‘spencer’ named after Lady Di!!
    Have a fun week xx
    Jacqui

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 12:03 pm

      Yet another word for it I’d not heard before, Jacqui – HOW have I never heard of a Spencer?? Especially seeing as I’m the right age and wore all manner of pie collar blouses (that we called “Lady Di blouses”)…!

  9. 6 January 2022 / 7:17 am

    We call it a spencer here in the Netherlands. And I call it a scoan butter first! Lol. Your hair is a gorgeous colour like this!

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 12:04 pm

      Another vote for Spencer!? Hehe I’m still shocked I’ve never heard it called that before…!

  10. KikiTotoro
    6 January 2022 / 5:25 am

    My default name is “tank top” as I too am a child of 1970s Britain. Today I switch between “sleeveless sweater” or “sleeveless knit” as those are the titles used for tank tops by stores online. ☺️
    Lovely outfit!

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 12:05 pm

      That’s my problem too, Kiki – what to put into search boxes to find them on websites… they all call them something a little different (but yes, sleeveless knit does seem to be the most common these days I find)! Bring back “tank top” I say 😀

  11. Pamela
    5 January 2022 / 11:49 pm

    In England we say – Pullover

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 12:06 pm

      To me a pullover was always just a jumper/sweater, Pamela… we never called the sleeveless ones pullovers! Interesting how it’s so different everywhere!

  12. Michelle Springer
    5 January 2022 / 11:08 pm

    Sweater vest. From the American. 😉

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 12:07 pm

      You know, that’s what I thought they’d call it in the US… without as much deviation as we have here! A vest is something totally different here as I’m sure you know, Michelle 😉

    • Holly
      20 April 2022 / 7:32 pm

      Yes in USA we call them sweater vests

  13. Naomi
    5 January 2022 / 10:45 pm

    WOW – I was just about to say, it’s a pullover!

    And Catherine, that’s an excellent philosophy: ‘I decided I’m not going to worry about this, so I won’t’. This is what I need today. Thank you.

    • Catherine
      Author
      11 January 2022 / 12:13 pm

      Another vote for pullover – as I mentioned to Pamela (above) we never called the sleeveless ones pullovers, to me, a pullover always had sleeves (i.e. a jumper/sweater)!

      And thank you, I’m glad the bit about not stressing resonated with you. It leaves your mind free to concentrate on the stuff you CAN concentrate on now, the other stuff can wait x

  14. Urs
    5 January 2022 / 10:02 pm

    In Germany we say: Pullunder…

    • Catherine
      Author
      13 January 2022 / 8:36 pm

      Seems in German it’s very clear with just the one word for it, is that right Urs? (I Googled it and it ONLY brought up pictures of what I’m talking about)!

      I translated the word to English and it came up with 7 translations… seems none of us know what to call it, lol!

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