A sweater – the right one, that is – makes a great present. For those who live in a temperate climate, it is hard to have too many, and this year, just like last, sweaters are a big trend. The trick is to find something fashionable enough to make it a proper present, while avoiding those seen in every magazine in town.
Etro, the boho-luxe label from Italy, has some striking designs featuring its signature swirls, and as it’s still a relatively niche brand, they won’t be ubiquitous. This year it has jumpers and cardigans in particularly ravishing patterns and colours. A wool and angora V-neck, for example, is awash with florals in shades of lime, blue and crushed raspberry (£440, second picture), while a crew-neck silk and cashmere knit in shades of brown, grey and white features an animal print edged with grey and white paisley (£410).
Markus Lupfer is always a good source for terrific sweaters. His Emma crew- neck in fine grey merino wool with a sequin paintbrush in red or blue (£275, first picture right) is a winner. Also highly desirable are those he’s produced in collaboration with Net‑a-Porter. Inspired by Japanese culture, they include a grey merino-wool design with a geisha girl on the front (£310).
Then there’s Bella Freud, most famous for her collection featuring our canine friends. Freud’s dogs are very discreet, outlined in Lurex intarsia and applied to navy or black round-neck sweaters (£258). For something prettier, they come embellished with charming cherries (£258). Lovers of Mary Katrantzou’s landscape patterns, which created a sensation on the catwalk this season, will find the same imagery translated onto a black and grey wool knit with a hint of silver glitter (£795, first picture left, from Net-a-Porter). Much plainer but still adorable is Paule Ka’s grey wool sweater with a vent overlay and grey bow (£320, third picture right).
And it’s hard to go wrong with Helmut Lang. His grey and black Obstructed Borders sweater (£250) is chic and flattering (a quality not to be dismissed lightly), thanks to the black side panels. If you’re looking for something more vibrant, Maison Martin Margiela comes up trumps with its cerise jumper decorated with two vivid scarlet blocks (£400, third picture left). Finally, if you really feel like treating someone, Emilio Pucci’s black and white twist-pattern design in wool and angora (£1,565) is a star.