How to recreate my go-to layered outfit that always gets me compliments

“That’s a very Villanelle outfit!” the shop assistant in B&M swooned while I packed up the last bits of my Christmas shopping, blushing, having never really nailed how to accept a compliment. It’s usually followed by ‘thanks! It has pockets’ or immediately telling them ‘Oh, it was only from Primark’ – as I’d done 15 minutes earlier in The Works when the lady at the checkout told me she liked my hat.

It was the same outfit I’d worn to Manchester Christmas Markets a few weeks earlier, and one that has fast become my go-to layered look for when temperatures dip. And really, you’ll probably have pieces in your wardrobe – perhaps in different colours or patterns – that you can build a super similar outfit with.

I started off with a plain white shirt from Boohoo. Mine’s really oversized, but any will work, as I tuck it in anyway. This particular style has drop shoulders and balloon sleeves, and I usually wear it with sweater vests. Because it’s long, I only button the central portion of the shirt, leaving the collar open, and the bottom open so that I can tuck the front tails around the back of my trousers to avoid too much bulk at the front – this is why a shorter shirt also works, and would possibly work even better.

Then, I layer over my pink Cara and the Sky Rocky cardigan – a cute chunky cropped knit in a vibrant hot pink hue. This also has balloon sleeves which have a box pleat at the top to add volume, as well as pointelle detail and a unique cable and mix stitch to the front, designed by founder, Cara. And the eagle eyed among you may notice that it matches my festive nails that Leanne Haycock painted for me earlier this month. I like to wear this buttoned up because of it’s fit, but a slouchier cardigan could be left open.

If it’s particularly chilly, like it was in Manchester, you can even add a roll neck underneath the shirt – I really likeb the sleeveless ones that don’t add too many layers to the arms, but still keep the chest area nice and snug.

The pink in the Rocky cardigan matches perfectly to the stripe running through these green and pink tartan trousers from Primark, making it feel a really well thought-out and put-together look. These were just £13, and you can buy the matching blazer for the ultimate power suit, too. They’re a straight leg with a hidden button, zip and hook fasten, so they look super sleek and tailored from the front. This does unfortunately make them difficult to wear a belt to though, as there are no loops.

I accessorised this look with a silk neck scarf from Primark, knotted loosely at the neck. The £3 scarf is mostly green with a pink and gold chain pattern running through. Alternatively, you can also wear this in your hair, or wrapped around a handbag handle – but the colours all tie in really nicely together. I added gold jewellery, pairing my Daisy London pieces with some Primark costume jewellery, some Cloud and Clay earrings, and a Tiger and Luck necklace that occasionally peeks past the scarf.

I also wore a deep green 100% wool fedora from Primark, which came in at £9 – and you could also tie the scarf around this, or customise it how you’d like. Finally, I rounded off the outfit with my trust ox blood Dr Martens, which I’ve had for around eight years, since I was in high school. I totally adore the outfit as it gives me Bowie’s Thin White Duke vibes with an androgynous feel, and was so thrilled for it to be likened to Villanelle, since her Killing Eve wardrobe is second to none.

Shop this look

Shirt – Boohoo – Similar

Cardigan – Cara and The Sky 

Trousers, scarf and hat – Primark

Boots – Dr Martens


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Staffordshire, UK

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