Without this sounding like the beginning of a modern unrequited love poem, there’s no celeb whose wardrobe I want more than Rosie Huntington-Whiteley’s. No one embodies chic minimalism and timeless buys with trend-led twists, all the while offering a masterclass in how to look expensive like she does. Every time she posts an outfit selfie on Instagram, I gasp, then sigh when I check the tagged brands on her look.
Of course, given her excellent fashion connections, style credentials and her job as a model and fashion designer, Rosie’s clothes and accessories (more often than not) actually are expensive. Bottega Veneta, The Row and Khaite are commonplace in her wardrobe – luxury brands I (literally) dream of filling my own closet.
So what do us gals on a budget do when our unrivalled minimal style icon wears £3,000 bags? We adopt the style lessons her outfits teach us, and we recreate them on the high street, that’s what. Let’s go!
RHW lesson one: It’s *all* about the accessories
Minimal dressers know that accessories have the ability to make or break an outfit. Rosie, naturally, gets them right every time, but that’s easier said than done when you have a bigger budget to play with. Luxe accessories can elevate a plain outfit, so if you’re wearing a white tee and wide-leg trousers, turn your focus to the added extras.
Play it safe and opt for clean styles that will look more expensive than their price tags suggest: neutral mules, leather bags with minimal branding and thick gold hoop earrings.
RHW lesson two: Try all-white
A cheap print can easily look, well, cheap, so a safer alternative to ensure you look as expensive as possible is colour-block neutral styles: the less details there are to call the pieces bluff, the better. Rosie’s look here is striking without being OTT: sleek, elegant and perfect for evening. And thanks to the non-descript main pieces, its an easy to replicate outfit.
RHW lesson three: Go for a high-low mix
The best outfits have a slight contrast – one unexpected item in the mix adds interest and personality to an otherwise simple look. Think a pair of kitten heels with boyfriend jeans and a knit, or a structured midi dress and smart bag with white trainers.
The best way to do it? Get dressed as you normally would in an outfit you love, then try to swap an item out for either a fancier one or a more casual one, depending on the outfit you start with. Rosie would be proud.
RHW lesson four: You don’t need to spend a lot on your activewear wardrobe
The one department of Rosie’s wardrobe that is slightly more accessible to the everywoman is her activewear. Cult brand (and Eliza favourite) Adanola features heavily – so much so that RHW recently launched an edit with the brand where she picked her favourite items and created a capsule.
If you’re looking for a way into the minimal luxe aesthetic that Rosie heads up, see the brand as step one. First follow my guide to what’s actually worth buying from Adanola, then pair your neutral (obviously!) athleisure pieces with oversized sunglasses, a leather bag and New Balance trainers.
RHW lesson five: Get a neutral capsule wardrobe together
You knew it was coming. The Only Way Is Neutrals, soon to reach a TV channel near you. I’m joking, but if you do want to look expensive, give off a rich air and be able to get dressed in the morning with ease, a neutral capsule is a must – any combination of items will make for a sleek outfit every day. Here’s your mini check list to get started with:
- Black blazer
- Camel trench coat
- Oversized blue shirt
- White/grey T-shirt
- Smart black leggings
- Dark straight jeans
- Wide-leg trousers
- White trainers
- Tan leather loafers
- Chunky black sandals
- Linen dress
- Black shoulder bag
RHW lesson six: Try an oversized silhouette
If in doubt, remember that an outfit always looks better if it’s a little looser than if it’s on the tight side. A slouchy silhouette has a modern feel, particularly when it comes to tailored separates like a blazer and wide-leg trousers. Size up if you’re wary, then add feminine touches for balance: think dainty gold necklaces and chunky rings, hair accessories or a pair of kitten heels.