As we enter the holiday season, the age-old predicament of mastering dressing up during the colder months is once again upon us. Besides figuring out footwear that factors in rain, cold and unclean public transport, maintaining comfort and warmth are the next biggest challenges when it comes to achieving autumn and winter glam.
So why not find the fun in covering up? We'll be the first to admit that dressing up in 2022 still feels like putting on a costume but now is the time to fully embrace it by tapping into our inner Little Red Riding Hood. From runway to red carpet, and now hitting the high street, hooded dresses have graced this season with ease. Not only is the hooded silhouette ultra sleek but it adds just a touch of necessary drama. Cue main character energy.
Earlier this year Tom Ford dropped sheer and bodycon hooded dresses for Autumn/Winter '22, giving the hood its official invitation to formal dress codes this season. In September, Saint Laurent sent a slew of dresses with hoods down the Spring/Summer '23 runway, paying homage to the house’s early '90s hooded archives. In the last month alone, creative director Anthony Vaccarello’s draped maxis with built-in hoods have received stamps of approval from red carpet regulars Olivia Wilde, Laura Harrier and Blackpink’s Rosé Park.
Elsewhere, Halpern’s Spring/Summer '23 collection included a leopard print hooded gown and Alaïa added hoods to various silhouettes, from cutout, feather-trimmed dresses to silver sequinned sets. On the red carpet in the last two weeks, Kate Moss upgraded her iconic '90s naked dress with a sheer, hooded Saint Laurent iteration, Natalia Bryant opted for Tom Ford in a full Barbiecore moment and Addison Rae tied back her tresses under the hood of a preloved Gareth Pugh mini.
In September I, too, indulged in my own hooded fashion moment (I am a trend-setter after all) by opting for a floor-length, hooded knit dress by Amsterdam streetwear label Daily Paper. I was immediately sold on the idea of wearing a hood to the club. While adding an air of mystery to my night-out look, an added bonus was that the sleek style kept my shaved head warm.
Granted, some logistics are harder to pin down – literally and figuratively – as those with hair might need to commit to a full-time hood-up moment to avoid hoodie hair. But this also means that there are plenty of hairstyles to try: see Rosé Park’s effortlessly undone side plait for reference.
When it comes to accessorising, the beauty of the hooded look is that it can be easily dressed up or down. Don’t be afraid to layer – take notes from Saint Laurent’s motorcycle jackets and structured coats – and style with heels or trainers, depending on the motive.
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Perhaps linked to the surge of last winter’s balaclava trend (which is still very much on trend this season), the hooded dress is an opportunity for us to really experiment with fashion in ways that we might not have before. Although, similar to the balaclava trend, it is worth noting fashion’s hypocrisy towards Muslim women when it comes to the connotations of wearing the hijab versus a trendy hooded dress.
Keeping these politics in mind, this marriage of loungewear and partywear is one that we can definitely expect to hit the market – and your winter parties – in the coming months.