The easiest way to look stylish this season? A stripy top of course...
The Breton top has come a long way. From humble beginnings back in1858 as a uniform designed for the French Navy (it was hoped that the stripes would help sailors to spot anyone who fell overboard) to it’s modern day style status as a wardrobe staple – we’re even going as far as to ditch the classic white t-shirt for something a little more inventive, but just as versatile.
Stripes are easy to style, and can be slotted into basically anyone’s wardrobe, seeing you through everything from the school run to a lunch party. Wear your favourite striped top with a camel hued trench and light wash jeans on the weekend, or pair it with a cocktail skirt for a dressed up, evening look.
Worried that you can’t pull the look off? Despite common belief stripes are not unflattering. Choose the right
stripe and you will wear it forever – you just need to find a style that suits you (long sleeved, short sleeved, fitted, loose).
Kate Middleton is often spotted donning a stripy breton tee, and if there’s anyone we’re willing to take our style cues from, it is most definitely the Duchess of Cambridge. Practical, versatile and stylish, a striped top is the ultimate investment buy. So where to start? This classic design from White Stuff, £25, in a new colourway is a great option. Three-quarter length sleeves suit everyone, and red will brighten up your jeans for an easy weekend look. It’s that simple!
Flick through our gallery to find even more of the best Breton tops – some even come with a quirky twist…
Start your stripe collection off with this simple but chic offering from Armor Lux. A brand favoured by celebrities thanks to their "highly developed range". Made from 100% cotton and with a universally-flattering crew neck and long sleeves, add this to your wardrobe staples today,
If you can't bear to be without some bling, why not try an embellished version of the classic Breton? This tailored jumper will work throughout most seasons, but we're wearing it now with a white midi skirt and black slider sandals.
Boden's classic Bretons are made with both design and quality in mind. 100% cotton and with a statement stripe to break up the print, this style is great when work with skinny jeans and trainers. The full-length sleeves can be rolled up for a wearable styling twist.
Opt for a lighter hue for summer. This pastel polka dot top from Comme des Garcons will look great worn loose over white culottes and styled with on-trend loafers.
Breton certainly doesn't have to mean black and white - bring some brights to your wardrobe with the help of this fun, colourful top. Style it with wide leg trousers or jeans and flatforms.
In need of a new cardigan? Your summer cover-up doesn't have to be plain - choose a Breton style to jazz up summer dresses. This Petit Bateau is a classic made from quality cotton - and despite the bargain price, it'll last for years.
There's no harm in keeping it plain simple - in fact, we're considering ditching our ever-trust white t-shirts in favour of this super-soft navy Breton. The linen blend gives it a worn-in look - so you can finally master that laid-back cool weekend style some women seem to work so effortlessly.
For a truly effortless approach to stripes, try a longer length Breton tee that can be worn loose over jeans or as a beach t-shirt on holiday. Slogans are still firmly in the fashion limelight, too - so you're ticking off multiple trends in one easy-to-wear buy.
Nothing to wear? This super soft, jersey sriped top is the ideal weekend wardrobe addition. With a loose fit and three quarter length sleeves this top is classic, versatile, and will be worn over and over again.