Reversible clothing

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If you’re boarding a plane any time soon and want to just have carry-on luggage, think about reversible clothing.

reversible trenchSince my reader Shelley pointed out how useful reversible clothing is if you want to avoid baggage charges on airlines like Ryanair, I thought I’d run a few more past you.

These clothes are all from Orvis. Yes, I know Orvis clothes are expensive. But not only are they beautifully made and comfortable, on a cost per wear basis they actually work out as cheap as chips.

sweaterI’ve owned much of my Orvis gear for 13-14 years (mostly bought in the sales), including five of their reversible jackets and two reversible waistcoats, and I wear them ALL THE TIME. You pays your money and you takes your choice. The fabrics, it should be noted, are universally of high quality – butter-soft linens, soft ethnic cottons and thick microfibres that need no ironing.

Reversible jacketreversible jacket other sideOrvis make many different sorts of reversible garments, including sunhats, bathrobes, jackets, coats and skirts. You can find a three-page listing of them here.

They include many ethnic-style jackets of the type seen here, with its zig-zag pattern at one side and its black and white paisleys on the other. The prints are usually very different on the two sides, and some reverse to a plain side. Quilted together from beautiful printed or batik cottons, these are among the most-worn items in my wardrobe – I have a brown one and a blue one, both with elephant appliques, a taupe one with appliqued chicks on it and a couple of others done in geometric patterns.

The stone-coloured microfibre trench at top left is fully reversible to black, which should be all the coats you’d need while on holiday, while the intarsia sweaters above right in a cotton/wool mix reverse out to the opposite colourway (white on red instead of red on white, for instance).

reversible cardireversible skirtreversible skirt


This pinwheel cardi (above left) is reversible and comes in black and white only – I would buy it like a shot this summer if I had the requisite £85 – ouch).  These skirts have two layers of toning florals or paisley and are usually made of high quality viscose.They come in many different colourways – the trick is to buy ones where you like both sides equally. 

Add in a pair of jeans and a few t-shirts and that might be pretty much all you’d need for a city break – in fact, play it right, and you could walk onto the plane wearing most of what you need for the week. 



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