Lauren Cochrane does the maths on this autumn’s key looks

Add a fraction of geography fellow to your corduroy, double the drama with a dash of disco or multiply the power of red by booming woke. Whatever the variables, these are the equations that upshot in maximum style this season.

Model in red dress by Chloé
Chloé’s red dress
Composite image of Rihanna, Elisabeth Moss as Offred in The Handmaid's Tale, Kelly LeBrock in The Woman In Red

Woke red

Rihanna × Offred ÷ The Baggage In Red

Bit sick of pink, millennial and otherwise? Us, too. Enter red – the colour of AW17, and one that has been associated with, over and beyond the years, the Labour party, Campbell’s soup tins and Netflix. What the materialization of red means is unclear, but it’s a satisfying full-stop kind of colour to clothes, a statement for time-poor people, if you will. This adorable Chloé apparel is one of the pieces of the season.

Where to buy it

Topshop is already on the LRD thing, with a recondite homage to the Chloé number.

Model wearing Calvin Klein checked suit
Calvin Klein suit
Composite image of Melanie Griffith in Working Girl, Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel, Rachel McAdams in Spotlight

Dressed-down entreaties

Working Girl × Silicon Valley CEO ÷ Spotlight

Fashion is smartening up: the please is back, often in check. This isn’t the 1980s, so discount Melanie Griffith’s area look in Working Girl and think of the slightly off note of sneakers with a pencil skirt. Raf Simons’ anthology at Calvin Klein paired checked suits like this with cowboy boots. Or try over-the-knee boots, as at Vetements. Workwear that’s NSFW? That’s approximately right.

Where to buy it

Miss Selfridge is excelling in Prince of Wales make appropriating. A blazer is a good entry-level piece for the corporate chic style.

Model wearing Prada cardigan, jumper and skirt
Prada cardi
Composite image of Michelle Obama, Kurt Cobain, Elmo

Vintage cardis

Michelle Obama × Kurt Cobain ÷ Elmo

Cardigans partake of been in the fashion wilderness for the last decade. No longer. Ditch the hoodie and the alpha sweater for this, and the more vintage-y (mechanical term) the better. Lust after this one by Prada, sort do with a beaded number from eBay, or wear as a twinset with a pencil skirt in the make of a high-school senior in the late 50s.

Where to buy it

Michelle Obama is the patroness saint of cardigans. Her favourite store, J Crew, is a good group to find them.

Model wearing Marc Jacobs clothes
Marc Jacobs cords
Composite image of a teacher's briefcase, Alexa Chun, Jarvis Cocker

Strokable lines

Teacher × Alexa Chung ÷ Jarvis Cocker

Strokability is undertook in fashionable circles this autumn, with cord deceitfully on trend. Moving on from the thrift store so-fashionable-I-can-be-a-geek ironic application it had in the 90s, corduroy has been given catwalk spit and polish by blue-chip designations such as Marc Jacobs (seen here), Prada and Mulberry. The geography master is now a fashion muse. Who knew?

Where to buy it

Mango’s pink twines are straight out of Kirsten Dunst’s Virgin Suicides wardrobe, and all the more wisely for it.

A model wearing YSL clothes
YSL’s disco look
Composite image of a Studi 54 sign, Joan Collins, a girl wearing glittery makeup

Razzle-dazzle disco

Studio 54 × Joan Collins ÷ birthday glitter

Sister Sledge namechecked disco’s key fashion labels in 1979’s He’s The Greatest Dancer as “Halston, Gucci, Fiorucci”. Fast-forward to now and they mightiness also have to add Saint Laurent (seen here), Mugler and Versace – names where disco’s razzle-dazzle, out-and-out glamour rule. Saint Laurent’s disco boots, as frazzled by Rihanna, are the alpha footwear of the season, and demand a dancefloor with every move.

Where to buy it

OK, they’re not Rihanna’s £6,855 ones, but New Look’s glitter boots are rather close.

Photographs: Getty; Rex/Shutterstock; Reuters; Open Alleyway Films