If you must, Katie Trotter has tips on how to wear the sleeveless jacket

M's fashion editor offers advice on making peace with one of the season's stranger trends.

Sometimes I feel like someone up there is having a good old laugh, coming up with trends for trends' sake. Watching all of us fools fall for them hook, line and sinker and cashing in on our ignorance.

Take sleeveless jackets, or sackets (why not?). A strange, if not borderline off-our-rocker new trend - and one I find rather puzzling.

"Why?" you will ask, with much anticipation. "Why would one want to wear a jacket that is missing its sleeves?" And I will answer, much to your disappointment: "To be perfectly frank, I'm not quite sure."

Truncated, curtailed, sturdy, perhaps even matronly - all are words I would associate with the sacket. But before we take it apart completely, let's go back to base level and clear one thing up: the sleeveless jacket is not a waistcoat. A sleeveless jacket goes on top of everything else. It is not safari gear, nor is it a throwback to the Eighties: in short, it is everything that a jacket is, only without the sleeves.

I have no doubt the sacket has the workings of a man behind it. How do I know? Because no woman with her sanity still intact would feel the need to widen her girth, in fear of appearing - well, you know - a little butch. Never mind with a garment that appears unfinished.

While men work at broadening the torso, women (in case you didn't know) do quite the opposite.

But fools as we are, I'm sure one of you will give this a shot. So I'll be a sport and offer you all I'm worth.

First, before you start, give your upper arm a good old shake in front of a mirror. If you wobble (be honest here) - even the tiniest hint of a wobble - you will have to opt out. Your upper arms had better play ball if you are going to give this a whirl; they will be your centrepiece.

Masculine tailoring works. Think equestrian - slim, fitted trousers also work (perfectly pressed, of course). Contrast is everything. Make sure your bottom half is skinny (in every way). Whether in skinny jeans or pencil skirt, it has to counterbalance the sheer volume of the upper body.

If you start thinking this way the sacket can, at a push, appear rather elegant.

So what's the big secret? There isn't one. I'm afraid the message is rather simple: one-third biker, one-third mountain climber and one-third freak.

It's about as pointless an artefact as a wind chime (I know it's windy. I don't need your tinkling garden accessory to remind me).

As I said, utterly pointless. Not like all the other trends, of course.


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