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Florals once again are going to be big news come Spring/Summer. To be honest, florals never date so are a good item to have in some form in your wardrobe. They can be worn in a feminine, floaty way or you can edge them up by contrasting them with some tan ankle boots and a leather jacket.
Being a bit of a rock chic at heart, this is how I would incorporate this trend into my wardrobe by wearing it with a worn looking pair of ankle grazer jeans, a bright pair of heels and a gorgeous understated pale long coat which will see you through from now all the way to next Autumn.
What do you think, are you tempted to try this trend out?
Last year Marks and Spencer added a new designer (Belinda Earle, formerly at Jaeger) to their team with the hope that she would turn their fashion fortunes around. So far, so good, as this year the Limited collection is one of their strongest yet.
If you're thinking of Marks & Spencer in times gone by when it was guilty of going a zip or a frill too far, then stop. More along the lines of Cos with it's simplicity, interesting tailoring and on trend styling, there are pieces that everyone aged 20 to 70 will be wanting to wear. With pastels, yellow and monochrome sitting alongside floral and aztec patterns on skirts, dresses, trousers and coats - there really is something to suit all styles, ages and personalities.
One of my favourite looks is the collarless coat in black and white aztec print (top right) paired with the white crop top, yellow ankle grazers and leopard print shoes for a print clash. If you want to make a statement without having to put too much effort into it - this is the way to go.
Here are a few of the pieces I snapped earlier. What do you think? Do you think any of them will be making their way into your wardrobe and your life?
Oh my goodness! Have you seen the weather? I just got caught in it wearing suede boots but thankfully I had already sprayed them and my leather bag with rain guard so no wet feet or ruined bags here!
Now the seasons have most definitely changed its worth spending some time waterproofing your leather and suede shoes and bags. It will help to keep them looking as good as new and will stop unsightly water stains.
Most shoe shops and dry cleaners sell it and for around £4-£5 and it can mean the difference between keeping a great pair of shoes for years or having to replace them year in, year out.
This season there's one colour that is going to overshadow all the others and it's bright, bold and beautiful. It's the colour of love and passion and is sure to get you noticed. Move over the LBD, this Autumn/Winter it's all about the LRD.
It's a brave colour so if the thought of head to toe scares you, break it up and use it in a jacket, a necklace or even a hat. I've done a quick round up of some items currently on the high street which includes Warehouse, Oasis, Hobbs, Phase Eight, Debenhams and M&S.
Two of my particular favourites are the double breasted coat (Hobbs) and the leopard print pencil skirt (Warehouse). If anything catches your eye and you'd like to know where it's from don't be afraid to ask. This season be bold!
Unless you've been walking around with your eyes closed for the last few months, you'll have noticed that boyfriend jeans are everywhere. I've personally been wearing them for years as I love how comfortable they are yet they still have a stylish vibe to them and sometimes you just want an alternative to the ever faithful skinny.
There are lots of styles around with ready made rips which unless you smarten the look up with a blazer, could look a bit grunge. I also love how wearing a smart heel can change the feel of the outfit. So I thought I'd create a couple of looks for you and show you how I put together my cool casual look for a night out last week.
This Spring/Summer, which by the time you read this, Spring will officially have sprung, stripes are going in all directions - horizontal, vertical, diagonal, chevron. You'll see them on anything from tops, dresses, and skirts to shoes, bags and scarves. As with all trends, I recommend using them as a starting point to influence your own style. Being stylish isn't about being 'trendy' and looking like a high street mannequin but expressing your own individuality in a way that is natural and feels comfortable to you AND makes you look and feel great.
If you're not careful stripes can make you look wider but if you get them right, they can also make you look slimmer so don't be afraid of wearing them, there is one out there that is just right for you. Here are a few tips that will help when looking for the right stripe for you:
- Pair stripes with a solid colour on the larger part of your body i.e. if you're heavier in the lower half of your body, keep this simple and monochromatic and use the pattern on your upper body to draw attention to it, for example a black
pencil skirt belted with a black and white striped blouse.
- Vertical stripes are great at lengthening the body, so if you have a shorter torso – wear a vertically striped shirt to create the illusion of length – just be aware of how wide the stripes are. A chiffon striped blouse worn with a pair of skinny jeans would look great. If you have shorter legs, a pair of striped trousers will make them look longer and if you add a heel, you're instantly going to look taller. Pinstripes are a classic style but experiment with colour and opt for a
coloured stripe instead for a more modern look.
- If you have a small waist, a chevron striped top that draws in at your waist will accentuate your petite waistline.
- If you're top heavy, wear a smaller, thinner stripe or if you want to enhance your bust, choose a bolder, wider stripe.
- If you have a small frame – wear a small pattern, if you have a larger frame – wear a larger pattern.
- If you like the idea of stripes but are still fearful of them, introduce them through your accessories. A striped scarf with a silky tee and skinny jeans is an easy way of nodding to the trend without being too over the top. Now that we've hit Spring and the weather should (I say this lightly) be warming up, a striped pair of espadrilles or wedges worn with a dress are a good alternative to plain sandals. A striped bag will add a different dimension to your outfit and can give a plainer look some added interest.
However you choose to wear stripes, have fun with them and use them to your advantage and don't be afraid to get a little creative.
I spent a happy few hours on Saturday researching the new trends that are slowly slowly making their way into the shops. The sales have stuck around for longer than usual this year so it's a welcome sight to see the new collections. There's lots of gorgeous hot colours and patterns around with orange being particularly strong again, so if you bought items in this tone last Summer, brilliant, get them out and start wearing them now.
If you're unsure of wearing such a bright colour here are a few facts about the pyschology of orange that might pursuade you to give it a try:
“The color psychology of orange is optimistic and uplifting, rejuvenating our spirit. In fact orange is so optimistic and uplifting that we should all find ways to use it in our everyday life, even if it is just an orange colored pen that we use (or a gorgeous handbag!). It radiates warmth and happiness, combining the physical energy and stimulation of red with the cheerfulness of yellow. Orange brings spontaneity and a positive outlook on life and is a great color to use during tough economic times, keeping us motivated and helping us to look on the bright side of life”.
- Empwer Yourself with Colour Pyschology
Back to fashion with flat blocked heel sandals (hurrah for comfort AND style) cropping up everywhere. Clark's had a few fab pairs that will look great with everything from skirts, to ankle grazers to rolled up jeans and a blazer. Florals are stronger than ever and split skirts of all lengths were popular too. Being a bit of a rock chic at heart, I'm always partial to a biker jacket and so was particularly drawn to H&M's hot pink style which means I can still have an edge, but a feminine one! It didn't make it home with me, but it has been playing on my mind ever since........
I couldn't photograph everything I saw and liked but here are a few items that will give your wardrobe a colourful boost without costing the earth.
a – Clark's
b – Oasis
c – BHS
d – Nine West
e - Clark's
f - Clark's
g – Oasis
h – H&M
j – H&M
k - H&M
l – Top Shop
If December is all about Christmas and January is all about new years resolutions, then February has to be all about love. There are many cynics out there who complain that Valentines Day is designed for card and flower companies to make an extra mint, but in my mind, any reason to celebrate the love in your life, whether it's your partner, children or even your dog (I know my parents dog will get a special treat once the 14th hits!) is a good enough one for me.
Wearing the color red affects us physically by increasing enthusiasm, stimulating energy and can increase the blood pressure, respiration, heartbeat, and pulse rate . It encourages action and confidence and provides a sense of protection from fears and anxiety. So if Valentines Day isn't a good enough reason to wear this gorgeous colour, then there are a few other ones to think about.
However you choose to spend the night, whether it's a quiet meal at home, sharing a bottle of wine and watching a DVD or a full blown posh meal in an expensive restaurant, celebrate in style. Here are just a few of the things I've seen recently that might inspire you and get your pulse rate up and your heart beat racing......
1 - White Stuff £49.95
2 - M&S £19.50
3 - Zara £169
4 -Alice Temperley for JL £160
5 - H&M £12.99
6 - Mango£34.99
7 - People Tree £65
8 - Schuh £60
9 - Lulu Guiness£245
10 - Oasis £35
11 - Joules £69.99
12 - Mint Velvet (top) £55
13 - Not on the High Street £160
I'm a lover of all things fashion, style and image related but more than that I believe passionately in the power of feeling good in your clothes.
I'm also a mum to a teenage daughter who is taller than me with legs longer than mine and a dog whose curls are glossier and bouncier than mine!!