What clothes should I buy in the sales?

Shop Window With Sale Banners. Shopping Series.

Can We Lesser Mortals find some summer sale bargains we can wear in winter?

The sales are here, and I’m sure lots of Lesser Mortals have rushed into town, and bought some reduced items to wear on summer holidays. However, at the back of your mind is the fact that it is already mid July, and you might only have a few weeks left to wear these garments before the weather changes. So what should you buy in the sales? If you are a savvy shopper, you will have already realised you are going to have to replace last years winter coat, and your leather boots have got holes in, and you might have a special Christmas party coming up!! Whilst it seems ridiculous to be thinking about it now, have you remembered how skint you usually are by October,? Because you’ve got to factor in buying Christmas presents, which is exactly why you never replaced your winter coat in the sales last year!!! Here are some suggestions which have great reductions but which I think you will get good wear out of, in winter. Let me know if you buy any of these things – always nice to chat ( see comments box below)

sale ss2015 pear KM ss2015 apple monsoon dressss2015 sequin jacket ted baker


  1. Kimono sleeve dress Was £215 now £105. Karen Millen. Size 6-16. 100% polyester. Dry clean only. I love this dress and it will really suit red heads! The  beading detail and rushed skirt will suit pear shapes best, but it will also suit other body shapes.
  2. Gracie dress. Was £169 now £35. Monsoon. Size 6-14. 100% polyester. Machine washable. Does this remind you of Marilyn Monroe? Beautiful halter neck dress which will suit apple shaped ladies! For winter, accessorise with metallic gold, or silver, shoes and handbag.
  3. Sequin bomber jacket Was £249 now £125. Ted Baker. Sizes 6-16. Viscose, polyester, polyamide mixes. How many times do you have a lovely party frock and no jacket to wear with it? It even looks great with jeans too!! Suits most body shapes, especially hourglass if it finishes at waist level.

sale 2015 Hourglass KM ss2105 leather reiss boyish:pear


  1. Textured cotton coat. Was £275 now £135. Karen Millen. Size 8-14. Cotton elastane – dry clean only. Normally I only have one winter coat, but I recently discovered the value of having a brighter lighter weight coat to keep me feeling summery in spring and autumn. This is perfect! This is good for most body shapes, apart from apple shapes.
  2. Black leather bomber jacket. Was £495 now £245. Reiss. Faux fur collar but lambs leather body. I always buy leather in the sales, as you get better quality leather for your money. I like this as most other styles are biker, and this bomber jacket is a little more versatile. It will suit most body shapes unless you are very busty.

sale 2015 lk bennet bootssale 2015 silver bag

  1. Betsy leather ankle boot. Was £275 not £165. LK Bennett. Leather. Again, if you buy in the sales, you get a much better quality boot, and don’t kid yourself that you’ll find cheaper in winter – the winter prices are always a shock after summer. These will look good with skinnies and skirts. They will elongate shorter wider feet.
  2. Grey Agosta Zip Tote was £229 now £114. Jigsaw.  Italian leather. Up to date tote which makes shopping with the girls a stylish pass time!! Good for summer or winter.

So if you want to save money, you need to buy ahead in the sales, and whilst it seems ridiculous to be thinking of winter when you haven’t had your summer holiday yet, you will give yourself a pat on the back, when you notice all the winter clothes are SO expensive. I am currently taking lots of clients sale shopping now. If you are interested, see www.vickysmithstyling.co.uk 

Further reading:

How to shop in the sales: fashion/Telegraph.

Is it safe to buy in the sales?: Dailymail

12 things to buy in the sales: The frugality

More than half of britons never wear clothes bought in the sales: this is money

What swimwear will suit my body shape?

ell macpherson

Can We Lesser Mortals find a swimwear which makes us look hot, hot, hot….!!! (like Elle “the bod” Macpherson)

Aaaaargh. How long till summer holidays and We Lesser Mortals are obliged to get our bods out on the beach? It’s too late to do sit ups and expect them to have an effect now, so what can we do to help the cause? Well believe it or not, there is swimwear out there (bikinis or swimsuits) which can help us look fabulous, whatever our body shape. Below are some which I have selected for various body shapes. Again, they aren’t in the sales, to make sure you can get the size you want, but once you’ve got the idea, you can look for something similar, which is reduced. Should you spend a lot? Well, you will be wearing it nearly all day for one to two weeks, so you decide. More expensive pieces are usually better made and offer more support. Ladies often wonder whether they can wear a bikini over a certain age. I say, it’s up to you. You may be self conscious about saggy tummies etc, but you can sunbathe and swim in them, and then use a sarong or kaftan to wonder in to the bar later. Life is too short to hide under a bushel!!!


swimsuit hourglassbikin hourglass


  1. Tropicana spot underwired swimsuit. £42. Floozie at Debenhams. Polyamide elastane. Size 8A/B through to 18 D/E. The lovely waist band will look fabulous on hourglass figures.
  2. Vintage vacation mix and match bikini. Seafolly available at John Lewis & Debenhams & House of Fraser, as well as their own Seafolly web site. Nylon elastane mix. DD plus style in size 8-16.  Top £72 bottoms £39. Prices vary, so browse all sites to look for the bargain. Retro styles always suit hourglass figures.

swimsuit pear bikini pear


  1. Navy and ivory colour block swim suit. £55. Phase eight at Debenhams. Nylon elastane. Size 8-18. Reduced to £35 at House of Fraser. This style focuses attention on the top half, and therefore, will suit pear shapes best
  2. Zigzag tassel fluted bikini top £26 and bottoms £15. Next Sizes 32A/B to 38 F/G. and bottoms size 6-20. The broader top makes your chest look bigger and therefore balances out pear shapes.

swimsuit apple bikini apple tankini bikini apple shorts


  1. Lime butterfly swimsuit. Reduced to £36. Gorgeous at Debenhams. Size 32DD to 40G. The side sculpted panels give a slimming effect and add curves, so will suit apple shapes best.
  2. Floral padded underwired tankini £27.50. Marks and Spencers.34DD to 40G. Polyamide elastane mix. I love the retro style of this tankini, and when sunbathing, you can always roll it up to catch more rays. The tummy support and underwired bra, gives definition to apple shapes.
  3. Floral high waisted bikini bottoms. £16. Marks and Spencers. Size 8-22. Polyamide elastane mix. The full pants finish off this lovely ensemble for apple shapes.

swimsuit boyish bikini boyish


  1. Disco non-wired swimsuit. £38. Lepel at Debenhams. (£22 at H of F) Size 8-18. Polyamide elastane mix. If you are athletic with a small bust, this swimsuit, with its empire line silhouette, will make your chest look fuller. It has removable foam pads in the cups to enhance your chest. Push up bra tops, if you have no boobs, just look ridiculous – always have a bust shape in the costume, and some subtle padding. Suits boyish/small chest.
  2. Ocean Ikat bikini bottoms £15 and triangle bikini top £20. John Lewis. Size 8-18. Nylon elastane mix. The moulded but non wired bikini top will suit boyish and small chested ladies. (ignore the large chested model) Don’t be tempted with a balcony push up bra.

swimsuit top heavyfantasie bikin


  1. “Rock the beach” halter neck swim suit. £54. Freya at Debenhams. and House Of Fraser, Figleaves. Size 30 DD to 38FF. Polyester elastane and light padding to cups. The belt draws eyes downwards, away from chest area, so suits a large chest.
  2. Fantasie full cup bikini top £38. Fantasie Montego short £30. Debenhams. Size 32DD to 38G  Pants S-XL. Polyamide elastane mix. Great support for large bust, balanced out with boy shorts, so perfect for large chests.

I hope this has given you some confidence to show off your figure on the beach this summer. You don’t have to walk round in your bikini if you are self conscious, there are so many kaftan cover ups available now. If you think you would benefit from a one to one session, then contact me here

Further reading:

Best swimsuits by body type: Popsugar

The no Bullsh*t swimsuit guide. Huffingtonpost

Most flattering swimsuit for your body shape: Self

Where can I get a women’s wedding guest outfit?

weddin g photos nina ricci


Can We Lesser Mortals find a women’s wedding guest outfit that makes you look and feel great?

The wedding season is upon us, and throughout July and August, many of us will be swanning off to weddings, and want to look and feel fabulous, all day. I’ve enlisted a bit of help from Kyra at Firetree photography to tell you how to take a good photo on the day without squinting, and also Sue York from Sue York Make Up, to help make sure your make up stays on all day too. I shall advise you on the wedding guest outfits I would recommend – as gorgeous Lesser Mortals should be getting their own attention for looking stunning. Obviously, as an Image Consultant, I can’t recommend a boring dress, as that is what everyone else will be wearing. I want you to wear something stylish and up to date, which suits your body shape. The ones shown, are nearly all full price, to make sure you can still get hold of them, but if you have plenty of time, mooch around the shops, as the sales are on. You can wear all these outfits again on other occasions.

wedding karen millen dresswedding KM shoes wedding KM clutch


  1. Painterley splash floral print dress. £160. Karen Millen. Size 6-16. Acetate, polyamide, elastane mix. Dry clean only. Suit hourglass best. You could team with nude accessories, or to be eye catching as suggested, and add contrasting green.
  2. Ankle cuff mid heel sandal. £125. Karen Millen. Size 36-41. Leather.
  3. Brompton Clutch. £99. Karen Millen. Leather. Chain can be in or out.

Kyra,Firetree photographer says  “Top tip for having your photograph taken in bright light, keep your eyes shut until the photographer counts in the photograph and open your eyes at the last minute, you won’t squint! If there is nowhere else to photograph but full sun, I ask everyone to shut their eyes and open on the count of three… perfect picture every time.” For more from Kyra, click here.

.wedding fenn wright maxi wedding fenn wright cardiwedding sandal Kurt Geiger


  1. Blue skyflower dress. Reduced to £174. Fenn Wright and Manson at John Lewis. Size 8-18. 100% silk. A beautiful flowing silk maxi dress, but wear with a heel. Suits apple shapes.
  2. Sky blue cardi. Fenn Wright and Manson at John Lewis. Size S-L/ 100 % viscose. Hand washable.
  3. Klassy Carvela sandal. £85 at John Lewis. SIze 3-8. Fabric upper.

wedding ted baker skirt wedding ted baker top wedding ted baker shoes


  1. Torchlit floral midi skirt. £179. Ted Baker. 100% polyester. Cool hand wash. Worn with matching silk top, will suit pear shapes.
  2. Syna frill neck shirt. £109. Ted Baker. 100% silk. Cool hand wash. Wear with full skirt above, to complement a pear shaped figure.
  3. Pointed leather court shoe. £110. Ted Baker. Leather upper.

Sue, Make up artist says:”By applying either a fine loose powder or compact powder, over your base make up, including eye lids, it will ensure your make up stays in place all day. If you are prone to oily shine, make sure you apply a mattifier under your foundation. On photos it is very easy to look washed out, so you will need to apply more blusher than you would normally and make sure you’ve got a lipstick in your chosen colour to top up throughout the day”. For more info on Sue, click here.

wedding jigsaw suitwedding silk top jigsawwedding hat jigsaw


  1. Blue cotton stretch jacket. £149. Jigsaw. Cotton elastane mix. Size 8-16. Stand out from the crowds, with a stylish pastel suit and heels.
  2. Cotton stretch tapered trouser. £98. Jigsaw. Size 8-16. Wear with the jacket to suit top heavy ladies.
  3. Overlay sleeveless top. £69. Jigsaw. Size S-L. 100% silk. Hand washable. Wide enough straps for good bra support, if top heavy.
  4. Florencia Panama hat. £49. Jigsaw. Raffia – one size only. Makes for a rakish outfit with the suit.

wedding jumpsuit reisswedding belt reisswedding clutch reiss

  1. Liora polka dot jumpsuit. £195. Reiss. Size 4-14. Hurry, as they are running out of sizes on line. Polyester elastane, dry clean only. Wear it with a belt, and perfect for boyish figures.
  2. Belluci hammered cream metal belt. £70. Reiss. Leather and brass. Size XS to XL
  3. Faro cream clutch. Reduced to £69. Reiss. Polyurethane.

Hope this has inspired you to step out of your comfort zone and try something a bit different. Frankly, I don’t want to look like everyone else which is why I choose something like a jumpsuit for a wedding. Would you? If you fancy a one to one session or you have question to ask about your clothes, contact me through www.vickysmithstyling,co.uk

Further reading:

100 best wedding guest outfits: you and your wedding

wedding guest outfits: one fine day

what to wear to a wedding evening reception: not dressed as lamb

what to wear to an evening wedding reception: fabulous after 40.


6 lovely cut out clothes

cut out valentino

www.vogue.co.uk – Valentino

Can We Lesser Mortals wear the cut out trend without looking like a paper doily (surely you’ve heard of them….?? Can’t just be me that’s old enough)

As it gets nearer to summer, Lesser Mortals are a little bit happier about revealing a tad more skin, though totally uncomfortable about putting it all on show….we’ll leave that to the young ‘uns. So the cut out trend is perfect – you can show as much or as little of your anatomy as you like. High street clothes are most often lined, so you won’t always need to worry about what underwear to wear underneath. If you are worried, you may just have to wear a camisole/vest top if you are feeling a slightly exposed. Go on – it’s summer….tease a little!!! My favourite is the Zara tunic – what’s yours? There is a bit of a cross over between broderie and laser cut. They are manufactured differently, but offer the same end use.

I had a lovely comment last week, from a Mortal who said she’d tried something she wouldn’t normally buy, based on this blog. Thank you so much for that, and anyone else with any comments – please add at the bottom of blog in the comment box.

Last thing – You have till Friday 19th June (this week) to get any friends to subscribe to this blog, and win a 2 hour mens styling session with me! A PERFECT gift for Fathers Day.

cut out top Mint velvetcut out tunic top Zara

  1. White Brodrai wrap top. £69. Mint Velvet. Size 8-18. 100% cotton. Machine washable. The V-neck makes this perfect for anyone with a large chest or hourglass figure.
  2. White embroidered tunic. £39.99. Zara. Size XS to L. 100% cotton. Machine washable. Personally I’m not keen on the cut out trousers, but the tunic is great for those ladies who like to wear a longer tops with leggings or skinnies. Best for boyish figures.

cut out  skirt reisscut out reiss dress

  1. Joelle Skirt. Reduced from £110 to £69. Reiss. Size 4-14. 100% polyester. Machine washable. The A line shape makes this great for pear shapes.
  2. 1971 Lucia laser cut dress. Reduced from £169 to £135. Reiss. Size 4-14. 100% polyester. Dry clean only. There are lots of these dress with a boxy shaped tops, in the shops at the moment. They don’t really suit hourglass or larger busted women, but are best on boyish and pear shapes.

cut out smock dress phase eightcut out skirt and top Karen Millen

  1. Hattie lace dress £89. Phase Eight. Size XS-XL. 100% cotton. Hand washable. Fabulous floaty top with 3/4 sleeves for those ladies who prefer to keep their arms covered. Great for apple shapes.
  2. Eyelet broderie top was £145 now £100. Broderie skirt was £199 now £135. Karen Millen Polyester cotton mix. Machine washable. You may not want to wear these together, and on the Karen Millen website the skirt is shown with coloured tops. A nice length if you don’t like showing all your legs in summer. The cut out fabric keeps you cool without showing to much thigh!! The skirt will suit boyish and some pear shapes with long lean torsos. Avoid if you carry any weight around your tummy. The top is best for smaller chests.

You will need to hurry if you want some of these items as they have gone into mid season sales.

I’m excited about my holidays and am trying to plan a wardrobe that will work in Greece, but that I can also wear in the UK too. I think this cut out trend covers it quite nicely. Have you any clothes you’d like advice on? If you comment below, I can get back to you personally, if you include your email in the comment box. Not all comments have to be made public. Or contact me through my website by clicking here

Further reading:

What you need to know about laser cut clothes: engadget.com

3 ways to wear a broderie top.: thewhitecompany

2 ways to wear a broderie collared shirt: Myfashionlife


8 ways to wear matching separates

2 piece catwalk Giambattista


Can we Lesser Mortals save money by buying smarter outfits?

It’s that time of year, when we are all saving like mad for our summer holidays, but the cost of the holiday has also got to include any new outfits. So how brilliant would it be, if, instead of buying one dress, you could get a dress, skirt, and top for the same price? That would be savvy shopping ( as Jack Sparrow would say). It also helps those Lesser Mortals who are disproportionate top and bottom, allowing them to buy different sizes (saving money in alterations). So what’s not to like about matching separates? As an “image consultant” I am always looking for ways to save money for clients, solve body issues and keep clients on trend, and this article deals with all 3 of those!! Enjoy!!

I was really pleased last week, when one lovely subscriber told me she’d bought an item based on my recommendation. 💕Thank you.

Don’t forget – I am offering a 2 HOURS FREE MENS STYLING SESSION for anyone who subscribes to this blog by 19/6 – just in time for FATHER’S DAY

2 piece `Coast 2 peice skirt and top Next


  1. Silvy skirt £75 and Silvy lace top £65. Coast. Size 6-18. Viscose polyamide cotton mix. The top is machine washable and the skirt, dry cleanable. This would be a perfect outfit for a wedding or christening. Then you can wear the top with jeans, or the skirt with a bright coloured top. As the top nips in at the waist and has a V design to show a modest cleavage, this will probably suit hourglass shapes best.
  2. Floral print tube skirt £24 and Floral compact top £25. Next. Sizes 6-22. Polyester elastane mix. The high mix of polyester makes this good for holiday packing without too much creasing. The boxy top will make small busts look a little bigger, so avoid if big chested. Will suit boyish, slight pear shapes, and some apple shapes best.

2 piece skirt and top Oasis 2 piece shorts and top Next


  1. Lime print pencil skirt £42 and Lime print crop top. £30. Oasis. Size 6-16. Cotton elastane mix. Machine washable. I thought these were a bit of fun, and you can also get matching shorts. Perfect for hot sunny climes, or if you want to  chase the cold British weather away. The top is slightly cropped, so if you wear with other trousers or skirt, aim for high waisted, unless you have a 6 pack!! Will suit boyish, apple and slight pear shapes.
  2. Stripe high waist shorts £32 and woven stripe top £28 Next. Size 6-18 shorts and 6-22 top. Cotton viscose mix. On the top, the waist is nipped in and the stripes at the shoulders will broaden them, so avoid if you have a generous chest. The shorts are pleated but stitched down, so this is fundamentally an A line skirt. Due to the pleats, avoid if you have a tummy which stick out. So this will be best for pear shapes. The top will go with other pencil skirts or jeans and the shorts are perfect with heels or converses.

2 PieCE SHIRT AND SHORTS TED 2 piece karen Millen

  1. Demitra palm print shorts £48 and Branca palm print denim shirt £69. Ted Baker. Both Lyocell. Size 6-16. Both machine washable. Here’s a matching set with a difference. They can be teamed together as a playsuit or worn apart. Especially good for cooler evenings, when you could wear the shirt open as a jacket. Will suit apple shapes, boyish, and top heavy ladies can undo a few buttons to show off their décolletage.
  2. Floral print sporty trousers £115 and Silk floral print cami top. £90. Karen Millen. Sizes 6-16. Top is 100% silk and the trousers are viscose. The shoe string straps won’t offer much support, and when the top is worn out there isn’t much shape, so these will suit boyish best. If you belt the top in, hourglass and slight pear shapes will get away with.

Now that I’ve saved you all that money, don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE to win a 2 hour mens styling session for Fathers Day. If you need help putting outfits together, then get in touch here

Further reading:

Matching prints:thefashionspot

Wear a matching 2 piece combo:allwomenstalk

effortlessly wear matching separates: thestore.com

Why matching separates are a must have: whowhatwear

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