Check out these gorgeous gingham garments!!

Gingham fashions courtesy of Peter PilottoD and G, Michael Kors and House of Holland

Can We Lesser Mortals wear gingham and not look like we blew in from the Windy City? (Doris Day)

Whip crack away, whip crack away, whip crack away!! Howdy partners! Gingham I hear you say…well I’m either going to look like Dorothy, without the Wizard of Oz, or I’m going to look like an extra from Calamity Jane (Doris Day don’t you know) Not so – the modern twist on gingham means you can find mature styles which are appropriate to your age and life style. Additionally, I would recommend that you take care when you find it styled up with frills, ruffles and embroidery, as you may start to look like a pair of curtains in a transport caff or in “Allo Allo”!

How to wear gingham:

Do think about what colour suits you best – most of the styles in the shops are black and white, which I find drains me. As a result, I’ve looked for other colours to flatter your skin tone. The check pattern will attract attention to it, so wear it over your best feature (boobs if you like them, bum if you like that) The off the shoulder styles are very fashionable this summer, and this can make shoulders look broader. Full frilled skirts can draw eyes downwards away from larger busts. So think about where your best and worst features are before you try on.

Finally, gingham can be smart and casual. The Boden trousers featured below can be office appropriate when worn with a blazer, and the Warehouse gingham dress would be perfect for a formal lunch.

So don’t ignore gingham this summer….check it out ( get it? check..gingham??)

  1. Off the shoulder gingham blouse. £17.99. H and M Size 6-20. 100% cotton. Machine washable. This blouse will make shoulders look broader so is best for pear shapes and boyish figures. Apple shapes and larger chest, may get away with it too. Hourglass ladies could wear it belted in. or tucked into trousers or skirts which show off their waists.
  2. Richmond gingham trousers £59.50. Boden Size 6-22. Petite, regular and long length. Cotton elastane mix. Machine washable. Drawing eyes downwards, these trousers will suit top heavy, boyish, and some hourglass ladies,

  1. Gingham dress. £56. Warehouse. Size 6-18. 100% cotton. Machine washable. This A line style will work perfectly for pear shapes, as well as boyish figures.
  2. Gingham ruched sleeve blouse £35. Warehouse. Size 6-18. 100% cotton. Machine washable. Slightly loose in shape, this will suit boyish best, but apple shapes can wear it, and some pear shapes – watch the trumpet sleeves don’t accentuate your hips.

  1. Gingham check cardi. £59.99, Zara Size XS-XL. Cotton polyester elastane mix. Hand washable. These little jackets from Zara are very popular and easy to wear. Best for pear and boyish. Other shapes will get away with it if worn undone.
  2. Gingham frilled skirt. £29.99. Zara Size XS-XL. 100% cotton, machine washable. Adding volume to the lower part of the body, this skirt will balance a large chest out nicely. It can add curves to boyish figures.

  1. Nina Gingham dress. £149. Coast  Size 6-18 100% polyester. Dry Clean only. This dress will highlight your shoulders, and skim over hips, so is good for pear shapes, and boyish ladies. If your bust isn’t too big, it will suit hourglass shapes too.
  2. Wendy bow wedges. £39. Top Shop  Size 3-8. 100% textile. Specialist clean.How cute are these? Perfect for beach holidays and casual occasions.

  1. MOTO gingham shorts £32. Top Shop Size 6-18. 100% cotton. Machine washable. Ok, so you’ve got to a have a cute butt for these or long slim legs, but that doesn’t mean you can’t wear them if you’re over thirty!! Best for long legs and boyish figures
  2. Gingham check shorts. £25.99 Mango. Size S-L. polyester cotton, Machine washable. Stylish shorts with a slightly longer cut. The retro shape means these will suit hourglass best, but will also work on top heavy, boyish and pear shape if the hem doesn’t sit on the widest point of your hips.

Do you think you could wear gingham? Have you looked at it now with a fresh perspective? It wasn’t something I was immediately drawn to, but since looking, I’ve seen quite a few styles I would wear. If you want help you can ask me in the comments box, or email me via my website

Further reading:

20 style tips on how to wear gingham clothes:

30+ ways to wear gingham style (sans Dorothy): Closetful of clothes

22 street style approved ways to wear gingham:

How to wear the Gingham outfits in a fashionable way: Styles Weekly

What is this “dark fairytale” fashion trend?

Can We Lesser Mortals embrace the fairy tale trend without looking like The evil witch?

The trouble with all these fashion trends, is that Lesser Mortals can start to look ridiculous if you follow them to the letter. I should imagine you’d be sick of people shouting “Oi, Little Red Riding Hood”, if you were to go shopping in a red cape. It is, however, a very wearable trend this autumn, and most of us should be able to find something floral, embellished or darkly romantic to suit us. It is a lovely feminine fashion, and if you are beginning to get older and worry you can’t rock the younger androgynous look, it is ideal. Don’t leave these items for night time – the floral dress and skirt shown  below, can be worn with a jumper and flat boots to tone them down for a saturday shopping trip. The embroidered kimono can be worn with ripped jeans and Timberland type boots. Obviously the knitwear pieces are pretty versatile for day and night, and can be worn either with skirts or trousers. Don’t be scared of fuller skirts – they can hide a multitude of sins under them, but you should avoid if you are an apple shape. Let me know what you think of this trend in the comments box.

fairy tale monsoon dress fairy dress hobbs


  1. Lorena Lace dress. £89. Monsoon. Sizes 6-22. Dry clean only. Finishing just above knee height, and with lace sleeves to either hide upper arms, or add a little extra warmth, this dress will suit most age groups, and won’t drown petite ladies either. Suits pear and boyish shapes best.
  2. Invitation Guildhall dress. £189. Hobbs. Sizes 8-18. Viscose rayon, silk mix. Dry clean only. It finishes flatteringly at knee level, so if you have heavy legs, this is the right style for you. The flowing skirt will skim over bigger hips, and the narrow waist highlights your curves. It won’t suit you if you are too busty. Suits boyish, pear and smaller chested hourglass ladies.

fairytale monsoon jumper fairytale jumper hobbs


  1. Marianna embellished funnel neck jumper. £69. Monsoon. Sizes 8-18 but sizes 20 & 22 out of stock on line. Viscose, polyamide, wool, alpaca. Machine washable. Will suit most body shoes, but would particularly flatter pear shapes.
  2. NW3 Evelyn sweater. £69. Hobbs. Sizes XS-L (6-16). Cotton, lyocell, wool mix. Hand washable. This slim fitting jumper would suit pear and boyish shapes best.

fairy tale top shop kimonofairy tale ted baker skirt fairy tale top ph 8


  1. Embroidered velvet kimono. £68. Top Shop. Sizes 4-16. Machine washable. 100% polyester. These kimono jackets are really easy to wear whatever your size and shape. Your arms and hips are covered, and you can dress up or down, day or night. Suits any body shape, but will flatter apple shapes and larger busted ladies.
  2. Genna blooms of enchantment skirt. £179. Ted Baker. Sizes 6-16. Outer is 100% silk. Dry clean only. The contrast coloured waistband and full skirt are screaming out for 50’s hourglass shapes to wear. Wear formally at night, or rock it up with a leather jacket, black ankle boots, and opaque tights.
  3. Steph floral Sequin jumper. £79. Phase Eight. Sizes XS-L. Viscose nylon. Hand washable. Comes to hip level on 5’10 model. A good evening wear piece for wearing with smart skinnies, or a pencil skirt. Covers upper arms, and would suit boyish figures and apples shapes.

fairytale shoes boden fairy tale bag monsoon


  1. Jewelled pump. £129. Boden. Available in half sizes from 36 to 42. These are suede with leather liner and sole. If you don’t like heels, these are your “must” for Christmas parties. Available in god, navy and black. May make your feet look longer, so good for wide feet, less good if you already have overly long feet already.
  2. Morocco suede embellished bag. £59. Monsoon. Suede outer. 20cm x 30cm. Popper fastening.

It’s nice to see a fashion that flatters normal body shapes, and is more feminine, which I think suit more mature women. Let me know what you think, or if you fancy a session with me, Vicky Smith Styling, you can ask for vouchers for Christmas too!!

What are the new fashion trends for Autumn 2014

How can We Lesser Mortals look “on trend” in September whilst suffering from post Pina Colada poverty!!!

Welcome back Lesser Mortals. Kids at school? Post A-levellers waved off on their Gap Year? Students nearly ready to head back to uni? Holiday clothes washed and flat packed till next year?

Is the colder weather starting to make you wonder what to wear, as hawaiian prints are a little too “high summer”, tans are starting to fade, and you still haven’t got your head round buying new winter clothes, not least because you overspent whilst you were in Ayia Napa and your kids have bled you dry all summer. Fear not. Whilst the new trends are looking fresh and exciting, some have already appeared in previous seasons, and you’ll be able to dig them out again, whilst still looking up to date! Some of the trends are florals, animal prints, bomber jackets and checks/tartans. Loyal Mortals, will already have taken my fashion advice and purchased in previous months, but in case you didn’t heed my words, here are some items available to buy now. See…’s worth using a style consultant!

Bomber jackets – first featured in March 2014.

AW14 bomber repeat fashion Karen M AW14 floral repeat fashion  Next


  1. JT108 bomber jacket. Karen Millen. £160. Sizes 6-16. 100% polyester. Suits most body shapes.
  2. Floral printed bomber jacket. Next. £32. Sizes 6-22. 100% polyester. Suits most body shapes.

Tartan and checks – first featured in October 2013.

Aw14 check repeat fashion Jigsaw AW14 check repeat fashion Karen M

  1. Jewel check Silk front sweater. £98. Jigsaw. Sizes S-L. 100% silk front and 100% wool sleeves,. Hand wash. Avoid if large chested.
  2. Graphic check shirt. £110. Karen Millen. Sizes 6-16. 100% cotton. Hand wash. Suits apples, boyish and pear shapes.

Florals – first featured in February 2014.

AW14 floral repeat fashion Ted B AW14 floral repeat fashion Zara

  1. Georgah opulent bloom print tunic. £159. Ted Baker. Outer is 100% polyester. Dry clean only. This tunic is reversible to have a V-neck and zip, when worn the other way. Could be worn as a dress, or over jeans/trousers. Sizes 6-16. Will suit boyish and apple shapes, as well as some pear shapes.
  2. Combination printed top. £25.99 Zara. 100% polyester. Sizes XS-L. Will suit similar shoes to above.

Animal prints – first featured October 2013

AW14 animal repeat fashion French C AW14 animal repeat fashion Next

  1. Wildcat tie Neck dress. £65. French connection. Sizes 6-16. 100% polyester. Cold wash. Will suit pear shapes, boyish and hourglass.
  2. Animal printed wrap dress. Next. £32. Viscose elastane mix. Sizes 6-22 in petite, regular and tall lengths. Great for hour glass.

So, hoping the word “winter” hasn’t depressed you too much, then keep following my blog as I lead you through the fashions this winter, and if you need an image consultant to help you with a wardrobe detox or to give you fashion advice, don’t hesitate to contact me at

Further reading.

Best Animal print as worn by women over 40:

autumn winter print trends (tartan and florals):

womens bomber jackets for Aw2014:

Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)