Sophisticated party wear to add to your Santa list

xmas-2016-mui-mui-coatxmas-2016-haider-ackermanxmas-2016-slavatorexmas-2016-john-galliano

Party wear images courtesy of Vogue.co.uk – MiuMiu Haider Ackerman Salvatore Ferragamo and John Galliano

Can We Lesser mortals find sensible Party Wear to lust over

Are your baubles up yet? Have you started popping your Christmas corks? And is the only festive spirit you are feeling, the liquid trickling down your throat? I don’t know about you, but I get massive Party Wear envy at this time of year. I lust after all the sparkles and sequins in the shops. day dream about sweeping into a cocktail party in a beautiful low cut velvet maxi dress surrounded by Daniel Craig look alikes, and then wake up to the realisation it’s going to look totes out of place at the “Nags Head” surrounded by men with beer bellies!!! How frustrating.

Can you get round this dilemma?

I would always say to wear your Party Wear as much as you can. It’s nuts that our most expensive clothes are saved for best, where they will date and  you won’t get your money’s worth? Haven’t we all got something we loved, but only wore a handful of times? What a waste. And ok, you won’t look like all the other women storming round Tesco with their trolleys overloaded – but then my philosophy is – why not look better?

Here are some Party Wear ideas which I believe you can dress up or down. For Christmas add a velvet or silk top and heels, and for normal wear, add a jumper and flat boots or brogues. One of the tabs on this blog, is “3 ways to wear”so have a browse at the different ideas, to get inspiration there e.g. metallic skirt or velvet pleat skirt.

My favourites? I like the green jacquard trousers, and the floral velvet blazer. Let me know in the comments which you like best…..

xmas-2016-berry-coated-legging-nextxmas-2016-next-1

  1. Berry coated legging. £24. Next Size 6-22 in various leg lengths (petite and tall). Viscose nylon elastane mix. Super stretchy, so perfect for a meal out at night. These leggings can be worn with jumpers and boots for normal day wear or with a super sexy top at night. They will suit anyone who normally wears skinny jeans. (boyish, top heavy, slight pear shapes, hourglass)
  2. Green jacquard taper trouser. £42. Next Size 6-22 with some long lengths available. Polyester cotton elastane mix. These stylish cigarette style trousers would look lovely with a silk blouse for evening wear, or a blazer jacket for work. They will work in summer too, with a cami top or floaty blouse. Suit busty, boyish and hourglass best.

xmas-2016-black-dress-coastxmas-2016-dress-zara

  1. Leonoria lace panel dress. Reduced to £69. Coast Size 6-16. Polyester polyamide mix. Dry clean only. This simple dress with super flattering side panels will be great dressed up for a party with sheer tights and heels, but will also work with opaque tights and knee boots for a lunch do. It may work in some work environments. This will super flatter straighter boyish figures by giving the illusion of curves. It will also suit some hourglass figures, but not if too busty.
  2. Frilled sleeve guipure lace dress. £29.99 Zara  Size XS-L Cotton polyamide viscose mix. Machine washable. This lovely flirty dress will look darling on Christmas Day with some opaque tights and high heeled shoes or boots. It will look equally as good after Christmas, with a leather jacketr or a jumper. This will be best for flatter chests, so boyish or pear shape will look best in this style.

xmas-2016-velvet-jacket-monsoonxmas-2016-jacquard-jacket-monsoon

  1. Florence printed velvet jacket. £89. Monsoon. Size 8-22. Viscose nylon mix, dry clean only. Super stylish jacket which can be tarted up over sequin trousers, velvet skirts etc or easily worn over a jumper and skinny blue jeans. Suit most body shapes depending on what you style it with.
  2. Mia jacquard jacket. £149. Monsoon. Size 8-18. Polyester cotton. Dry clean only. I love this long length jacket, which works to break up a big bust or big tummy. This will be fantastic over a work suit, or velvet trousers, or even with blue jeans!! It will suit apple  and boyish shapes, but will also suit other shapes, again depending on what you wear it with.

xmas-2016-metallic-savannah-miller-next-skirtxmas-2016-leather-skirt-coast

  1. Metallic pleat skirt. £45. Nine by Savannah Miller at Next. Size 4-18. 100% polyester. Machines washable. Available at Debenhams too. These skirts tend to skim the tummy, and flare out over the hips so are flattering for hourglass figures and pear shapes. They can also suit boyish and top heavy ladies. Apple shapes beware of the gathers over your tummy.
  2. Lela PU skirt. Reduced to £59. Coast. Size 6-16. 100% polyurethane, dry clean only. The extra detail, makes this fun leather skirt quite special for the festive season but equally will work well with opaque tights and woolly jumpers after the New Year. This pencil skirt will suit hourglass and slight pear shapes.  Top heavy ladies may get away with too.

xmas-2016-blouse-m-and-sxmas-2016-satin-top-warehouse

  1. Thistle bloom Long Sleeve Blouse. £35. M and S Size 8-22. 100% polyester. As florals are set to carry on into spring, this silky blouse will be perfect dressed up with a party skirt or trousers, or on a normal pub night out, with blue jeans. So lots of opportunities to wear this. This will suit most body shapes.
  2. Tie back T shirt. £45. Warehouse Size 6-16. 100% polyester. Machine washable.Wear this silky top with coated or velvet jeans for a night time look, or wear over a polo neck jumper during the day, where the split is not so obvious. If you are shy, then wear a blue vest top underneath it at all times. This will suit boyish and pear shapes best. It will also disguise a bit of a tummy, but it’s not a very long length.

So be a savvy shopper and choose things you can wear more than once. Keep an eye out for the sales…..they ARE going to happen soon. New Year is a great time for reflection, particularly on clothes, body and image. A consultation with me may only cost £100-200 and can totally help you to refocus and gain confidence with yourself. It may even be what you need to be more organised with your wardrobe – if you haven’t done it for the last 5-10 years on your own, the chances are, you’re going to need some help. Contact me through comments or Vicky Smith Styling. Skype consultations are possible too.

Further reading:

ways to wear a pleat skirt: whowhatwear

The velvet trend this fall: thefashiontag.com

How to wear coated jeans: glamradar

Best buys for brocade and jacquard trend: pop sugar

 

An essential Sneak Peek at Autumn’s Fashions

sneak-peak-bottegasenak-peak-d-an-gsneak-peak-guccisneak-peak-prada

Images from Vogue.co.uk: Bottega Veneta, D and G, Gucci, and Prada

Can We Lesser Mortals save money this Winter, by early buying Autumn’s Fashions?

How the heck are you? It’s been a long time since I tipped you off about the trends on the High Street, and it’s been a short summer in terms of sun and heat. I don’t feel I got my wear out of my high summer clothes, so I’m trying desperately hard to keep wearing them till at least the end of September, avoiding buying this autumn’s fashions just yet. Remember, you can keep warm by layering up – put shirts/T shirts etc on under dresses, and wear sandals with maxi’s and crop trousers to keep your legs a bit warmer.

If, however, you are totally bored with your summer clothes and can’t wait to go shopping, then here’s a quick heads up for what autumn fashions are to come. It’s by no means comprehensive, and High Street stores can sometimes ignore the catwalks, and carry on old styles from the season before, especially if they were best sellers. But at least, with this advice, you can be sure you’ll be fairly “edgy” for the next 6 months. Make sure you subscribe on the tab, to get my 2 weekly advice on what’s in the High Street shops to suit your figure!

All my resolutions to save money are flying out of the window…….

Luxury

sneakpeak-velvet-jean-jigsaw.sneakpeak-sandals-top-shop

  1. Richmond Velvet jean.  £89. Whistles. Available in graphite, black and petrol. Size 24-32 (roughly 6-14). Machine washable. A stretchy jean in cotton elastane mix, cut in a 5 pocket jeans style. This jean is an easy style to wear, but still shows you know what’s in fashion. Suits boyish, slight pear, top heavy and hourglass ladies.
  2. Jagga Velvet shoe £46 Top Shop. size 3-9. 100% textile. Heel 3″. Colour teal. Velvet too much for you on top? Make a statement with these funky shoes. Will really brighten up a black evening ensemble. Avoid if you have chunky ankles.

Brocade

sneakpeak-brocade-boot-top-shopsneakpeak-brocade-trousers-next

  1. Harry jacquard ankle boot. £65. Top Shop Size 2-9. Heel 3.5″. Textile upper. Again, if you prefer to wear plain clothes or skinny jeans, why not add some funky ankle boots? These won’t suit you if you have very thick ankles.
  2. Geo jacquard cigarette trouser £35. Next. Sizes 6-22 in reg, long and extra long lengths. 100% polyester. These can be dressed up for work or evening wear, but why not wear during the day too, with a chunky knit and trainers or converses? Comments on the website suggest these are better on curvier women if you don’t want a saggy (not soggy) bottom!!

Military

sneak-peak-coat-zarasneak-peak-skirt-oasis

  1. Military knit coat. £99.99. Zara. Size S-L. Knitted long length coat. A striking lighter weight coat for winter. Perfect for hippy ladies who want to broaden their shoulders so will suit more proportionate pear shapes, and tall boyish shape ladies best. This coat is intended to reach to your ankles, and will look amazing with high heeled knee boots or over skinny jeans.
  2. Pleated cord skirt. £38. Oasis. Size 6-16. 100% cotton, machine washable. Short flippy skirt which will suit most body shapes, but not apple shapes.

Animal

sneakpeak-animal-bibasneakpeak-clutch-top-shop

  1. Leopard dress wrap dress. £99. Biba at H of Fraser. size 6-16. 100% polyester. Machine washable. Wrap dresses suit most body shapes and the V neck and wide sleeves are flattering whatever your age. Fantastic with knee boots in winter. Suit pear shape, hourglass, top heavy and boyish. Probably not apple shapes due to rigid waist.
  2. Pony zip clutch. £32 Top Shop. Faux fur and leather purse. Great for day or night.

Tartan/tweed

sneak-peek-tartan-coat-mangosneak-peak-traouser-mango

  1. Check wool blend coat £99.99. Mango. Size XS-XL. wool blend mix, dry clean only. This coat is quite chunky and boxy, so although most shapes can wear it, it will complement boyish and some apple shapes best.
  2. Check suit trouser. £49.99. Mango. Size 8-14. Polyester viscose elastane mix. Machine washable. Perfect for work or with a chunky jumper at weekends. Will suit boyish, hourglass and busty women best.

Quilting

sneak-peak-barboursneak-peak-ted-baker-jacket

  1. Endo Baffle Quilt coat. £249. Barbour at H of Fraser. Size 8-18. Polyester amide mix. Machine washable. Stylish and warm, this will suit pear shapes, boyish and hourglass best.
  2. Junni faux fur collar jacket. £199. Ted Baker. Size 6-16. Nylon shell, faux fur collar (detachable) and down filled. Dry clean only. This style is best for hourglass and boyish.

Lace/sheer

sneak-peak-blouse-kmsnaek-peak-tunic-zara

  1. Sheer spot pussy bow blouse. £99. Karen Millen. Sizes 6-16. Available in red too. 100% polyester, machine washable. Don’t you just love a pussy bow? The bow draws attention upwards, so great for pear shapes, boyish, apple, and hourglass.
  2. Aubergine long sleeve friledl blouse. £19.99. Zara. 100% polyester. Machine washable. Size S-L. Before you freak out that this is see through, I just want to mention you should wear a vest top underneath (so no unsightly flesh on show) If you are very self conscious, then a long sleeve tight T shirt would do the trick too.. This cunning little blouse, has a discreet V in to break up the chest area, so is great for apple shapes and big busts. The muted sleeves, draw eyes away from chest area.

So did this titillate you and get you wishing the weather was colder, providing a perfect excuse to go shopping? I’ll keep you up to date with new styles coming in, and where to get them, as this quick peek is by no means comprehensive.

Further reading:

15 style tips on how to wear puff coats: fashiontasty

20 style tips on how to wear leopard print: gurl.com

8 ways celebrities are wearing brocade: nubry.com

7 ways to wer the military trend: allwomenstalk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer lace you shouldn’t be straight laced about!

lace 2016 burberrylace 2016 oscar de lalace 2016 dolce & gabbanalace 2016 moncler

Photos courtesy of Vogue.co.uk: Burberry, Oscar de La Renta, Dolce and Gabbana and Moncler Gamme Rouge

Can We Lesser Mortals wear lace and not look like a crochet table cloth?

Lace often conjures up images of old maids in dowdy lace dresses or the primness of the Victorian era. In addition, there is the issue of cheap nylon lace looking like a net curtain which can be off putting. But times have moved on and a lot of nylon lace is quite authentic looking. When cut into an item of clothing where you can see through the lace, it can be quite a sexy summer offering. Nude linings hint at nakedness, but when manufactured into a midi length skirt, conversely suggests demureness. What a conundrum!! So below I have shown some of the many versatile ways that lace can be worn – from smart tailoring, to edgy culottes. What temptation!!

What tickles your fancy? I actually really like the Monsoon ensemble, and quite like the Boden blouse. If I hadn’t got a white midi skirt already, I  might have got the Zara culottes. Remember age is just a state of mind…..!

lace 2016 jacket KMlace 2016 zara jacket

  1. JX059 Sculptural lace jacket. £200. Karen Millen. Size 6-16. Polyamide viscose mix. Dry clean. Low on stock, this is now reduced from £299 to £200. I have one from a few years ago, and it never fails to get compliments. Because this doesn’t close across the front, it will accentuate your top half, so suits pear, boyish and hourglass best.
  2. Guipure Lace jacket. £59.99. Zara. Size S-L. 100% polyester. Machine washable. A pretty little summer cover up, with long sleeves, this will suit most body shapes.

lace 2016 oasis dresslace 2016 next dress

  1. Limited edition lace midi dress. £150. Oasis. Size 8-18. 100% polyester. Hand wash. A beautiful cobalt colour, this style will suit hourglass, and pear shapes best.
  2. Navy leaf dress. £75. Next . Size 6-22. In tall and petite as well as regular length. 100% polyester. Also available in ivory. A lovely dress, this will suit slight pear, boyish and hourglass best.

lace 2016 zara culotteslace2016 monsoon

  1. Lace culottes. £39.99. Zara. Size XS-L. 100% polyester. Machine washable. Now normally I hate the whole see through lace trouser thing, but maybe because these are fully lined they work… and come on ladies – culottes are not so scary are they? More like a crop trouser? Great for pear shape and hour glass ladies, but other body shapes may get away with too.
  2. Demi lace top. £49.Monsoon. Size 8-18. Viscose nylon mix. Dry clean only. Quite a cheeky little skirt with a nude lining underneath to hint at sexy!! Described as green – I would say a lichen green colour/grey. Suits most body shapes, but not great if big chested.
  3. Demi lace skirt £69. Monsoon. Size 8-18. Viscose nylon mix, Dry clean only. What value – a skirt and top, which can be worn as separates or as an outfit. And not boring black!! Suits most body shapes, but may not suit very hippy ladies.

lace 2016 boden toplace 2016 whistles 2

  1. Floral Lace top. £89.50. Boden. Size 6-22. 100% cotton. Hand wash. In white and navy. Lots of fab comments on this top, on their website, from busty, apple shaped and slim women. Also, you can wear a clashing top under it & that will look good. Cut slightly A line, this will suit most body shapes, but beware big chested ladies.
  2. Meadow Lace top. £120. Whistles. Size 4-16. 100% polyester. Dry clean only. Described as pink but looks corally. This is best for pear and boyish, and for other body shapes, it will depend how big your chest is.
  3. Meadow skirt. £140. Whistles. Size 4-16.100% polyester. Dry clean only. The fuller skirt works on most body shapes, but won’t suit you if you have a bit of a tummy.

So do you think lace will be your “thang” this summer? It doesn’t only have to be a smart option – all these items can be dressed down with different footwear. If you’d like more ideas, you can contact me through www.vickysmithstyling.co.uk or the comments box on this blog.

Further reading:

8 modern ways to wear white lace: whowhatwear

How to wear a lace dress: Just the design

Lace clothing at work: fashion gum

How to wear lace skirts: fashion gum

9 Lingerie Style fashions to lust after this summer!!

black and white 2016 celineblack and white 2016 alexander wangblack and white 2016 burberryblack and white 2016 givenchy

Lingerie style fashions, courtesy of Vogue.co.uk – Celine, Alexander wang, Burberry  and Givenchy

Can We Lesser Mortals wear the Lingerie Style clothes, without looking like we’ve gone out in our underwear?

That’s it – we’re all so hard up now after the recession, we’re about to spend the summer going out in our underwear!! Or so it looks to the untrained eye. Catwalk designers have turned to lingerie style garments to inspire their summer collections, and this has in turn, influenced the High Street. It’s not the easiest of trends to follow if you need some serious scaffolding to support your chest, but there is a vast array of support underwear in the shops, for whatever your size and shape. Failing that, choose some brightly coloured bra straps and make a contrasting feature of the whole thing!! Can you wear slip dresses and camisoles whatever your age? Personally I would steer away from anything too white  and lace-y (lets face it, you are kidding no-one about the state of your innocence, and you don’t want to look like a bride) If you are older you may be conscious of your arms, but it is totally acceptable to wear T shirts or such like under your slip dress, or a shrug over the top. Having said that, they don’t give you much to hide under. It doesn’t really matter what size you are. Nowadays, it’s all about accepting yourself for who you are and embracing it, rather than covering it up. For me, I think the camisole tops are easy to wear on holiday or during hot weather, styled with a skirt or skinny jeans – and with a blazer or bomber jacket chucked over the top. Slip dresses are fabulous with flat converses or sandals, and a pashmina for evening (possibly avoid mules, or they’ll look like your slippers!!)

Let me know what you think, would you or wouldn’t you? And how would you style them up? Shall I do a “3 ways to wear” piece on lingerie style clothes? Let me know. Best bargain for what you get – the Ghost dress at the bottom.

 

black and white dress 2016 top shopblack and white dress 2016 karen millenblack and white 2016 dress m and s

  1. Lace Doll Dress. £55. Top Shop. Size 4-16. Polyester cotton viscose mix. Machine washable. Perfect for a more modest look. This shift dress is inspired by the “lingerie” trend, but is much more user friendly. Best for boyish shapes.
  2. Lace Crepe Dress £199. Karen Millen. Size 6-16. 100% polyester. Dry clean only. This has a fitted bodice and is straight to the knees so best for boyish shapes, although less extreme apple shapes or hourglass, may get away with this style.
  3. Lace trim dress. £39.50 Marks and Spencers. Size 6-18. 100% viscose. Machine washable. This is much looser and unstructured so anyone can wear, but it will suit boyish and apple shapes best.

black and white 2016 top Mand Sblack and white 2016 nextblack and white 2016 all saints

  1. Lace trim camisole top. £22.50. Marks and Spencers. size 6-18. 100% viscose. Machine washable. Also available in khaki. Loose fitting and flowing, this top fits most body shapes but will flatter boyish and apple best.
  2. Sage lace trim came top.£24. Next size 6-22. 100% polyester. Machine washable. Also available in black.  There isn’t a lot of shape to this top, but the black trim means this is a great top for boyish, and slight apple. Again, other shapes can wear, but it depends what you co-ordinate with.
  3. Emeline Camisole Top. £68. All saints. Size 2-14. Available in black too. No info on fabric and care. Nearly all of these tops, are just slip over, so not great for big busts. However, out of all the tops,  this V neck line is better for slightly larger busted ladies. Most other shapes can wear too.

black and white 2016 top Zarablack and white 2016 dress ghostblack and white 2016 sandal lk bennet

  1. Dress with lace hem. £35.99. Zara Size S-XL. 100% polyester. Machine washable. This flowing style is best for this with bigger busts, if they can find the right bra. The elastic waist band nips the dress in, under the bust line. It may also suit apple, pear and hourglass shapes.
  2. Janine Dress Lint green. £95. Ghost.  Size XS-XL. 100% viscose, hand washable. This bias cut dress, has the most structure out of all the items shown. Adjustable straps and bias cut skirt, make this suitable for pear shapes, hourglass and larger busted ladies.
  3. Miki monochrome high heeled sandal. £295. Lk Bennet Size 35-42. Leather. Inspired by the black and white trend. Also available in orange. A lovely high heel for special occasions. The fastening at the front allows for some lea way on width of foot.

So I think you can see, this lingerie inspired trend is best for more boyish figures, although there are styles to suit all body shapes if you like it. If you need help on deciding your body shape, and what styles suit you, you can always books one to one with me here

 

Further reading:

11 lingerie inspired pieces you could wear from dinner to the bedroom: bustle.com

How to wear lingerie styled fashion: Thefashionroom.net

lingerie inspired fashion for every occasion : my fashion.com.hr

celebrity style / the slip dress: whowhatwear

7 ways to wear a slip dress: style caster

How to style a camisole top 10 ways: fashion lady.in

8 marvelous metallics to model this summer

metallic SS16 saint laurentmetallic SS16 isable marantmetallic SS16 viviennemetallic SS16 prada

Courtesy of Vogue.co.uk – Saint Laurent, Isabel Marant, Vivienne Westwood and Prada

Can We Lesser Mortals wear metallics and still get through airport security?

Is it just me, or are fashions not moving on very much? I think this is the third time I have written about metallics, which just goes to show, if you listen to my advice, you’ll get quite a lot of wear from you purchases. The other thing is HOW EXPENSIVE are clothes at the moment? I hate buying cheap tat, but some of the High Street Shops are seriously expensive at the moment. Anyway, I hope I can steer you towards some wearable metallic clothes, at reasonable prices, without you looking like Jennifer Beals in her shiny Pineapple track pants break dancing in Flashdance (ok if you are too young to remember, think sweaty shiny plastic trousers) Can you wear metallics whatever your age? Well, if you look at Prada (photo above) they stick to stripes of silver in the material, without going the whole “metallic” hog. The M and S skirt below just uses threads of metallic without going  “bacofoil”. Stick to silver if you have blue tones to your skin, and stick to golds, if you have a warmer skin tone. I have shown on my “3 ways to wear” tab, how to wear a metallic T shirt. Click here to see. Or to see a metallic skirt, click here.

As for me…..I love the silver slip dress, which is ticking a lot of boxes this summer. I have already worn my silver converses to death (you should have taken my advice….!!! Don’t you hate a smarty pants??)

metallics SS16 oasis dressmetallic SS16 tunic Zara

  1. Plisse midi slip dress. £65. Oasis. Size XS-L. 100% polyester. Machine washable. Slip dresses are all the rage this summer and are great for summer holidays to show off a tan. This one has a tie belt, so although best for boyish, hourglass can get away with, provided not too big busted.
  2. Long pleated tunic. £25.99. Zara. Size S-L 100% polyester. Machine washable. This is half white and half silver, so not too overpowering. It is versatile enough to be good for evenings and beach wear!! Best for boyish and apple shapes.

metallic SS16 Oasis T shirtmetallic SS16 T shirt reiss

  1. Wrap back wrinkle T shirt. £30. Oasis. Size XS-L. 100% polyester, machine washable. It has interesting back detail, but is also quite shapeless. Therefore is best for boyish, and pear, although other shapes can get away with.
  2. Maison pewter knitted metallic top. £60. Reiss. Size XS-L. Viscose, metallic, elastane mix. Hand washable. With a loose fit and batwing style sleeves, this will suit boyish and pear shapes best.

metallic ss16 M and S skirtmetallic SS16 m and S cardi

  1. Metallic zigzag skirt. £49.50. The limited collection. M and S. Size 6-18. Polyester, polyamide, metallic mix. Machine washable. When you look at the photo, is it any wonder M and S is doing badly? Totally uninspiring image, but it is actually a nice skirt, building on the retro & midi length trend. Perfect for 50’s starlets!! This shape can be worn with heels or flats. Best for hourglass, top heavy, pear shapes and boyish. With all the pleats at the middle, apple shapes need to avoid!!
  2. Slim fit metallic effect cardi. £35. M and S. Size 6-18. Size 6-18. Viscose, polyamide, polyester and metallised fibres. Machine washable, Again, not very inspiring photo, but this versatile cardi will be great for summer, under jackets, or as an extra layer at night time. Best for pear, boyish, and hourglass.

metallic SS16 jigsaw trainersmetallic ss16 Boden bag

  1. Ayda leather trainers. £98. Jigsaw. Size 36-41. Calf leather and rubber.  These can be worn with skirts, or jeans, and will suit anyone.
  2. Fearne slouchy metallic suede bag. £139. Boden. metallic finished suede. Suits anyone.

Hoping then, that these ideas will inspire you to try something a little different this summer. If you want more help or advice, contact me in the comments sections, or through my website, Vicky Smith Styling.

 

Further reading:

25 ways to wear metallic flats: stylecaster

How to wear metallic pieces: whowhatwear

How to wear metallic skirt: vogue.co.uk

Elle Mac person in metallic pants: whowhatwear

metallic trend street style: fashion gum

Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)