Prior to Fashion Month Spring/Summer 2014, I used to select my favourite collections and write about each one of them. This time around, I thought I would do things a bit differently, partly because I felt more uninspired than ever before by what was happening on the runway, but mainly because it made much more sense to select the trends I liked and that I can work. These are ideas I can easily incorporate into my wardrobe, because the biggest gain from watching the shows is that they provide you with endless styling tips, which, for me, is much more relevant than making wish-lists of items you may never get to purchase. I’ve scoured the collections and the overall outcome is my very own reference point for the spring fashions, as well as being very representative of my own personal style.
Belted dresses. A belt can add personality to your dress. You can knot it to give a twist to a flowy dress, or use it to further enhance a ladylike look, or to lend a little rigor to a dress whenever it’s called for. From left to right: Michael Kors, Jil Sander, Bottega Veneta.
Leisurely chic. Not the obvious kind of femininity, but one infused with a boyish and playful attitude and a no-nonsense confidence, a softly structured look that’s very much my taste in dressing.
From left to right: Isabel Marant, Chloé, 10 Crosby Derek Lam.
Pleats. It seems to be a big trend for SS 2014, the designers competing in originality in reinterpreting this element. But what I loved the most were those designs which remained undeniably feminine, but simple enough not to fall into the too-fancy category.
From left to right: Victoria Victoria Beckham, Salvatore Ferragamo, Michael Kors.
Wide-legged pants. It can be a tricky look, especially if you don’t have sky-high legs. I make sure to wear them with heels and a top that marks my waist – it can very well be a t-shirt half-tucked in if you don’t want to appear office-ready. However, you can also opt for a look à la Marlene, by choosing to wear them in the classic way, with a shirt, provided you choose it in the right fabric and style, just as in the examples above, for a perfect feminine-masculine take.
From left to right: Hermès, Michael Kors, Gianfranco Ferré.
Fancy-meets-casual. I’ve always been drawn to unexpected combinations of two pieces that aren’t supposed to work, but they do. Downplaying something fancy with something casual, an elegant dress with a sweatshirt, a sequined top with a utilitarian skirt or a delicate fabric skirt with a cosy knit, you avoid looking too predictable and your personal style can only benefit from this.
From left to right: Preen, Jason Wu, Michael Kors.
Tuxedo jacket. I don’t think I must explain my attraction for the tuxedo jacket again. The inspiration point was to see how differently it can be styled: fitted suit, in light fabric and relaxed shape or even over a mini dress, finished off with flats – a look I’m looking forward to try.
From left to right: Co, Dries Van Noten, Paul Smith.
Loose-fit coats. Voluminous and soft-shouldered, lacking any kind of embellishment, there is an undeniable chicness about these coats, especially about the reinterpretation of the trench – middle image above. I’ve always loved this relaxed style in outerwear, but, of course, Christopher Bailey is among the few who can bring it so close to perfection.
From left to right: Burberry Prorsum.
Floral prints. A floral print is very feminine and I usually stay away from anything too girly. But when it’s a black and white pencil skirt that I can pair with a basic t-shirt, the look becomes very practical and very much mine. A black and white dress or even a colourful pattern strategically placed on a white canvas are also very appealing.
From left to right: Stella McCartney, Preen, Elie Saab.
Grey cardigans and sweaters. I don’t think a new season goes by without my buying a new grey cardigan or sweater. A grey cardigan is a classic, it can polish off a casual look or pare down a delicate skirt. As of late, I’ve also made a passion for grey sweaters in two fabrics, like the one at Sacai, they add a bit of edginess and I’m all for that.
From left to right: Alexander Wang, Burberry Prorsum, Sacai.
V-necks combined with geometric patterns. Black and white or navy and white sweaters with gaping V-necks, I like this take on preppy style. And on a dress, such detail will nicely balance things out, something I always aim for.
From left to right: Ralph Lauren, Bouchra Jarrar, Rag & Bone.
Monochrome. There is something very appealing in a monochrome look: in keeping it in one colour from head-to-toe, you can freely play with fabric and proportion, and whether you go for elegant or casual, it will always look put-together in a very effortless kind of way.
From left to right: Pringle of Scotland, Saint Laurent, Tod’s.