Saturday, 31 March 2012

Summer style

20's style? Check.  Pastel palette? Check that too.  Under the sea? Yeah just about.  This dress ticks all the spring fashion trend boxes and will look lovely with girly accessories and bare feet, or mix it up with a neon accessory à la Saucy Glossie.

1.  Earrings - Coast - were £16 now £10
2.  Peach Midi Dress - Miss Selfridge - £65
3.  Wooden beaded necklace - Boohoo - was £12 now £10
4.  Sequined clutch - Coast - was £58 now £30

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Annie Hall's Style

I watched Annie Hall a few days ago and just loved Annie's 70's style which has this great androgynous-geek-chic twist.

Diane Keaton and Woody Allen 
Those buttoned up shirts

Annie's signature style (Annie was played by Diane Keaton, who won a Golden Globe for Best Actress for her portrayal of Annie) includes waistcoats, ties, shirts (buttoned all the way up), and always, always trousers.

My favourite Annie Hall look

Looking like one of Charlie's Angels

If you haven't seen it, give Annie Hall a watch - even if not for the fashion, it is supposed to be one of Woody Allen's best films.

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Absolutely Fabulous!

Kate Moss has confirmed that she will be starring in a one-off special of Absolutely Fabulous in aid of sports relief, alongside good friend Stella McCartney.

For those of you that don't know, Ab Fab is a satire on the fashion industry that ran for 5 series during the 90's.  Joanna Lumley plays Patsy and Jennifer Saunders Eddie, 'a pair of high-powered career women on the London fashion scene', who waste their seemingly endless amounts of money on binge-drinking, recreational drugs and the latest fashion trends in an attempt to regain and maintain their bygone youth.  With the childish pair often landing themselves in a mess it falls on Patsy's teenage daughter, Saffy, to solve their problems, who through years of exasperation now acts like a middle-aged woman.

The show is hilarious, you really must take a look for some laughs and fab lines such as:

Patsy: What will you drink if you stop drinking?
Edina: I shall drink water.
Patsy: [Blank look]
Edina: It's a mixer, Patsy, we have it with whisky.

Here's my pick of Ab Fab fashion over the years.  You'll notice that Patsy (the blonde) tends to dress well, whereas Eddie on the other hand always looks like mutton dressed as lamb.  Brilliant.

Oh Patsy

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Coloured Jeans

I hope you like skinny jeans! Here's my pick of gorgeous coloured versions with all of them in a sale, naturally.

Vero Moda - was £28 now £14

Boohoo - was £25 now £10

Dorothy Perkins - were £30 now £12

Desire - was £25 now £15

J Brand Jeans - was £204 now £101

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

The Queen and her Style

With all the Jubilee celebrations in the news at the moment, I thought I'd dedicate a post to the Queen and her style.

On 6th February 1952, Princess Elizabeth came to the throne, and was crowned a year later on 2nd June 1953.

Princess Elizabeth attending a dinner in Scotland, 1947

The Royal family will be visiting all Commonwealth Realms this year as part of the celebrations, as well as some Commonwealth countries (I love the way Prince Harry 'gets' Jamaica and the Bahamas!)  During the Queen's Silver Jubilee, she visited Melbourne, Australia as part of Jubilee celebrations with her husband and there's some brief footage of it here.  It seems 1977 was a bad year for hats, and even the reporter has a dig at them at the races.

In 1947, the Queen married the Duke of Edinburgh and famously saved her ration cards in order to pay for the materials.  Instead of an elaborately adorned dress, dripping with diamonds, the Queen wore a silk gown embroidered with flowers (and some pearls granted), a dress which was symbolic of the post-war British austerity measures.

The Queen is also known for her more down-to-earth fashion, and when walking the dogs or when in-residence in the country she will opt for typical British country gear (see my post on the recent Burberry catwalk show for a modern take on this.)


The Queen gives her typical wardrobe a modern twist here with a bow-detail dress.


Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Eco & Fairtrade Fashion

My last post on eco-fashion at the Oscars really got me wanting to know more.

I've had a good search on the internet and it seems that unfortunately the market is not booming.  There simply aren't enough designers taking fairtrade and sustainable fashion on-board (making prices high), and of those that do, many of their collections are not available online or they have only a handful of boutiques (making shopping inconvenient).

Here's 6 of the best I've found.

1.  Beyond Skin

What is it?

  • 100% vegan shoe shop

Tell me more!
  • Offers free worldwide delivery during Fairtrade Fortnight (27th Feb to 11th March)
  • Pledges to give 1% of it's turnover or 10% of pre-tax profits (whichever is greater) to grass-root environmental and social projects.
  • These faux suede courts are made from 100% recycled PET plastics

Beyond Skin - Faux Snake Courts - £162

2.  Annie Greenabelle

What is it ?

  • Ethical clothing and bags for teens/20 somethings (and their budgets)
Tell me more!

  • Garments made from organic or Fairtrade certified cotton
  • Uses end-of-roll fabrics to minimise waste and, as a cool by-product, many of the items are unique
  • All factories comply with Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) codes of conduct

Stripe T-Shirt Dress - Annie Greenabelle

I've learnt some pretty shocking facts during my research.  We're all aware of the sweat shops and child labour and other atrocities that certain brands try their best to conceal, but I'd never considered, for example, the environmental impact my wardrobe has or indeed the welfare of the animals my leather has come from.

For example, one cow hide = 18 pairs of leather shoes, and just one of these pairs requires 1.4 million litres of water (the rearing and slaughtering of the cows and processing of the leather), and much leather is not even bio-degradable due to the tanning agents used*!  I've also read of the inhumane ways in which reptiles are slaughtered (after being illegally hunted from their natural habitats) i.e. being clubbed on the head and skinned unconscious or even alive**.

3.  Ascension

What is it?
  • Ascension brings eco-fashion brands to one place (tick for the convenience criteria), with womens, mens, kids, jewellery and toiletries all available.
Tell me more!
  • Collections celebrate the finest artisanal skills (and fair of course), the best quality organic cottons and sustainable bamboo.
  • 15% off during fairtrade fortnight

Denim Shorts - Ascension - £17 from £49
4.  Edun

What is it?
  • Brainchild of Bono and his wife Ali Hewson, Edun develops trade in Africa, and aims to encourage other fashion brands to do the same
Tell me more!
  • Edun has set up projects such as providing funding and training for cotton farmers in war-stricken Northern Uganda, supporting 4,000 farmers and their families, or working with school children in Kenya who have designed prints for Edun t-shirts, with 100% of the proceeds going back to the school.

Bracelet - Edun - £32 from £65

5.  Stella McCartney

Not strictly an eco-fashion brand, however the SS12 collection contains sunglasses who's materials come from all-natural origins, with 50% of the material being natural and the other half renewable.

Stella McCartney SS 12 Sunglasses

6. Minna

 What is it ? 

I've saved the best till last and I could happily wear any item in this collection.  Think pretty, feminine and romantic tops and dresses in ivories and creams (though there's a black collection too).  

Tell me more!
Minna is described as eco-luxe - luxe due to the meticulous craftsmanship and on-trend designs, and eco as the materials are either organic, recycled or produced locally.  Minna is the least affordable of my collection of eco-brands but the clothes are gorgeous so they're getting a good showing off anyway.

I cannot claim to practise what I preach.  With the scarcity of choice and competition, eco-fashion remains pricey, inaccessible and therefore the less appealing option, but as eco-fashion grows in popularity (as it inevitably will) I'll be on the case for the new generation of eco-brands, and of course, their end of season sales! 

*    beyond skin

Friday, 2 March 2012

Eco-Fashion at the Oscars

         Clutch - Beyond Skin - £87

We're currently a few days into Fairtrade Fortnight (27th Feb - 11th March) so it seems a good time to note the sustainable fashion seen on the red-carpet of Sunday's Oscars.

Eco-fashion really is a no-brainer - we should all be conscious of the conditions under which our clothes have been made, and the effect their production has on our environment.  However, sustainable fashion is relatively new, with only a handful of successful sustainable brands to choose from, which makes being an eco-shopper both less convenient and more expensive.

Celebrity endorsements are one of the most successful ways to raise awareness, for example Natalie Portman for shoe-shop Beyond Skin and Bono and Ali Hewson for Edun, so it was great to see celebrities at the Oscars donning recycled, organic and morally conscious clothes and accessories.

Livia Firth

Pioneer of the Green Carpet Challenge (promoting sustainable style to the A-list and red carpets), Livia Firth came to the Oscars in a Valentino recycled-fabric dress.

Meryl Streep

Award-winning Meryl Streep (incidentally The Iron Lady is the best film I've seen in a long time and deserves all the hype - go see it!) in a custom-made Lanvin gown made from eco-certified fabric.

Missi Pyle

The Artist star Missi Pyle wore an organic silk dress, dyed with natural pigments and lined with recycled polyester.

Natalie Portman

Natalie's engagement ring was made from recycled platinum and the diamonds are conflict-free.

Click here to find out more about fairtrade, and if you're interested in eco-fashion then get clicking at sites such as

  • Beyond Skin (women's shoes)
  • Edun (men's and women's clothes and accessories)
  • Howies (men's, women's and kids) and
  • People Tree (Emma Watson has designed her own collection for the brand, available online now)

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Floral Trousers

What with spring on the doorstep and prints being big news for spring/summer 12, floral trousers have hit the high-street in force.

Olivia Palermo was spotted recently in a pair from Topshop (as featured in this post while they were still available) and as such they are currently out of stock.  What power!

They have been styled beautifully by Jessica Alba, Zoe Saldana and Bethany from  archedeyebrow who all realise that you need to match the rest of your outfit to a chosen colour in the trousers, and stick to block colours.  Even the generally-not-so-stylish Cher Lloyd looks OK in them too.

Verdict?  Floral trousers are very much on-trend right now but, I have to say these patterns remind me of the seating in the caravan we used to holiday in 15 years ago, and therefore the print will not flourish much past the end of this summer.  Therefore, don't splash out, get one of the high-street pairs I've found below.

                       1.                                                                                 2.            




1.  Boohoo - £20 
2.  Isabel Marant - £240 - if you really do want to splash out
3.  Topshop - £45
4.  Warehouse - £55