Monday, 9 May 2011

Peacocks over Prada - Affordable Fashion, the Awards

Being down to earth may be part of their day job, but not many TV hosts can do it as well as Lorraine Kelly – whose show’s fashion awards ignore high end designers in favour of value for money brands like Peacocks.

The High Street Fashion Awards celebrate fashion we can all enjoy – not just the rich, famous or extremely lucky, and the first category addresses affordable fashion.

Since the recession hit the brands nominated in the affordable fashion brands category have been among the few to do well from the recession, and they certainly have picked up their game in the fashion stakes to cater for the new market for value: Peacocks have introduced a designer inspired By Design range, as well as recruiting Pearl and Daisy Lowe to design vintage inspired dresses and swimwear. And once you know you can wear the latest designer trends for under forty pounds it really does become hard to shop elsewhere, even when you have a little cash to splash.

The Lorraine Show has long been a good way for the ordinary woman to learn about trends on a level that is approachable for everyone – from teenagers to grannies – and their varied choice of models and flexible styling tips reflect that. Adding a budget choice for everyone in The High Street Fashion Awards only boosts this reputation, with affordable, mid range and upmarket high street categories and nominees.

So well done Lorraine for staying true to your thrifty Scottish roots and promoting affordable fashion accessible to all – and well done Peacocks and co for being nominated.

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

We Want Middleton

Ok, so we're obsessed. So what...

Thursday, 28 April 2011

Maxi Dresses: Still a Fashion Dilemma?

Maxi dresses have been firmly in fashion for years now, in fact they even made an appearance this winter having once been a strictly summer only option.
But while maxi dresses are becoming more and more popular, there are a number of people who are still nervous to try them. With this in mind, I have decided to write a short guide on the benefits of maxi dresses to encourage anyone still unsure to take the plunge. Here are just some of the great things maxi dresses can bring to your wardrobe this summer:


There are now maxi dresses to flatter every shape and size, and there are more options than ever in terms of colour, shape and fit, so if you’re thinking about embracing the trend but haven’t yet taken that brave step now is the time to try.


Maxi dresses are a great day to night option on holiday, a simple black one can look just as nice on the beach over a bikini as they can at the bar later that night with smart sandals and gold jewellery – maxi dresses mean less packing for all.


Dressing up in the summertime is no easy feat. Smart clothing is usually restrictive and it can be hard to keep cool with tight, formal skirts and blouses. Luckily maxi dresses are usually light and floaty, so you can look dressed up without feeling the heat.

Classic Style:

Maxi dresses have been seen everywhere right now, and are one trend that isn’t going away any time soon. We’ve been seeing them on catwalks and celebrities for years, and we’re sure they will look just as good at music festivals this year as this will the following - and maybe even the year after that!

Friday, 15 April 2011

Fashion forever items

We all have items of clothing that for some unknown reason have an almost magical power - it could be something that as a purchase was agonised over prior to buying because of the price, or it could simply be something we picked up cheap with thought as to its style longevity. But there are items that outlast their contemporaries not only in terms of durability but in terms of look.

At the other end of the scale there's the kind of purchase that after you take it home, it just doesn't seem to look or feel right. Luckily that's what receipts are for - or, at a push, ebay. Because one individual's mispurchase is another individual's style perennial.

So, what's your forever garment?

Thursday, 31 March 2011

Royal Wedding fashion slipstream

I've got little interest in the Royal Wedding itself - this is because unless I've been invited and am supping free champagne and beer then wedding's generally don't hold much interest.

But from a fashion perspective this one is going to be interesting. While few eyes will be on William's suit (the finest Saville Row I'm sure it will be) his wife-to-be Kate Middleton is going to start a fashion sensation - her engagement announcement was the moment when designers were inspired to make Kate-a-like products, so expect everything from wedding dresses to fascinators to shoes in the Kate mould from here on in.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Street v Catwalk fashion

I've always wondered about the relation between street fashion and catwalk fashion.

If you're a hardcore clothes type (ie too cool even for the word fashionista) you'll have been to some fashion shows and seen first hand that the catwalk is part fine art, part dance, part theatre, part rock'n'roll and 100% fascinating. It's a much underrated art form, in fact - there should be write ups of fashion shows in the reviews section of the broadsheets.

But while the catwalk is an incredible thing for a someone like me to observe - (a neighbourhood kid, doing minimum wage jobs and never seeing the inside of an aeroplane until I was 19) - it's not all there is to clothes. As kids we enjoyed getting tracksuits from market stalls and t-shirts from supermarkets, and later as teenagers getting the latest pair of Adidas or Nike. Now, makes like that (and then all the skate labels too) don't do catwalk (that I know of...) so there then becomes a disjunction between street gear and designer gear. Or does there? In the 21st century I see the catwalk as becoming more than a place to show off collections - it could become a place to show off postmodernism itself.

Do you prefer catwalk sidewalk duds? Let us know in the comments kids!

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

We Want Maternity Fashion!

Like a lot of things, maternity fashion has had a bit of a transformation over the years. Things that once were functional or boring or simply a stress purchase necessity - all these things have been made cool by design. Design is the DNA of any manufactured object from an orange juice carton to a spaceship. Designers like Philippe Starck have transformed every day objects like the citrus press or the tin opener and made them almost into works of art.

Clothes are the same - look at any old pic from the 1950s of people in the street, and about 90% of people aren't dressing to look cool, they're just wearing clothes to suit whatever weather it is.

Design changed all that and it's the same with maternity clothes - celebrities like Myleene Klass are often seen in very stylish maternity outfits, and the months of pregnancy are no longer on a lesser fashion level.