As a fashion editor, most of my working life is focused on how other people look and I find myself so overloaded with information, trends, imagery and ideas, when it comes to dressing myself I rely on a simple (boring?!), uniformed look. This centres around classics and basics, peppered with a few key ‘investment pieces’ (how we fashion folk justify spending silly amounts of money on certain items). In shying away from trends and sticking firmly within my cosy, comfort zone of cashmere jumpers, white tees and jeans, I’ve recently started to feel like I’m missing out on some of the fun.
It wasn’t always like this, as Sarah will attest to – many moons ago she hired me as her assistant at Glamour magazine and it was working alongside Sarah, and on her shoots that really inspired me to become a fashion editor…. Her sugary fairy tail of a prom shoot had me lusting after taffeta, a Geek Chic story had me reaching for a pair of specs (I had 20/20 vision) and she once got me to try on all the clothes for her lilac and orange themed shoot (based on a Luella show) which elicited a particular thrill. And yet somewhere along the way I’d lost the spark that that had initially lit the inner, fashion-loving flame. Fast forward 10 or so years (gulp) and change is in the air.
When presenting her SS18 collection for Celine (the designer’s last), Phoebe Philo was reported by Vogue to have said said backstage ‘If there’s anything to say at the moment, let it be with love, and let it be joyful’. For me this pretty much sums up the mood of the season, rich in colour, texture and embellishment, its a season made for maximalists. The mood for SS18 is decidedly feel good and I want in.
A few weeks ago I found myself magnetically drawn to a Loewe x Paula’s Ibiza dress. Patchwork, printed, brightly coloured, it’s a ‘look at me’, of the moment, joy-inducing buy, and a world away from a classic or ‘investment buy’. Its sold out everywhere so I’m now not-so-patiently waiting (or rather praying) for it to come back into stock. In allowing myself to covet something that ‘sparks joy’ (I’d recently tried the famed Marie Kondo approach to decluttering finding that rather that my wardrobe sparked little more than a mental list along the lines of… must buy a de-bobbler, my t-shirts are stained, these jeans are too tight), I was feeling excited and ready to SHOP. Here are are my 5 must have’s for summer.
- A GORGEOUS DRESS
From Chloe to Erdem and Alexander McQueen, designers and have really embraced femininity this season and that means ruffles, floral prints, ruching, bows and a pretty palate. I don’t usually do pretty per say but I’m finding myself magnetically drawn to dresses right now.
2. A SUMMER SUIT
I don’t own a suit but I want one and it’s not the sensible Fleet Street type I’m after, but something chic and summery that’s easy to throw on whenever I need to look smart and pulled together. I love the ones shown at Celine, Tibi and Hermes, and also Khaite (new favourite brand).
3. THE UPDATED TRENCH COAT
From Max Mara’s sheer version to Dries Van Noten’s pink one, I love the myriad of takes on a trench this season. A reworked classic isn’t pushing me too far out of my comfort zone, which hugely appeals, and I’ve recently acquired two (one has frayed edges, the other is structured and in dark green).
4. DENIM RE-DONE
This season’s denim feels pulled together and elevated- rather than jeans – think pieces you wouldn’t normally find in denim (trousers, belted jackets etc.). I really love the denim that Raf Simmon’s has been showing for Calvin Klein in recent seasons, as as it feels crisp and smart. I love my Levi’s but this feels like an update.
Not a catwalk trend as such but increasingly becoming part of the ‘cool girl’ uniform and regularly seen in street style snaps. Some of the best I’ve seen have interesting touches like sculpted heels, texture or embellishment. If I’m feeling a jeans and T-shirt day coming on, a mule would really help up the ante.