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HIGHLAND FLING

Join the new Tartan army in a riot of plaids and checks…

 

Tartan and plaid are back. Everyone from D&G to Ralph Lauren paid homage to the timeless winter favourites. This season, however, the emphasis is on adding a fresh and youthful edge with clashing prints and fabrics being key.

    

 Feminine detailing is big news when it comes to plaid and tartan this winter. Think flowing chiffon dresses, bow details on tartan blouses and checked princess coats.

   

And for the more daring, add clashing plaid tights to a tartan dress and you have autumn/winter style all sewn up.

   

 

Adding a checked shirt or tartan blouse is the easiest way to update your wardrobe for this winter and the High Street are doing some great pieces right now. So go on, get ahead and join the tartan army!

 High Street Hits

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1. Ruffle neck blouse £45 by French Connection

2. Brighten up a pair of jeans with this on-trend shirt by River Island (Price to be confirmed, New Collection)

3. Tartan blouse with bow detail by River Island (New Collection, price to be confirmed.)

4.  Blue and purple checked shirt dress £65 by French Connection

5. This checked shirt dress, £85 by French Connection, is bang on trend and has clearly been inspired by Luella’s Autumn/Winter show.

6. This dress from River Island’s new collection (price to be confirmed) ticks two autumn/winter trend boxes. Not only does it channel this season’s fondness of tartan and checks, it also nails the bad girl punk look (as seen at the Vivienne Westwood Red Label show) too. Making this a winter must-have!

7. This dress will be a sure sell-out when it hits Primark at the end of this month as part of their new autumn/winter collection. (Tiered tartan dress £14 Primark)

8.  And they’ve done it again! This Primark tartan wrap dress ticks all this autumn/winter’s style boxes. (Wrap dress £14 Primark)

9. This tartan print military-esque coat is bang on trend and looks oh-so-designer. Make sure you keep checking out your local River Island as it will stores as part of their new Autumn/Winter collection.

10. These tartan tights by Pamela Mann (£7.95 from Mytights.com) will add va-va voom to any simple black dress. Alternatively, they would work well under an oversized black jumper with patent ankle boots (giving a nod to this season’s punk look). And for those who want to be bold, try clashing with other tartan or plaid prints as seen on the D&G catwalk.

11. For those of you who want to give the tartan look a try but are a bit wary of going head to toe, try some simple heels to instantly update your wardrobe. (Shoes by River Island, new collection-price to be confirmed.)

 

By Gemma Douthwaite

With thanks to:

PRShots.com

and Vogue.com

COMING SOON:

Trend focus on: Punk, military, dark romance, power dressing, lace and much much more.

And new features on hot autumn colours, bag and shoe trend round ups, High Street Hot Twenty and how to bag a bargain on Portobello Market online!

 

SPELLBOUND

This season prepare for a journey into the magical world of the fairytale…. 

Yes, its that time of year yet again! In the fast paced world of fashion the Autumn/Winter pre-collections are slowly trickling into the shops and the summer sales are starting. So, it is inevitably time for the bi-annual trend forecast! There is always an enormous buzz at this time of year, a great anticipation over what the next season has in store. And let me tell you, you won’t be disappointed! This year, we are taken on a voyage through a magical fairytale world. From dark gothic femme fatales and pagans to royal princesses there is sure to be something to melt your heart this coming season.

It seemed designers were inspired by the world of fiction, allowing them free-reign to create an intricate and beautiful fashion story. Veronica Etro said she was inspired by Narnia and Giles Deacon was heard stating, ‘I was inspired by a Roger Corman film, Masque of the Red Death, which is a gothic femme fatale sort of film where these really decadent people live in this castle while outside lots of people are dying.’ (source: Vogue.com) Alexander McQueen said his collection was inspired by a 600 year-old elm tree in his garden. He added, ‘I made up this story of a girl who lives in it and comes out of the darkness to meet a prince and become queen.’ (source: Vogue.com)

So, what does all this mean for us fashionistas? Well, let me tell you in my run-down of the key trends that will make a splash this season…

This autumn/winter the gothic femme fatale makes a big impact. Channelled by Alexander McQueen, Gareth Pugh, Prada and Giles this look is all about drama. Giles’ collection featured slashed strapless gowns (in rich colours such as blue and green) all adding to the ill fated gothic heroine feel. ‘Tough love’ was a term he used to describe his collection. This trend is all about texture (think lace, leather, silky fabrics and as seen on the McQueen catwalk appliqué detailing) and volume (McQueen’s show featured a strong silhouette with fitted dresses that billowed out from the waist).

The staple and classic military trend makes a welcome return this season but it will have a much more regal feel. The military jacket of last year will prove a big hit but it has been updated with richer colours and embellishments. Take your cue from Alexander McQueen who featured strong colours such as royal blue and red with gold piping.  This year it can be dressed up with full, swishy skirts and dresses giving a nod to the princess theme which featured strongly on the catwalks. It can also be dressed down and given a less romantic feel with skinny trousers and heels á la Temperley London. As well as the classic military jacket the trend diversifies this season spawning military-esque dresses, waistcoats and skirt suits (see Temperley London for inspiration).

Another trend which came through in the major shows of fashion week was a relaxed 70s bohemian look. A clear homage to the success of the globe trotter trend of spring/summer. Channelled by Etro this trend is all about layering. Think brown leather and sheep skin coats over long flowing 70s-esque maxi dresses cinched in with a belt. Texture is also a key component of this look (feathers, fringing, leather and chiffon are all big news when teamed together). Luella also gave a nod to this look but in the usual quirky way. A little bit Pagan and a little bit Wednesday Adams. Luella’s show featured a strong palette of earthy colours such as orange, brown and green (which had a distinctly pagan feel, especially as some models completed the look with a witches hat!) Dolce and Gabanna, in an unusual yet highly successful departure from their signature look, also embraced the bohemian trend. The highlight of the collection included an effortless but oh-so-cool tartan shirt layered over a David Bowie t-shirt. You can be assured that Tartan and plaid will be everywhere this season! From coats to skirts.

 

For those of you who loved spring/summer’s penchant for all things art print fear not for Christian Lacroix updates it for autumn (so no need to say goodbye to your favourite paint splattered tee just yet!) However, it is given a much hipper edge. Voluminous ladylike cocktail dresses featured oil paint brush strokes.

 

Of course autumn/winter wouldn’t be the same without classic tailoring. And this is where Chanel always comes to the forefront. Karl Lagerfeld wanted to give Chanel a more ‘grown-up feel’ which was refreshing after a summer of Americana inspired stars and stripes. There was the trademark tweed tailoring but also edgy oversized knits teamed with sexy lace tights (which are going to be big, especially when teamed with full, swishy skirts and ankle boots.) Sheer blouses and high-waisted trousers were also a hit. Lagerfeld also embraced victoriana (which again will be big news this forthcoming season) with ruffle neck blouses and  vintage inspired dresses in nude, pastel green and royal blue.  And as Lagerfeld wanted, the basis is still very French, very chic.

And for those who have a more rebellious approach to fashion there is plenty to play around with. Offering a more tongue-in-cheek approach was Marc by Marc Jacobs, which is welcome after the darker, gothic collections of this season. If the collection were a person it would be the tear away daughter of a prim and proper wealthy family who own a country estate (Boy, will she rock the manor?) Think along the lines of punky dog tooth. Say goodbye to the traditional black and white and hello to mint-choc-chip green and shocking pink! Leather dresses, trapeze shapes and oversized jumpers worn a few sizes too big with black opaque tights all add to the defiant attitude. So feel free to shake it all up but just make sure whatever you do, you wear with attitude!

As well as Jacobs, Eley Kishimoto have also come up with a playful collection. Theatrical circus inspired ruffles and harlequin prints ensure you stand out. Rabbit print t-shirts and slouchy trousers also ensured this design duo are way out in front when it comes to fresh and eye catching fashion. And true to form directional high-street favourite TopShop are working some Eley Kishimoto inspired harlequin and ruffle collars into their new collection (source: Drapers Online).

Vivienne Westwood who made a welcome return to London Fashion Week after a ten-year abscence, previewed her Red Label, which embraces the rebellious side of fashion. And for those who want to mix fashion and politics she’s your woman! One model carried the banner ‘Fair trial my arse! Justice for Guantanamo Bay Prisoners.’ Westwood’s rebellious, creative and politically active streak comes through in the collection. Think tailoring with an edge. Slouchy trousers and punky dog tooth. Eccentrically English and totally Westwood. Wear with passion…vive la revolution!

In terms of coats the big news this year is the cocoon. The catwalks were awash with this shape, from Pringle to Viktor & Rolf. Sleeves are also important this season, with oversized being the order of the day.

In terms of key colours this season, metallics (such as olive green, bronze and gold) and rich, regal colours such as (royal blues, reds and forest greens) are bound to be a hit on the high-street. More sombre palettes are also central to this seasons main trends (blacks, browns, pastel colours and greys). Strong hues such as orange will also be pivotal to next season.

This season is theatrical and dramatic. It reminds me of a library in the sense there are so many genres and characters to choose. There is the gothic femme fatale, the fairytale princess, military heroine, the rock star, the bohemian, the revolutionary and the classic! The only problem is deciding who you want to be! And with a nod to the Viktor & Rolf show, this season our imaginations are given free reign, in this fashion fairytale, to ‘dream on’. And dream we shall!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pictures courtesy of Vogue.com

With thanks to Drapers Online

Written by Gemma Douthwaite Ó

 

Coming Soon: Swimwear Special, The Edge of Love fashion feature, Footwear and accessories trends for Autumn/Winter and much, much more!

 

The New VOLUME…

 Make a bold statement and pump up the volume in this season’s key shapes…

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(Images with thanks to Vogue.com and Elle magazine. To see Elle’s feature buy February edition out now!) 

This look is all about the cut and shape of the material. Keep everything else simple and let the clothes do the talking. This summer turn up the volume and wear it loud and wear it proud!

Get the Look for Less…

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1. Floral dress, short and sweet and not a million miles away in style from Balenciaga’s spring/summer ’08 dresses!

2. This monochrome skirt is a deadringer for the Dolce and Gabbana one pictured above

3. This Black bubble hem dress is simple yet striking which is the essence of the New Volume trend.

And the really good news?

…They’re all from Warehouse’s Spring/Summer collection! They’ve not yet hit the shops but keep your eyes peeled because they are almost guaranteed to fly off the rails!

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 4.  Full netted skirt £28 from ASOS.com

5. Gingham full skirt from Oasis (New Collection)

6. Cream skirt £28 from ASOS.com

7. This black dress is bang on trend and definately embraces Miu Miu’s take on the New Volume trend ( see above) and it’s only £115 from Coast.

 

Coming soon on FashionBeat:

More Trend Focus (including shoe trends) 

Put these dates in your Diary:

New York Fashion week- Feb 1st-8th

London Fashion Week- Feb 10th-15th

Milan Fashion week- Feb 16th-23rd

Paris Fashion Week- Feb 24th- March 2nd

With thanks to PRShots.com for images

Gemma Douthwaite Ó

   

Black is well and truly back and has been the muse of many a designer on this seasons catwalks. Designers such as Chanel, Christian Lacroix and Valentino embraced black with heavy embellishment, added texture such as lace, metallic notes, sequins and shimmer. Jewel box hues are big news this autumn/winter and offset the principal colour of black perfectly, Dior and Valentino adopted emeralds, sapphires and rubies. Other colours making a splash this season are burnt orange, hot pink, purple and cobalt.

Floor sweeping evening dresses in paint box colours made significant appearances on the catwalks of Dior and Valentino reminiscent of old school Hollywood glamour. Valentino added romance with ruffles, sheer and satin fabrics in bold colours such as scarlet.

There is a notable nod to the ‘lady of the manor’; Mid length skirt suits made a big impact in tweeds, Valentino used beige tweed for a fresh edge. At Chanel skirt suits were worn with tights, patent heels, cinched-in waists and accessorised with pearls and hair bands with bows. Equestrian style quilted country jackets were big especially in midnight blues, for an eye-catching twist look for soft, silky fabrics and layer over a dress for the evening.

Volume is carrying through and continues to be a hit this season with a decidedly romantic Victoriana feel. Blouses and shirts in textured or sheer black with ruffles and bow detailing were aplenty. For a fresh twist layer under a shift dress or work the tailored look and wear under a tweed waistcoat with high waisted trousers. Another way to work volume this season is in a chunky, oversized knit as seen on the catwalks of Stella McCartney, Giles Deacon and Vivienne Westwood.

Vintage also showed up on the catwalks. Valentino featured a floor length nude, lace evening dress, emanating 40s glamour. To work this trend think ruffles, bows and glamorous fabrics such as sheer chiffon, delicate lace and silky satin. Jewellery should be classic. Be inspired by jewellery from past eras such as striking brooches and antique-esque necklaces.

Military also worked its magic on the autumn/winter catwalks and featured in Aquascutum’s show. Coats with red and gold accents and embellishments are central to this trend and make a real style statement with minimal effort. Complete the look by wearing boots with buckles or laces. This look works extremely well with a simple polo neck (try a block colour to be right on trend) and trousers for everyday but equally with skinny jeans and a simple rock t-shirt for an edgy look. The versatility doesn’t end there, simply team with a little black dress underneath for going out.

Another trend not to go unnoticed is tailoring, which once again takes on an androgynous edge as seen at Alexander Wang and Celine. Think high waisted trousers, shirts and waistcoats, leather jackets and tweed bomber jackets. Wear with a beret and heels to keep it looking feminine.

As for accessories it is all about making an impact. In terms of shoes make an impression with patent notes, zips, buttons, studs and buckles. Ankle boots are key and work well teamed with a military coat. Hats are also big news and add allure to any look. As for bags embellishments staked their claim of the autumn/winter 2007 catwalks. Gold accents, jewels and luxe fabrics are order of the day. Think vintage bags you would find in antique shops. Structured patent bags are another big story, particularly in blacks, burgundies and purples. Following designers’ fondness for leather jackets (and even dresses) this season, expect it to be big in bag terms too.

Urban sports wear carries subtly through to this season (so don’t throw away your parkas just yet!) Isabel Marant had a lightweight sports style parka in her autumn/winter collection at Paris fashion week. Bring this look up to date by taking ideas from Chanel’s autumn/winter show and investing in a pair of ice skating inspired boots.

Don’t forget that if you love something it is okay to wear it! Fashion is imaginative, and style isn’t merely about imitating and following trends, its about interpreting and adapting them. Designers such as JC De Castelbajac have fun with their creations too, he ‘rocked the lady of the manor’ look quite literally. He gave the usually prim and proper look a rock chick edge. And as Balenciaga’s designers stated their collection was inspired partly by girls on campus finding themselves, go ahead and remember all the worlds a stage (or should that be catwalk!?) and this is no dress rehearsal. So go on girl, shake it up, put your best fashion foot forward and get creative!

Gemma Doutwaite Ó