Look du Jour: MeOWza

Hitchcockian goddess Kim Novak…

After a summer of blousy pastels and girly minimalism f/w 2010 sees the return of an altogether more dark, sophisticated (and somewhat austere) elegance – think of Hitchcockian heroines Ingrid Bergman and Kim Novak with an 80’s twist; cool, coiffed and tailored to perfection; polished glamour belying a seamy and often murderous undercurrent…

Emilio Pucci Pre-Fall 2010

Dolce & Gabbana Pre-Fall 2010

Lanvin Pre-Fall 2010
Statement is the buzz-word when it comes to prints this season…forget the chintz, the ditz and the itty-bitty florals. It’s time to come over all Dan Dare and temper your beauty with a sizeable dollop of danger…rework the season’s strong austere silhouettes with animal prints a la Emilio Pucci, Dolce & Gabbana and Lanvin (no we are still not over them…and we have Alexander Wang’s s/s wedges to thank – profusely).

(I know it’s wrong – and probably illegal in some countries – but I am quite literally in love with these Forever21 metallic leopard print leggings as worn by Ania B!!!)

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Look du Jour: Marvellous Marl Maxi

Well, with summer coming over all commitment-phobic (will it?  won’t it?!) which – lets face it – is about as useful as the proverbial chocolate teapot when it comes to wardrobe planning, I am happy to report that ASOS have the (or at least an ) answer to your changeable weather woes…

Behold, the grey marl jersey maxi! Okay, so it’s not mind-blowing but just give it a chance… For a start it’s got the Wang-factor, looks great (as styled here by Niina K) with grungy leather, is smart and simple enough to work in the office, has urban-sport chic nailed and will keep you warm on those not-so-hot summer days. Practical and fashion-friendly? That’s got to be worth a few bob!

Check out more of Niina’s looks over at Lookbook.

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Strut Your Stuff in Zandra Rhodes’ Début Shoe Collection!

Award-winning atelier extraordinaire, sixties sartorial pioneer and Commander of the British Empire, no less. It has to be Zandra Rhodes – she of the brighter than bright barnet (attention-grabbing green, punchy pink, pillarbox red) – is that rarest of flowers, a true-blue home-grown fashion virtuoso, and boy does she have flair…

Her trademark colour clashes, mind-boggling print combinations and penchant for blow-your-pretty-little-eyes-out (whilst simultaneously knocking-your-socks off) brights, and feminine yet outrageously dramatic aesthetic are hitting all the right buttons trend-wise this season, so it seems only fitting – auspicious even – for the release of the shoe collaboration of the summer.

Teaming up with high-end shoe brand Strutt Couture, Zandra’s collection is everything you would expect…and just a little bit more. Seasonal style favourites – wedges, platforms and stacked peep-toe booties – all feature, as do voguish intricate lazer-cut details, sorbet soft pastels and au naturel wood finishes…

Zica Tan/Gold

Zimra Pink/Gold

Zafira Grey/Fuchsia

Zanna Aqua/Gold

Zemena Tan/Gold

Zanya Aqua/Gold

Zamora Fuchsia/Pink/Aqua

Zerrin Light Grey/Mustard/White

Zinnia Tan/Gold

These utterly stunning, gob-smackingly beautiful booties are my out-and-out favourite…Wear with a super sleek-casual silk jumpsuit a la DKNY (look for peg-leg effect ties at the ankle for a neo-sports twist), or a pair of Alexander Wang-inspired joggers a slouchy racer-back and an oversized varsity jacket for totally covetable catwalk  appeal.

To say I’m excited about this collection would be a grave and monumental understatement: Zandra Rhodes PLUS couture footwear?! Frankly, I’m surprised I haven’t wet myself in a tumultuous flurry of feverish elation.

Shop/browse the collection at Zandra Rhodes Footwear.

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Look du Jour: Sport & Sweet

Don’t you just love it when trends merge in a kind of opposites attract rom-com of an outfit…

Fairy florals and demure lace detailing get a preppy makeover with a totally sport-chic coral jersey bust panel (very reminiscent of the layered bralettes seen on Alexander Wang’s s/s runway, not to mention the body/skirt combos seen at Topshop Unique). All topped off with a pair of sneaker-meets-winklepicker kitten heels in a gloriously coordinated spring/summer style love-in.

Photograph by Illiana M.

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It’s time to kick up a shoe storm – sports stylee!

Balenciaga s/s 2010

Alexander Wang s/s 2010

With the likes of Balenciaga, Alexander Wang and Loewe proving that gym wear can be über glam (and with my shoe cupboard crying out for fresh blood) I have turned my attention to footwear. A simple way to ease oneself into the urban sports trend, and to sate the insatiable hunger of the shoe beast – two birds, one stone. Genius? Could well be.

Office: Best Foot Forward in grey leather.

Ash: Thelma buckle wedge.

Schuh: Lois lattice court patent

These Lola Hush Puppies are simply fabulous – sport-chic with a retro twist: very cute and very me. (In fact I’ve just ordered them in black – the girlish gingham swung it for me; that and the fact that I like my wardrobe to multi-task and these will satisfy me during one of my monochrome moments when I need something more casual than killer).

Designed by Laura Berry for the HP ‘Shoeperstar’ competition; they come in black (gingham trim) and purple (trimmed with cute-as-a-button florals) and are supposedly kind to feet – Give me 5 working days and I’ll be sure to let you know!

New Look: mesh sandals

Schuh: Roche perforated lace-ups

The key with this trend seems to be structure – strong with a masculine edge – head for mesh, straps and cut-aways and work with sleek and minimal styling; think skater-meets-mod a la Proenza Schouler or Wang-eqsue collegiate-chic, et voila! Sport-chic without the sweat.

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ATTENTION! March Out this Summer in Utility

Chloe s/s 2010

It is an indisputable fact that there will be a point (or many points) this season when the saccharine romance of whimsical ruffles, floaty tulle and wholesome pastels just doesn’t cut it. Enter the slick workaday styling of  new urban utility: practical shapes, seriously smart design, rough-hewn simplicity – it’s edgy, versatile and smacks of rampant glamazonian independence. Military? Sports? Right across the s/s trendosphere, utility works to rework the ordinary into something altogether extraordinary and effortlessly cool. It’s time to join the new style army.

Look for Spartan-chic a la Chloe with constructed shirting and practical detailing; skinny leather belts are all the rage – try buying too large and knot rather than buckle as seen at Stella McCartney – for a streamlined martial look par excellance.

Chloe s/s 2010

Olive, khaki, camo, sage, sand, fawn – look to the front-line for colour inspiration – drab has never been so desirable. Alternatively, offer a salute to the super-stylish Balmain and work Gladiatorial-glam in glittering bronze and gold (tarnished please).

Balmain s/s 2010

For a sporty take on the trend look to Alexander Wang’s reworked all-American sportswear for inspiration: oversized raglan-cut grey sweatshirts, varsity jackets, extended-shoulders (taking epaulettes to the minimal max) and those strangely covetable cut-away-calf knee-high socks, make for effortless undone simplicity – keep it feminine and work-ready with peep-toe wedges and leather accessories.

Alexander Wang s/s 2010

Alexander Wang s/s 2010

More inspiration? Check out the Warehouse Utility Collection at InStyle UK