THE SEXY HEADDRESS IS BACK – TRUE DEVOTION AND THE HEIGHT OF HAUTE COUTURE

THE SEXY HEADDRESS IS BACK – TRUE DEVOTION AND THE HEIGHT OF HAUTE COUTURE

Reading Time: 4 minutes

 

As a truly committed devotee of the heady days of Princess Diana, from her peter pan collars and see through skirts, to the ever plunging necklines of the temptress, I vowed never to go there again after the tragedy of 1997.

Now with the butterfly advent of Meghan Markle, I am feeling those all too familiar pangs of fascination, but vowed not to be swept along in the same way with her obvious flair for fashion.  After all she isn’t Princess Diana, and I am older now so don’t need a Royal  Fashion Icon to follow.

But here I am admiring her style – and particularly her head ware.  Yes, Meghan’s berets are becoming quite a fashion symbol in familiar circles of my peers – a sweeping statement you may think.  But the beret was and has been fashionable for several decades, and even centuries.

Le Beret was worn originally in the Béarnaise countryside of France – usually in black and red.  It has certainly become the staple fashion ‘look’ of  France along with gauloises and the Breton striped jumper.

Celebrities have historically played a role in making the beret popular. It became a fashionable accessory in Hollywood as far back as the 1930s after being worn casually askew by a number of famous movie actresses or ‘A’ listers as we would refer to them today.

From Lauren Bacall to Julia Roberts in more recent times, you can see why as this sexy but classy headdress is both flattering and highly haute couture.

Over the years too it has appeared in some High Street outlets, but not seriously featured, except perhaps as a passing ‘wink’ to more beret centric days in Fashion.

So it is no wonder our Meghan, and did you clock the word ‘our’ – yes already adopted and addicted – has made such an impact, because as well as marrying everybody’s favourite Prince, she also has the knack of carrying off an outfit and putting it on the map.  So with that in mind, I am throwing caution to the wind, getting back on the treadmill of Meghan mania, and am in search of some spectacular head gear – the beret is back and so am I.

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For The Love Of Layering

For The Love Of Layering

Reading Time: 9 minutes

 

We live in a Country where weather is a huge topic of conversation, and so we all need an outfit that will work all day and night regardless of what is going on outside.  Temperature shifts like that call for layering… and I simply adore layering.

The big, fluffy sweaters atop a tight tank. The ripped jeans with patterned tights or fishnets underneath. The bomber jacket over a cropped sweatshirt. The T-shirt paired with a natural-waisted pair of boyfriend jeans, with ankles rolled up, showing off your colorful socks. You really can have fun with layering. I especially enjoy it because I love to keep clothes from prior seasons in my closet, and layering allows me to still wear as part of a layered ensemble what might otherwise be a bit too dated to wear on its own.

You can truly get creative with layering. Almost anything goes, and it can be ridiculously fun! That being said, here are my top five layering rules to remember:

Rule One: The Plot Thickens

Remember that layering adds thickness. If you don’t want to look like an overinflated balloon, be sure to layer thin fabrics underneath thicker ones. Also remember to make the thin layers more form fitting than the top layer. Finally, make sure that top layer has a little bit of breathing room, so you don’t see all the creases and everything else that can accumulate from all the layers underneath, no matter what shape you’re in.

“The Go-To”: A tank top and netted sweater under a long, flowy cardigan, with comfy jeans and ankle high boots. Toddler optional!

Rule Two: Your Bottom is the Tops

Generally speaking, if you do all your layering on your top half, then simplify your lower half with something slimming, like a skirt or trousers. You want people to be able to tell where you start and the layering begins, and vice versa. Simply put, going baggy on both top and bottom will make you look precisely like a potato sack. And an un-stylish potato sack, at that.

“The Classic”: A button-up under a loose sweater, with cuffs rolled up. Note the colorful socks peeking out below the rolled trouser hem!

 Rule Three: Mixing Business and Pleasure

Always mix textures. Always! Example: denim on the bottom; jersey tee, cotton sweater, leather jacket and silk scarf on the top. Get texture crazy. If you wear all of one fabric, you will come off a bit flat and washed out, or – worse yet – appear too matchy-matchy. Wearing all of one texture is to be avoided at all costs, because it will not only make you look drab, it will also add weight. Horror of horrors.

“The Autumn Dress”: A button-up covered by a thick cardigan with winter tights, and boots. Get that short dress out of the closet all year round!

Rule Four: The Long and the Short of It

Have a variety of lengths. You want to make sure your layers have complementing proportionate hemlines that are different from one another. In short, you want people to know you’re layering, as opposed to you just having gained three layers worth of weight. If you layer three tops over one another and they all end at the same length, instead of looking stylish, you will look stockier, boxier and heavier. Avoid.

“Hot Shorts”: They’re not just for summer anymore, especially when you layer with fun, patterned tights and fishnets. Never hurts to throw a scarf in with this ensemble!

Rule Five: Cut from the Same Cloth

Choose appropriate fabrics. For example, when layering a button up shirt under a sweater, make sure the button up is not too heavy, or every button, wrinkle and fold will show through to the top layer. Ew. If your top layer is thick like a cable knit, you can get away with almost anything underneath, but if it’s fine like merino wool, you’ll want a smooth, lightweight shirt underneath – something like a non-slubby silk (satin, crêpe) or lightweight cotton (Batiste, lawn, voile). After all, there’s a reason the saying goes “smooth as silk.”

“Hem-brace the Layers”: Have fun with hems by layering with different textures – lace, sequins, pom poms… whatever!

 Bonus Rule: Cute As A Button (Up)

Simple crew neck sweaters look great with a collared, button up shirt peeking through at the neck, with the cuffs folded up and the hem showing underneath. Make sure the shirt is not too short or too long under the sweater. Ideally, you’ll be able to see the natural split of the shirt at the bottom, but have the lowest button covered by the sweater. Fold the cuffs over the arm of the sweater to give it a cohesive look. Make sure your collar is crisp and don’t let it splay all over the place, or risk looking sloppy, which is a fashion crime. Keep it in place by buttoning it up to the top, or near the top. My favorite secret for layering button ups is to wear a fitted tank top over your button up and under your sweater to hide any visible bumps from seams and buttons. No one will see it, but you’ll look sleek.

“A Layered Approach”: Use thin, soft fabric to pile on the layers, and avoid the bulk. Here, I’ve got four layers on, but manage to still look sleek in the process!

 Personally, I love the effortless layered look of a netted sweater with a tank underneath, and either a cropped jacket or super long flowing cardigan on top, with jeans and ankle boots on the bottom. It’s a look that can work with lots of body types and is easy to throw together, plus is super warm and cozy.

Speaking of warmth, I find that when layering for the cold, merino wool works best. It’s much warmer than anything else out there, and isn’t bulky. It’s a bit pricier than other fabrics, but you can get away with having just one or two for the season, as it’s naturally anti-bacterial and wicks away moisture, so you don’t need to wash it as much as other articles of clothing.

“The Timeless”: A short jacket over a cropped sweater with a tank underneath. Try a metallic tank, instead of a boring basic!

 A Few Layering Combos To Ponder

  • Bring your summer dress into winter by adding an open button up (chambray), a thick cardigan (also open), winter tights and boots.
  • Wear shorts year-round by putting leggings under them. Top with knee high socks and boots for a cute bottom half. Pair on top with a fitted tank and an oversized sweater.
  • You can even layer multiple tights under shorts or a skirt by putting a patterned or shimmery pair under a netted pair. Don’t go overboard with this, or you won’t be able to bend your knees.
  • For a more fitted look, add a thin belt to a cardigan that’s been layered over a form fitting knit top.

The ideas for layering are endless, but keep to the rules above and you should be fine to get as creative as you want. Most importantly, commit to your look so it appears intentional. There’s nothing worse than layering that seems like you’re wearing whatever happened to be clean that day.

“Warm & Cozy”: Wear a turtleneck underneath a sweater, topped with a blazer. You can’t go wrong with this easy and comfy look!

Finally, don’t be afraid to mix and match patterns. There are rules on how to do this properly… but we’ll save that for another day.

 

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BLACK AND WHITE – THE AGELESS MODERN CLASSIC

BLACK AND WHITE – THE AGELESS MODERN CLASSIC

Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

As Karl Lagerfeld said, “black and white always looks modern, whatever that word means.”

As a modern outspoken woman of the 21st Century, my friends are always telling me not to be so black and white, but in this case I am recommending it.

It is true – black and white always looks cool and chic, perfectly placed wherever you are – and monochrome is this season’s ‘must have’.

Black and white stripes have never gone out of fashion as far as I am concerned – I seem to always replace my stripy Breton top every year.  It is always flattering and easy to wear over jeans or under a black biker jacket.

Monochrome dresses were introduced in by Ozzie Clarke back in the sixties, but again have never really dated, and are back now on the High Street in all their glory.

credit: Nata Sha / Shutterstock.com

Polka dot leggings or trousers are really kind to the figure, and will instantly slim you down if you need it.  Similarly polka dot dresses or tops have the same effect and are adaptable and easy on the eye.

White trousers should be worn all the year round, and team up well with black jumpers or sweatshirts and pumps, in either black or white.  This look is easy to accessorise with bangles and handbags.

Also, remember the all-time classic of the black suit trousers teamed with a gleaming white shirt and black tie, to float from office to champagne bar.

Alternatively a smart white jacket over ripped black jeans is a cool look for spring.

 

WATCH THIS SPACE – TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE

WATCH THIS SPACE – TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Buying a watch can be as rigorous as buying a house or car, and often as expensive. It can also be a joy and a sound investment. A very close colleague, Alvin Hall is the money guru. He got himself into debt when young, and turned his life around by facing it head on. Since then he has been a financial advisor for many years, and has appeared on the Apprentice many times in the UK and US, and hosted his own BBC TV show where he advised families how to become debt free.

The theme of this story is that Alvin, our very own Time Lord, advised us personally to invest in a Patek Philippe watch is a sound investment, as it will not diminish in value.

So we have done our own investigation and in the process have made some exciting discoveries in the Time department. Some are good investments, others are cosmetically beautiful and others a practical buy – but there is something for everyone in our Watch of the Day line up.

Harrods

Hublot – Big Bong 38mm Red Gold Diamond Watch £19,100 hublot/big-bang-38mm

Larsson and Jennings – Chain Metal Watch £230.00 larsson-and-jennings/chain-metal-watch

watches.co.uk

Rolex Cellini 18 ct £2,995.00 rolex-cellini-18ct

Cartier Ladies Tank Francaise £2,495 cartier-ladies-tank-francaise

Michael Kors

Sofie Pave Access – Silver Tone Smart Watch £399 sofie-pavé-silver-tone-smartwatch

H Samuel

Sekonda Ladies Silver Watch and Christmas Set £79.99 Seconda Xmas Gift Set

Watchfinder and Co – preowned watches – many gems so search to find the ONE for you.

Patek Philippe Ellipse – preowned, approx. 41 years old, comes with original box – £5,950.

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GETTING SHIRTY THIS CHRISTMAS – IT REALLY IS ALL WHITE

GETTING SHIRTY THIS CHRISTMAS – IT REALLY IS ALL WHITE

Reading Time: 4 minutes

When Meghan Markle stepped out with her bo Prince Harry last month at the Invictus Games, the World took a gasp of relief. Firstly because their much publicised romance was on every tabloid’s lips and secondly we were all dying to see what she would wear as their union was consolidated and announced to the World.

A ‘husband’ white shirt with ripped jeans was both a relief and a revelation, as she looked cool, fresh and confident, which let’s face it is the most important aspect of retaining one’s identity. Meghan achieved that in abundance, sticking close to her Californian roots whilst not bucking the fashion altogether as she donned a very expensive pair of designer sunglasses.

So back to the white shirt. I have always been a fan of a crisp white shirt worn in a slouch mode with rolled up sleeves and perhaps nipped in with a low slung belt. But there are a multitude of ways to make it work for you.

If you are going from the Board Room to a party this Christmas, you can adapt during the day with a black or navy jacket or blazer and then vamp it up for evening with jewellery like a choker, sparkling brooch and earrings.

A white shirt can also be ‘customised’ with sequins sown into the lapels or collar and matched with skinny jeans or sparkling leggings and high heels to complete the outfit.

If you are struggling with the ‘I don’t have anything to wear’ syndrome, which is common this time of the year, and if you have a dinner party or posh work do. Then join the boys in a smart black suit (even hire one from Burtons) and wear a white shirt with a tie or black bow and DJ. This is not just ultra-flattering, it really makes a statement, and you will be the envy of everyone in the room.

So you see, the little white shirt really is the new black dress.

 

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Emily’s Fashion Hack – SCARF SEASON – THE ULTIMATE STYLE TWISTER

Emily’s Fashion Hack – SCARF SEASON – THE ULTIMATE STYLE TWISTER

Reading Time: 10 minutes

How wonderful it is to be in the midst of the season for scarves (as if there’s only one season… but we’ll get to that)!

I recently made a major house move, so had to go through my closet to reorganize my clothes. I had a hard time making decisions on what to throw out, as I’m still working on losing those last 15 pounds of baby weight – (eek – baby is actually 18 months old)! As a result, I ended up bagging and boxing some items, and putting them in storage for when I do shed those last couple of inches around my middle.

Having said that, I’ve actually come to terms with my new curves and I’ve purchased a few new wares in my lovely, current, baby hip-holding size, and (luckily) a good portion of my tops fit me once again. Being a designer and a fashion lover, I have actually figured out a way for my new wares to stand up to the wardrobe I had pre-baby.

I’ve never been the person who buys a new wardrobe every year and donates last season’s garbs to charity.   I’m actually someone who shops for items here and there, buying a garment when I fall in love with it, or when I have an occasion and need something new.

I tend to keep my clothes and wear them for years, restyling them as the seasons and the trends change. Some items I have had long enough to see them go out of style and then come back into fashion.

I’m also a huge advocate of layering – probably because I hail from New York, a place with a harsh winter and four full, glorious seasons.

Why toss that glittery, gold tank top from your college clubbing days away when you can layer it under a classy, fuzzy ivory cashmere sweater and get a peek of shimmer at the waist and at the shoulder straps?

But I digress, as this article is supposed to be about scarves, and I am just preparing you for the other topics in my series, so watch this space because there is a lot more to come.

So back to the scarves. As I embark on another autumn/winter with this new limited wardrobe at my disposal, I am faced with the eternal question… how do I liven up my closet without spending a fortune? Luckily for me, I’ve accumulated quite a collection of scarves in my time. Scarves are a true wardrobe workhorse. They’re the ultimate article of clothing that should stay put in your wardrobe.

They do not have to be replaced during pregnancy, and though the chillier months are known to be “scarf season,” they actually have such versatility that you can use them as a lifesaving accessory all year long.

Keep your hair up and out of your face in summer with a light silk scarf. Channel your inner Audrey Hepburn and cover your head in the storms of spring. In colder autumn and winter days, you can wear them in the usual way, around your neck for warmth, but there are endless ways to wear a scarf that can liven up any outfit, any time of year. And you can wear them anywhere you please, as well! Use scarves as a necklace, as a hair band or tie. As a bracelet, a belt, a head cover, a shawl. Tie one around the hips to accentuate a skirt. Even when worn traditionally around your neck, there are countless methods of securing them. Their uses are endless, as are their abilities to transform an outfit. The scarf truly does take a drab, boring look and make it exciting. You can add a pop of color to an otherwise monochromatic look. Bring in a pattern to offset solids, or – if you’re daring enough – mix and match different patterns by adding a wild scarf. Wear a scarf up by donning a fine-fabric one with beaded embellishments, or wear it down by using a well-loved cotton voile paired with jeans.

What I’m trying to say is simply this: Move your scarves to the front of your closet. Mix and match them. Wear them in whatever way strikes your fancy. Expand the options that exist for you without shopping for whole new outfits. Get creative with your wardrobe, and have fun while doing it. I know I will! Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go dive into a big pile of scarves…

 

French Knot: my favorite.

This is a classy, beautiful and timeless look that never goes out of style.


1.Take a long scarf and fold it in half lengthwise


2.Drape it around your neck so loop and ends are at your front


3.Take one part of the loose end and put it through the loop, over one side and under the other.


4.Take the other loose end and put it through the loop in the other direction – under the one side and over the other, then adjust to desired tightness and length.

 

The Belted Scarf: a wonderful way to show off your favorite scarf.

I love it now, in my current post-baby state because some of my tops still fit a little snug, but not enough to retire, so wearing a scarf in this way hides some of those unwanted creases and bulges (no need for that shaper underwear here)!


1.Start with a long light to medium weight scarf that has a fringed edge


2.Drape over shoulders, and adjust length so both edges are even


3.Take a belt and secure at the natural waistline


4.Tug scarf to tighten beneath the belt

 

The V-Neck Front Knot: if a cowgirl went to Paris this is what she’d come away with.
A chic and fun way to wear a scarf that also keeps you warm.


1. Take a medium to large square silk scarf and fold in half diagonally, to form a triangle


2. Wrap it around your neck with the fold at your chin and the tip of the triangle pointing down


3. Take the other two corners around your neck and bring back around to your front


4. Tie the two corners in a double knot slightly to one side, then fluff for desired fullness

 

The Infinity Necklace: a flirty, fun and oh-so-easy look.
This may be the scarf combination I get the most compliments on. Simple, different and playful.


1. Take a medium to long rectangle scarf and tie the ends together


2. Put it over your head with the knot at the back of your neck


3. Loop the scarf around your neck again


4. Leaving the knot at the back of your neck, adjust one part to be tight, like a choker (but not too tight!) and the other part loose, like a long necklace

Stay tuned for more of Emily’s Fashion Hacks on GloTIME.tv

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