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Jersey Evening Post

My first column in the Jersey Evening Post! How to dress to impress on Valentine's Day.

This is a wardrobe workhorse of a dress by Next with enough styling detail to be interesting as well as figure flattering across the sizes. It does come in a range of length options and I recommend that this dress either finishes above or just below the knee. Generally anything that sits mid knee can look a bit square and dated. A ‘v’ neck, such as this is more flattering and easy to wear than a high round neck and is perfect for adding a statement piece of jewellery, transforming this dress from day to night.

A classic Chanel style tweed jacket with contrast detail such as this elevates any outfit. Shorter jackets that finish above the broadest part of your hips and also have waist shaping, do wonders for your silhouette. Pop this LK Bennett one on over a black dress for date night, ankle-grazing trousers at the office or even pair with denim. There are so many ways this jacket can be restyled and enjoyed time and time again.

Kitten heels are everywhere again this season which is great news as they are easier to spend all day in, rather than towering stiletto heels, which you want to take off at the first opportunity! You can completely transform a look by adding a fun colourful shoe and there is an abundance to choose from in the shops currently. These Dune ones are in a high shine mock croc finish which also means they are super easy to look after and will continue to look like new for much longer than suede or plain leather. These little red ones will also look fabulous in the summer worn with white, navy or be right on trend when paired with a bold contrasting colour such as bright blue.

A style mistake I often encounter for a night out look, is matching clutch bag with shoe colour. It’s a no in my books and a sure way to look outdated. I’ve paired the mock croc textures here with this elegant clutch by Whistles but not the colours. That’s not essential, any black evening bag would work with these pieces. The place to add red into the rest of the overall outfit could be in your necklace choice, lipstick or nails.

There are some things Marks & Spencer’s do well for quality on price point and their range of Luxury shirts is one. This is much more than a plain white shirt, it has a subtle twill grain weave, comes in a range of body fits, collar and cuff configurations. Personally, the cut away collar, worn open without a tie is still the edgiest look for guys in a smart casual environment. It goes without saying that it also works with a tie. This shirt also has a double cuff so you can add a bit of extra personality with some cufflinks for your Valentines night.

Dark indigo denim jeans are a style statement in their own right and these by Meyer have wonderful detailing that truly sets them apart. With just enough stretch in the denim these are a year round jean that are slim cut but not restrictive. They will work equally well now and in the summer. My style guide with jeans, to keep the look sharp and smart is to always wear a belt that matches the occasion. For a Valentines date night I recommend a formal dress belt rather than the plaited one in the image, which is a more relaxed casual look.

 

Dark indigo denim jeans are a style statement in their own right and these by Meyer have wonderful detailing that truly sets them apart. With just enough stretch in the denim these are a year round jean that are slim cut but not restrictive. They will work equally well now and in the summer. My style guide with jeans, to keep the look sharp and smart is to always wear a belt that matches the occasion. For a Valentines date night I recommend a formal dress belt rather than the plaited one in the image, which is a more relaxed casual look.

 

Fashion Fact file:

Coco Chanel is credited with creating the LBD. In 1926, Vogue published a photo of a black dress from one of her collections and referred to it as “Chanel’s Ford.” She also invented suits for women. Previously women’s fashion was predominantly binding corsets, oversized skirts and ultra feminine detailing.

Denim was invented in 1873 by Jacob Davis and Levi Strauss. An estimated 1.24 billion pairs are sold annually around the world. There are 31 individual operations to construct a pair of jeans, using 16 different specialist sewing machines of which only a few are automated. Clothing construction relies heavily upon the skills of the women and men who make your clothes. 

 

Sustainable Fact File:

It takes 2720 litres of water to produce one t-shirt - that's more than the average drinking water for one person for 3 years.