And so, after going through a "should I - shouldn't I" motion, I decided to enter the Passion for Fashion competition and create three outfits for less than £200 each. Some may call me silly, others may say that determination equal success, but frankly, I just find the whole process of creating looks very relaxing and fun and that’s the main reason why I am taking part.
Would love to hear what you think of the ideas below, so please do drop me a comment.
The Casual look is the perfect example of what I’d normally wear if I needed something comfortable and quick without compromising on style.
Take a pretty cotton sweater, add the jeans, some simple jewellery, sunglasses (I never ever leave the house without them), and a roomy bag, slip on a pair of the sweetest wedges, top it up with a trilby and you are good to go. I adore the fact that the open knit pattern of the sweater (have a look at the website for close-ups) is similar to the one of the hat. And I love those shoes that remind me of Chloe and Celine circa 2010 – flatforms for a bit of extra height, comfortable for running around and way more stylish than trainers or flip flops.
To finish the outfit, I added some make-up and a perfume because, really, you’ve got to dab a drop of perfume here and there before leaving the house and I Love Love is such a fresh, happy and beautiful scent!
Total cost: £173.78
Shop: Sunglasses, Forever21 | Bracelets, Mango | Drawstring shopper bag, Boohoo | Sweater, La Redoute | Boyfriend skinny jeans, Warehouse | Trilby, Figleaves beachwear | Gansa sandals, Michael Antonio | Perfume (mini), I Love Love by Moschino @ FragranceNet | Nail polish, mascara, lip gloss, all L’Oreal
The Holiday/Beach outfit began with the dress. I choose it for several reasons: a) the fabric wouldn’t wrinkle b) the cut is feminine but allow you to move and relax c) the dress goes on like a t-shirt (and comes off like one, too) d) the fabric is dark enough, so should you choose to wear it to the beach with a bikini underneath, nobody would see the swimsuit through the material.
The rest of the look is pretty self-explanatory – sunglasses that pick the colours of the dress, statement ring that highlights the pink hues in the fabric and a perfect match of espadrilles, trilby and straw tote.
The only make-up I’d wear is a lip gloss and I picked the Daiquiri by Philosophy because it’s pink and the name screams holiday. The organic paraben-free sunscreen was another essential item. I decided against any perfumes this time because wearing one on the beach isn’t something I’d do or recommend.
Total cost: £156.93
Shop: Opaque frame sunglasses, Warehouse | Statement ring, Mango | Scent free organic sun lotion, Green People | Daiquiri lipgloss, Philosophy | Platform espadrilles, Hobbs | Hat, Eluna | Striped hem dress, Izabel London | Bikini, TopShop | Straw tote, Seafolly
The Party outfit is all about the dress. It looks like a petal or leaf, delicate and fresh - simple, light and incredibly versatile. For the summer party ensemble I decided to create an art-deco-meets-Greek-Goddess feel by pairing the “petal” with crystal earrings, clutch and sandals to make it unfussy and elegant. A touch of neroli-based perfume and light make-up to finish the look.
And when the party is over, the dress can be worn with Gladiator-style flats and gold cuff or bracelets, or black strappy sandals and biker jacket to create two absolutely different daywear outfits. I promised you it was versatile, didn’t I?
Total cost: £196.37Mango | Colour block clutch bag, Oasis | Lime green dress, Helmut Lang | Solid perfume, Bulgari by Bulgari @ FragranceNet | Mascara & lipgloss, MUA | Nail polish, 2True | Suedette & metallic sandals, Boohoo
Photo source: Cosmopolitan US June 2012