Summer Loving

It’s that time of year again – hemlines come up, necklines go down, and the opportunities to hide our lumps and bumps under thick and forgiving fabrics become more and more scarce.  So, what are our sartorial options this summer?

My personal favourite is the decorative day-wear trend that was prevalent at Louis Vuitton, Dolce & Gabbana and Prada.  Dresses with lace overlays, embellished lightweight coats, and floral prints in abundance all give daytime dressing a smarter sheen.  Think ladylike as opposed to girly, so choose glamorous accessories such as gloves or a chic hat.

Pastels were on every catwalk for this season, and designers have finally succeeded in creating clothes in sugared hues that don’t look like wither nightwear or something from the bottom of a seventies bargain bin.  Through use of fine fabrics such as silk and lightweight cotton, dressing all pale and interesting just got a whole lot easier.  Pastel pink is a suits-all shade, whereas minty green is slightly harder to work with and should generally be avoided by those with a complexion similar to Casper.  Various grades of blue and aqua look great when teamed with metallic accessories, and if you can’t decide which bit of rainbow sherbet is your favourite, then there’s always colour blocking.  A lot of detailing can go into pastel colours without looking ostentations – lace appliqué, feathers, embroidery… with a neutral background, these delicate additions can go a long way to making an outfit go up a notch or two.

On the subject of detailing, it looks like the peplum trend is here for at least another season.  I personally am a huge fan of this – what better way to show off your waist and conceal your hips?  The key with peplums is to keep things simple.  Think colour blocking, minimal patterns and detailing – let that flare do the talking.

Of course, you could go extreme in terms of simplicity and adopt the all-in-white look that was seen at Celine, Calvin Klein and Jil Sander.  Whether you go graphic or girlish, this is a high-maintenance look that won’t tolerate spaghetti Bolognese or smeared lipstick.  The appeal is in staying as fresh as possible, so low-key hair and makeup are a must.  It might also be an idea to get the St Tropez out in order to avoid the all-in-white look extending to your limbs.  Just don’t use the instant stuff – trust me it’s a nightmare to get off fabric.

A slightly more avant-garde trend that graced this season’s catwalks is the one for high-shine fabrics such as lame, PVC and leather.  Perhaps opting for Chanel’s plasticised swing coat and trousers isn’t quite what one might do on a rainy day, but a glimpse of glistening silk organza will go a long way to updating an evening outfit.  And then there’s what the magazines are calling Vintage Americana, which seems to pop up ever four years or so to remind us how great the fifties were, not that any of us can actually remember them.  Cat’s eye sunglasses, rich and glossy leather skirts, nipped in waists and retro prints all make dressing up an every-day activity.  For the slightly more daring, there’s the option to expose an inch or two of (preferably toned) midriff by teaming together a high-waisted skirt and a pretty bra top.  Now where’s that drive-in movie?

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About Charlotte Rottenburg

In 2010, Charlotte Rottenburg launched her fashion blog and from starting with writing about what she thought about the new season’s trends, her writing has now expanded to a wider range of topics that goes beyond just fashion. Charlotte joined the City Connect team in September 2011 and whether it’s fashion, film, music, or popular culture, Charlotte enjoys writing about things that her generation can relate to, and in a style that is both engaging and honest. Her main interests, other than the ones already mentioned, are travel, skiing, languages and cooking. Charlotte’s motto for life is “Be interested and interesting”. Follow Charlotte on Twitter @charlotte_r24
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