Saturday, 21 April 2012

See off April showers in style

With the Queen's Jubilee hot the heels of May, now is the time to start organising your royal attire to celebrate in style

April should be teasing us with peeps of sun and longer evenings, but with all the blasts of chilly winds and dizzily showers it seems more like we are on the cusp of Christmas than a summer heatwave. 

April was a busy month in the fashionista calendar. We saw Raf Simmons take the helm at Dior after John Galliano’s highly-publicised departure, and with the county gearing up to host two of the biggest events to grace our shores this year, what better way to win a sporting event at the Olympics than in high-end designer gear? Designer Stella McCartney ensured the athletes step out for the Games in style later this year, by designing the patriotic official team GB outfits. In collaboration with Adidas, the stylish ensemble is typically skin-tight and proudly shows off our national colours of red, white and blue. 

Before we start thinking about how we are going to enjoy the Olympic Games (speed shopping is my sport of choice) June will see our very own Oueenie take centre as we celebrate her 60 year reign. With everyone from Beatrice and K.Middy to bumbling Prince Philip and the prize corgis already hiring designers to compile some outfit options for the big occasion, the extra bank holiday is a great excuse to have a right royal knees-up in style.
Fingers crossed that we will start to see more yellow sun symbols hovering over the British Isles on the weather reports and we can dive back into the wardrobe to dig out those summer staples.

For the perfect garden party attire good enough to rival any princess, there are a few key looks to nail. Midsummer party glamour is perhaps the hardest to pull off with aplomb. How do you do glamour when temperatures sizzle? In winter, at least you have the LBD to fall back on. In warm June, black just feels wrong.

With Hollywood A-listers basking in the sun at the stylish Coachella festival in Tinseltown, the fashion magazines do a great job at papping the most fashionable celebs for us to feast our eyes on and draw inspiration from. One noticeable trend is the crop-top. Thankfully they don't all require a Britney-Spears-washboard-tum to pull them off and can be worn with skirts, shorts and even your favourite pair of denims. Topshop has once again nailed this ensemble and provides a quirky range of floral, lace and plain crop tops to suit the garden party perfectly. While cropped tops seem to be very casual they can come in evening outfits as well. Remember the black ensemble Gwyneth Paltrow wore at 2011 Emmys?

Summer suits can hardly be worn to a real office but they look so smart and stylish that ladies will still rock them. Made in a variety of colours and prints, summer suits can also come trimmed with lace to add a cute twist. Popular on the catwalk with Gucci and as seen on celebrities, head down to Debenhams for the best selection of floral summer suits on the high street. And while designers team it up with shirts and ties, you can experiment with different items in your wardrobe to create your look.

Head down to Zara to check out its range of asymmetrical hemlines. Although a classic fit might be your typical hem of choice, opt for something different and you'll be bang on trend. It's not only dresses either. There are plenty of skirts, both long and short and even jackets that play with the aysmmetrical design. Wear with a casual tee for the day or a sheer shirt to glam up for the evening.

By now, it's a little too late to look in the summer sales for evening-wear bargains, so why not start experimenting with new season fashions? Stuffy marquees make parties a fashion nightmare; opting for a stiff skirt could be torturous, but wafting maxi-dresses aren't the only answer to be in-vogue at a garden party.

So, don't let the heat cramp your style and the excitement ruin your barnet- follow this guide on how to do summer soirées with flair.

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