Monday, 28 May 2012

She shoots, she scores


What a month it’s been for your wardrobe. If you haven’t been digging out your winter knits, you would’ve been tugging at your summer florals, begging for the sun to come out to give them a spin round the block. It seems this month’s hottest fashion accessory was the classic umbrella and cardigan combo.

Aside from the disastrous start to the summer, it’s been a month of fashion highlights. With power brands Victoria Beckham and the Kardashians announcing plans for new flagship stores in the heart of the capital to high street staple Oasis releasing a tribute Jubilee range to honour to Queen’s 60 years on the throne; fashion has had its fair share of the headlines.

Now the Queen has given us the Royal wave goodbye and Prince Philip has gotten over his Jubilee hangover, there is already another event brewing. Forget the madness surrounding the Olympics, first we see England take on our neighbours in the Euro 2012 tournament. You can all breathe a sigh of relief – I’m not going to bang on about football kits for the next 500 words, although I’m sure I could rack my brains for something to say about 11 hunky men wearing shorts and getting sweaty.

European style has worked its way into the helm of British designers’ ranges and will be the real talking point for me during the football competition. The media plays a huge part in predicting what’s hot and what’s not and it’s not just us Brits who read Vogue cover to cover. Just a short hop across the channel, other fashionistas on the continent are watching the designers and transpiring the trends in their own unique way. Often playing with brighter hues and experimenting in a braver way, even big name brands look to Europe to inspire their creative minds. Gucci, Michael Kors and Roberto Cavalli all embrace European style influences to design that catwalk wow factor. Most notably is the proliferation of H&M’s, the fast-fashion retailer from Sweden that has redefined stylish fashion at inexpensive costs, with stores now popping up in key cities across the UK. This coupled with the rise of Spanish store Zara, Amsterdam’s focus on sustainable sources and Denmark’s love of emerging designers, has helped put Europe firmly on the style map. It’s colossal how much this has influenced the way us Brits dress, especially in a time where every penny counts.

That’s not to say that the UK shouldn’t be forgotten in all this. We invented mods and rockers, and swinging London of the 60s; even the infamous ‘bob’ originated from Mary Quant and her trend setting persona. Eyes are always on the emerging talent that comes out of Graduate Fashion Week in London to catch a glimpse of the icons of the future. It’s clear that the UK plays a huge part in influencing the rest of the world too.

This summer we welcome the sport luxe look from Italy as renowned fashion designer Donatella Versace has taken this trend to the catwalk. Sport luxe aren’t two words we would usually team together to envision style; one conjuring images of upmost glamour and the other giving me dreaded flashbacks of plimsolls and vests from my school days. However, there are a number of ways to ooze this trend. Be it racer back vests from Topshop or luxury sports jackets from River Island. The high top shoe has also become the epitome of cool in the capital, and if you’re a diehard fan they even come in a wedge version.

Fashion is obviously not limited to our European boarders and we have already see trends from Africa – vibrant tribal patterns – and India – luxurious fabrics and beautiful prints – take shape this year. If you’ve been hitting the shops hard recently you would’ve noticed the quirky collar trend everywhere. From studs to sparkle and bold colour to delicate lace, adding a special collar to an outfit is big news and can give a look that instant update without diving too far into your pockets. Miss Selfridge and New Look have a great selection of quirky, rocky and cutesy collars to suit everyone.

So whatever section of the globe you look towards for style inspiration, with the Euro 2012 coverage, it’s safe to say I’ll only look up from my copy of Vogue to catch a glimpse of what the WAGS are wearing.

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