Belfast Telegraph

What not to wear now that spring is sprung

By Frances Burscough

It’s official: spring has finally sprung at last! Not only was yesterday the Vernal Equinox — ie. The first day of spring in the Northern Hemisphere — it was also the start of Belfast Fashionweek for spring/summer 2015.

So there really is no going back to polo necks and pullovers, because it’s time to scan the stores for something skimpy.

As a fashion correspondent for the Tele I get to see a sneak preview of all the new collections at every show so, for your convenience, here is my breakdown of all the latest trends for women this weather plus a few personal pointers on what to avoid like the plague and why.

Gingham Style: Unless you are a waif-like teenager full of the joys of spring and/or look like Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday, I wouldn’t “do” this season’s re-incarnation of gingham. It’s definitely a look for the young ’uns, believe me. If anyone over the age of 25 attempts it, they tend to look like someone who either forgot to remove their napkin after leaving an Italian Pizzeria or got lost on their way to a line-dancing hoe-down. So just “whip-crack-away” that gingham, y’all.

Military Khaki is back with a vengeance. This is cool and can look good on any age or shape but (like most things)  only in moderation. For example, a pair of khaki shorts are all well and good but please don’t team it with a matching shirt or hat. No, you won’t look like Hotlips Houlahan from MASH, you’ll look like Don Estelle from It Ain’t Half Hot Mum. If you decide to go for the camouflage look then choose summery “Desert Storm” camo colours rather than the greens and browns. Unless of course you are a hunt saboteur, in which case a balaclava and Doc Martens are the perfect accessory whatever the time of year. 

Relaxed denim: Now for many of us, wearing “relaxed denim” isn’t so much a conscious style choice as a what’s-the-closest-thing choice when you get dressed in the morning. But what many of us wear as a matter of course has gone full circle and come back into fashion since we were last on trend. The variations that stand out this spring though are classic dungarees, chambray shirt-dresses and baggy boyfriend jeans. However, never ever do the dreaded “double denim” or you’ll just look wrong.

Trench Coats are timelessly stylish and reminiscent of so many cool war films, but how you wear them can determine whether you’re more Casablanca or Colditz. The summer variation for 2015 is always at its best worn belted at the waist, so this requires a slim frame to carry it off. Anyone over a size 14 might just look like a sack of spuds I’m afraid, unless they are tall enough to compensate for all that extra bulk. Do wear with flat sandals or loafers. Don’t wear with last season’s over the knee boots unless you don’t mind being called Herr Commandant. 

Big Knickers showing through under tight see-through dresses: No, this isn’t a joke, It’s an actual trend for evening wear this season. If you don’t believe me, then look at the recent pictures from the Alexander McQueen gala dinner in London. Kate Moss arrived in a transparent lace dress through which her (not-very) smalls were transparently obvious. Meanwhile Suki Waterhouse was pictured last week partying in a red chiffon gown with (what looked like) her grandma’s pantie-girdle in full view underneath. But the worst offender by far was Louise Hazel from The Jump who wore a cream tulle dress with no bra and yet gigantic control pants to the recent premiere of Insurgent. She looked ridiculous of course and so did the others. So, let’s face it, if Kate and Co can’t pull it off, imagine how mere mortals like us would look. And where would all that spare-tyre flab that’s being so conscientiously constrained go to, the moment you sit down or bend over or ... well ... move a muscle? It just doesn’t bear thinking about does it?

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