Tag Archives: River Island

Hey Good Lookin’

I’ve been thinking about writing an article about my other half for a while and its only the worry of publicly mocking his dress sense that has stopped me. I realised that he gets far more stick on Facebook from his work mates than I could ever inflict on him using fancy words, so here it goes.

The first time I met my bloke he was wearing Gap jeans, a Haynes Manual Ford Cortina t-shirt and Fred Perry pumps, all fairly casual, standard items for a 29-year-old guy. I knew he had potential to pull off a range of looks, he’s tall, broad-shouldered and stuck in the 90’s so there was definitely room for improvement. It’s only fair to detail what I was wearing at our first meeting too, Gap Pinstripe Shell top, River Island cropped jeans and Irregular Choice shoes. I could have been more conservative but you only get once chance at a first impression and I thought I’d make a statement, you can probably tell that we’re complete opposites already?

The natural progression for fashion-shy boy meets switched-on girl is that she moulds him into a socially acceptable dresser and broadens his fashion horizons by introducing smart casual garments into his collection of footy shirts and jeans. Also you’d expect that someone with a passion for all things trendy would be in her element starting out with a fresh canvas, however my husband is rather stubborn and the last three years have been something of a battle. If you stopped him in the street and asked him ‘Who’ he was wearing I’m pretty sure he would think you were a pervert.

My bloke likes to wear what he calls ‘manly’ clothes. He’s not into knitwear, suit jackets (when not wearing a suit) or shoes that are anything other than Timberland boots, Onitsuka Tiger Trainers or Dune brogues. Not a bad start really as I’ve never been attracted to guys who take longer than me to get ready for a date. But when sportswear is the ONLY option he resembles a P.E teacher rather than sexy jock. Same goes for trousers really, Gap jeans or combats have been his only casual wear until we reluctantly tiptoed into Next and purchased a pair of sand colour chino’s that definitely didn’t make him look like a JLS wannabe. Clothes shopping with him is like dragging Horrid Henry around Debenhams, you know it’s going to end with someone being in a huff and a Costa Coffee to clear the air.

We were on a roll, a couple of plain white versatile t’s followed, and god forbid, a pair of navy blue espadrilles that he’s had to wear around the house a few times to get used to. Now that I have endured half a dozen of these courageous shopping trips I think I have nailed the approach and can get him to wear a plethora of more stylish items, it’s all about confidence. It’s not really about copying the mannequin in the Zara store window, or forwarding him the trend report emails from ASOS menswear as a hint, it’s simply about making him feel confident in the clothes he wears….. Albeit in slightly more interesting ensembles than a 1997 football hooligan.

What’s so infuriating about this whole situation is that he looks good in everything, I’m not just saying that. I’m very lucky to have a good-looking guy for a husband and I’m well aware of that, but its kind of taken the fun out of watching the metamorphosis from a 1990’s country bumpkin into an on-trend, passionate dresser. I’ve accepted the fact that it’s going to be a long process and that I should carry on bin bagging the washed out and misshapen Superdry t-shirts when he’s at work and replace them with Zara fine knit jumpers. Hope he doesn’t read this!

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Seasonal Style

What a day it’s been! When I left the house this morning in perfectly weather suitable attire I was on top of the world. I arrived home three hours later freezing cold and grumpy. I detest the changing of the season’s especially now that they are so harsh. One day its 22 degrees the next we have an inch of snow, what are we supposed to wear?

Screenshot of Karen Dotrice and Matthew Garber...

Look at that rain! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I took my daughter to a children’s party this morning. I wore Gap cropped jeans, Topshop floral singlet, Zara prep blazer and ballet flats, accessorized with my large River Island tote and umbrella. The sun was shining so we both donned our sunglasses and headed out to have some fun. Imagine my dismay when half way through my over-priced hot chocolate I look out of the gaudily painted windows to see the rain hurling itself at the car park at an alarming rate. Yes, I have an umbrella but the wind also picked up considerably and while staying dry is majorly important when one has short hair, not being dragged down the street imitating a bad Mary Poppins takes precedence. This made me grumpy knowing I would have to go out and get wet feet and fasten the buttons on my blazer which makes me look like a nerd. How dare the weather change so suddenly?

I’m an avid checker of weather forecasts, I even have a friend who works at the Met Office, although this alliance has never given me the edge over anyone who catches the daily weather forecast during Daybreak. Is it just me or are seasonal changes taking forever to happen these days? Wasn’t Spring supposed to have started about a month ago and surely Summer is just around the corner, so what’s with the snow? My poor handbag is battered with carrying extra items of clothing among all my usual junk. Ordinarily I might have a pashmina and sunglasses lurking in there but in addition I’m now carrying a cardigan, socks and all important plastic bag to wrap my soggy umbrella in. Inter-season dressing is getting me down, the store displays and magazines have flaunted the SS12 trends for weeks and it seems like we will never get a chance to actually wear it. Is there a Summer in sight?

Needless to say, my daughter and I ditched the soggy ballet flats for comfy Christmas socks and spent the rest of the day eating left over Easter eggs and spag-bol. Until the weather sorts itself out, this is how we intend to stay….see you in September then.

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Who’s That Girl?

I have lost my identity, possibly forever. From graduating as an aspiring fashionista, 3 years later I am worrying if ‘I’m too old to be wearing that now?’ I am 29 years old, no longer a preppy teen or a funky young twenty-something, I’m almost 30 and I feel as if my fashion sense is no longer tingling. Did I put it down somewhere when I tried on that black silk playsuit in Reiss? Or perhaps I stacked one too many shoe boxes on top of it at Dune? Do I still shop in trendy places? Yeah I think so. My recent favourite is H&M as I always manage to find something in there at the last minute. I adore TopShop for denim and their Tall section as well River Island for accessories and Kurt Geiger for heels. Okay so it’s not exactly Jimmy Choo’s and D&G but as far as the high street goes, that’s pretty cool, right?

It must be the ensemble stage of dressing in which I am going wrong? Let’s take today for instance, to set the scene, I work for a high street retailer, often travelling from north to south and running down train platforms with an oversized bag and Costa latte. A typical outfit of choice is a pair of bright blue skinny jeans with ankle zips, a black silk shell top, suit jacket and suede and patent leather shoe boots. I’m also a massive fan of hats, I have short hair and find that a baker boy or trilby finishes off my outfit perfectly. . When I think about it, I always favoured the tailored classics. Shift dresses, pinstripe trousers and men’s blazers were all wardrobe staples during my teens and early twenties. Black has also been a major player, along with khaki, white and grey. Maybe I missed my calling in life as a GAP model. I could wear their entire range season after    season without as much as a thought for colour!

On further investigation into my wardrobe it would seem that I do in fact own some very beautiful clothes. The preoccupation with what one ‘Should’ wear as opposed to what one ‘Wants’ to wear has indeed had an impact on my day-to-day choices. Thanks Trinny and Suzannah for ruining what fun there was left in just throwing an outfit together!

I decided  following this self-analysis. That is to make sure that all the items of clothing at the back of my wardrobe are worn at least once in the coming weeks, including the silk knee-length a-line skirt that my boyfriend brought me back from Dubai. I will of course be teaming these random pieces with black tights and knitwear of some description. (Due to the subzero temperatures) I intend to make a huge effort to recapture that ‘who-cares’ attitude of my earlier years.

What’s the worst that can happen?

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