9 Fashion Tips To Help Define Your Trans-seasonal Style

How to fashion yourself now…

Jenna Lyons

For most, September is the hardest month to dress oneself. Of course this makes sense – it’s the time of uncertainty for dandies and fashion concerned clothes wearers. We have been so busy honing and compiling our summer wardrobes, taking to Pinterest and Tumblr for street style inspiration and then shopping accordingly, that we haven’t even given much thought to the 2014-15 autumn/winter catwalk shows that we watched back in February.

I personally feel like, just as I truly got into the swing of my fashioned summer self – lots of shorts, printed trousers, Birkenstocks, camisole tops and a general laid back Celine inspired approach – were the shops displaying winter garb too warm to wear and the magazines discussing new coat trends far too early to invest in.

Yet, in London, August just gone, it was far too chilly to be sporting shorts and camisole tops, however, not quite the season for tights and boots. And, here we are in September, the appearance of the sun is slightly unreliable, but there is a much warmer temperature than the previous month. Indeed, we have reached the time in the year when our summer wardrobes need to be adapted slightly to contend with the colder mornings and evenings and days that may not be as bright as they were in the height of summer.

It is the transitional seasons that I find to be the most intriguing in terms of fashion, particularly the summer to autumn as opposed to winter to spring. The glossies are fatter and more overwhelming than ever. The spectrum of styles and trends worn by street style icons varies more vastly than ever and the commuters that I see every day in London are a mash up of ankle boots worn with dresses, cut off shorts with kimonos, to coats with sandals.

The transitional seasons can bring about uncertainty because the season hasn’t actually managed to synch itself with the edits in the fashion magazines – there is no definitive fashion rhetoric stating that this is what should be worn NOW. The silver lining of this very short lived moment in fashion is, it is our time to shine – to wear whatever we want, to interpret the trends that we loved of the summer just gone and piece them together with the purchases we have made for the coming winter season.

My approach to defining my look and streamlining my wardrobe for this ‘in-between’ time is almost like creating a capsule collection of garments that include pieces from my summer wardrobe, pieces from my winter wardrobe and a few pieces that I have purchased specifically to hack these trans-seasonal dilemmas. I think the challenge is to feel as though you are dressed appropriately as well as fashionably and so far, these nine tips have been my solution…

1.Wear your mum jeans till you can’t wear them any more…

street style fashion spring 15 shows

When in doubt, don’t we all just opt for jeans? I know it’s not very creative, but this is the perfect time to really value mum, boyfriend and tapered jeans. I only wear these more relaxed fit jeans at an ankle grazing length and with heeled sandals, stilettos and shoes that tend to expose the foot as opposed to cover it. The combination of the shoe and a bit ankle on display helps to keep these relaxed fit jeans a little more sexy. I generally don’t enjoy wearing jeans in the height of summer and feel that these particular cut jeans are far too casual for my winter wardrobe, so the transitional seasons are perfect for ankle grazing jeans with stilettos. So I am wearing these mothers as much as I can right now!

2. Wear ripped jeans till the winter fairytale calms the distress…

ripped jeans street style fashion

The distressed jean is back – a little more refined than it was in the early noughties and maybe not as long lasting as it was in its last fashion reign. The 2014/15 winter trends are dreamy, sleek and refined, think shift dresses and long boots at Gucci, cinched waists and pencil skirts at Balmain and the Sicilian fairy tale at Dolce and Gabanna. It seems pretty that ripped jeans won’t be cutting it for much longer.

3. Don’t Cover Up to Soon…Hold off wearing tights and boots 

Leather culottes

My mother once told me, “Stay away from tights till October and boots till November.” I don’t always take her fashion rules on board, but adopting my respect for fashion and dress from her, I do like to consider them. Ankle boots, of course I will wear with a skirt or a dress throughout summer and autumn months, but I will not wear them with jeans and most certainly won’t wear my boots with tights – that’s far too much protection and coverage too soon. If it’s raining so heavily that a court shoe or a sandal is out of the question, I opt for brogues, driving shoes or slip on sneakers and if I can’t get away with wearing a skirt or dress without tights, then I simply go for a smart trouser.  I think a  wardrobe should change and transform as the seasons do. If we  start wearing tights in September, the likelihood is we’ll be wearing them till March next year and where’s the fun in that? With the midi skirt back in fruition this winter, who needs tights anyway?

4. Throw some black trousers into the mix…

Black trousers street style

If you’re opting for a little more elegance than jeans can offer, but are also avoiding tights, like myself, how do you stay warm and tasteful? Tailored trousers! Like jeans, a pair of simple black trousers are trans-seasonal, but they have a slightly more mature edge on jeans. They look sexy and sleek paired with stilettos and smart and androgynous worn with loafers and brogues.

5. Smarten up your maxis….

olivia palermo stye

You can call them maxi skirts and dresses I suppose – but something about the word maxi reminds me of summer and floatiness. Full length skirts and dresses paired with a chambray or denim shirt or a simple round neck jumper lengthens the longevity of a garment mostly associated with the sun. Biker jackets naturally toughen up this typically feminine garment. Wear these full length skirts and dresses with heeled strappy sandals, peep toe heeled shoes and even boots – Olivia Palermo has nailed this look to a T!

6. Replace your camisole vests with tops that cover your decolletage…

Miroslava Duma

As versatile as those camisole tops were for the summer, it’s time to phase them out. You’ll find yourself needing a jacket or a cardigan to cover up wearing these thin and strappy tops – which can be unnecessary fuss, unless of course, your cover up is adding something aesthetically to the style of your ensemble. Never underestimate the good of a great t-shirt to tuck into jeans, culottes, midi skirts or a pair of tailored trousers. And if you’re looking for something a little more pulled together, opt for shell tops, sleeveless or short sleeved. These tops and tees won’t expose too much of your décolletage, therefore you can wear them without a jacket or scarf during the early months of autumn, but still have your arms on show whilst trying to hold on to summer.

7. Don’t be all buttoned up just yet – opt for a casual shirt…

Miranda Kerr in double denim

On the days when it is slightly cooler, maybe too cool for a short sleeve, I opt for a casual shirt. My first choice is denim, but chambray and oxford and even my fiance’s shirts will make the cut. I pair these shirts with skinny jeans and a strappy heeled sandal or stiletto. I know in the midst of the winter I will head to Zara and purchase myself a shed load of smart, sharp and will-dress-up-any-ensemble- Celine-esque shirts and blouses and I will wear them right through till March. However, in the warmer months I like to keep things a little more relaxed than my winter wardrobe.

8. Show off your waistcoats This is a waistcoat’s prime time…

Olivia Palermo Waistcoat

This is a waistcoat’s prime time! In the colder winter months I will wear a waistcoat over my shirt and beneath my coat, which is great for those that see me indoors and coat-less, but not so much when I am running about outside in the cold. If you want to give your waistcoat, which is a seriously cool garment, some serious airtime, now is the time to do it. For me, it is still too warm to wear a leather jacket and I feel too stuffy in a blazer. I am still flitting around London in short sleeve tops and tees without any outerwear at all. But if I want to add a little something to an ensemble, I pull out my waistcoat and throw it over over a shift dress or a shirt and jeans ensemble. Never have I worn it so much!

9. Say goodbye to flippy sandals…


Stop wearing your strappy flat delicate sandals and opt for a heeled sandal, a heavier and chunkier sandal or Birkenstocks. Strappy sandals are just a little too easy breezy for this transitional autumn period and boots are too wintery, so now is the time for peep toe boots, ankle sandals and shoes in colours or material you fear to wear in the winter. I say wear your Birckemstocks now and keep wearing them till you go off them – if you haven’t already. I think I have already gone off mine!

 Be charmed, stay inspired!

Sicily, Dolce and Gabbana and Papini

Sicily, Dolce and Gabbana and Papini

The 2013 Winter Visit to Catania, Sicilia


If there’s one thing I know fashion lovers absolutely adore, as well as everyone else, it’s the opportunity to travel. So I am going to deviate from my usual fashion writing to share with you some memorable moments from my recent trip to Sicily. Needless to say, my four days in Sicily was not completely void of fashion and fabulousness – how can it be when in Italy?

My partner and I went back to Sicily last week to celebrate his birthday with his family and friends – frequent readers of Charms of a Dandizette will know that my partner is Sicilian and I have been travelling to and from Catania, Sicily for the past eight years. No matter where in the world I travel, no matter how inspired and rejuvenated I feel on my escape and on my return, there is something very special about the way I feel when I am in and have returned from the wonderful island that is Sicily. Admittedly my affection for Sicily may well be because of my emotional ties with the island and the great family and friends I have gained through my partner, but no matter how many times I return to Sicily, it never fails to fascinate me.

We flew to Sicily the morning that the Dolce and Gabbana New Bond Street Menswear store had their Sicilian Christmas table installed on the shop floor. My partner, being Sicilian and working for Dolce and Gabbana, as you can imagine, was extremely excited about all the typical Sicilian sweet treats featured on the table – it was indeed the perfect little send off for our Sicilian pursuit. On our arrival we unpacked the Christmas gifts we had bought for his family and instead of wrapping in nondescript wrapping paper, we placed the presents in Dolce and Gabbana paper bags – which his family absolutely adored – not because they are Dolce and Gabbana, but because these bags are pieces of art work in themselves (I myself have started my own little collection). These bags feature elements of typical Sicilian culture and folklore, some of which you will recognise from the collections, such as the Sicilian puppets, the Sicilian ceramics, the Moorish head and the Sicilian cart. For admirers of Dolce and Gabbana these bags are a perfect representation of the collection, however for my partner and his family, these bags are a small token of Sicilian heritage.

Once we had embellished the Christmas tree with our Dolce and Gabbana bags we sat down to eat. Needless to say we ate and drank extremely well, in fact we did so for five hours! With course after course of Bruschetta, Artichokes and grilled courgettes and aubergine, a fennel, orange and pomegranate pallet cleansing salad followed by swordfish and pistachio involtini, savoury pastries filled with ricotta and sundried tomato pesto and so on so forth, all washed down with Nero D’avola and followed by a selection of Limoncello and cream liquers and Prossecco. Yum!

Aside from drinking, eating and socialising, there was also some shopping and an acquaintance with my partner’s cousin Chicco – an acquaintance I have been particularly keen to make the eight years I have been with my partner. Chicco is one of the owners of Papini, the Eastern region of Sicily’s go to fashion department store for the luxury shopper.  In Catania there are two Papini stores, both located on Corsa Italia, the ultimate fashion and luxury shopping strip – think Sloane or Bond Street. One store is dedicated to Men’s and Womenswear and the other dedicates itself entirely to shoes, handbags and accessories. The third Papini store is located on the small island of Ortigia, the historical centre of Siracusa, Sicily, the very same location of Giuseppe Tornatore’s 2007 film Malena, starring Monica Belluci. My partner tells me Chicco has a particular talent for picking up on designers and trends before they have blown up. Among many other operations for Papini, Chicco does the buying for the business, he attends fashion week, he circulates in the industry and builds and maintains relationships with the suppliers.

Although having been to Papini many a times, this time I meet Chicco. He asks me what’s hot in London right now. We talk about the Celine Phantom bag and the just as coveted sling back Valentino stiletto, all of which is stocked at Papini. I admire the array of Givenchy printed sweatshirts, the myriad of leather and fur from Gucci, hand woven classic Bottega Veneta bags and the Saint Laurent punk boots. And after deliberating between the Alexander Wang Rocco bag and the Givenchy Nightingale bag for my own purchase, I leave with the Rocco bag. As if I could avoid all of that gleaming gold hardware. 

Please enjoy my Sicilian break in pictures…

The Sicilian Christmas table at Dolce and Gabbana New Bond Street store
The Christmas tree in Sicily
The Dolce and Gabbana bag collection




The Arrancini Dolce and Gabbana bag
Aubergines, courgettes and artichokes
Bruschetta and ricotta cheese
pastry filled with cheese and pesto
a fennel, orange and pomegranate salad, swordfish involtini, prawns, stuffed squid
Chocolate birthday cake
Apperitivo at Spinella, wearing Tom Ford sunglasses, Zara leather and lace insert top


Prossecco, pizzetta and arrancini at Spinella
The rose gold Rocco bag by Alexander Wang from Papini Catania


Apperitivo with Chicco and Giorgia at Bonu, wearing Biba earrings, necklace from Primark, coat and top from Zara, bracelet from Marc by Marc Jacobs, leather trousers from Topshop, bag from Marc Jacobs

Be charmed, stay inspired! x

The Gold Studded Leather Jacket

Inspired by: The gold studded leather jacket in Zara, Katie Nehra and studs and spikes!

Studded Leather Zara Jacket

Studded Leather Zara Jacket by ayeshadandizette 

For some time now I have been debating whether to purchase Zara’s black leather jacket…the one embellished with gold studs…I am expecting everyone coveting the studded leather jacket trend to know this exact high street version, inspired by LA based designer Katie Nehra’s Simone label. In recent months the Simone leather jackets has become many a celebrity’s go to jacket. You barely see Nicole Ritchie in the press without her extreme lapelled studded jacket…in fact she has two, one black one white.  If someone offered to buy me one of these $1080 leather Simone jackets I most certainly would not say no, however, that’s not happening and I happened to have fallen head over heels in love with Zara’s high street rendition. Of course, it has to be the gold studs that are really doing it for me, that and the affordable price tag!

This Zara jacket is like a slice of perfection handed over on a GOLD plate! Gold on black has got to be my ultimate go to combination – whether it’s on handbags, jewellery, belts – even my iPhone case. In fact, anything with gold and I am usually pretty much a sucker. It’s like the ketchup or mayo effect – everything just seems better with gold!

The gold studs appeal to me most specifically because, depending on how I choose to wear the jacket, it can sit perfectly between rocky and glamorous  or can be either or when I am feeling decisive and precise!  The metal studs lends itself towards the rocky style, whilst the shiny gold says glamour!

On my weekly visits to Zara I have tried this gorgeous jacket on twice, the leather is super soft and dreamy and nips in just at the waist nicely – it would read as though I have pretty much made my decision to make this purchase (or have been endorsed by Zara – I wish)!  However, my hesitation is due to the fact I already own four leather jackets, a deep purple one from Firetrap, a cream one from Topshop, a tanned pig skin jacket from Primark (yes – real leather from Primark!) and a black leather biker from Zara. So, arguably, I already own a black leather jacket – but the gold studs on this perspective jacket just makes wearing a leather jacket that bit more special, that bit more statement making.

I suppose I can always argue that my love for black and gold transcends fashion trends and even once the studded and spiked embellishments we are seeing everywhere on everything dies down, my love for black and gold will remain and I’ll still feel just as great in my gold on black leather jacket!

Nicole Richie wearing black studded Simone Jacket
Nicole Richie wearing black leather studded Simone Jacket
Nicole Richie wearing white leather studded Simone jacket
Nicole Richie wears white leather studded Simone Jacket
Studded leather jacket
Rock chic in silver studded leather jacket
Cindy Crawford Mexico Vogue Cover
Cindy Crawford Mexico Vogue Cover wearing Burberry Prorsum studded leather jacket
Studded leather jacket
Burberry Prorsum Jacket on the cover of L'Officiel
Burberry Prorsum studded leather jacket on the cover of L’Officiel
Mary Kate Olsen wearing Givenchy Jacket
Mary Kate Olsen wearing extreme studded Givenchy Jacket

I think it’s a done deal! Let’s get studded!

Be charmed, stay inspired! x

Studs and Spikes

Studs and Spikes

Inspired by: PRINT-CESS Mary Kantrantzou

spring summer 2012 runway look by Mary Kantrantzou

If, like me, you’re not tickled pink by the sherbet candy colour pallet seen in the likes of  Louis Vuiton’s spring summer 2012 collection, then it’s likely that you’re all wrapped up in the scarf prints at D & G, blown away by the beautiful floral prints at Dolce and Gabbana or swept off your feet by the oceanic sea star and seashell prints at Versace. The point is…for spring summer 2012, if it’s not lace or leather then it’s definitely patterned or printed.

I’ve never been one to play around too much with pattern and print, at least not since the devastating logo mania nineties, when it was paramount that all my skirts and jeans had to be from Moschino and had to be covered in crazy Moschino prints! (Please don’t judge me…then again isn’t that what fashion is all about? Judge away if you will!)

Since then however, asides from the staple breton stripes and polka dots, my wardrobe consists of a considerably small amount of  print and pattern, mainly dominated by Leopard print, leggings, jeans, a skirt and two dresses, all funnily enough  from Zara. One black white and yellow art deco inspired dress by Holly Fulton (which is possibly one of my favourite items of clothing), a vintage thirties dandelion print dress from Portobello road (which is one of my greatest buys at £5!), a star patterned dress inspired by Dolce and Gabbana’s a/w 2011 collection and a snake print dress inspired by Chloe’s a/w 2011 collection, both thankfully from Primark, as I am sure that by a/w 2012 I’ll despise them both!

With my research into the world of pattern and print I have naturally fallen in love with Mary Kantrantzou and would like to crown her the Print-cess of Spring Summer 2012!

Mary Kantrantzou spring summer 2010 
Mary Kantrantzou Spring summer 2012

Mary Kantrantzou ss2012

Mary Kantrantzou spring summer 2012 Mary Kantrantzou spring summer 2012

Mary Kantrantzou autumn winter/fall 2012
Mary Kantrantzou a/w2011

 Mary Kantrantzou autumn winter/fall 2011 Mary Kantrantzou autumn winter/fall 2011 Mary Kantrantzou autumn winter/fall 2011

 Mary Kantrantzou spring summer 2011
Mary Kantrantzou spring summer 2011Mary Kantrantzou spring summer 2011

So…fashion is art? x

Oh to be in Fashion…An Ode to the Sheer Black Black Dress

…and just sheer black…

Admittedly, those of us that not only follow fashion, but enjoy documenting it by fashioning our bodies with adornment that demonstrates our understanding and ability to keep up with the trends, take a self indulgent pleasure when something, someone or some item confirms our fashion savvy-ness. Admit it! We love it! Moments have occurred pretty frequently for me of recently.

Naturally I am going to down play my self praise and my excitement for such moments, because that’s the tasteful thing to do. But I was particularly excited when I saw that the peplum was making a huge comeback this season…before I had even been aware of such a trend I had purchased myself a wonderful black peplum pencil skirt from Zara, in fact I wore it to my Christmas party.

I take pleasure in watching Zoey Deschanel singing and prancing around like a crazy person in the opening sequence of New Girl in a red skater dress that looks as though it is also from Zara and if so, is also another dress that I happen to own. Granted, I was inspired to purchase this dress when I saw Frankie from the Saturday’s sporting it. Unfortunately I can now no longer wear the dress. It seems the whole world and his wife also clocked on to how fabulous and easy to wear that dress was and also went and purchased it (indeed, the irony of fashion).

I was also particularly excited when I saw both Holly, Fearne and Christina Ricci dressed in black sheer dresses with red lips on the Jonathon Ross show recently. God bless the black sheer dress and red lipstick! Black on black on black to me is a playground of sexual obscurity! Now you see me now you don’t! Can you really see what you think you can see? Black velvet embellishments on black lace combined with solid black, a black sheer shirt with a black bra tucked into a black waxed lace skirt. A sheer black body suit with sheer long sleeves and a black net insert to the navel worn with a black long sheer skirt over a solid black mini….I needn’t go on.

So here’s to my favourite trend of a/w, that has set me back a significant number GBPs, but has allowed me to be so in fashion this winter…The Sheer Black Dress…so dolce vita, so Dolce and Gabbanna of Stella McCartney and just so Dolce and Gabbanna. Never underestimate the black dress, just overlay it with sensuous and sultry fabrics – if you have to!

Winter Sale Shopping – Essentials

Winter Wardrobe Addendum
So…we near Christmas time slowly but surely and the sales are even closer on our heels. If you haven’t completed your winter wardrobe just yet, then the sales are the best time to make your wardrobe addendums.

Don’t waste time buying anonymous garments unless you really need them. Polo necks, black t-shirts and vests can always be bought for less than £10 in shops like Zara, Hennes and Primark. There’s no point wasting sale shopping money on garments that remain relatively cheap throughout the season and aren’t making much of a statement.
Look out for garments that might be considered a ‘Trend Piece’ that could possibly disappear this time next year.
Gucci RTW- a/w 09/10

Sequined embellished garb, Blazers, Leggings and Evening tops – I always refrain from having too much going on on the upper part of my body – particularly in shiny, light reflecting materials, which can risk making you look like a sparkling elephant. I would look out for sequins in muted colours for this part of the body or choose sequined jackets and boleros as opposed to tops.

Marc Jacobs RTW a/w 09/10

Shoulder padded jumpers and dresses – I have an inkling that like the over the knee boot, skinny jeans and leggings – the shoulder pad trend might stick with us for a moment. I wouldn’t worry too much if you have fallen in love with the embellished shoulder and are buying only padded upper garments. On the other hand you could always head to John Lewis and get yourself a pair of shoulder pads that you can slot into all the tops you own. John Lewis has barely been able to hold onto their shoulder pads this year.

Marc Jacobs RTW a/w 09/10

Louis Vuitton RTW a/w 09/10Boots are always a good find this time of the year – of course if anyone manages to get hold of a decent pair of ‘V Boots’ in the sale then that is the ultimate find! The best pair i’ve spotted are in Topshop, they’ve already sold out once this season and are now on their second run, with only two sizes left! These boots are on and off the shelves so quickly i doubt that Topshop will need to put them in the sale. Aldo have a couple of ‘V Boots’ in the sale, be warned most of these aren’t real leather.
Marc Jacobs RTW a/w 09/10

Coats and Jackets are always on the top of my list in the sales, you can get loads more for your money and of course if you purchase right you can have yourself a ‘Forever Killer Coat’. I always recommend Zara for Catwalk style coats. This season Marc Jacobs is the man dominating the inspiration for my wardrobe with his winter 2009/10 collection. I’ll be looking out for capes (with full length sleeves only)*, coats and jackets with embellished or enhanced shoulders.
Marc Jacobs RTW a/w 09/10
For those that are avid wearers of black, bright bold coloured coats are a must have in this collection – don’t be afraid to be bright and definitely be prepared to turn heads – especially in this dream of a coat.
Marc Jacobs RTW a/w 09/10

Another trendy must have is Velvet. We saw velvet trousers on the catwalk three years ago, however this trend disappeared fairly quickly. The cyclical nature of fashion would have it that trends are making their comebacks much quicker than they used to, trends can disappear and reappear in a matter of years now. Velvet has to be of good quality, especially to create the shiny looks that are all over this season’s catwalk. When buying velvet think SHINY SHINY!
Louis Vuitton RTW a/w 09/10

Accessories are so important this winter, so make sure you accessorise this season, Fashionistas! Many don’t consider this element of dress to be essential, but when it’s cold and bleak outside and fashionistas want to be warm and sparkly there is no better way to do this than adorn yourself in some shimmery winter armour.

Louis Vuitton RTW a/w 09/10

The catwalk would have it that jewellery has been played down this winter, the look is definitely more focussed on a sharper, classier look leaning towards power dressing rather than overtly glamorous and blingy. Keep your ensembles clean and tidy by wearing a few pieces of huge statement making pieces, rather than too much jewellery which can counteract the sharpness of your outfit and ultimately take the attention away from you.
Key jewellery pieces this season are jewelled bibs, which can be bought for less than £5 in Primark, hefty neckwear and of course ridiculously oversized rings. Topshop and Miss Selfridges are my favourite for some serious metal hardware.

Burberry Porsum RTW a/w 09/10

Winter Warmers are now officially as important as your coat. As i grow older the coat just doesn’t seem to insulate me as sufficiently as i need. It’s all about ear muffs, snoods, armlets, fingerless gloves and gloves that make their way all the way up to your elbows.
If you don’t have a snood already then snood yourself now – these are the best things on the planet right now! Hennes have a good selection of snoods that will no doubt be in the sale at some point this week as the sale products expand.

ASOS a/w 09/10

*Armlets are perfect if you’re the owner of cropped or three quarter length sleeve coats and capes. The armlet is great because you can pull them over your fingers when not needing your hands, but don’t have to freeze your forearms when needing to change the song on your mp3 player or searching in your handbag for keys – see how efficient and considerate fashion is becoming?

Gloves this season are big – really? What i mean is, magic gloves for a pound just aren’t cutting it anymore. Leather gloves are as sophisticated and timeless as a Burberry Mac.

Louis Vuitton a/w 09/10

Primark have a whole range of leather gloves, suede, coloured, short, long, embellished, you name it. I do like the idea of matching the colour of your coat to your gloves, it just adds that extra little detail and shows you have taken the time to pay that bit more attention. If you only wear black coats, then how about trying a pair of hot pink or scarlet red leather gloves. Marc Jacobs has once again incorporated gloves into his catwalk this season.

Marc Jacobs RTW a/w 09/10

Marc Jacobs RTW a/w 09/10

Balenciaga RTW a/w 09/10
Hoisery – I’m searching for a look alike pair of Marc Jacobs paisley print pink and green tights – hideous?? I love them. This season is all about adorning your legs, so tights have either got to be 100 denier or printed, sparkling, laced or coloured.

Marc Jacobs RTW a/w 09/10

Primark have an amazing selection of fashion tights, their quality is as good as a pair of Pretty Pollys. If you are really loving the whole tights phenomenon then Henry Holland has an amazing variety of quirky tights. Balenciaga featured a pair of sheer spotted tights in their show this season, these tights are perfect for adding that extra sexy edge to an ensemble without having to freeze your pins off completely as you would in a pair of lace tights. Checkout Accessorize and ASOS for Balenciaga look alikes.

Balenciaga RTW a/w 09/10

Christmas is probably not the best time to be giving shopaholics personal buying tips… but shop – you know you want to, just shop wisely!

Marc Jacobs RTW a/w 09/10

Recessionista Chic

It was the usual Friday evening at the South West London home of the green fingered photographer and ex London College of fashionstudent, Canterbury Parker. Protocol of gatherings at the Parker home are drinks, tortilla chips and humus dips, gossip, fashion pondering, wine sipping and drunken calorie burning dancing.Myself and vintage shopper and charity shop aficionado Kimmie Parker and her mother, Canterbury were sat in the garden, Kimmie and myself flicking through high fashion magazines and building mental wish lists, when I came to the conclusion that, ‘I need a new image.’
Looking down at my jeans and a vest top outfit I couldn’t help feeling slightly upset and annoyed by the fact that it had taken me almost two hours to select this ensemble – (surely an outfit worth two hours of trying on and taking off should be more…creative?)
‘A new image? That costs money,’ Kimmie Parker says, sucking on her Vogue cigarette.
‘It doesn’t have to. You can just style what you already have differently,’ Canterbury Parker advises, pulling weeds from one of the flower beds of her much loved garden.
Transform Primark garments into fashion history homageI was an expert of styling while being a student, I spent most of my time shopping in my mothers wardrobe, which is like fashion heaven, filled to the brim with vintage, classic and quality goods. When my much needed student loan arrived I would stock up on Primark garments and key accessories such as bags, jewellery and shoes. By the end of the semester I could transform Primark garments in to fashion history homage, cleverly styled, interestingly worn outfits.Since being employed I must admit I have become somewhat lazy, I am very proficient in taking myself to Zara or Topshop and buying myself a Catwalk look a likey whenever an event pops up. I can’t help thinking this is all too easy and a lot less fun!
Never fear, the impromptu shopping for occasion attitude will be over in the next few months. The coming months will not only see me considerably poorer due to heading back to university – but headed to FASHION university (the Gold winners of Graduate Fashion Week) some serious creativity and art will need to be applied to my dressing technique.
Now is the time for me to pull my finger out and get all Recessionista chique!

Outfits look great with a bit of vintage punctuation
Gok Wan says the key to dressing in high street and cheaper garments is to accessorise – often these garments miss out on detail.’ Kimmie says.
Sipping my wine, I concur. I am a true accessories practitioner – I don’t believe an outfit is complete until you have considered your belt, it’s buckle, your earrings, your necklace or chain, rings, bracelets, your handbag and shoes. If you’re a truly serious dresser you’ll even have a selection of watches!
The Sicilian always says, ‘A man can be wearing anything, but he will always be judged by his watch and his shoes.’
Accessories can speak volumes about your outfit, your style and your ability to dress – I believe all outfits look great with a bit of vintage punctuation, whether it’s a vintage belt, bag or shoe; vintage always puts you in a league with the connoisseurs. Accessories can easily get over looked or become a second thought, to some, maybe they are. In my case it would take me far longer to decide NOT to wear accessories than it would for me to pile them on.
My ears were pierced before I even knew what earrings were and since then I’ve never looked back. As a dancer in my late teens I would go as far as to pack a special pair of earrings to wear whilst rehearsing in the studio, once rehearsals were finished I would replace my dancing earrings with my statement earrings!
Many of my friends would die at the thought of leaving their homes without their earrings, particularly frequent flyer and bling – a – ling supporter, Angel Rae; in the six years that I have known her I am yet to see her without earrings big enough to pick up a satellite signal. It’s her thing and it works!
If and when you have to buy garments, buy them in black!
Accessories are a necessity, particularly for the Recesisionista Fashionista who doesn’t have thousands of pounds to rework their image, but still insists on being individual and stylish. I am not saying that everyone should go out and spend thousands of pounds on accessories, that would defeat the whole object. But if sacrifice and compromise happen to reside in your fashion styling technique, then instead of buying a load of clothes from Primark that are anonymous and more than likely not necessary or spending sixty pounds on a dress from Zara, that can only be worn once around the same group of friends, focus more on a pair of statement shoes, a killer coat, a broche or clutch bag. My key tip for Recessionista Chique is; invest in items that can transform outfits and can be worn continuously throughout the season. And if and when you have to buy garments, buy them in black!

Cont’d in Accessory Necessities…