I Want Some Spring(/Summer 2011) in My Step.

Hello, chickens. 
I’m conscious that I’ve had my Critical Hat on a lot lately, what with my indignation at Superette, Calvin Klein and Jennifer Aniston in Allure magazine…so as a welcome antidote – and after the crushing realisation that I will never be able to afford this season’s Miu Miu heels – I want to talk to you about shoes. It’ll be as though second-wave feminism never existed… *plants tongue firmly in cheek*

First: the Miu Mius. They were for me one of the highlights of the S/S 2011 shows (in fact, so were the dresses – I wrote briefly about it in my post Miu Miu: Gatsby on Acid? ). Part brogue, part spats, part 30s dancing shoes, the demure shape, metallic leather and neon shades culminated in what I thought were some seriously cool footwear. Want a reminder? Course you do…

What I love about the them is the way they decorate the front of the foot – I’m no fetishist, but there’s something very sensual about the glimpse of the part between ankle and toe, especially when the ankle and toes are hidden. Of course, the ‘corset-style’ lace-up and multiple straps help to eroticise the look a little…

After long deliberation, I’ve decided these are my favourites.

And look how they emphasise the curve of the leg (at least for people with legs like gazelles):

Anyway – I like them. You get it. I had a happy old time discussing with Pearl W which ones I was saving up for…but tragically, as it turned out they retail at £700 they won’t be my First Pair of Brand New Designer Shoes after all. But, as we all know, once you’re strung out on something, it’s hard to let it go…which is why I couldn’t resist turning to my faithful old pal the highstreet in search of a fix.

Topshop’s ‘Heels’ banner.

At first it was a bit disheartening – the Dorothy Perkins could do with a bit of metallic spraypaint, and the New Look ones, while sporting the requisite straps, are a little underwhelming:

These Monsoon lovelies at least have a degree of the filigree flourish:

Veering more towards shoeboots – check out the bondage-esque straps on these two offerings from Office.

So far so dull. Where are all the eye-popping brights?! Just as we all yearned for autumn at the tail end of summer, as the grey days drag on I’m now dreaming of spring sunshine – the kind of days that require you to have an array of peeptoe shoes at your disposal to show off a glimpse of your colourful pedicure. Well look no further – Kurt Geiger are bringing the colour this spring. The top lefthand ones also have the nude/yellow/metallic combination that I find so delectable in the Miu Mius…

In the end, though, it looks like ‘neon and metallic leather brogue shoeboots’ is too much to ask from the high street. These Méchante of London are closest in nailing that glitzy roller-derby aesthetic – relatively cheap at under 200 notes. Perhaps flouro-pink toenails would give them the right feel…?! 

So for now, at least, the Miu Miu-shaped gap in my life is here to stay. (As for feminism…just remember, heels may make you as tall as the fellas – but you might not be able to walk at the same pace… )

Which were your favourite shoes from SS 2011?
Would you save for the designer or splurge on the high-street?


"Does Jaeger look better, or have I been with those women too long?"

Can you remember when Jaeger wasn’t quite so cool? 

When I was a child when my mother had a designer dress agency, and I associated the concept of ‘fashion’ with the glitzy women who shopped there. They wore off-the-shoulder batwing t-shirts in taupe and silver, had ash-blonde streaks in their hair, and wore bold earrings in gold and primary brights. (I should mention that it was the ’80s, when I regularly wore cycling shorts – we all lived and learnt, didn’t we?) I became aware of the name Jaeger around this time, and like most people came to imagine that their clothes were for stuffy, middle-aged women.

Since seeing their A/W 2010 collection, that theory has been throughly eradicated.

It’s no secret that Jaeger’s reputation has been on the up in recent times; particularly since the introduction of Boutique by Jaeger, by all accounts a great success with the younger customer. 
Take a look at these items, and see if you can understand the appeal…

There are some lovely touches: the toffee-coloured velvet on this classic dress; the leather lapels on the jacket.

I always feel elegant in a blouse, and the colour palette on this one gives it a touch of quirkiness. All you’d need with the dress is a pair of ankle boots.

Fans of velvet need look no further for their fix…

I love the subtlety of the lace in these trousers – and these shoes could almost give Camilla Skovgaard a run for her money.

See what I mean? Flattering ladylike dresses, beautiful silk blouses and some sleek tailoring. I wondered at first if it appeals just because I’m getting older – if I’m simply becoming more conservative. Maybe that’s true, to some extent. But whatever the cause, I have begun to crave clothes that make me feel comfortable and chic, and all these items appeal to that need. Most importantly, all the classic pieces have subtle touches that keep them just this side of fashionable…

What do you think? Have any labels made you rethink your opinions?

Asos 'Revive': a glimpse of stocking.

Yes, I’m excited about Zara.com, yes, I’m dying to get my freshly-bought items…but no, that hasn’t quashed my naturally materialistic nature. Revive, Asos’s new line of vintage-inspired clothing, launched on Friday, and is a small and slightly odd collection for the ladylike among us.

The dresses are really rather lovely; I am a little taken by this green number, which I think has beautiful vintage-style details. They style it with a chunky cardigan with elbow patches, and there ain’t nothing wrong with that:

The ‘underwear’ is definitely a highlight for me; impractical as they are, I may not be able to resist these delicate little shorts:

 Never fear, however, footwear and outerwear is catered for, with this country-chic cape, and yummy moss-green jodphurs:

Here is one of the obligatory aviator jackets, but honestly? I’m more interested in the cute pom-pom headband:

I’m really not a hat person (it’s the unruly hair) but that or the faux-fur hat below might tempt me:

 And finally, just because I like em….the velvet peg trousers. They’re in a tasteful colour, and they appear to drape beautifully. Velvet dresses always feel a bit ‘first birthday party’ for me, but these may well have pushed me into the velvet-fan camp. 

My grandma will hate them, but then, she wouldn’t approve of going out in a slip and cardigan, either.

Will you be wearing velvet this winter? And which items have beckoned to you, from amongst the vast array of A/W fashions?

"Don't care how, I want it NOW!"

Mmm, lovely.

French Connection A/W 2010

I’d wear this baby with grey ribbed tights and peeptoe ankle boots:

 French Connection A/W 2010

Continuing the ladylike theme:

Mango A/W 2010

Mango A/W 2010

A workable nod to the baroque trend here:

 Oasis A/W 2010

And a grown-up camel coat:
 Oasis A/W 2010

I know I shouldn’t say it, but…I can’t wait for autumn.
(All images from instyle.com)

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