Category Archives: Spring trends 2013

Why Designer Handbags Really Are A Girl’s Best Friend

Summer with Mulberry!

Summer with a Mulberry handbag!

 

 

 

 

 

 

When I was very little and went on one of my first holidays to Italy, I remember religiously carrying around a little plastic handbag as if it were surgically attached to me. My most prized possessions had the honour of being carried round in it! Then as I got older I graduated up from toy handbag to actual handbag. My teenage years saw me have a GAP handbag in every colour, and now I go to Zara and Topshop for my ‘grown-up’ versions. I have been lucky enough to inherit some amazing vintage handbags from my mother and grandmother (yay for my little red mulberry!), but my ultimate handbag goal has yet to be achieved- to own my very own designer handbag!

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With the news this week that creative director of Mulberry, and creator of the Alexa and Del Ray designer handbag, Emma Hill will be leaving the brand, I took to thinking about how much of an impact a lil old handbag can make. Yes, it may sound stupid, and i’m pretty sure no boy will ever comprehend their importance to us girls, but designer handbags really are our best friends!

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Emma Hill is widely regarded as being the magic ingredient to Mulberry’s success since 2007. Having previously worked for Burberry, GAP and Marc Jacobs, her CV was already looking preeeety impressive. She heavily used celebrity endorsement to sell her bags (f-row at the Mulberry shows were always celebrity crazy),and perhaps this is a factor as to why we are all so desperate to own a designer bag these days. We want anything that celebrities have. And the celebrities have a planet’s worth of designer handbags between them!

For the Kardashians, it’s the Celine bag. Victoria Beckham had quite the love affair with Hermes handbags. Miranda Kerr loves the classic Vuitton. And Alexa and Lana were more than happy to carry round their bag versions whenever possible. Everyone has their specific dream bag and most girls have a plan in place to acquire one!

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So why the need to own a designer handbag? Yes, we want what the celebs have, but why not just settle for a high-street copy? I think its because owning a designer handbag is an aspirational thing which goes further than having the bag itself. Yes, designer handbags are beautifully crafted, amazing quality and tend to last a lifetime. They make you look sophisticated and rather upmarket. But it’s how you got to owning it. I hear stories all the time about girls using their first proper wage slip to buy a designer handbag. It’s a mark of success. A symbol that you’ve made it! Whether you’ve earnt the money to buy one for yourself or are given one as a gift from a loved one, it will mean something important to you.

Models with Mulberry!

 

 

 

 

 

So deep stuff about symbols and aspirations aside, the designer handbag looks set to continue its steady relationship with us girls. Let’s hope that wherever Emma Hill goes, she continues to create some amazing bags for us to lust over and eventually own! I’ll take the one below please! 🙂

Dream Mulberry Bag 2013!

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Summer Fashion Trend Alert! The Skort- Have The Best Of Both Worlds

The Newly Revamped Skort!

The Newly Revamped Skort!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s take a trip down memory lane, or rather fashion lane shall we say. It’s the late 90’s. We all think we look the bomb. Pedal pushers, Adidas shell suits,  bandanas, SCRUNCHIES (?!) and Spice Girl-esque platform shoes are just some of the looks that we loved to don. They made us look so good when we were bopping along to S Club 7. Fast-forward to 2013 and a now 24 year old me, I can  thankfully say that I have the sense to never, never repeat any of these looks ever again! But there is one 90’s trend that has won me over again very surprisingly, and it’s the skort.

The skort is a weird thing, yet so wonderful! Gone are the days where it was seen as a sports garment for women to wear along with a visor for a game of tennis. The skort has been transformed into something seriously fashionable (my 90’s Tammy Girl ones would definitely not fit the bill these days).  Firstly they’re very practical. There’s always a hint of self-consciousness when wearing a short skirt out and about. With a skort you have the appearance of a pretty mini skirt, with the safety of shorts underneath. No knickers on show today!

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Skorts are also rather versatile. I had a look on Pinterest for some skort-spiration and found some lovely ladies working the skort into various trends including monochrome, neon and sports luxe. Skorts can be worn smart, casual, at a festival, in the city…anywhere really! So a worthy investment which you should get a lot of wear out of. Plus, you really do get two looks in one- one minute you’re in a skirt, then you need only turn around and you’re in shorts too! Magic.

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This season, ZARA had THE skort that every fashionista was after. Coming in a fab asymmetric cut, Its been feautured on countless blogs and worn by celebs including ZARA lover Olivia Palermo, which just goes to prove that it’s a winning garment.

So why not opt for a skort this summer? 2 things for the price of 1 🙂 Yay!

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1920’s Great Gatsby Glamour- Out With The New In With The Old

1920's Fashion is back!

1920’s Fashion is back!

 

 

 

 

 

Trends-they’re what keeps the fashion cycle turning and what keeps the world of fashion so exciting and fast-paced. They also largely contribute to our empty bank balances by the end of each month! This season we were introduced to trends including sports luxe, metallics and neons, and next season we will be sure to see a whole new load of looks welcomed into the fashion family.

But there is one trend that refuses to phase out when a new season rolls in. And this trend is vintage. These days the definition of vintage is becoming increasingly blurred. Some people like to stick to the definition of vintage as being a second hand garment from a previous era, some like to use the term  for a new garment which is based on an old one, and some just like to call it vintage if it has a hole in it (ahem, Joey Essex). Whatever your definition, old garments and accessories are still very much on the fashion scene and can often make the difference between an outfit which scores 9/10, and one which scores full marks for originality!

And what better time to talk about Vintage, what with the hugely anticipated release of the The Great Gatsby, a film full of wonderfully glamorous 1920’s fashion. I’m a firm believer of reading the book before viewing the film but I may have to pass this time because I’m so desperate to see the film! Leading up to this big film release, the catwalk shows were also celebrating the 1920’s fashion trend, from the beaded and tasselled flapper frocks, masses of ostrich feathers and drop-waisted dresses which all appeared in collections including Gucci, Marchesa, Etro and Sonia Rykiel. If its on the big screen and the catwalk, you know you’re onto a sure-fire hit!

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So how do you work the 1920’s look into your everyday wardrobe without looking like you’ve raided a fancy dress box? It’s actually very easy! The 1920’s fashion embraced opulence and glamour. The key was in the texture (think luxury furs, silk and satin). Detailing was also of paramount importance- tassels, jewels and embellishment were popular, infact anything that would catch people’s eyes and look good when moving (boy, they loved to dance in the 1920’s!) Statement jewellery is the perfect way to work 1920’s into an everyday outfit. Think pearls (the traditional failsafe), delicate headpieces and big jewelled rings.  If you’re going to choose a bracelet, choose several at once. They loved to go big or go home where jewellery was concerned.

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Dress-wise, flapper dresses are the most obvious choice. I absolutely LOVE drop-waist dresses. They make a refreshing change from wearing tight bodycon dresses and the like out. I think there is something very cute and innocent about them! Tasselled dresses are also a flattering option to go for, just make sure you can shake it like Shakira to make maximum impact from your tassells!

So whilst I love a new trend or two (or three), sometimes its more effective to look back instead of forward for your next look. 🙂

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The Rise Of The Low Heel In Fashion

SS13 Trend 

I like to think that when it comes to fashion, I know what I like, and I know what I don’t. But I’ve been feeling very confused lately. The standard procedure for me when looking for statement evening  shoes is to go high or go home. The higher the better. For daytime shoes, much to the confusion of my boyfriend, it’s a pair of flatter than a pancake pumps (‘They have no sole, you’re basically walking barefoot, that can’t be good for your feet’). He’s absolutely correct…but they look so cute! However, a few weeks ago on a standard shopping trip, my eyes were drawn to a pair of….low heels! Dun Dun Duhhhhh. This is unheard of. Surely this is a no-go area for me? We all know the negative connotations surrounding a kitten heel. But I couldn’t resist them, I had to get them. And  after having owned them and not taken them back in a fit of embarrassment, I can make the huge revelation that I now LOVE low-heels!

Low Heeled Shoes- The Biggest Shoe Fad This SS13

Low Heeled Shoes- The Biggest Shoe Fad This SS13

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s not only me who’s jumped on the low-heel bandwagon, and our acceptance of them has not just come from nowhere. The SS13 catwalk season saw designers including Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacob, Miu Miu, Dries Van Noten and shoe- god Nicholas Kirkwood all roll out their versions of low heeled beauties. Monochrome pencil-pointed ones from Vuitton, crystal-heeled ones at Miu Miu and triangular stepped-heel pumps from Kirkwood. Following suit, the high-street got in on the act, nervously setting out their stock wondering what we’d all make of them suggesting we go low, then happily watching the money roll in when they realised this is one of the hottest trends for this summer.

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The Kitten heel is now but a thing of the past. Now we have block low heels, slingbacks and court shoes to replace them in every colour and pattern under the sun. Yes, the low block heel may be the Queen’s favourite shoe, but it’s also favoured by the likes of Kate Bosworth and Alexa Chung. And the faithful court shoe seems surgically attached to the Duchess of Cambridge, who must adore their low height when she has to walk round all day doing the royal duties.

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It seems that women have grown to like wearing low heels because they are distinctly ‘lady-like’. Speaking from experience, they really do make you feel elegant. Their dainty aesthetic and little heel is still flattering enough for your legs to look good, but with the added bonus of actually being comfortable and ‘ walk-able’ in. I don’t think there are many women that can deny taking off their skyscraper heels at the end of a loooong night and walking barefoot home. With a low heel, you can walk/dance/ skip/ break-dance to your heart’s content. And they’re incredibly versatile and practical. You can dress them up in the evening, or go shopping in them during the day. It’s a free for all!

Check out Zara and H&M for on-trend yet on on-budget low heels. Another excuse to go shopping? Yes please!

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From Catwalk, To Celeb, To High Street- 5 Spring Fashion Buys!

Catwalk envy, it’s not pretty. The phrase ‘look but don’t touch’ would be extremely relevant for the garments that frequent the runways. We watch the shows in their fabulous settings, discover the best new designs, get totally inspired and then fall short of reaching our goals when we realise we might not be able to stretch to that £400 dress…well not this month anyway (wishful thinking!) And then to rub it in even more, we then have to redirect our jealousy to all of our favourite celebrities who are first in line to wear these exciting new fashions. Don’t even get me started on the grim reality that these super rich celebrities usually get these luxurious items ‘on the (fashion) house’!

But amidst all this negativity, we do have a saving grace! Three cheers for the high street! Making luxury fashion possible for a mass market. They really do a spectacular job of recreating our favourite catwalk looks at much more affordable pricing. And thus, fashion trickles down from catwalk to celebrity to high street and then quickly into our wardrobes! How many times have you been in a shop and seen a near identical double of a designer piece hanging right in front of you shouting ‘buy me for 1/100th of the designer price’!  And in this sense we are very lucky to have the high street.

So I got to looking for some key spring fashion trends inspired by the designers, and using the catwalk to celeb to high street filter, discovered some great finds!

1)      The Print Blazer

Blazers can safely be placed into the capsule wardrobe category. You can dress them up or down, they come in every colour and material that you could possibly need. But this spring, you should be going big with your blazer or going home! A print blazer is such an easy way to make a statement and can be worn with all manner of clothing. On the catwalk we saw Matthew Williamson, Stella McCartney and House of Holland all showcase their versions of a printed blazer. Stella’s in particular struck a chord with the fashion pack for their sophisticated yet zany prints. And the celebrity world lapped them up. Check out style icon Miranda Kerr in her floral Stella blazer, teamed with skinnies and neutral basics. Now for the most important part- buy your own amazing print blazer at Zara this spring! I absolutely love this blue and white ceramic print one which I would wear with skinnies like Miranda, or over a shift dress.

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2)      The Maxi Skirt

Last year Maxi skirts were a revelation for girls all around the world. A perfect way to look fashionable without having to try too hard. Worn defiantly with gladiator sandals  even though the british ‘summer’ was more suited to wellies, it was a rather boho look. This year, they’ve taken on a more delicate, pretty aesthetic. Sheer, often pleated and in pastel and light spring colours, on the catwalk this Rocha Maxi Skirt set the standard for maxi skirts for SS13. Then Jennifer Lawrence brought the look to life with her flowing white pleated maxi cinched in around her tiny waist and completed with wedges and a vest for a comfortable yet trendy daytime look. Buy your own maxi skirt at Mango this spring. They do it in a wonderful range of colours but I thought this lemon yellow one was particularly striking.

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3)      The Drop-Waist Dress

This trend is partly inspired by the catwalk trend and partly by the upcoming HUGE film that is The Great Gatsby! This style of dress has a distinct 1920’s glamour feel . Victoria Beckham brought this style of dress into Vogue a few seasons ago and it’s still very popular in the fashion world. Check out posh in her own design (so bloody lucky), and then compare it to this ever so cute design from H&M, an absolute steal at £29.99. The frills, the colour… I love it all!

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4)      The Perspex Heel

At all the fashion weeks this year, there was one common dominant force. Perspex. It  was ready for world domination! From bags to stunning pieces of jewellery, the wow factor really came in the form of shoes. Chanel’s Perspex heels were a wonder to behold in their other-worldly catwalk setting, and Christian Louboutin did not want to be left behind, making sure his Perspex designs were on the all the best perfectly pedicured feet of the fashion world. Then the celebrities followed suit. Emma Stone worked her Perspex Louboutins into her monochrome look at a premiere, whilst posh totty Millie Mackintosh  featured her sky-scraper Perspex heels in her very own fashion blog. For your high street buy, invest in these Lelia pyramid stud heels in mint green from Reiss. Perfectly Perspex!

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5)      The Winged Bag

One of the best feelings in the world is scouting out an utter fashion bargain. Even better when it looks near identical to a luxury designer piece! One of THE bags of the moment is the Celine winged handbag. The Kardashians’ each have about eight which should give an indication of their luxury factor. My favourite Kardashian, Kourtney (the most sophisticated of the bunch by far), wears her black one with a daring print jumpsuit and looks pretty darn fashionable. And if you’d like to recreate the Celine handbag look then it’s going to cost you…. (drumroll)….£20! Snap up this Topshop lookalike which is currently in the sale! Waaa.

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So there you have it! A little bit of inspiration for you. Going from the catwalk to the sidewalk (excuse the Americanism) really is possible these days!

 

Coachella 2013- Festival Looks To Adapt To Your Own Lifestyle!

Scene 1- sun, music, laughter- basically the time of your life.

Scene 2- work, rain and a soggy sandwich for lunchtime.

Unfortunately for most people, scene 2 is what they’re doing this working week. But it’s a very different story in California, where all the beautiful people are partying hard to the likes of the Stones Roses, Blur and the Red Hot Chilli Peppers. Waaaa, how depressing! Coachella 2013 is well under way.

Coachella 2013

Coachella 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last year one of my first ever blog posts on lottiebeth.com  was about Coachella 2012 and the wonderful boho street style that the festival is famous for. Being in Califorina, It’s the perfect climate for ultimate festival wear. Hot pants to rival all other hotpants, fringed crop tops and flower headbands are practically uniform. As is a banging tan. So to stop myself becoming bitter and twisted with jealousy, I got to looking at some of the celebrity style this year and picked out a few key looks which I think us normal people could work into our everyday lives! Here’s what I found…

1)      Knee High Suede Boots

For look one, we need only look to Diane Kruger for inspiration. She looks amazing in this knee length pair of black boots. No doubt designer and VERY expensive. Knee length boots are not only incredibly sexy and complimentary to your legs, but very practical for walking long distances- whether this is from stage to stage at a festival or walking shop to shop on a serious retail therapy mission. Diane looks festival chic in monochrome patterned shorts and a baggy band t-shirt, but this style of boot also looks brilliant with skinny jeans. When it finally gets warmer here, a floaty summer dress would look ever so pretty teamed with some too. Check out this pair from the new ICONS collection at H&M.

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2)      Cats Eyes Sunglasses

Cats Eyes sunglasses skyrocketed from the fifties well into 2013 where celebrities including Katy Perry were seen wearing these delectable accessories at Coachella. They are the perfect way to complete an eclectic look and give off a distinct vintage vibe with their fifties roots. Katy wore hers with a seriously cropped floral top but in the good old UK you could opt for a coloured pair to add a bit of excitement to an everyday outfit. H&M and Topshop are my go-to destinations for cheap but fashionable sunglasses.

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3)      Matching Tops and Bottoms

This may sound like something you’d do in primary school, but wearing matching tops and bottoms is pretty big right now! Just look at Coachella veteran Kate Bosworth who looks effortlessly cool in matching frilly floral  designs with scallop edgings. Such a summer look. You can find matching garments in all your favourite high street shops; you just need to have the confidence to buy both at once and then wear them together! Just think, it’s just like wearing a playsuit. And we all love a playsuit!  Throw over a leather jacket or blazer and you can easily go from a daytime activity to a night-time one with this outfit. Perfect.

Kate Bosworth in matching top and short combo at Coachella 2013

Kate Bosworth in matching top and short combo at Coachella 2013

Topshop Matching Top and Shorts Combo

Topshop Matching Top and Shorts Combo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4)      A Fedora

The fedora is a staple for experienced festival goers. Protection from the sun, a well-needed cover up for greasy festival hair and of course a timeless fashion look. Yes, wearing a fedora in the UK can look a bit try-hard, but on a sunny day in the country or city, teamed with a fashionable outfit it can be the difference between a 9/10 and full marks where an outfit is concerned! Call on your Coachella roots when wearing one and opt for a boho dress and knee high boots.

Victoria's Secret Girls Just Wanna Have Fun (In Hats)

Victoria’s Secret Girls Just Wanna Have Fun (In Hats)

Miranda Kerr wears Coachella Staples- Hat, Shades, Baggy Tee, Shorts and Ankle Boots

Miranda Kerr wears Coachella Staples- Hat, Shades, Baggy Tee, Shorts and Ankle Boots

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So whilst I feel sooo  jealous of those pesky Coachella festival goers that I feel I may cry, I’m going to man up and 1) incorporate these looks into my own lifestyle and 2) start furiously saving for Coachella 2014.

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Make Your Move Checkerboard Chick!

Louis Vuitton fashion sketch

Louis Vuitton fashion sketch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Checkerboard and fashion. To me this sounds like something a character from Alice In Wonderland may wear, but this spring Louis Vuitton proved that its very much a real trend! Using spring yellows, olive greens and monochrome, the Louis Vuitton ss13 show in Paris was a spectacular show where models descended from escalators onto the checkerboard catwalk, as if they were off for a spot of shopping rather than walking at a huge runway event!

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This show resulted in the crème de la crème of the fashion world tripping over each other to get their hands on the various checkerboard designs. Jessica Alba, Kristen Stewart, Kendall Jenner and Miranda Kerr to name but a few. From shift dresses, to cropped tops and miniskirts, this trend is incredibly versatile and has a distinct seventies feel. There was also a lovely contrast at Louis Vuitton between the bold checkerboard patterns and the feminine bows and beehives which the models donned. Checkerboards can look girly and empowering at the same time. Great news!

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The current monochrome craze that we are experiencing goes hand in hand with the traditional checkerboard look. Black and white checks are the boldest choice to go for. I think it looks amazing with a hot pink. Head to my fave shop Zara for some inspiration. They are loving monochrome with hot pink at the moment!

Blogger Street Style

Blogger Street Style

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As we saw on the catwalk, wearing head to toe checkerboard is a very brave look! If you want to adapt it to your everyday lifestyle, why not wear a monochrome checkerboard t-shirt with some coloured jeans? For a dressed up look, a checkerboard pencil skirt with a metallic or leather top would be bang on trend. Or you could dress up a neutral outfit with several checkerboard accessories. Pencil point shoes are another big trend this spring.  Keep a look out for some checkerboard ones and kill two birds with one stone!

Louis Vuitton checkerboard pencil points

Louis Vuitton checkerboard pencil points

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And Gwen Stefani proves how important makeup can be when wearing such a bold trend. Her statement red lips really bring out the stark black and white design of her checkerboard trench. Completed with some classic black shades, she really does look like a true Hollywood star.

Have fun playing checkerboard chic!

Gwen Stefani in monochrome checkerboard trench

Gwen Stefani in monochrome checkerboard trencHave fun playing with checkerboard chic this spring!