Wednesday, 14 March 2007

10 items you can't do without this summer

  1. Voluminous white mini dress - Trust me. You are going to need this. When the temperatures start rising, so will the hemlines. If you're not a big fan of white, or you find a bit too draining on your complexion, then cream will do. Where to get the look: They will be everywhere but Zara, H&M and FCUK are all doing versions at affordable prices right now.

  2. Something yellow (or blue) - Come the summer, we will all be shining like the sun in sunny yellow. Whether it be dresses, bags, shoes or accessories, get ready to shine and shine. Yellow too much for you? Try something in the other colour of the season, blue. Where to get the look: Wallis are on amber alert, with pretty dresses and tops. Zara has some beautiful pieces including yellow satin flats and a gorgeous yellow chiffon dress. Try Evans for some pretty, yellow, mid-heeled, wedge sandals.

  3. A bit of bling - It sounds weird because it's not winter, but all things that glister are big news this season, whether it be a full on metallic dress, a candy-iced bag or bejewelled pumps. Pundits are even advocating wearing this stuff to work. "It'll never catch on" I hear you cry? Well, never say never. Where to get the look: head down to New Look and try and get your hands on accessories from the Giles Gold range. Failing that, try ASOS for metallic bags, Faith for shoes and Warehouse for that must-have dress. There are also some beautiful bejewelled silver flats lurking around at Zara.

  4. Be a wild flower - Laura Ashley's back in vogue and apparently that's a good thing. Blooms were all over the catwalk for spring/summer and are proving to be big on the high street too. Get them printed, large or small on clothes or accessories. At least these flowers are guaranteed not to give you hay fever. Where to get the look: H&M are doing a fair bit for flower power and Zara have some amazing flower print dresses. Or get embellished flowers from FCUK.

  5. Get graphic - If you're not into flowers but you want some of that pattern action, try graphic prints. Appearing everywhere in some very interesting colours. Where to get the look: Warehouse, Oasis and Mango would be my choice. Also try Primark and Peacocks for some inexpensive throw away pieces.

  6. High waisted, flared jeans - Thanks to Kate Moss and Kylie, there's been an explosion in this trend. Everyone's wearing them. For cool 70s hippy chic, wear with wedges and a smock top, or tuck in a t-shirt and wear some platforms for laid-back, rock glam. Where to get the look: Topshop do the best value for money version.

  7. Wedges and platforms - This has been a trend since last year and is still going strong, so if you haven't got a pair yet, it's time to sort it out. Their leg lengthening properties will help you through this season of ultra short minis and shorts. Where to get the look: New Look do a great line in patent cork platform wedges (I love the the turquoise ones. I own a pair). Also check out Gil Carvalho's sky-high platforms at Faith.

  8. A very big bag - If your bag's not big enough to hide behind then it's just not big enough. This is the season of the super-sized hand bag. Find the your source of future back-ache from Mango or Zara. New Look also do a neat big bag with buckle detail and side pockets in several of the up to the minute colours. I've got one in yellow.

  9. Coloured leggings or footless tights - Let's face it, not a lot of us have legs like Giselle, so to pull off those mini and shorts moments we need a stylish cover-up. Enter, the legging. No matter how hot it gets this summer, I predict that leggings won't be going anywhere. Mix things up a bit with bold (if dark) colours to get away from drab black and pull in a bit of extra colour. Where to get the look: If you're looking for the full gamut of colours and styles, then it's got to be American Apparel.

  10. Flouro accessories - The Flouro trend is going to be big for summer but, unless you're a club kid on the rave scene, less is definitely more. Make it easy by buying into flouro accessories to lift your look without drowning you out. Where to get the look: H&M do some great flouro accessories for under a fiver. Check out M&S for their cute perspex bangles. Dorothy Perkins have superb bright bags and belts.

Images from top:

Yellow chiffon dress, Zara, £59; Flower print smock, Primark; Gabriella jeans, Topshop, £45; Big yellow bag with buckle detail, New Look, £25; Bright belts, Dorothy Perkins, £5 each.

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I like pretty dresses, high heels, the colour red and good writing.