There’s no denying the influence of fairytale icons in our sartorial choices. But while we appreciate the more obvious Disney t-shirts, we generally prefer a more subtle approach.
Which is why the latest jewellery craze to take over Instagram is right up our street. You could say it’s more or less inspired by the Little Mermaid, as it involves shell-shaped jewellery. The likes of Pandora Sykes, Monikh and Dutch blogger Lizzy Vdligt have been draping themselves in shells, adorned with gold for that extra luxe factor.
Niche jewellery brands like Dutch shop Anna + Nina, French designer Elise Tsikis and German brand Wald have hit that sweet spot between vintage and contemporary, providing us with the perfect holiday-worthy pieces to elevate even the most basic of outfits, like a white t-shirt and cropped jeans. They’re also the perfect finishing touch to a pastel trouser suit or floral dress for a wedding.
Shop my edit of the best Ariel-worthy shell jewellery pieces below.
I’m calling it: the white dress is the only dress worth investing in for your holiday, not least because it looks great with a tan. Whether it’s a button-down linen or a floaty maxi, it’s the most flattering blank canvas you can accessorise to your heart’s content with anything from basket bags to sandals and shell jewellery.
There’s one dress in particular that my Instagram scrolling can’t keep up with, and it comes in at a bargainous £38, which is perfect if you don’t want to break the bank for one holiday.
It comes courtesy of Next, features a pretty broderie Anglais finish, cold shoulders and buttons down the front, and has the fashion influencer seal of approval.
Packing for your big holiday or simply want to amp up your summer wardrobe? Lucky for you, the sales are in full swing everywhere from Net-A-Porter to Zara and Topshop. But I get it, it can be a little hard to pick when everything has been reduced by an alluring 50%.
So I thought I’d do the hard work for you and narrow it down to 9 items that will make all the difference – I’m calling it, these are total game-changers, from the Insta-worthy basket bag to the go-with-everything sandals.
And the best bit? They’re all under £100, because there’s still a little while to go before payday (that said, if you feel like splurging, these designer handbag sales are well worth the detour).
Scroll down for my top pick of the sales. Buy now or regret later…
There was just something about the flattering halterneck and the way the fabric flowed that was pure understated Hollywood glamour.
And if you agree with me, then I have some excellent news for you: you will soon be able to buy the exact replica of her evening gown, courtesy of Ms McCartney herself.
The designer has announced that she will be creating a limited edition collection, Made With Love, offering a select number of clients the opportunity to buy their own version of the custom design.
I say select, as there will only be 46 gowns in total, 23 in white and 23 in black, to celebrate the opening of the designer’s new flagship store at 23 Bond Street.
Although the gowns will be made from sustainable viscose rather than silk crepe like the Duchess of Sussex’s, they promise to be just as glamorous. And at a price tag of £3,500 each, they will be a tad more affordable too (see how much her actual wedding dress cost here).
So, how will you be able to get your hands on the sartorial golden ticket? Well this is where it gets tricky. You will need to email firstname.lastname@example.org and be lucky enough to receive a personal invitation to view the gowns in the new shop.
And if you’re out of luck, don’t worry, Stella McCartney is planning an extended bridal collection for 2019. Oh to get married again…
Maxi dresses are this season’s go-to dress length for parties, weekends and work. Shop our favourite styles…
Not one for mini or midi dresses this summer? You’ll be pleased to hear maxi dresses are still the original new season-ready item, but there’s nothing classic about this season’s take on the wardrobe essential. With luxurious textures clashes, 70s bohemian and minimal 90s styles hitting the rails, there’s never been a better time to update your dress collection.
Maxi dress trends
Are you feeling this season’s minimalist mood? Then references the 90s with silk and velvet slip dresses, strapless column dresses and everyday-ready jumper dresses.
Alternatively, are you into all things boho and feminine? We’ve got a feeling you’ll love a floaty printed floor-sweeper. Complete your throwback look with an oh-so-chic fringed bag and denim jacket.
If you like a pop of colour, then colour blocking has never been so chic. Think chiffon gowns in neon shades of pink, yellow or purple. Wallflowers, abstain.
Wedding guest outfit ideas
If the invites are racking up for this summer’s weddings, bag yourself a versatile floor-skimmer that can be reworked throughout the season. Maxi dresses are a great choice for formal occasions when complemented with a statement clutch and strappy heels – Needle & Thread, Adam Lippes and The Row are among our go-to brands when it comes to choosing something special.
If you want to try your hand at one of this season’s more daring trends, consider shopping for maxi dresses with a lace insert or cut-out detail. Team with statement sandals for a striking new season look. We love high street brands Boden, Zara, & Other Stories and Bershka for trendier pieces.
From cosy weekend knitted staples to workwear-appropriate long shirts,or even a summer-holiday ready off-the-shoulder chambray number, there’s a dress for all shapes, styles and budgets right here.
Where to buy maxi dresses
We’ve scoured the high street and designer fashion stores to find the best maxi dresses in the shops right now. Click through to shop our edit.
After a few brief heatwaves, summer is definitely starting to stick around, with days getting longer and the sun making more frequent appearances. So what better way to embrace the new season than with a new pair of sunglasses for summer 2018?
But let’s be honest, they’re not just a seasonal trend, they’re an all-year-round must. Even when it’s not sunny, they’re still an impossibly chic way to hide those under eye bags after a night out.
SS18 sunglasses trends
This season, they’re cooler than ever. Sunglasses are the kind of thing you can justify spending on — bear in mind, if you buy them right, you’ll have them forever (read: Céline cat eye sunglasses). But, if you’re looking for a quick fix, there are pairs on the high street we’d wear for seasons too.
In terms of shapes, you’ve got the two iconic styles beloved by all: aviators and cat-eyes, though they are getting a makeover.
The classic bottle green and mirror aviator sunglasses will never go out of style, but this season, the offering is much more colourful, with acid yellow lenses and blue frames. Just look at our edit of the best Ray-Ban sunglasses and we defy you not to fall in love.
On the other side of things, if you want a bit of a departure from your classic black cat eye sunglasses, try OTT frames. Think loud prints, 3D detailing, glitter and gems. There’s no such thing as too much in this instance.
If you don’t fall into either of those two camps, there’s a new(ish) style in town: the 90s style, small frames. They come in muted tones, but we recommend donning them in bright red or pink for a more current look – Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid and Selena Gomez are fans.
Here are the best sunglasses to shop now and wear all season…
If there’s a pair of cat-eye sunglasses you’ll keep forever, it’s this pair. The white version we had our eye on sold out in a flash, though this black pair will go with any outfit and add a dose of cool girl chic.
We saw yellow and golden toned lenses pick up speed over the past couple of months and this pair of Gucci sunglasses melds the trend with a classic silhouette. If we ever get a Top Gun remake, we bet these would make Maverick’s discerning cut.
These dark Louis Vuitton sunglasses are a timeless classic. With sophisticated gold hardware detailing and the barest hint of an LV logo, they’re a total designer investment piece you’ll want to hang onto forever.
Le Specs has truly been stealing the show this year – there was one point last month where we saw their Lolita glasses literally everywhere and we’re expecting this new drop will get the same treatment. With a 90s inspired silhouette and cute heart details, it also comes in black and ‘hot pants pink’.
Cop Meghan Markle’s handbag and the most in-demand styles of the season.
It’s the most dangerous time of the year. Luxury retailers all over the internet have announced their huge summer sales, which means that your bank account’s in serious trouble and your wardrobe is about to get a big upgrade. While there’s so much to comb through, we know many of you are going to be gunning for the designer handbags sale – so we’ve put together a list of the best designer investment pieces below.
We’ve curated some of the signature styles of the season that are somehow miraculously still available. Chloe’s Pixie and Saddle cross-body bags were spotted literally everywhere at fashion week, while the JW Anderson Pierce remains a firm favourite with the influencer crowd. Gucci and Dolce & Gabbana’s more adventurous styles are perfect for the quirky gal, while minimalism is the name of the game over at Alexander McQueen and Simon Miller.
So, which retailers getting in on the fashion fun? Chart a course for NET-A-PORTER, Harvey Nichols, MATCHESFASHION and FARFETCH – remember, we’ve only curated purses but there’s clothing, homeware and accessories galore if you’re willing to enter the fray.
We’ve seen discounts as high as 50% off and if you’ve never bought designer before, now might be the time to pull the trigger…
Because we need at least one or two (OK, 5) floral dresses in our lives…
Floral dresses are just as versatile as your LBD, especially when it comes to summer dressing. Nothing says wedding season quite like a floral frock, and luckily there’s plenty of new-in styles lining the rails to get your fix.
Floaty, midi, mini or super-structured – there’s plenty of ways to work the trend this season. See our SS18 summer fashion trends report, to see this season’s twist on the trend. Hint: it’s not all about ditzy florals. Those not afraid to take a sartorial risk can look to Emilia Wickstead for sheer inspo, aka layering a high neck see-through summer dress over your favourite undies.
Floral dresses for weddings
Print-wise, anything goes for wedding guest season. Those new to the trend and looking to avoid anything too girly should look to abstract prints, seen everywhere on the catwalk, it’s a sure fire way to liven up occasion dressing and a great way to break up any dull wardrobe shades. If you’re a fan of mixing prints, look to Rixo, Richard Quinn and Preen by Thornton Bregazzi for a riot of colour and print.
Romantic ruffles are having a moment and the trend is here to stay. From super long styles with splits to shorter shifts, frills are in. Just add heels and a clutch – et voila!
But don’t feel like you’ve waste money by buying a dress you’ll only wear once. The beauty of most floral dresses is that they can easily be dressed down. Influencers like Fashion Guitar, Hannah Crosskey and Lucy Williams, wearing theirs solo with bare legs, a leather jacket and their favourite trainers.
Floral dresses with sleeves
The high-street’s love affair with shirt dresses means there is plethora of gorgeous long-sleeved floral dresses (see Kitri’s dress of the season), and it’s a style that is perfect for the office too. Pick a flattering midi length, which you can easily wear with heels or smart sandals.
Floral maxi dresses
Maxi dresses are having a bit of a moment, and they’re the ideal length for a summer holiday on the coast. We love wraparound styles with a pleated skirt for that elegant touch, or a silk cami for a sexy spin.
Floral midi dresses
You’ll never go wrong with a flattering midi length, which suits most body shapes. From vintage floral prints to digital works of art, you’ll find a print to suit all tastes.
Summer sandals are looking better than ever, so there is no better time to get pedi-ready and snap up some new season styles.
Summer shoe trends
As ever, the summer fashion trends cater for everyone, from the maximalist to the minimalist. The latter will rejoice at the news that the trusted slide is still very much en vogue, with sleek tan and black leather styles very much taking over the high street (see Instagram’s current favourite, the Dune Loupe sandals, with Zara also offering a cute tan number).
The bohemian amongst you will also love the raffia slides seen at Topshop, L.K.Bennett, Mango and more.
For the more OTT amongst you, look no further than the sculptural heel shoe, which will give an arty twist to any summer dress. Look to Cult Gaia, Mango, Jacquemus and Neous for some fabulous options.
Flat summer sandals
Flat shoes have never been so in. From raffia slides and logo mules for off-duty to minimal white leather affairs and tropical fruit and animal prints, we’re spoiled for choice, whether we are looking to the high street or the designer offering.
Bottega Veneta’s woven leather slides will become your go-to work shoe, while Miu Miu’s pearl encrusted flats are the dreamy evening/party shoes if you’re just too fed up with sore feet.
Either way, a flat summer shoe goes beautifully with a linen ensemble, whether a button-down dress or a sharp suit.
Summer sandals with heels
The aforementioned sculptural heel shoe is the treat your feet (and your Instagram) deserve. Look to Cult Gaia for a quite frankly spectacular bamboo heel, and Jacquemus for geometrical wonders.
And if high heels aren’t your thing, don’t worry, the smaller heel is very much de rigueur right now. Kitten heels are all the rage, as are 90s block heels (preferably with a square sole), which are a lot more flattering than you’d think.
Scroll down to shop our edit of the best summer sandals to buy now.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve been on the lookout for the perfect flat summer sandal all season, and I think I’ve finally found it. Or rather, half the fashion world has, judging by Instagram.
The leather flats came out three months ago courtesy of Dune (I know, where have I been?!) in tan, white and black leather, but have been so popular that the range has been extended with more colours including orange, yellow, turquoise and hot pink.
Influencer Alex Stedman was an early adopted, while Emma Hill loves them so much she has them in several colours, and Hannah Crosskey just styled the white version with chic tan trousers and a black t-shirt.
A spokesperson for Dune said, ‘The Loupe style has been our bestselling style in store and online, every week, for the past 3 months. Loupe has been the most searched for item on our website every week for the past 2 months, and we have restocked this style four times this season to keep up with demand.’
There’s a reason they’re so popular: minimal and chic, they will go with everything from a floral dress to a linen suit or jeans and a logo tee.
And I for one, will finally be adding these to my basket before they sell out again. In black, and tan. And maybe white? Send help!