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Friday, January 28, 2011

Put a spring in your style

navy tux jacket, £40; Breton stripe top, £16; print chiffon trousers, £30, all from Awear (
navy tux jacket, £40; Breton stripe top, £16; print chiffon trousers, £30, all from Awear (
Skimpy shorts for January? Flippy skirts for February, anyone?
Hold on to your (bobble) hats, we’re officially in the season of ‘win-sum’ – that tricky fashion limboland where we hover aimlessly between old winter and new summer trends.
Witnessing the onset of a new spring season is refreshing after a frightfully cold winter swamped in oversized woollies and giant coats.
But don’t panic if you’re not prepared for those flimsy fashions. Transition dressing is all about tackling ‘win-sum’ head-on with between-season tactics.
Make like Coco Chanel, who once said: “I am against fashion that doesn’t last. I cannot accept that you throw your clothes away just because it is spring.”
Instead, merge your seasonal trends effortlessly with some stylish mix-and-match.
  • Get trend selective
“When we need to make the transition between heavy winter wear to fun flirty spring, get ahead of the pack with the Seventies revival,” suggests celebrity stylist Chris Leger at
“The high street is brimming with ankle-skimming skirts, wide leg trousers and floppy velvet hats.”
And the good news is that with long lengths firmly in vogue, you don’t require any flesh-baring bravery to pull them off.
  • Neutral know-how
Even if you’re still rocking chunky knits, dig out neutral-only colours to instantly put a spring in your step.
Go top-to-toe and mix up beige, white and pale grey tones.
Leger says: “Stores are packed with this sophisticated and effortlessly simple palette of nudes.
“Easy to wear, look for minimal sheer shirts, long softy pleated skirts, flesh-tone leather shorts and silky fluid dresses. Complete the look with sharp pointed nude skyscraper heels or barely-there beige pumps.”
  • Dabble in denim
Free yourself from the winter wardrobe heavies with one of your trusty staples.
“If you can’t wait to ditch the bulky pea coats, thick cable jumpers and dowdy layers then embrace spring’s best friend, denim,” says Leger.
Experiment with a new flattering fit of jeans – high-waisted are bang on trend for spring – or delve into denim nirvana and try out new separates.
“It’s the fabric of choice this season with washed-out denim jackets, dark denim buttoned-down skirts and perfectly faded denim shirts,” Leger reveals.
  • Inject colours
“Don’t get left behind the fashion crowd, grab this season’s brightest trend, colour,” Leger advises.
“Every high-octane shade is acceptable this season, from bold blues, garish greens, radiant reds and neon yellows.”
If you’re not ready to embrace the brights just yet, try a subtle suggestion of colour with a standout accessory like a scarf, bag or shoes in your favourite shade.
  • Transition tips
  • Ditch the winter coat and invest in a classic mac or trench. Choose a bright/light shade or print to freshen up every ensemble.
  • Wear your favourite floral summer dress now and team with a chunky knit cardigan and dark tights until you’re ready to bare more flesh.
  • Make dark classics new season modern with offbeat colour styling. Zing up a dark suit with a fuchsia scarf or orange belt for a subtle nod to spring.
  • Stash the dark, glitzy jewellery that sparkled over the festive season and replace with spring-appropriate, ethnic-inspired, floral-themed or shimmering bronze pieces.
  • Love trousers? Skinny olive green cargo pants can be dressed up or down and will work equally as well in winter, spring and beyond.

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