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Featured in The Telegraph Virginia Chadwyck-Healey - September dressing
This month, we were featured in The Telegraph in Virginia Chadwyck-Healey's column on how to each into September dressing.
It's week one of September and I too find myself in that style rut. This week I felt cold. I mean, bed-socks cold. In the fashion stakes September is a bit of a conundrum because it's too chilly for most summer dresses but you don't want to hibernate just yet. You probably aren't fully au fait with all the new items in the shops, because there hasn't been much time to actually take it all in yet such is the holiday season.
This week I have picked out this shirt and skirt from Berkshire-based Really Wild clothing. The Liberty print says timeless wonder (to me), I can envisage wearing the shirt, with its pleating detail, with all the trousers I've got lined up this season, and then the skirt sits at a perfect knee-high boot height for smarter occasions like the races, my work meetings in London and, come Christmas (just over 100 days to go by the way), all the fireside gatherings for which any shade of red feels festively apt.
Really Wild Clothing is one of a host of brands focusing on the hunting, fishing and shooting market with a strong focus on style for women who go one step further than my approach of bedraggled Barbour and muddy Aigle wellies. And as the team told me, 'we have noticed a huge rise in business from London-based women who want to have tweeds and checks in their wardrobe thanks to their clout and quality.' They may only go as far as Richmond Park but they want more than a denim jacket or Zara parka. And why not? Take this blue Prince of Wales check blazer. A good layer for right now, but equally as chic with a roll-neck underneath come deep Autumn, or you could try it over a knit dress, or with jeans for a weekend look.
I love Liberty London fabrics; they have an instant polish to them, they can be understated or recognisable, and the range of colours mean they work on a variety of ages. Wearing the shirt and skirt combination feels very ‘fashion’. For those feeling a little more daring, it could also be a matching shirt and trouser set. I know some of my friends will say it feels too grown up to do 'matchy matchy' but it makes your look instantly sharp.
For those in the 30-50 age bracket, generally, you need to be thinking about smartening up a little. It's the simplest way to approach dressing. No matter how many newsletters or catalogues bombard you with the latest army jacket or slouchy cargo pants, your failsafe approach to getting dressed, no matter what your day holds, is to take it up a level. You then sort the wheat from the chaff and you hopefully buy with a clearer action plan (shopping list) which can only be a good thing.
I am more than aware that at this time of year there is a lot of noise on the fashion scene. New trends, new collections, new heel styles, new trouser shapes, London Fashion Week around the corner... Enjoy, absorb - but then really think about what you need in your life. This red paisley print has warmth with its red and navy tones but the cooler, khaki tones make it useful in summer with white trousers. Here I've shown myself wearing it with trainers, or smartened up with boots and a jacket. Multiple boxes ticked. All manner of September weather catered for. Let the new season commence.