It’s time for velvet… again! Well maybe we are a little biased, but there’s a lot of it knocking around right now and we love it because it feels sooooo good, like carrying around a little, soft chihuahua for a comforting stroke. Oh, and because it effortlessly glams up any look. It’s funny how these things come around. I have a crushing memory (see what I did there?) of mum making me wear a high-neck, knee-length velvet thing with a white ruffle collar for a family friend’s Christmas party. I would like to say I was small, but not small enough I suspect. Yet here I am, by choice, draping myself in velvet on an almost daily basis, and today it’s a high-neck, knee-length velvet dress – only this time without the white ruffle collar (and it’s not quite knee-length, but who’s complaining).
While it’s currently a hyper-trend, velvet can have the air of being stuffy, and a little frumpish if styled the wrong way. The key to keeping velvet modern is to show some skin – so scrub, buff and moisturise till you’re gleaming – and if you can bear it, don’t wear tights. For a cocktail party, pair with strappy high heels and a glamorous clutch, but for a daytime look don’t be afraid to be more creative. Try pairing velvet with mid-top trainers, like Golden Goose, or white Adidas Stan Smith Trainers for an urban, dressed-down style. For this outfit, we’re aiming at something which can get you out of the door in the morning and keep you going until the early hours of the next morning; a classic day-to-night look.
We were asked recently how best to style a velvet dress and these L.K.Bennett Robbie boots were the exact solution we suggested. They are great with velvet – the contrast in texture and pattern being perfectly complementary. They are cut a little higher than most ankle boots so slightly less leg exposure to worry about and a comfortable mid-height heel for a long day on the hoof. L.K.Bennett is one of our HøF Approved brands – you will find so many good options for long limbs and size 8/9 feet – and they’re hosting a decent sale at the moment so take a look.
For the handbag, I chose one of my most (surprisingly) successful purchases of the year – this Dena chain cross body bag from Accessorize. I have had more comments on this £29 bag than any other; the fact is it looks expensive – a classic high street hero item.
A hat can change the look or feel of an outfit quite dramatically, so try a few on and see what you think. This one is from a great collection in Zara – they are always dotted around the store so you need to walk around to find one that suits you best. I have a friend who has started wearing a felt hat, but he insists on asking me how it looks and whether he should wear it. Looking good in hats comes from the inside, so you need to wear it with confidence and act like you don’t give a damn.