Time After Time...

Growing up in the 80s means that this era holds a very special place in my heart for all things fashion, film and music. Was there ever a decade that resonated with such hope, fun and sheer optimism in popular culture? From the ‘brat pack’ films with their punchy, ‘can do’ soundtracks to the soaring heights of synth rock and all its faux (or real?) depth. Maybe it was the particular age I was at back then? Aged 11 in 1985, I was coming into my own personality (and style) wise and found it all SO very exciting. Friendships were formed watching ‘Ferris Bueller’s Day Off’ at school sleepovers and joint swooning over pictures of Rob Lowe or Andrew McCarthy. I watched ‘Grange Hill’ religiously after school and taped the chart show on Radio 1 every Sunday.  Bananarama and A-Ha were played on repeat in my Laura Ashley decorated bedroom. Fast forward a year or so and I soon moved onto The Cure and The Smiths and saved up to buy their albums on tape and their band posters for my walls. And to cap it all, a weekly subscription to ‘Smash Hits’ Magazine and the NME, meant that I’d truly ‘arrived’.

I’m sure this affection for all things 80s is why the Netflix show ‘Stranger Things’ is such a huge hit and resonates so much for me and others of my generation. Aside from the brilliant script and storyline, it also perfectly encapsulates that sense of optimism and innocence. It’s nostalgic yes. But there’s nothing wrong with nostalgia if it’s executed in a new and original way (as ‘Stranger Things’ does so well). The same applies to fashion and style of course. There has to be a slightly new spin on things and one step up from fancy dress if you will, otherwise it’s just naff – isn’t it? This is not about living in the past. It’s about taking the best aspects of it and enjoying them fully in the present, while looking with hope and positivity to the future. Boom!

This is my final ode to dresses, in my little filmic/muso fashion series ‘The Long & Short of It’.  I’ve chosen two short frocks below (both from the Great British high street) and styled them in a slightly 80s way. Why? Because there was something about them that reminded me of this era when I bought them. See what you think!

 

Dynasty

I can hear that familiar theme tune now. Krystle Carrington and Alexis Carrington Colby (played by the inimitable Joan Collins) descending the sweeping and slightly kitsch staircase, shoulder padded dresses centre stage. Love it! This shift dress above is part of Zara’s wonderful and regular Special Prices selection and was only £19.99. I thought that was pretty bargainous for a dress with such lovely detailing. I’ve tried to pick up the cobalt blue stitching in one part of it with the blue suede heels. I think it works. It’s a breezy and fun look and would also work over leather leggings for the daytime. It would suit a Christmas lunch or drinks party as it’s not tight and skims the tummy, so you can eat your fill without feeling uncomfortable. Result! Also do you like my makeup? I paired some blue eyeliner with this lovely liquid sort of peach colour that makes the eyes pop. I did get a few looks whilst wearing it on the school run after this shoot, but also lots of nice comments. In fact it really was fun to do something a bit different to the usual black eyeliner.

Dress | Zara £19.99

Necklace | M&S (old)

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Through The Flowers 

I love, love, love this dress. It’s actually one of my all-time favourites. The look and the fit of it are just sublime in my humble opinion. I bought it in the huge H&M store in Paris near Galleries Lafayette in September and couldn’t believe it was from this high street behemoth. In fact H&M is now firmly on my radar after years in the sartorial wilderness (I’ve always thought the fit didn’t suit me or something?) Now I just think it’s fantastic and especially as they have a premium line and try to do more sustainable stuff too. To my mind, this particular dress looks positively designer, especially the dark floral grey and white print on an unusual puckered fabric. It’s also lined. I’m in love with the shape of it. The nipped in waist, shortish full skirt and high buttoned neckline, plus leg o’mutton puffed sleeves – it just all feels so modern and so now. I’ve had so many compliments when wearing it, especially with the coral pink/red patent shoes. The wet look leggings make it look a bit fiercer and the shoes too which add a great pop of neon-ish colour. I think you do need a shoe with a point and a heel here (well at least I do) as they’re quite leg-lengthening and a nice contrast to the prissy and pretty nature of the dress. I wore it to the launch of my blog and networking night and it was *just* right. It’s kinda fashiony and fierce (that word again!) and looks like you mean business. Which I do of course 😉

 

 

Dress H&M (France)

Leggings | Calzedonia (old)

Necklace | Missoma

Shoes | Kurt Geiger (old)

 

Well there we go… I hope you got just a little inspiration from this post and the whole trilogy in general 🙂 Next time I’ll be back with some everyday looks in more sober (but not boring!), classic colours. It will be black leather leggings, navy cashmere tunics, tweed necklaces and camel coats a go go! See you next time and thanks again for reading. Means a lot! Bisou xxx

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