Monday, July 21, 2014

The Old Ones Really Are The Best

'I start each collection thinking how I can refresh my classics' - Jean Paul Gautier

This post was inspired by an article I found on Pinterest - 10 Fall Basics for Easy Audrey Hepburn Style. I sometimes feel that Audrey Hepburn is a vintage style icon who is somewhat overlooked, and while the sainted Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor are all very well and good I feel that their style is much more difficult to recreate on a day to day basis.

So here I have compiled a collection of the classics that every girl should have in her wardrobe with high street options as well as sewing patterns! Some are items that Ms Hepburn would definitely have approved of and some are pieces that I feel that I could nevr live without.

1. The Little Black Dress
If you've read my first post you'll know that this was the item where I finally lost all patience with the high street and put all my faith in my sewing machine. Unless you are prepared to spend a lot of money the LBD is an item that is very difficult to buy of the peg. I found that most high street shops were too keen to keep up with trends so insisted on putting in panels and cut outs that I simply wasn't interested in.

This dress is one that I found at Topshop, and has to be one of very few examples of unfussy black dresses that I have found. However, coming in at £46 you could easily make something for a lot less.

This pattern is available from Sewing World and is great for so many reasons. First of all, it's multi-style meaning you could combine the slightly sleeker skirt from B with the scoop neck bodice of D to make it suit you perfectly. I also found that this was highly easy to alter to a V-Neck. 

2. The Perfect Pair of Trousers
This is a piece that I'm definitely planning on investing in soon. I have a real problem buying trousers as if they fit round my waist they won't fit round my legs and vice versa. So this is one that I'll definitely be making myself. Having been inspired by the article about Audrey Hepburn I've decided I really like the cigarette style that she wore so have purchased this pattern from Minerva Crafts. I've never used a Burda pattern before so this may be a learning curve in more way than one.

If you don't fancy making these yourself, then as with the LBD this might be quite a hard one to find on the high street. The only ones that I've managed to find that I felt fitted the bill were these from Roland Mouret. However, at £450 they're hardly the thrifty girl's best friend. Perhaps somewhere like M&S might be the best bet for a lower budget.

3. A Good White Shirt
This is without a doubt one of my absolute go to staples in my wardrobe. Put with a pair of skinny jeans and a statement necklace, the effect is effortless but glamorous. I've only ever bought white shirts from Uniqlo and I've found that they last a long time and don't fray or wear at the collar.

If you fancy something slightly different and have your fingers itching to get on a sewing machine then how about this knotted shirt designed by Burda. Now I know what you're thinking. Oh my God. Trashy cowgirl, Steps, the nineties... I really think that done right this could work. I might be completely wrong. I might make this and hate it and it then I'll have to edit this post. But until then please try and keep and open mind.

I can't lie the more I look at this the more I have my doubts. Oh well. Let's wait and see.

4. A Go-With-Everything Jumper
This should do exactly what it says on the tin. No crazy patterns or prints, in a colour that you wear regularly or that goes with most of the things that you own. For me this would be either black or navy blue (I know, how exciting). Zara are fantastic for basics like this and this jumper really caught my eye. I like the detail on the cuffs and the quite slimline shape.

I'm afraid this is one of the kind of basics that I would never really to bother to make myself. Even I think that in some areas life is too short and although the high street can be frustrating in many ways it is still good for a great many things.

5. Flat Shoes
In my opinion you can never have enough pairs of flat shoes, and no I don't expect you to make these yourself. Be they elegant black ballet pumps a la Audrey, pretty laced up canvas trainers or smart brogues all flat shoes definitely have their uses and can completely change the feel of an outfit.

These plain black pumps from New Look are basic but have become a go to for me in the recent warm weather we've been having.

If you're looking for something that might prove to be a bit more comfortable during a long day on your feet then perhaps looking at Joules' Lottie Shoes. These canvas trainers come in a range of pretty designs, are super comfy and unlike a number of the other types of these shoes last longer than one summer.

If you're looking for something slightly smarter but still flat and comfortable Topshop have a wide range of brogues. I really like brogues for adding a slightly preppy edge to an outfit as well as being slightly more practical during the colder and rainier months. Try and get ones made from real leather as they will last longer and will mould better to the shape of your feet making them more comfortable.

So there you have five of my essentials for every girl's wardrobe! I feel that if your wardrobe is based on a few key items then being thrifty is much easier. You can dress each piece up with a piece of statement jewellery or a pretty scarf and it will always look different!

Happy Thrifting!


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