Tag Archives: H&M

Bristol Fashion Week: Maternity fashion guide

17th April 2016

How to dress fabulously while pregnant – some top tips with a little help from The Image Consulting Company at Bristol Fashion Week.

1. Jacket, £55, River Island, 2. Aerin top in white, £48, People Tree, 3. Necklace £9.99, H&M, 4. Patterned trousers, £12.99, H&M, 5. Katy leopard sandals, £42, Dune, 6. Embossed shopper, £26.25, Warehouse

1. Jacket, £55, River Island, 2. Aerin top in white, £48, People Tree, 3. Necklace £9.99, H&M, 4. Patterned trousers, £12.99, H&M, 5. Katy leopard sandals, £42, Dune, 6. Embossed shopper, £26.25, Warehouse

Bristol Fashion Week is one of my favourite jobs of the year and, as PR and Social Media Manager for the event, it keeps me busy. This year, there’s even more reason to celebrate as I am expecting my first child this September. This does, however, present some fashion dilemmas for me since I’d like to be on trend for work but at the same time I need to dress for a completely different shape now. Finding something that’s stylish but comfortable and accommodates my bump was proving quite tricky, until I met Emmeline Stevens from The Image Consulting Company.

Emmeline Stevens (left) gave me some great advice at Bristol Fashion Week

Emmeline Stevens (left) gave me some great advice at Bristol Fashion Week

Emmeline and her team are on hand every Bristol Fashion Week to offer personal styling advice at The Mall. You can book in for a free 10-minute session, or get a special discounted rate on a 30-minute styling consultation. Then, if you need further support going forward, the ladies are available for private bookings. I popped in for a quick chat and picked up some great tips to help me shop a bit smarter now that I’m pregnant.

  1. Throw out your usual style rules and take a fresh look
    I wear belts with everything. They cinch in my waist and finish off every outfit I have perfectly. I even had a belt on my wedding dress. But nowadays belts don’t fit around my bump. This is a huge problem for me, because 99% of my wardrobe needs a belt to work, in my opinion. Without one, I feel a bit naked.Emmeline’s advice was to stop thinking about my outfits as I used to. I’ve got a new shape now and I need to dress for that. That doesn’t necessarily mean buying loads of new stuff, but it does mean reappraising the things I have and looking at how they can be worn differently. Instead of belting in those shift dresses as I used to, for example, I can now wear them loose – but I might need to add a jacket on top to streamline the look. She gave me a licence to look at everything with fresh eyes. “It doesn’t mean you have to be frumpy – it just means you need to think about your clothes differently and create some new style rules for yourself,” says Emmeline.
  2. Invest in waterfall shaped cover-ups
    If there’s one thing I took from the session, it’s that I need more waterfall jackets in my life. The great thing about these is that you don’t have to do them up, so you can buy them in the size you usually are and wear them over the top of maternity blouses etc. This means that from the back, your waistline is still visible, but from the front you’ve got room for your bump to grow. It also creates a vertical line over your outfit, which means you look slim, despite the bump at the front.“When you have a bump, many tops or dresses might skim over that and make you look bigger overall. Adding a waterfall jacket means you still have that slim fitting shape on the sides – it streamlines your whole look,” says Emmeline.
  3. Accessorize it
    One great way to draw the eye upwards and add interest to what might be a plain maternity top is to add eye-catching accessories. From experience so far, I’ve found the range of maternity tops to be quite limited – you don’t get many prints or patterns generally and the lines are very simple. Emmeline advised me to invest in a couple of key accessories that will jazz up these plainer tops and add some sparkle to my look.
  4. Be flexible with sizing
    While I have managed to pick up some great petite maternity jeans from ASOS in my usual size, finding fashionable maternity wear on the high street has been slightly trickier. Emmeline pointed me to H&M, which has a great ‘Mama’ range with some lovely simple shirts and palazzo pants – all of which I was able to buy in my usual size 8 and fitted perfectly. But not all stores have a maternity range and actually, you don’t need to invest purely in maternity wear just because you’re pregnant. Emmeline’s advice was to try standard ranges in other stores, perhaps in a size 10 or 12 to give myself room to grow. “For you at this stage it’s not about the size, it’s about the fit – so forget the label and try on shapes that flatter your body,” she said.
  5. Natural fibres are your friends
    If, like me, you’re going to pregnant over the summer months, it pays to spend a little bit extra and buy garments made with natural fibres, according to Emmeline. “You will feel hotter than usual when you’re carrying that extra weight and your skin might be sensitive at this time, so if you can try to invest in natural fibres like cotton – your skin with thank you for it!” After she said that, I became a lot more conscious of what things were made from – looking in a lot of the high street labels I noticed that lots of things that look nice on the hanger are actually polyester or viscose. I’ve got my eye on a few pieces from People Tree, and Emmeline also pointed me in the direction of Isabella Oliver, an online maternity retailer which has some gorgeous dresses – but the price tags are quite hefty so it might be worth waiting for the sale!

Finally, Emmeline’s advice was that while this is a great time to discover a new side of myself and dress for my changing shape, it doesn’t mean I need to forget who I am. “I know you love to wear bright colours and you’re all about blocking contrasting colours – don’t lose that spark! You can still do it now that you’re pregnant, but it’s just about finding new and exciting ways to wear it!”

P.S. I did actually buy a lot of that outfit above so you may see me around Bristol wearing this look soon!

Bristol Fashion Week is now finished for this season but if you’d like to book a styling session with Emmeline and her team you can find details and prices for her sessions at theimageconsultingcompany.co.uk.

 

Winter florals and spots

1st January 2016

You needn’t wait until spring to crack out those floral prints – this year those darling buds are coming out much earlier than May…

Polka dot cardi - H&M, T shirt - Vogue, skirt - vintage, boots - Ted & Muffy

Polka dot cardi – H&M, T shirt – Vogue, skirt – vintage, boots – Ted & Muffy

Winter can be a dull time for fashion if you stick with muted colours and knits all the time, so I like to mix it up a bit and use clashing prints to bring a ray of sunshine back to my wardrobe. This outfit was inspired by Dolce & Gabbana’s SS15 shows, where dark-based florals and polka dots came together in perfect harmony.

Florals and polka dots

Of course, I didn’t have Dolce & Gabbana levels of cash to spend, so this skirt was plucked from the rails at one of my favourite Bristol vintage shops, Bohemia on Picton Street, which I believe has now moved to another location – if anyone knows where it’s gone, please leave me a comment and let me know, it’s one of my faves! I love rifling through their rails as they have some real treasures and, for some reason, I find vintage styles tend to fit slightly better than today’s high street fare.

Polka dot top and floral skirt

Those of you with an eagle eye might notice I’ve added a slim leopard print belt to this look. For me, leopard print is the new neutral – this belt goes with pretty much every outfit I own! This is leopard print belt version 2.0 – the last one got worn so much I had to replace it and no doubt the same will happen to this one eventually, but you can never have too much of a good thing.

Will you be working those florals this winter? Tweet me some of your fab floral looks if you can on @GDyer! 

Bristol Fashion Favourites: Trilby and Breton stripes

1st September 2015

This hat from Bristol boutique Fox & Feather has a bit of a 1970s vibe, but I’ve mixed it with a Breton stripe and jeans for a casual work-friendly look.

Trilby hat from Fox and Feather

Fox and Feather 1970s hat and Breton stripe top

The 1970s look is back for Autumn/Winter but if you don’t feel like going the whole hog with your outfit, little details like this hat can offer a subtle nod when styled with your old wardrobe staples. You might recognise this hat from my Christmas haul post – my mother-in-law picked it out and I’m so glad she did because I’ve gotten a lot of wear out of it so far.

Orange trilby hat from Fox and Feather

These pics might look like a London street, but in fact they were taken in Bristol’s Queen Square as part of a blogger collab with my pal Emily from Mermaid Gossip.

Autumn Winter 2015 1970s style hat

Outfit details: Hat – Fox & Feather; jacket – ASOS; top – H&M’ jeans – River Island

Like this? Check out my other outfit posts here

Get nautical!

30th March 2011

Breton striped tops are a style staple that will never, ever go out of fashion.

The Breton stripe shirt originated in Brittany and was traditionally worn by French sailors and fisherman. Thrust into the fashion spotlight by timeless style icons such as Coco Chanel and Audrey Hepburn, the Breton stripe embodies Riviera chic and is a must have for every wardrobe.

Breton strips look great paired down with jeans. Boot cut, boyfriend, skinny, you name it – it goes. Or, for a more Parisian feel, team Breton tops with tailored trousers or shorts. They also work well underneath blazers and can be accessorised with a simple necklace or string of pearls.

As with most style staples, it’s important to invest in one that fits your perfectly. Luckily, there are plenty of Breton tops around that will suit all shapes and sizes.

If you are fuller figured or have a large bust, stick to looser fitted styles with medium stripes. Narrow stripes suit more petite frames with smaller busts.  If you have curvy hips or are smaller on your top half than around your bottom, then you can wear tighter fitting Breton tops with high waisted skirts to conceal any problem areas.

As a general rule, if you really want to work this look, whatever your size or shape, then opt for loose, lightweight, cotton Breton tops that are a size too big.

Take a look at our gallery for nautical inspiration:

Hot street style at Bristol Fashion Week

25th March 2011

After watching a fab catwalk show for Bristol Fashion week, we took to the Mall at Cribbs Causeway to find out what’s hot on the high street with our Bristol Fashionistas. Here are our findings:

  • Hareem trousers are quite literally everywhere in all types of fabrics and colours. They’re being worn with basic tees or floaty blouses and statement handbags.
  • As the current weather is glorious, Bristol street stylistas are ditching heavy winter coats in favour of belted long cardigans, denim jackets and blazers. We saw a lot of girls accessorising with printed scarves.
  • Maxi skirts are proving to be hugely popular – in particular, soft fabric maxis from Zara.
  • As for footwear, pumps were the order of the day – ranging from simple ballet pumps to moccasins.
  • According to the girls we spoke to, their favourite shops are Miss Selfridge, River Island and H&M.

Take a look at our street style inspired gallery to see who’s wearing what and where to get the hottest key pieces in Bristol:

Thank you for all those who took part  – sorry if we didn’t publish your photo!