Look effortlessly cool this summer in a classic cotton number cut to perfection, says Penny Fray
The three biggest fashion mistakes are cheap suits, shoes and shirts, according to the Italian designer Donatella Versace, and I have to say I agree. If you’re going back to basics, you need to spend more. And there is no better casual summer staple than the so-called boyfriend shirt.
Crisp cotton and longer in length, layer yours over jeans for that casual but cool vibe or, if you have youth and a decent pair of pins on your side, go it alone and make accessories your new fashion buddies.
Prefer something pretty and prim with the potential for a little provocation? Let me introduce you to this season’s latest wardrobe “must have” – the shirt dress. It was spotted on several runway shows in denim, gingham and stripes.
Designers have re-imagined this classic silhouette with drop waists, high splits and more. Charlotte Ronson gave a regulation collared number a sporty twist with a ruched waistline and pockets, while Altuzarra injected extra va-va-voom to a 1950s silhouette by leaving the buttons undone. How you wear yours is up to you – just make sure it’s pressed to perfection.
Monsoon’s feminine shirt dress is the key to an effortless weekday-to-weekend look. The art motif gives it an added edge. From RO62
Define and accentuate your waist with Mango’s timeless leather belt. Wear this obi-style accessory with everything from tailored dresses to casual kaftans. From RO18
Cut from airy cotton-poplin, this white shirt dress from Acne Studios is loose and lightweight – perfect for warm weather. The curved hem keeps the oversized silhouette flattering. Style this piece for the beach with bare legs and a pair of sandals. From RO164
Make a statement with this Parfois necklace. Intricate strands of faux pearls, beads and gems are intertwined with metal chains. Wear this boho design against an understated shirt. From RO16.9
These new Zara sandals have a comfortable block heel for a touch of height and cool. From RO32
Tips on updating your shirt:
1. The fashion forward should consider allowing their shirt tails to peek cheekily from below the hem of their skirt. Sounds odd but it looks youthful. No wonder so many celebrities have been seen sporting the look.
2. Ironing your own? Say hello to spray-on starch. Crisps up a shirt nicely.