A few posts backs I posted about H&M’s new limited edition Girl With the Dragon Tattoo clothing range (read it here). Packed with leather jackets, worn jeans and spiked jewellery, the collection is pretty much everything you’d want and expect from a high street retailer.
And then New Look decided they’d jump on the bandwagon. Yet calling their newest range ‘grunge’ has sparked a small flame of disappointment/fury within my soul. Grunge is a subgenre of angst-ridden music also known as Seattle Sound. For many of you, images of Kurt Cobain should be flung to the front of your mind almost simultaneously with that loose definition.
Grunge is cheap, thrifty, flannel-based, comfy clothing that looks a bit rough round the edges and possibly a bit like you live under a bridge somewhere in downtown Chicago. Grunge is not New Look. Their newest range of ‘Bronx Brogues’, crochet tops and floral shorts screams more Pixie Lott than Courtney Love. And the animal print trousers and Giles Deacon tights certainly wouldn’t look out of place at Loveboxx Festival.
I’m not saying I don’t like any of the pieces – I’d certainly buy into one of the ‘cross print’ jumpers, but only because they look a bit like I could pass it off as an homage to Ed Banger’s Justice.
Growing up in the late 90s it was ESSENTIAL for every school girl to have high-heeled, glittery jelly shoes. You know the ones – usually clear in colour, a buckle at the ankle and filled to the brim with iridescent silver sparkle.
Just as aztec print leggings and animal-logo jumpers are also back ‘in’ – 2011 sees the further rise of the jelly shoe. Vivienne Westwood, of course, has had a £90 rubber boot under her belt for generations (see photo above). Little ankle-high wellies have always been hot in her eyes. And it’s fair to say I’ve had my eye on a pair of her £120 Lady Dragon heels for a good quarter of my lifetime (see photo right, and my blog entry here).
Vivienne Westwood wasn’t the first polymer-lover to jump on the plastic bandwagon though. Melissa Shoes have had eco-friendly, plastic designs on the market for around 30 years. And they haven’t only teamed up with Westwood either – John Paul Gaultier has also collaborated with the Aussie based company to create a range of to-die-for footwear.
Until now though, I’ve yet to see much of an imitation of Viv, John or Melissa’s styles. And so enter New Look. The high street store have worked in partner with ‘Mel’ – Melissa’s playful younger sister, vegan friendly and totally recyclable. Why you’d ever chuck them in with your bean cans and cereal boxes is beyond me. The ankle boots here are £37.99, and the butterfly heels are £39.99. Compared with the Vivienne Westwood designs up top, and aside from the obvious contrast in price, is there really much in the way of differences? I’m starting to think that even I prefer the New Look variation…
Berry coloured skirts are perhaps my favourite trend for Autumn/Winter 2011. I’ve picked a few of my (affordable) online favourites as an example of just how many there are to choose from! Whether you’re more of a raspberry-reveller, a rose-tinted honey or a rich nectarine junkie – there’s sure to be a design to suit you here.
ASOS Mini £30
H&M Mini £14.99
House of Holland Mini
New Look £24.99
South Pleat Midi £35
Topshop Pleats £35
The key for wearing this trend seems to be colour clashing – mix your berry hues with a crazy print blouse or patterned knit. Graphic = great. I love the new crochet-look prints from House of Holland too. You can buy the pieces here at ASOS, although don’t say I didn’t give you fair warning of the steep prices! They look exactly like the blankets my grandma has on her sofa. Shabby ,vintage chic clearly still has a place among the fashion elite.
I’ve recently developed a crush on 1920s pleated skirts too. I currently own 2 calf-length lovelies – one in navy blue (New Look) and one in bright coral (River Island). I’m therefore very happy to see that this trend isn’t just limited to summer – although I may just need to invest in a rose-petal coloured one in order to keep right up to date…