WARDROBE TREASURES: Featuring – Battered Army Surplus Parka

The U.S Army Surplus Arctic M65 Fishtail Parka in full Winter mode

The last Wardrobe Treasures post featured my 13 year old distressed wool blazer by Japanese label Gomme. This time it’s all about my 15 year old battered army surplus parka or, to give it its full name, the U.S Army Surplus Arctic M65 Fishtail Parka.  For a good few years in the early 2000s you couldn’t swing a cat in Hoxton without bumping into one of these babies.  But, as ubiquitous as it was, I have always loved it.  Here’s why:

#1. It’s WARM. (And waterproof, obvs.) #2. It’s versatile. Almost everything on this coat can be detached or adjusted. The fishtail, waist, DEEP pockets and hood can all be adjusted to give a different fit and look. And importantly, the hood and lining come off – making for a fabulous Spring/Autumn version. It’s also UNISEX. #3. It looks good.  Perhaps not with an evening gown but definitely with everything else, especially with the hood and lining detached.  In this post I’m wearing it with jeans, but I’ve frequently worn it over frocks –  just add heels!

Every wardrobe needs a parka in my opinion but whether you go for a Moncler or this one (you can still find them) is up to you.  All I’ll say is that it’s a testament to the awesomeness of this coat that everyone I know who ever had one still has it and uses it. Are you one of us? Drop me a comment and let me know!

Here’s to another 15 or so years…..

Addie x

Yes, this is the SAME coat…..

The U.S Army Surplus Arctic M65 Fishtail Parka in Spring/Autumn mode!

I am wearing:

Winter mode – Parka (US Army Surplus Arctic M65 Fishtail Parka)| Jeans and Sweater (H&M)| Bag (Marc Jacobs)| Beanie (COS)| Scarf (Acne Studios)| Boots (Billi Bi)

Spring/Autumn mode – Parka (as before)| T-shirt (GAP)| Blue jeans (Levis)| Trainers (Isabel Marant)| Bag (Victoria Beckham)| Sunglasses (&other stories)

Slim Shade(y)s. Why I won’t be skinny this Summer

Prada

Super skinny ‘the Matrix’-inspired sunglasses is a hot trend for SS18.  But I’ll be sitting this one out. The reason? Lies in my wardrobe, specifically the third drawer on the left. That, my friends, is where my sunglasses go to die. Over the years I’ve amassed quite a collection – the problem is most of them don’t really suit me and a few are positively unflattering (and I strongly suspect that the new skinny trend will be the latter).  So, how have I ended up in this specs-tacular mess?

# 1. My face? Lol. My prominent cheeks, nose bridge width and temple length ratio don’t make it easy. I’ve long since made peace with the fact that my face just isn’t a ‘natural’ when it comes to sunglasses!

#2. The elusive “perfect pair”. I guess as a result of #1 I’m always on the lookout for the perfect pair.  The upshot of which is yet more sunnies….

#3. Trend trap. I know I should know better. I do know better. Yet, I’ve ended up with several pairs of sunglasses that I don’t ever wear and worse, some that I do wear knowing full well that they don’t really suit my face (yes you, Ray Ban Wayfarers).

#4. A different look. I do actually know what shape suits me best: Square and big. (Anything else and my cheeks get in the way which means that the sunglasses end up halfway up my forehead every time I smile.) But I yearn for a different look! After all, I can’t be doomed to wearing huge square sunnies for life can I?

The Usual Su-specs: L – Oliver Peoples, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, The Row, Victoria Beckham, Steve Madden. R – Prada, Whistles, Celine, Ray Ban, &otherstories

Don’t let this photo fool you – quite a few pairs didn’t make the cut for this post. Like the gigantic reflector aviators I picked up in Tokyo that make me look like Deputy Cartman from South Park.  Or, the vintage 80s ‘drop-down temple’ pair. Or, the goggle wrap-arounds – another Tokyo special.

Tip: There aren’t really any sunglasses dos and don’ts. Know your face obviously. But if you are after a ‘statement look’ and not particularly bothered about how they suit you and your budget allows, I say knock yourself out! Sunglasses are also one of the most affordable ways to buy into a high end label. With that in mind, here’s a little taster of the shape of things to come this Spring/Summer…..

Maison Margiela

Maison Margiela

Louis Vuitton

Prada

And for the truly adventurous……

Dolce & Gabbana

Dolce & Gabbana

And the shape that suits me best……

Love,

Addie x

*Apologies to subscribers who received an earlier unfinished draft of this post due to a technical fault. Please disregard that version!

 

Beyond Faux Fur: One Shaggy Coat That is Proudly Not Fur

 

“Cushion Chic”

I hesitated before buying this shaggy little H&M number. With broad shoulders and narrow hips, I don’t usually do short furry coats. Then there’s the colour: well, it’s not black or grey is it. Next, the fabric. On the plus side, it’s clearly not fur but I wasn’t keen on looking like I’d stuffed myself into an Ikea cushion either! Then I tried it on and, to my surprise, it looked rather fabulous. And I actually quite like the fact that it is unashamedly NOT fur. It’s comfortable too (not as bulky or as heavy as your typical faux fur number) and fantastically warm so no need for bulky sweaters or scarves. (Tip: Scarves just do not go with furry coats. Believe me, I’ve tried.)  The wallet-friendly H&M price point of course sealed the deal.* I’ll mostly be wearing it casually with jeans but I reckon it’ll be just as fab with a short skirt and heels for the evenings. What do you think?

Addie x

*Much to Uli’s disappointment! There was a similar Nikki Minaj X H&M version in store that day – it looked more like real fur, was a fiercer shade of pink with a gold unicorn on the back. Guess which one she preferred? (Well she is 6!) 🙂

 

 

Images: U.W. Ugbenne

 

Are you ready for ‘anything goes’ Spring/Summer 2018?

Colour is IN

I wish the sunnier days of Spring were here already don’t you? And it’s  looking to be a stonker on the fashion front too.  In fact, there are so many trends to choose from for Spring/Summer 2018 that it made this post quite the challenge! Anyway, here it is – my round-up of the Fab, the Mad and the downright Bad…..

#1. Le Trench. (FAB)

Trench coats are everywhere for S/S 2018 in a variety of shapes. Every major label has a version, so expect the High Street to follow suit. To me, trench coats are always in, but now that it’s like, official,  if you need any tips on how to make the most of yours see my Trench Wear-fare: Little tweaks to make the most of your trench coat!

From L-R: Balenciaga, Céline, Bottega Veneta

Valentino

#2. Colour me….(BAD?) 

Whether it’s bright and brash (think Crayola crayons) or softer pastels (think the Queen), colour is “in” this Spring. And nothing makes me want to reach for my trusted grey and black faster. It’s not that I’m averse to colour – I own my fair share of colourful stuff – but I don’t think I’ve quite recovered from the “colour-blocking” madness of S/S 2011.  Anyway, you won’t find me anywhere near the lavenders, pastels and lilacs but I might indulge in a bold colour (or two) and actually the pinks are not looking so bad. Shock horror.

From L-R: Tom Ford, Off-White, Marco di Vincenzo, Missoni

Anyone for ice cream?

#3. 80s Pick n Mix. (FAB)

The 80s are back! Shoulders? Check. High-waisted jeans tucked into boots? Check. Dynasty-esque dresses? Double check. You can literally choose which bits of it you want. What fun. Tip:  I plan to get involved (obvs) but I won’t be bothering with the high-end stuff. I reckon the High Street will have this one covered. Meaning we can indulge to our heart’s content in the “ one season wonder” fun and frolics without breaking the bank. Oh dear. Oh YES.

From L-R: Emanuel Ungaro, Saint Laurent, Halpern

From L-R: Y Project, Off-white, Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafin

#4. Fanny packs, bum bags or roadman bags. (FAB? MAD? Oh who cares!)

Bum bags or fanny packs, whatever  you call them, they are in. I’ll admit that I wasn’t keen on them first time round, but now with a 6 year old in tow, anything hands-free gets my vote! And there are so many fab options. I’m all over this one people.

From L-R: Zimmerman, Noon by Noor, Marc Jacobs, Vivienne Tam, Rachel Comey

Gucci

Louis Vuitton

#5. Plastic not so fantastic (MAD. And BAD)

Shame on us, fashion lovers.  Maybe it’s just me, but with all the talk around reducing the impact of plastic on the environment this over-dose on “wearable plastic” (whatever that means) seems at tad out of touch and mighty crass. Plastic rain macs I might be able to forgive but transparent knee-high plastic boots?! Who is wearing this stuff? Emperor’s New Clothes syndrome on steroids.  We can do better.

From L-R: Balmain, Chanel, Balmain

Fabulous top half. Shame about the rest

#6. Bye bye Phoebe. Hello Hedi (FAB or MAD – time will tell)

So this is not exactly S/S 2018 news but I couldn’t ignore the hottest fashion news of the moment. Phoebe Philo – queen of minimalism and the designer of choice for “women with shit to get done” – is leaving Céline after 10 years to be replaced by Hedi Slimane (ex-YSL). Where Hedi is all about youth culture, Phoebe’s Céline is unquestionably for grown-ups, so it’ll be interesting to see what direction he takes. He’s no stranger to shaking things up (he it was who dropped “Yves” from Yves Saint Laurent – see What’s in a name anyway?) and apparently he’s already proposing a Céline Mens’ line.  Is this a yay or a nay? I’m not really sure but maybe we should start stocking up on those Céline accessories just in case. Psst! Rumour has it Ms Philo is off to Burberry…..

Phoebe Philo

Hedi Slimane

So there you have it. A veritable free-for-all S/S 2018 and I for one can’t wait!

Addie x

 

Photos: Imaxtree; Getty images