Style Counsel – May/June Collection

With Cathy Owen

Is your mind straying to the summer holidays yet? We may have just got over Easter, but seriously it’s not long now!

I’m staying in the UK this year and chats at the school gate have lead me to conclude that many of us are opting to holiday closer to home. My summer holiday plans include taking our 7-year-old to his first music festival and exploring the North of Scotland, therefore my usual summer attire of palazzo pants and floaty kaftans are not going to work in a soggy campsite, or the wilds of Scotland!

So if like me you need your summer wardrobe to be less ‘Amalfi Coast’ and more ‘Loch Lomond and The Trossachs’ what trends are going to work?

A lightweight waterproof jacket is a must when spending summer at home. The perfect cover-up for a festival and walks along a blustery Scottish beach. I’m opting for a jacket in a strong pop of colour, such as yellow (the colour of the season) or coral. I love this Hunter Original version (£195) available from Very Exclusive or this Topshop style at just £49 is also very wearable.

Tracksuit bottoms and sporty trousers should absolutely be on your shopping list as they are unbelievably versatile. If you are journeying to warmer climes, you will look comfy and stylish for travelling, and they work dressed up with heels and a slinky vest for evening. For me… they are an ideal pull-on item, with a slouchy jumper and trainers for chilling with my boy.

This easy to wear style by Karen Millen (£130), at John Lewis, look equally as good with heels, as they would with box-fresh white trainers and a fine merino wool knit, casually slipping off the shoulder. Uniqlo also offer some great inexpensive options to experiment with this look. I especially like their denim version for a bargain summer saver at £24.90.

A summer dress is essential and this year I was searching for embroidery and peasant sleeves, something I can style and accessorise to the max for special nights out, but that I can also wear with flats to a family BBQ. I found ‘the one’, from Zara. Now bear with me, I know it doesn’t look that summery, but let’s face it, Scotland is not known for warm balmy nights. The fabric is surprisingly lightweight and I will be able to wear it right through to autumn – bonus! I think I am actually in love with this dress. If you are looking for a more typical summer style, Mango have so many beautiful options and j’adore this pretty Bardot off-the-shoulder design.

Now, some of you may be planning an altogether more tropical summer holiday experience and I don’t want to leave you out! So, let’s talk swimwear and this summer it’s all about the one piece.

The contrasting waistband on this swimsuit from Boden (£60) is so flattering and I also love the vintage 70s pattern on this style from Next (£28) which will look great against a golden tan.

Wherever you are planning to spend your summer holidays, have a fabulous time!

Style File

Don’t forget Father’s Day on Sunday June 18

A great gift idea for stylish dads is one of these gorgeous cotton ties using the iconic signature heritage prints of Liberty of London. Featuring designs by Morris and Co, one would make a fabulous addition to any man’s smart summer wardrobe. £40 from

Life & Style Edinburgh

Looking for even more style inspiration? The brand-new Life & Style Edinburgh event, July 1 & 2 is your ‘one-stop shop’ for a stylish life. Watch the latest collections at fashion shows, get top tips from BBC’s ‘The Great Interior Design’ judge Sophie Robinson in her ‘Common Interior Crimes and Fixes’ masterclass.

There will be a discussion stage brimming with fabulous talks from celebrity and local beauty, tech, travel, interior design, food & drink and fitness experts. Become a social media goddess and learn how to create that 5,000 likes Instagram picture, or even ‘How to Vlog’. And the fun continues with complimentary beauty treatments, cocktail making and there’s even a yoga class in St Andrews Square!

Earlybird tickets (£10) are on sale now and include:

  • Access and a seat at one of the Life & Style Fashion Shows (reserved seating on a first come basis).
  • One complimentary beverage redeemed throughout the event.
  • Chance to browse pop-ups of the world’s top lifestyle brands.
  • Shop £5 off at participating city centre businesses with your event ticket.
  • Chance to sample complimentary health and beauty treatments.
  • Chance to attend talks from beauty, tech, travel, interior design, fitness and food & drink experts.

And each event attendee will also be entered into a prize draw to win the ‘Ultimate Edinburgh Weekend’.

See you there! x

Find Cathy’s blog at or follow on Twitter @cathyocreative

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