Style Counsel – New Year Collection

It’s that time of year when many of us freak out and feel the need to ‘change’.

Two weeks of over-indulging leads us to dramatically announce, “This is the year I’m running a marathon!” Feeling sluggish and frumpy, we collect sales bargains we would never normally wear, just to feel more vibrant.

For 2018 I’m saying, “NO!” to ‘New Year, New You’. I quite liked myself in 2017, so a few weeks of too much wine and cheese does not make me want to overhaul my entire personality and appearance. Instead I will adopt small, manageable changes. I might drag myself to the gym an extra day per week, I’ll stop eating Nutella for breakfast and I will not buy a 70-per-cent- off sequin dress in the sale to wear next Christmas.

We’re still in the throes of winter for another couple of months yet and after all that jumper buying, Christmas shopping and party dressing, you can end up feeling a bit jaded by shopping and the mountain of sale rejects. So, this issue I wanted to highlight a few gorgeous purchases that you can wear now, but will also transition into spring.

Wide Dress, £34.99; H&M

This dress from H&M is perfect and a great shape if you are concerned about the effects of mince pies. I love how it looks styled with boots, but it will also work well as the temperature rises with bare legs and trainers. Oh, and belted with amazing heels for a night out! So many possibilities…

Cascade ruffle midi skirt, £49.95; GAP

I’ve had a bit of a Gap obsession the last couple of months and it shows no sign of stopping. This skirt is so versatile. Wear with boots in winter, paired with a sexy camisole for an evening out, or style smart and sophisticated for the office. And while looking at this skirt I stumbled across the perfect leather biker jacket, I’m in love with everything about this! It will of course look great with jeans or sporty trousers, but in spring I’m thinking 90’s vibe with a floaty floral print dress and white Superga trainers.

Side-tie leather jacket, £399.95; GAP

Whistles have the best selection of ‘New In’ trousers and I’m finding it hard to select just one pair. The contrasting print on their limited edition cropped pair is really striking. They’d look amazing styled with the leather biker jacket from Gap and equally fab with sandals in summer. The stripe detail on these jeans elevates them to something special, I’m imagining them worn with red suede heels and the biker jacket…again!

Mix And Match Spot Trouser, £169; Whistles

Multi-Stripe Denim Jean, £129; Whistles

Many of us will have partied a little too much in December so the thought of getting dressed up for another night out may feel like a chore. Look no further than this Leopard print chiffon dress, from Asos, for an effortless evening look. The shape is simple and comfy, but the animal print brings all the drama you need to make statement. Right now I’d style this with heeled boots and dare I say it…the Gap biker jacket! I’d even dress it with metallic strappy sandals at a summer wedding, for a more alternative look in a sea of Coast and Phase Eight!

Warehouse Leopard Print Chiffon Dress, £65; Asos

Mules are THE shoe to be seen in now, and they don’t get better than the Topshop Galaxy Flare heel. I could be sensible and suggest you’d get more use from the black, but I’m not my mother, so I say get the fabulous impractical pink version!

Galaxy Flare Heel Mules, £69; Topshop

Now on to bags. Did you see the super stylish Meghan Markle carrying a Strathberry bag on her first royal engagement? I’ve highlighted Scottish brand Strathberry in previous columns and since seeing Ms Markle sporting her navy, burgundy and cream version, I’m very tempted to invest. I have an older style that I still use, so I know it’s a wise and classic purchase. My eye is drawn to the East/West in Ruby. I love the gold hardware and the pop of colour.

East/West – Ruby, £475; Strathberry

I’m off now for my last spoonful of Nutella before I need to start training for that marathon I said I wasn’t doing.

Best wishes for 2018 x

Cathy is a freelance creative with experience in PR, fashion show production, model agency manager and casting agent. Her greatest achievement to date is managing to style a shoot with kids, animals and a hot air balloon!

Find Cathy’s blog at or follow on Twitter

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