How to: Banish those wet weather fashion blues

November rain… Perfect for a Sunday afternoon curled up with a cup of tea and a good book, not ideal for fashion lovers. After this week of sporadic rain and miserable weather in Sydney I have decided I am in need of some rainy day love. An anorak & gumboots have been my staples over the last few days and I am craving that little bit of Spring sunshine, so I can pull my favourites out of the cupboard and at least feel like a more fashionable version of myself.

With every fashion magazine on the newsstand parading the hottest looks for Spring, I am craving the opportunity to wear them. I know the rain shouldn’t stop me but I really just want to feel as though I can wear them without risk of them being ruined. Yes, it’s fine for those of you who drive to work everyday and only need to risk the rain in the 15 second sprint to your car but for the commuters of the world, like me, we are in need of some wet weather inspiration.

So as soon as those dark clouds begin to roll over Sydney my rainy day essentials make me feel a little less grey. Here are a few of my tips to try to waterproof your style ensuring you feel a little more polished and a little less like a drowned rat!

Must Waterproof

Sounds obvious, but on that beautiful sunny day it is usually the furthest thing from your mind. The last thing you want is a pair of my favourite shoes or statement handbag to be ruined in a surprise downpour. It is always in that moment when I am caught unprepared in a spring shower, that I am grateful for waterproofing.

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When gumboots don’t make the cut – Waterproofing in KEY!

Whenever you purchase something new don’t forget to waterproof you will not regret it, it takes two minutes and means your favourite pieces can remain a treasure for so much longer.

The Clear Umbrella

Yes this may not be a wet weather essential and it does make me appear quite vain but the clear umbrella is my pick. My grandmother bought me mine telling me it is both cool and useful! And I couldn’t agree more… Just ask Blake Lively.

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Channel Blake Lively’s Clear Umbrella Look

It goes with everything. Clashing colours are no longer an issue and I must admit a giant corporate logo doesn’t match anything in my wardrobe… and practically speaking you can still see where you are going regardless of how low you are pulling it down over your face to protect yourself.

Add Accessories

Looking stylish is not all about the clothes. Beautiful accessories can transform a basic white tee and jeans combo into something enviable and chic.

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Statement Necklace = Mood Lifter. Photo via shophoneylove.com

Scarves, jewels and headwear are my go-to for a rainy day, they create excitement and depth to complete any basic look. So even if you are wearing gumboots, no one will be looking at your feet.

Nailed it!

Pampering yourself is the perfect way to pass time, while the rain pours down outside. Whether you are a DIY mani-pedi person or treat yourself at the beautician, bright nails on a miserable day are an instant mood lifter!

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Mint nails

So while the clouds are grey my nails are coloured. I tend to choose bright colours in tones of pink or red, but breaking with tradition this time round I opt’ed for mint green to sooth my soul.

Hairstyle

Frizz-free hairstyles are key to maintaining a stylish look. If you are anything like me, stepping out into the rain or humidity turns my hair into a sea of unflattering curls.

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Rainy-day hairstyles

The sleek ponytail or messy braid are my picks, ensuring you still maintain a polished look with the ability to disguise and control any fly-aways that try to escape in the damp air. And you can get away with not washing your hair for a day or two and no one will know the difference…

So don’t let the rain get you down… Channel your inner fashionista in even if it means dancing in the November Rain…

Would love to hear your style tips for those rainy days?

SS x

Fashion Challenge; A dress a day!

I love Paula Joye’s Fashion Challenges. It is all about rediscovering your own wardrobe and taking inspiration from other peoples style, not necessarily hitting up the shops to buy new things…

This week it was all about dresses; five days, five dresses in five different styles. And for me this was truly a challenge… Dresses aren’t usually my outfit of choice. Simply due to my slightly pear-shaped body type; I end up having a hard time finding dresses that suits and fits properly; I usually wear different sized tops and bottoms (damn my J.Lo bootie). To be honest I don’t own many dresses, being more of a skirt and top kinda girl, so pre planning here was key.

Day 0. Sunday – Plan of Attack

Rediscover my wardrobe, with the winter weather starting roll into early spring, it is time to put those pants and tights away and frock up. After a good hour and a bit standing in front of my wardrobe I feel a bit more comfortable with a basic style plan for the week ahead. Although feeling slightly nervous that my pale sun-tanless legs are being bared for a whole week!

Day 1. Monday – Black

Thank you P.J for starting off with a failsafe style. The LBD makes a difficult challenge a little more bearable as I ease my way into the week. Classic with a twist, is the look I was going for today. Black on black is an easy win, with a touch of leopard!

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Day 2. Tuesday – Prints

Until recently I was not the biggest fan of prints, sticking with block colours and basic layered tones. But I can proudly say I love prints and can’t stop buying them. Black and white leopard paired with a blazer is work-wear chic. Monochrome is the trend for the upcoming season so it’s time to jump on board.

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Day 3. Wednesday – Short

Done! Short is something I can do, rarely wearing anything that falls below the knee. I pulled this dress out of the back of my wardrobe, having not worn it for a good year or maybe more, continually thinking that I need an occasion or excuse to wear it. So I was delighted with the barrage compliments today, as a sported my nautical look today in my stripes and navy blazer.

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Day 4. Thursday – Long

Hmmm this was tricky, the only maxi style dress I own is the one I throw over my swimwear on the beach. Unfortunately not really work-wear appropriate. My Country Road floaty palazzo pants was my work around… To me this doesn’t count as a fail, as I really did push my fashion boundaries, as my outfit of choice will always fall above the knee! I was pleasantly surprised by the number of compliments on my outfit which converts this rule-tweak into a fashion achievement.

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Day 5. Friday – Evening for Day

This theme required a little bit of research and inspiration as I was a little lost on what to wear. With some inspiration under my belt I was ready for my final challenge. I am a style-comfort kind of girl, so by pairing a cocktail dress, Kookai, with a pair of sneakers it was the perfect outfit choice. Done!

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At the end a successful week completing five days of dresses, I have re-cemented why I love fashion, as my week long challenge became a bit of a game for the girls at work, ‘guess which look it is today’, I challenged my own style assumptions (that dresses aren’t my forte)… and pulled out some old favourites out of my cupboard. Even though I semi cheated on the ‘Long Dress’ day I was proud I wore an outfit that wouldn’t traditionally of been my first choice. I loved that I could hit snooze once or twice more on those early mornings, as my outfits were organised and structured for each day. Now I can’t wait for the next challenge…

SS x

Always Read the (Garment) Label

Standing in the change room trying on what could be the latest addition to your wardrobe, a lot of things run through your mind simultaneously. Fit, comfort, how do I look, occasions to wear, what do I currently own that matches… but that little label with the fine print hidden away inside the seam is the furthest from my mind. It is not until I have handed over my credit card and it is time to wash it do we check and even then sometimes we think about it a little too late…

With an extensive range of clothing materials and styles available; silk, chiffon, wool, leather, beading and the list goes on, each one with its own care conditions and rules, every item you purchase and bring home adds a new set of instructions to consider. So why is it that don’t we read the fashion fine print, you would never start a new job, sign a contract or even enter a competition without a little knowledge of what we are getting ourselves into. This little white label becomes the ‘terms and conditions’ of clothing, containing a series of logos and cryptic text outlining the conditions of your new purchase. ‘Do not bleach, do not dry clean, gentle machine wash, cool water of 30degrees, do not tumble dry, dry flat and away from direct sunlight.’ Apply that to the 100’s of items you have in your closet and it quickly becomes a mine field.

Always Read the (Garment) Label

Always Read the (Garment) Label

But if not applied correctly, that fine print can be the difference between an item that lasts for years and still looks like new or ends up a one wear throw away… It can also result in a whole lot time and money, different washing machine cycles, water temperatures, drying methods or money to pay for that ever growing pile of dry cleaning. I have recently rediscovered the importance of that little tag after destroying two of my favourite items this week through my own carelessness. As the saying goes, bad luck comes in threes … My fingers are crossed that I don’t ruin anything else.

So for the sake of this post, I did a mini inventory of my wardrobes fine print… approximately 15% of my clothes are dry clean only, 10% are whites, 30% are machine washable, 5% are cold wash only and over 40% are hand wash only, which equates to 100% annoying…

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Rules for caring for your clothes.

So I did a little bit of research, and asked my mother, for some of her best garment and fabric care tips;

1. Good quality wooden coat hangers prevents hanging items stretching out of shape. But never hang your woolen items always fold sweaters or jumpers to store.

2. Leather items are to be cleaned by a professional who specialises in leather, your local dry cleaner can damage the material and potentially make the leather crack.

3. Garment bags are a lifesaver, by using a lingerie garment bag on a cool and gentle machine wash cycle you can successfully machine wash some delicate items.

4. Sort out your laundry before putting it in the machine. The last thing you want is that sneaky red, pink or navy item turning all your whites an off white shade.

5. Cotton clothing is not only comfortable but hard wearing. The ultimate material for the low maintenance washer, just throw in the machine alongside any cleaning powder and you are done.

So to try to help prevent all that heartache over a lost love item, here’s my fine print… Always read the label and if heartbreak persists please see your local dry cleaner, seamstress or in worst case scenario shop assistant for a re-purchase πŸ˜‰

SS x