Kate. Marilyn And Elizabeth And The Allure Of Pearls.

10 years ago next month, Kate Winslet posed for a stunning photograph that appeared on the cover of  V magazine.  A shot of her beautiful face and a string of pearls was all that was needed to create the wonderful image. But the pictures also evoked the movie queens of days past, and speaks volumes about the eternal lure of pearls. I may be biased – pearls are my necklace of choice, my birthstone (for June), but whether it is an elegant gold and pearl necklace with a chain and a pendant, a simple string of pearls, or a vintage style choker, pearls evoke glamour, and elegance, and also a lot of sex appeal.

Looking back at Kate’s cover, The Daily Telegraph said that Winslet was paying some kind of tribute to Elizabeth Taylor, the last of the immortal love goddesses, who had  died earlier that year. A famous still of Taylor from the film Ash Wednesday was used to illustrate the similarity of the pose. But the image of Kate reminded me of those Bert SternLast Sitting‘ poses by Marilyn Monroe, the ones where she was photographed with pearls and rhinestones just a month before her death. These were almost a last hurrah for Marilyn, and ensured she pushed Elizabeth  Taylor from all the world’s front pages. Marilyn had also posed with pearls in the publicity shots for ‘Some like it Hot’ in 1958.

So the picture of Kate celebrates screen goddesses of the past, but it is also as much a celebration of pearls as it is of  the females who wear them. I think pearls are the most mysterious of jewels…what do they actually symbolise? They are often seen as presenting a real lady, sometimes in the form of conservative dressing, the twinset and pearls brigade for instance. Debutantes and Duchesses wear pearls, old ladies wear pearls,  Ladies on the cover of ‘Country Life’ and ‘The Lady’ wore pearls. And yet…

One of the most famous courtesans of the 19th century, Cora Pearl, is said to have appeared before Edward VII wearing a long string of pearls…and nothing else. One of the  most notorious rock paramours of the 1960s, Marianne Faithfull, was photographed wearing a conservative pearl choker at the height of her heroin addiction,  subverting the image of the necklace as something for good girls. And Madonna added pearls to her Boytoy bride look in the 1980s. Large 1980’s style pearls have made a comeback in recent years, with stores like Shein having lots of cool choices, whilst Butler and Wilson also deal with pearls in the form of both costume jewellery and gem set pieces.

 

So, what is the truth about pearls, good girl accessories, or ultimate bad girl attire? Maybe the truth is a little bit of both. Good girls love the prettiness and the glossy sheen or pearls, whilst bad girls like to subvert the jewel that is considered a sign of class, breeding and landed gentry. While all this is true, pearls will be continue to fascinate.

How to Dress to Impress This Christmas

 Christmas is a season for love, joy, and peace, and the season to let your hair down, get glam, and dress to impress. It is party season, a time when you have every excuse to get your glam on. Most work environments have an office Christmas party where the food and drink is generous,and then there are family occasions, nights out with friends, and a movie date night with the hubby. The time is right for getting out and about, even if you live in pyjamas for the majority of the year. 

If you want to stand out from the crowd, you may need to invest in your wardrobe. Relying on a dress that has been in your closet for five years might not be the fit of current fashion today, so a fashion investment for your Christmas party may be necessary. The good news is that you don’t have to spend a fortune to look good, you can find perfect vintage styles and preloved clothing that you can customise, or just wear as it is in a retro look. If you are buying clothes online, you certainly shouldn’t just but the first thing you see without checking you can get it cheaper, you need to look for voucher codes, special offers, free delivery offers, literally everything you can that will save you money. Dontpayfull has some great deals for clothing and fashion, these may help you to get the shoes and the bag as well as the killer dress.
christmas-and-new-years-eve-party-looks-inspiration-31Feel Good Look Good
What you choose to wear to a Christmas party can say a lot about your personality and how you feel about yourself. Dress for yourself and your outfit will display your confidence, but try to impress wearing something that you feel uncomfortable in and this can be counterproductive. You don’t have to opt for something revealing or too clingy, you will feel more confident if you are comfortable and love your look. Try a midi dress if you have a curvaceous body, or a crop top with high waisted trousers if you are naturally slim with a boyish figure. Long sleeves are also fine, it is Winter after all, and, as Lydia Bright proves, they can look amazing on the right dress.60e9e928457f9105cd3f2ac39b0ccde6rexfeatures_6908342ao-v2-745x1024abbey-clancy-1135807_h113606_l_w650Try Quirky and Different
If fast fashion is not on your radar, you might be interested in quirky or vintage fashion. Vintage fashion is not for everyone, but if you can carry off this look wear it with pride. Vintage items are about finding your own fashion style and era. Think polka dots, sixties style dresses, mini or maxi skirts, and colourful short fitted jackets. This look relies on a confident individual who will be complimented numerous times on the outfit. Difference is good with fashion. You might not always be the latest trendsetter, but a colourful outfit quirky or vintage outfit makes a statement about who you are and your signature style.floral-appliques-lovely-way-add-texture-charmDitch the Black
Black is the classic colour when it comes to style, Coco Chanel and many others that have followed know the allure of the Little Black Dress. Nothing beats the little black dress when it comes to elegance, and it can also be slimming’ which can add to your confidence, particularly if you don’t usually wear dresses. But whilst black can be slimming and elegant, it can also boring, especially at Christmas time. If you choose to wear black, you could opt for a sequined effort, or glamorous lace, or you could choose to add an item of clothing in a bright  shade to wear with your black jacket or trousers/skirt.
cbb_emmaWEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 28: Actress Kate Upton attends Michael Sugar, Doug Wald, and Steve Golin's Pre-Oscar Party hosted by GREY GOOSE Vodka at Sunset Tower on February 28, 2016 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for Grey Goose)

Get Your Festival style sorted

Festival season will soon be upon us, and this year sees the biggie back, with Glastonbury once again promising to be memorable. Festivals are a great mixture of great style, great music, and, notoriously bad weather, but they are a part of Summer to enjoy and savour, whether you go for a single day or enjoy the whole camping/glamping experience.

Festivals in the UK are as famous for the inclement weather as they are for the music, and weather does tend to govern festival fashion. Unlike Coachella, white is never a good idea at British festivals, one downpour and that lovely fresh field becomes a total quagmire. That said, there have been some amazing festival fashion over the years, with Kate Moss being the reigning Queen of festival fashion, but with the likes of Lily Allen, Alexa Chung and Millie Mackintosh also showing us how it’s done.

Festival style

Glastonbury Festival

Florence Welch

kate-moss_glamour_25jun13_pa_b_450x675

Kate Moss

alexa-chung_glamour_25jun13_xp_b_592x8881

Alexa Chung

lily-allen-in-shorts-glastonbury-festival-june-2014_4

Lily Allen

53fa17a3-ed21-43d5-89c1-2e8123eb88e6_Glastonbury-2013-Millie-Mackintosh-Made-in-Chelsea-style-fashion

Millie Mackintosh

British festival style is a cool mixture of Hunter Wellies, cut off denim hotpants worn with either shabby chic knitwear, tie and die, or vintage cotton. The aim of the look is to be eclectic, this mish mash of styles works to create a look that is both unique and practical, whatever the weather decides to throw at you.

 

Camping or Glamping?

Festivals often mean camping, with most festival goers setting up their own tents for the duration. But, if like me, camping is not your thing, and you prefer home comforts and luxury whilst enjoying the atmosphere of the festival, then maybe glamping is a better option for you.

The Yurtel Steanbow experience is the most luxurious way to experience Glastonbury this year, the one that I am sure Kate Moss would well appreciate. From deluxe bell tents, to Yurts full of home comforts, to the absolute creme de la creme, the luxury suites that come complete with cosy rugs, a shower room and front decking from which to enjoy the views of Glastonbury Tor, the experience allows you to enjoy all the fun of the festival, but to then chill out with Spa treatments, and to enjoy a la carte dining with not a dodgy burger in sight.

This is definitely the way to enjoy Glastonbury if you are just there for the music, and want to avoid the burger vans, portaloos and too much mud.

Are you going to a festival this year? Will you be camping or glamping?