Friday Focus – Alice Temperley

If I could choose one designer to create my wardrobe for the rest of my life, it would be the wonderful Alice Temperley. Her designs are just so typically English, ethereal, mystical and totally feminine, and have attracted celebrity fans in their droves. Katy Perry rocked her Floria dress as the perfect choice for a Valentine’s evening,  those splashes of red being totally appropriate to celebrate the day of love. Both Kate and Pippa Middleton are fans of the brand, Kate famously wore a beautiful white dress with black accents for one of her first official engagements. And, of course, a great many society ladies and models have opted for Temperley London as their wedding dress designer of choice, with the latest name in the frame the lovely Millie Mackintosh, who is set to wed Professor Green this September. But you don’t have to be a celebrity to rock the Temperley look. Here is my lovely friend Charlotte Harper totally owning the Floria dress at the Aegon Classic tennis in Birmingham yesterday – a look that shows just how versatile Temperley London can be.

But Temperley is not just about lace and whimsy. Her latest collection, currently stocked at Avenue 32, features 1930s style silhouettes emblazoned with tattoo style motifs to create classically elegant looks, whilst there are also Roman Holiday style pieces, full skirts, lace tops and Jacquard prints that are very 1950s in flavour and influence. Favourite pieces include the satin Freya ribboned skirt in black and ivory, a skirt that is both super pretty and a touch daring, the full-skirted mesh panels (very Sandra Dee), covering a rather sexy pencil skirt (certainly more Rizzo than Sandy.) Another key piece is the red mini Jacquard top that is the absolute epitome of geek chic, but when paired with the Freya skirt looks simply gorgeous, and oh so elegant.

Temperley London Black Satin Freya Ribbon Skirt £720 click to visit Avenue 32

Temperley London Red Mini Jacquard Top £400 click to visit Avenue 32

Temperley London Red Satin Freya Ribbon Dress £1,400 click to visit Avenue 32

Temperley London Powder Blue Francine Tattoo Dress £2,500 click to visit Avenue 32

Temperley London Black Silk Embroidery Gown £1,850 click to visit Avenue 32

X Factor Fash Off Week 6

The latest edition of X Factor proved to be the battle of the boybands, with Union J proving the victor. On the fashion front, the honours were pretty much even again, with Tulisa the clear winner on Saturday night, and Nicole looking wonderful during the live results show.

Saturday saw Tulisa go all Downton Abbey on us with a stunning Art Deco style beaded dress from Alice Temperley. This was a column dress that had previously been worn by Shirley Bassey, but it was a classically beautiful look that gave Tulisa an elegance that she rarely exhibits. She chose an interesting hairstyle with this dress that also had a Lady Mary feel, pinned underneath it gave the impression of a triangular bob. I prefer her long locks, but full marks for experimentation, and overall I thought that the younger lady looked simply divine.

Nicole went all androgynous in a white trouser suit by Jean Pierre Braganza. Now this look is iconic and has been worn with immense style by the likes of Angelina Jolie, but on Nicole it just didn’t appeal. I think it was all the layers – the shirt, what looked like a waistcoat and then the Tux. Maybe if she had just worn the tuxedo Bianca Jagger style, this would’ve worked, but the trousers also seemed a little on the large size for the svelte Miss Scherzinger, so maybe not.

Vero Moda LULIX – Blazer – white 


White Lux Twill Slouch Blazer £24.99 

Somerset by Alice Temperley Mesh Beaded Long Dress, Black £299 

Untold Beaded maxi dress £144 

Petra Lace Beaded Maxi Dress £300.00 


Sunday results show

You really can’t beat a bit of McQueen, and the vintage McQueen gown worn by Nicole on the Sunday results show was super stunning, if not a little beachy. I seem to recall a pregnant Angelina Jolie (yes, again!) wearing a green version of this dress when she was pregnant, but the soft grey was a really great colour for Nicole, and with loose hair this was a very romantic look that I just adored.

Tulisa so nearly got it right on Sunday night. The black dress by Forever Unique is beautiful, with stunning embellished detail across the top and back. But this dress is better suited to a nightclub or party than to the X Factor, being a little too short. Also, this dress has already been worn by TOWIE’s Lucy Mecklenburgh and widely photographed, so it was a bit of a faux pas to wear this on prime time television.

KENNETH COLE Safari bandeau maxi dress 

Jane Norman Beaded maxi dress £25 

FOREVER UNIQUE Lisa embellished dress £410.00 


Layla Long Sleeved Lace Midi Dress

Did you have a preference for a particular outfit this week? Let me know who you think is winning the fashion battle.

Kate wears Temperley to greet the athletes

At a reception at Buckingham Palace to salute Britain’s golden summer and the wonderful athletes created it, Duchess Kate showed off a new dress that has so far received decidedly mixed reviews. The black and gold dress from Alice Temperley has been described as being too ‘busy’ with floral applique panels, a frilled skirt which also had a pleated panel, and a silk sash belt at the waist, there was certainly a lot going on. But, in my opinion, this does not distract from the beauty of the gown, which I think was perfect in it’s cocktail length, beautiful embellishment, and also in the use of gold as a motif.

It seems that this dress has been custom made by Alice Temperley for the Duchess, but it contains many of the hallmarks that feature in other Temperley designs, notably the mesh panel and frilled sleeve detail. This can be seen in one of the fab designs Alice produced for her ‘Somerset’ collection for John Lewis, the ‘Spot Mesh’ dress. Another striking point is the use of black and gold as a colourway. With flapper trends and the Great Gatsby on its way, the use of the most Art Deco of colours shows Kate is in tune with style trends once again, but is interpreting them in an elegant and regal way.

Somerset by Alice Temperley Spot Mesh Shift Dress, Black £160 click to visit John Lewis

Get the look – black and gold dresses


Hobbs Invitation Gabriel Maxi Dress, Black/Gold £289 click to visit John Lewis

Teatro Sequin Shift Dress £79 click to visit Very

Red Herring £38.00 Black sequin trim tunic dress click to visit Debenhams

Dove Print Wrap Dress £63.20 was £79 click to visit Phase Eight

Lexa Embellished Ponteroma Dress £71.20 Was £89.00 click to visit Phase Eight