One outfit, four ways: Jane and Beryl have decided to make their clothes work a bit harder. Jane chooses a blazer from a new trouser suit while Beryl goes for a charity shop skirt as the basis for four outfits.

Jane has long since lusted after a white suit but has been reluctant to take the plunge on the grounds that this is a wasteful bit of toot which will in reality never see the light of day. However, she recently bought this one from Zara which she felt was a bit of a bargain and she has convinced herself that she can get the requisite fashion mileage out of it. Here's how...

To a smart summer celebration...

Suit, Zara, jacket £79.99, trousers £39.99 this season, shoes M&S £29.50 previous season, bag gift
One of the big plusses about a suit is that it is a bit like a dress (one never has to think about coordinates) - it's a bit of a no brainer, really. This one is double breasted, as is Jane, and the tailoring is such that it hangs well, despite coming from Zara. Added to this is the colour which is instantly feminine.

To a wedding...

Dress Alice Temperley £139 last season, beads charity shop £1.50, bag vintage
This jacket is soo comfortable to wear and Jane puts this down to the fact that she has gone for a size bigger than normal - oh, the blessed relief (too many buns again, says Beryl). A slouchy look for a slouchy girl, some might say. It's a stomach covering length though, and this outfit is ready to go at the drop of a hat.

Out to lunch... 

Trousers Top Shop via the charity shop £4.99, necklace charity shop, shoes Penelope Chilvers via the charity shop £30,
bag Banana Republic gift

As luck would have it, Jane bought these trousers in a charity shop and they are the exact colour of the jacket, so hey, presto, another complete look for £4.99! Jane feels that a charming capsule wardrobe is inadvertently shaping up here (Beryl is jealous). 

Any summer event that takes place in a field...

Shirt Zara, previous season, necklace Accessorize £1.73 sale, bag Mulberry fake £30 (Far East),
shoes Mode in Pele £80, jeans John Lewis £49 (sale)

Hmm, muddy summer fields and a white jacket should, perhaps, never meet? Probably, but Jane's philosophy is, shove it in the washing machine if necessary and pray!


Meanwhile, Beryl shops on instinct. The only time she made a plan, she bought the most appalling collection of clothes ever. This Nicole Farhi skirt winked at her from the designer rail of a charity shop and cost a full £15. It is made of a ditsy floral silk and has godets with ruffles. All of which make it move very beautifully when Beryl is in full sail.  Surprisingly it has proved incredibly versatile, and is worn both posh and casually.  

The wedding guest

Skirt Nicole Farhi (charity shop £15), Shoes £30 Karen Millen sale Reduced from £130,
Jacket Hobbs (charity shop £12.50) Pearls Jaeger £50 (this season)
Basket Dune £75 (this season) Top, Pied a Terre, Sunglasses Roxtons £39 (this season)

Adding a short jacket, (Jane has banned her from long ones) a camisole and heels, she could grace any garden party or nuptials. 

Top Hush £45, Basket Top Shop £25, Plimsoles Next £25 All previous season

On a day trip to Swanage, Beryl adds a Hush sleeveless top, (short in the body to please Jane) a basket and really comfy plimmies. How much better does this look than the standard middle aged fare of the cut off trouser?  

Roman holiday

Top Zara £22, Sandals Piarossini £17 (previous season)

 'Good Heavens,' says Jane, 'that top makes your tits look ma-hoosive.'
Beryl tries her best to make her jumper-lumpers look smaller, but alas to no avail, besides she is too busy listening to the heavenly angels that appear to be singing in her head.

 This is rather like the moment when she bought this top: truth is she knew it wasn't that flattering. Although short, old and over-endowed in the chest department, she wanted just for once to wear something Elle Macpherson would wear while judging Britain's Next Top Model. 'Is that wrong?' she asks plaintively. 

Music on a summer evening 

Zara linen dress (worn as a coat) £39 (this season),
 earrings Maggie and London £34 (this season),
 gold bag Top Shop (previous season £35), shoes £98 KMB, for Anthropologie 

This time the skirt is out to play under a linen dress which doubles duty as an evening coat. The beauty of this skirt is that it has a plethoras of colours within the fabric, so that Beryl can ring the changes with different coloured SHORT jackets. Yes SHORT jackets Jane.

Off to Tesco

Cashmere jumper Warm and Co £7 (Charity shop)
pink suede shoes by Elia B, basket £30 Luna, all previous seasons  
Beryl is a tad over-excited by her latest charity shop acquisition, this cashmere sweater in mint condition for seven quid. Its the sort of thing that Bezza usually denies herself when new on grounds of cost, (£198) pilling and shape. Big and baggy is normally a bit of a disaster on the height challenged one, but strangely this works.

Post a Comment




© What We Wear at FiftyThe Basic Page