Styling

It’s a wrap

This time of year, regardless of the weather, inspires us to stay snug indoors with a mug of hot chocolate (or something slightly stronger) with the fire blazing and/or cheesy films on the TV, wrapped up in a soft cardigan. You might have the fire/TV/beverage of choice sorted, but have you found the cardigan you need to ensure the ultimate cosy winter experience?

Whatever your body shape and size, the perfect wrap for you is out there. Whether you’re straight of body or curvy, tall or short, I’ve lined up my favourite Kettlewell wraps and the body shapes they suit.

 

Links to: short cascade, mid cascade, midi shawl wrap, long rio wrap, cosy merino wrap, long tie wrap, sleeveless merino wrap, shawl collar wrap

 

7 items, 7 outfits

 

Once upon a time, when I first started writing this blog, we didn’t used to be able to create a complete capsule wardrobe using only Kettlewell pieces, so we had to send you elsewhere to fill in the gaps. I’m really thrilled that we’ve introduced so many more items over the years, and it’s now possible to create a complete look knowing that each and every piece has been carefully selected to mix and match as well as compliment your skintone and colouring.

Rather than diving into a full capsule wardrobe, which can be somewhat overwhelming and not actually that useful, I’ve created a ‘mini capsule’ using seven Kettlewell garments to create seven outfits, for a full week of colour fun.

7 items

Remember, this is just a sample wardrobe. If your style is a little less classic, go for the Alexa Jacket rather than the Paris jacket, or you might prefer to swap the Ponte Trousers for skinny jeans. Or if you love the classic look, maybe a dress instead of the dressed-down Davina tee? What would your perfect seven items be?

7 outfits 


 







Links to: Paris Jacket, Merino Crossover, Grace Pencil Skirt, Ponte Trousers, Davina Tee, Long Vest, Silky Roll Neck


This week’s post uses colours from the Winter palette. Each week we will be choosing a different seasonal palette to illustrate our blog posts – watch out for yours!

How to wear true red, whatever your palette

True red. Vibrant, festive and confident. And, believe it or not, a colour that we can all wear. If you’ve always thought that you couldn’t wear red, the chances are you’ve been trying one with the wrong undertone or brightness level. True red has neither a yellow or a blue undertone, meaning it sits bang in the middle of the four seasonal palettes, and can tone in with all of them.

The trick is in how you wear your true red; what you wear it with. Pairing vibrant true red with stark black and white creates a totally different effect to pairing it with cream and aqua, or chocolate and tan, and which one looks best on you will depend on your seasonal palette.

If you already know your own seasonal colour palette, just click on the link below to go to the appropriate post for your palette. If you haven’t had a colour analysis yet, don’t panic. You can either make a start on your journey into colour by visiting the Kettlewell colour quiz or simply read on for some great looks that will maximise that universally flattering true red, whatever your skintone.

 

 

 

 


Davina Tee in true red


 

Paris Textured Jacket in true red,  Ponte Trousers in charcoal and a Darcey V Neck in soft white


Grace Jacquard Blazer in marine teal, Grace Pencil Skirt in marine teal, Silky Roll Neck in true red, simple court shoes


​Lace Camisole in true red, ​Merino Crossover in emerald, ​Cashmere Gauze Stole in true red, navy skinny jeans


 

Meet our Summer Ambassador – Annabel Simons

From the perfect party dress to the essential dinner party top, our Summer colour ambassador and lifestyle blogger Annabel Simons from CountryWives reveals the pieces on her Christmas wishlist this year…

 Annabel wears an Alpaca Shawl in French Navy with a Pink Fiesta Three Way Scarf

What are your daytime essentials for work and weekend?
In winter, it’s jeans or leggings with a pair of Chelsea boots and something like a Silky Rollneck and Cosy Merino Wrap, which I’ll have hanging over the back of my chair when I’m writing the blog from home (your thermostat starts to go haywire when you get older so this is the perfect coatigan for shrugging on when you get chilly, just adding a Gauze Stole Scarf if you need to head out). I used to wear a lot of skinny jeans in the past but nowadays I find straight-legged jeans more flattering and work better with boots.


Annabel wears the Ava Dress in Iris Bloom, she also has a Leather Star Makeup Bag in Aquagreen and Grey

My perfect Christmas party outfit?

A great va-va-voom dress like the velvet Ava Dress if I’m going to a Christmas party or smart trousers and a top, such as the lovely new silky-feel Lulu Curve in Cherry, if I’m out to friends for a dinner. The Lulu Curve is double-layered and the lining means it hangs so much better and shows fewer lumps and bumps than a normal T-shirt. I always like to dress up because I think it’s nice for the hostess if you make an effort, and I’ll always make sure I finish off the look with earrings, scarf and a decorative necklace.

Annabel is wearing a Lulu Curve top in Cherry and has a Light Grey Paris Textured Jacket over her shoulder. She has added a silver Multi Star Necklace

Favourite piece from new winter collection?
It has to be the Ava, but I also love the Velvet Scarves for a bright pop (the Peacock Blue one is fabulous). The Cosy Merino Wrap is also great. I like the fact that it works equally well over a dress and trousers – it’s the kind of item that I know will get plenty of use this season.

Here, Annabel wears the Sofia Dress in Teal and French Navy, with a Velvet Scarf in Peacock Blue and a Cosy Merino Wrap in Bright Navy.

Your favourite Summer colours?
Pastel shades from pale blue and duck egg, through to pale lilac and pink (I wear a Cashmere Gauze Stole in Peony all the time). I also love red, especially a pop of it for a scarf or necklace.

Best feature?
My hair. Only because I know that everyone in the hairdressers is always asking for my hair colour! Everyone thinks it’s dyed until they meet my sister and realise that she has exactly the same colour hair. Feature I’m not so keen on? My neck – it’s very long and a bit wrinkly, so I don’t like it at all.

I also hate the fact that as you get older you put on weight in all the wrong places (although I don’t want to get skinny as that doesn’t actually suit me, either). I’m starting to come to terms with the fact that no matter what you do, you have to just accept your body, within reason, and then dress accordingly. Oh, and always look at your back. French women never forget to check what they look like from behind!

Claire (Autumn) wearing Cypress Green, Annabel (Summer) in Iris Bloom and Melissa (Spring) in Cosmopolitan Velvet Faux Wraps!

How does wearing your colours make you feel?
Wearing colour, particularly round my face, makes me feel better and gives me an instant uplift. As you get older your skin loses a lot of its dewiness and freshness, and without painting yourself like something out of the circus, it’s far easier to put on something close to your skin in a great colour.

Since I was first introduced to Kettlewell, there has been so much more colour in my life. If you’d  looked in my wardrobe three or four years ago, you’d have found white, navy, grey, brown and black. Now it looks like a Summer wardrobe and is so much better for it, particularly as I tend to live in a uniform of jeans, jeans and more jeans. Even just having a sweater in my right colours can make all the difference.

Annabel wearing a Merino Tunic in Bright Navy with her favourite peony Cashmere Gauze Stole

No outfit is complete without…
A scarf. As you get older, you get colder, so putting something round your neck is immensely useful. I wear scarves all year round; even in summer when I go off on holiday I’ll pack a couple of scarves to drape round my shoulders in the evening. Nowadays I find that you don’t need a really thick scarf, even in winter: my Peony Cashmere Gauze Stole and Dusky Rose Florence Infinity Scarf are all the cosiness I need.

You can follow Annabel (and her friends Grace and Ellie) over on the CountryWives website.

The colour rules you should be breaking

There are so many ‘rules’ that I hear around wearing colour. Sometimes I’m amazed that any of us manage anything other than top to toe grey! I thought it was about time to bust some of the myths and misconceptions that I hear about wearing colour, and share what the one real rule is that matters when it comes to wearing colour.

Black looks chic on everyone

There is no good way of saying this: it just doesn’t work on everyone. If you want the slimming, sleek silhouette effect without the skintone draining downsides, go for navy, charcoal, dark olive or petrol blue instead, whichever works best for your skintone. You’ll look more chic and more well rested.

Our models are wearing the Paris Textured Jacket.  Eveline (Autumn) wears Leaf , Sophie (Spring) wears Light Grey,  Georgia (Summer) wears Marine Teal and Violet (Winter) wears Black.

Redheads can’t wear pink

You so can. The question is, which pink. If you have a warm complexion, you might better off in coral hued flamingo pink or soft mellow rose, but if you have a cooler skintone, maybe musk rose is more your specialty, or even a bold fuchsia. Whatever your skintone or hair colour, there is a right version of almost every colour for you. Take the colour quiz to start learning what that version is.

Spring: flamingo pink Long Sleeve Tee, Autumn: peach melba Camisole, Summer: rose Long Vest, Winter: fuchsia Silky Roll Neck

I can’t wear green

Well, now you can. There is a shade of green for everyone. The chances are, if you’ve been struggling so far, you’ve been picking the wrong shade. Too cool, too warm too bright or too muted and it’s all wrong, but get it right and you’ll look bright eyed, glamorous, bold and stylish. It’s all in the tones.

Spring: apple Long Camisole, Autumn: tree top Semi Scoop 3/4, Summer: tropical teal Fine Cotton Tee, Winter: pine Lulu Curve

You can’t mix gold and silver

Actually, you might be able to. If your skintone lies in a more neutral space – ie you still fall into a seasonal palette (we all do!), but you are at the less extreme warm end (for Springs and Autumns) or cool end (for Winters and Summers), a mix of metals might work really well with your colours to set off those more ‘neutral’ (in terms of warmth, not brightness) shades.

 

Tiny Star Necklace in Silver, Multi Star Necklace in Silver and Gold, Davina Tee in Latte

It all comes down to one rule…

As far as I’m concerned the only rule that matters is this one: wear the colours you love and that love you.

Your essentials for the party season

Eveline wears the Ava dress in Peacock Blue

I read the other day that most women have their festive season party outfits planned by early November. And wouldn’t you know it, we’re in early November right now. So to help you on your way I’ve put together the party outfits you need to add to your arsenal this December, whether it’s for the work Christmas lunch or the glamorous cocktail party of the year.

This is The Dress. If you only buy one party season essential, this is it. Wear with ballet pumps and an alpaca wrap for everyday luxury, but go with heels and as much sparkle as you can cram into the accessories for a full on party look.

Ava Dress in peacock blue, Metallic Leather Clutch in mars, Stud Wrap Bracelet in light grey – all from Kettlewell.

Rose gold glitter court shoes from Office

The gorgeous velvet faux wrap adds a touch of luxury and glamour to your favourite jeans for an evening out outfit to wow. The skinny velvet scarf adds a modern-retro touch.

Velvet Faux Wrap in cosmopolitan, Velvet Scarf in cosmopolitan, Stud Wrap Bracelet in chestnut gold, Loafers in red sparkle – all from Kettlewell

 

 

Love separates? Elevate them with flounce and print. The alpaca shawl keeps you cosy for the late night journey home (and in case of hosts with a different idea about central heating requirements!) without sacrificing elegance while the silky roll neck lends an air of sophistication to the ensemble.

Flounce Skirt in teal/french navy, Silky Roll Neck in soft white, Alpaca Shawl in french navy, Suede Tassel Clutch in everglade – all from Kettlewell.

Teal court shoes from New Look


Work Christmas lunch beckoning? The super-useful ponte dress will up the ante during party season then behave beautifully as your go to work dress in January. Add a splash of bright with your scarf and a hint of luxury with the new improved merino wrap.

Classic Ponte Dress in purple, Cosy Merino Wrap in marine blue, Cashmere Gauze Stole in red coral, Velvet Ballerinas in petrol, Suede Star Shoulder Bag in mango & teal – all from Kettlewell

This week’s post uses colours from the Autumn palette. Each week we will be choosing a different seasonal palette to illustrate our blog posts – watch out for yours!

Meet our Spring Ambassador – Amy Mulcrone

Nothing beats a pop of colour on a grey winter’s day, says our new Spring Colour Ambassador Amy Mulcrone, jewellery designer and creative director of Chambers & Beau.

What are your daytime essentials for work and weekend?
Jeans and ankle boots in the winter; jeans and trainers in the summer  – so easy to throw together and dress up or down. My weekend look tends to be the same as my work look as I’m a jewellery designer and work at home, so I’m generally alone in the studio with no particular need to dress up. But I’m a sucker for a handbag and I love scarves (although they do cover up my jewellery, so I may need to rethink that!).

Go-to dressed-up look for evening?
A pair of heels and plenty of bling. A pair of statement earrings has the same effect as popping on your favourite heels.

Favourite piece from the Kettlewell A/W collection and why?
The new Alexa faux-suede biker-style jacket is totally gorgeous. The colours are lovely and it is the perfect piece for that layered look. Only problem is working out which of my seasonal colours I love best!

Favourite colour and why…
I have only recently had my colours done and discovered I’m a Blue Spring, so for a long time I tended to stick to neutrals. But I’ve always loved red and been complimented whenever I wear it, and as it’s one of my ‘wow colours’ and this season’s key colour, I am totally going with it. I also love Kettlewell’s Royal Blue and Hot Coral, which work really well on me.

Amy wears the Alpaca Shawl in Hot Coral

Best feature (and parts you prefer to play down)?
My upper body is much better than my lower half. I have good shoulders and toned arms so I get them out whenever I can. I hate my legs, so I keep them tucked away ­ hence the jeans wardrobe.

How does wearing the right colours for you make you feel?
It has made such a difference and has really changed the way I dress. I love seeing pops of colour, especially during our drab grey winter. I won’t be saving them for holidays and sun-kissed skin any more.

No outfit is complete without…
Lashings of Chambers & Beau jewellery, naturally!

You can see all of Amy’s jewellery on her website Chambers and Beau.

Photographs by Katharine Davies

Thanks to Cherryade Life Store, Poundbury, Dorset