Monthly Archives

June 2013

Posted on June 9, 2013

Chic in Red, Blue and White

Romantique/ Shirts/ Skirts/ Wardrobe
red sunglasses

Blue polka dot blouse from Van Laack, lace style belt with jewel heart from Moschino, white pencil skirt from H&M.

To fit in with our French theme this week, I dressed in the colours of the french flag: Blue, white and red.  In the 18th century, French sympathizers with the cause of liberty raised a tri-coloured flag of blue, white and red. These have become the emblematic colours of that century’s two great revolutions: The American war of Independence and the French revolution. While the United States adopted the demonstrative design of stars and stripes, the French, with Cartesian simplicity, opted for three equal vertical panels.

These hues also happen to be the colours of the nautical Breton style! But rather than stripes, today I felt in the mood for a blue polka dot shirt and the ever so slimming pencil skirt in summery broderie anglaise fabric. Completed with navy mini wedge espadrilles from RAS and the little straw bag from Misako.

The blouse (from van Laack)  is a bit too big so I casually knotted it and also tried the combination of clenching it in with a belt to give it more shape.

Red Versace sunglasses and van Laack shirt

Thanks to Rebel’s suggestion, I bought these red Versace wayfarer sunglasses and I am absolutely in love with them. At first I thought they are too flashy and not my style, but I’m surprised that they fit with lots of outfits. Great accessories can really make or break a look.  Read Rebel’s post on red sunglasses here.

Sunglasses red Versace

White charm bracelet with little knives and spoons from Les Nereides

White pencil skirt H&M, blue polka dot blouse

Posted on June 8, 2013

French Style and the Secret of Je Ne Sais Quoi

Icons/ Romantique/ Wardrobe

RandR french weeks

It’s French week at Romantique and Rebel and we will be dedicating our posts trying to unlock the style recipe of French women. Think Marion Cotillard, Vanessa Paradis, Brigitte Bardot or Audrey Tautou. They all possess this girly, effortless charm, that je ne sais quoi.  They are not all dolled up, bronzed up, acrylic tipped, hairsprayed and injected but seduce with natural make-up, hair and understated chic.

Meet Bérengère, a lovely friend and colleague from work who kindly agreed to let us in the secrets of French women in this in depth interview. Enjoy!

Bérengère in a casual Friday travel outfit before jumping onto the Eurostar

Bérengère in a casual Friday travel outfit before jumping onto the Eurostar

 

1.       Who is your style icon and why?

I don’t have a specific style icon as I am finding inspiration in different people, brands etc. My style is a whole mix and I can’t say I love everything in one icon. For example, Audrey Hepburn’s style seduces me by her elegance and class. I think the most important style is  the way you wear your clothes. People should be able to be dressed with anything, the most important is to keep an elegant attitude . This comes from posture, delicacy, simplicity. I was a grand fan of Brigitte Bardot as well as she was quite provocative for her time: she was the 1st person who has dared to wear close-fitting short pants to highlight her body and also the 1st lady to wear ballet shoes. Brands such as Somewhere, Tara Jarmon or  Sinequanone mean something for me and make me think directly of elegance, joyfulness and naturalness….

2.       How would you describe your style?

My style is a mix of romantism and classicism, with some flashy colours for a more original touch. For the summer, I love artistic, geometric patterns on a top or dress, tunics and skirt with colourful stripes or  the shirt “mariniere” (Breton Shirt) , round boat necks or vichy gingham checks with wedge espadrilles. For winter style, I prefer high heels boots, with a wool dress and a leather jacket to break up the classic and give it a modern touch. I often use also accessories to complete my style: original colourful dangling earings, belts…

French chic summer wardrobe

3.       In terms of style, Russian IT-girls are easily recognizeable by their opulent outfits, British people are famous for their unconventional quirky style and French style icons like Vogue editor Emmanuale Alt are often associated with a minimalistic, typical French chic.  Living in London, do you agree with this description, do British people dress differently compared to the French? And what are these differences?

London is a capital where people from all around the world come together, so I think now, the distinction between the styles is not totally obvious even if it does exist (when you pay attention to…)…Globalization gives the possibility to find any shop such as Zara from Spain, Sandro from France, Victoria Secret from US etc…Now anybody is influenced even if you can still see a difference. It’s quite hard to explain…ahaha 🙂 I will try:

British people will prefer some colours or patterns which are quite different from french: yellow, brown, orange  against more neutral colours: pastels, beige, blue..French often wear some soft colours whereas British tend to wear more distinctive colours. British will go for more original patterns such as bends, cats etc…ours will be more geometric (stripes, rounds etc…) than a significant drawing…

4.       The questions every lady would like to know: How do you stay slim and fit? Do you follow a special diet or workout regime?

I am not that slim ahahah 🙂 but I try to do my best daily…If for example I go for a cake, or ice cream, then I will have a lighter meal during the evening. I go at least 2 times a week to gym: running outside, or weights at gym, swimming…

I often eat proteins and green vegetables only in my meals. If I go out, I will try to only drink, gin, champagne or cider… This year is exceptional for me, and I have a personal trainer who is the best coach ever to get me prepared for my wedding.

5.       What kind of make-up (i.e. mascara or lipstick)  do you use for every day and for when you go out?

I am very specific with make up as I could not use something else for example. I am very loyal to my combination. I think natural make-up is the best. I always use tinted medium BB cream, with some terracotta bronzer on top and a small touch of pink blush on my cheeks. Black Volume mascara from l’Oreal. For my eyes,  a light line of violet or brown eye pencil. This is perfect for a blond girl rather than a harsh black line which can be too aggressive for a blond girl. I bought my eye pencils at a French pharmacy and it’s the best kajal ever! :-). (Bérengère uses Mavala eye pencil in “Violin”, Mavala lip pencil in “cassis” and lipstick from Rimmel in colour “heartbreaker”).

My colours for a lipstick are something between the red and the pink from Clarins or Rimmel .I will only tone down a little bit of colours on my lips for everyday, and will emphasize it a little bit more when I go out…with a touch of light, fresh, sweet and lime parfume !

 

Bérengère is wearing: Blue scarf from Zara, denim shirt from Topshop, ballet pumps with kitten heel and cigarette trousers, Bérengère's tip to make legs look slimmer and longer.

Bérengère is wearing: Blue scarf from Zara, denim shirt from Topshop, ballet pumps with kitten heel and cigarette trousers, Bérengère’s tip to make legs look slimmer and longer.

 

6.       What are your favourite clothes shops in London and Paris?

I am a big fan of Sinequanone, Tara Jarmon, Sandro, Mage, Comptoir des Cotonniers in Paris… In London, I often go to Zara, Gap, Benetton, FCUK (French Connection), Whistles, LK Benett and Elizabeth Arden.

7.       You live in London, can you recommend your favourite restaurant or cafe in the city?

I love the Angle Sea bar in South Kensington with it’s nice terrasse

In terms of restaurant, La Bouchée  in South Ken, for “the escargots de Bourgogne à l’ail”

I don’t have a favourite coffe place, but I love  to sit with my Latte in a big confortable leather sofa to talk with friends….

8. Do you have a life motto or philosophy you live by?

Carpe Diem! Live and enjoy every day.

Bérengère likes to accessorise: Bracelet from the markets in Camden, turqoise ring from Gucci, blue scarf from Zara.

Bérengère likes to accessorise: Mosaic bracelet from the markets in Camden, turqoise ring from Gucci, blue scarf from Zara.

French style chic

Posted on June 7, 2013

Geometric Pattern Clash

Wardrobe

 

Stripes pattern clash

Stripes pattern clash

 

“Mix it, don’t match” is Jenna Lyons motto, beautifully displayed in her trendy JCrew fashion collections. What used to be an absolute no-go for decades has now become the signature look of bold fashionistas worldwide.

Fear not, pattern clash is not only for the over-confident rebels of dressers. Make pattern complement each other rather than conflict for a harmnious, romantic look. For me, the below  points worked when clashing with pattern:

  • Mix pattern within the geometric family, i.e. polka dots with stripes or gingham checks with polka dots
  • When mixing pattern, pickup on of the colours in print A with print B
  • Breton Stripes usually go well with various pattern

I must admit I didn’t feel comfortable mixing leopard with florals but it’s all a question of trying it out and see if it works for you!

Above: I am mixing stripes in the blue and pink colour family: Navy pink bubble skirt from Max & Co, navy Breton shirt with boat neck from Banana Republic, ankle boots “Sprinkle” from Kurt Geiger.

Geometric Pattern Clash Inspirations

 

From left to right:

1. I am clashing  gingham trousers with a dotty silk blouse. All from Gant.

2. Zara’s interpretation of the Miu Miu FW2012 collection, clashing 70s geometric prints.

3. Mixing a polka dot dress with stripey long sleeved shirt underneath.

4. Inspiration from the German Freundin magazine May 2013:  Stripey Box top with wide boat neck (Brigitte Bardot’s favourite shirt style) from Tara Jarmon. Sandals with block midi heel from Mango. Pink and black striped skirt from Marc Cain.

Pattern stripe clash

Sunglasses from Chloé. Cat earrings from Les Nereides Paris.

Sunglasses from Chloé. Cat earrings from Les Nereides Paris.

Posted on June 4, 2013

60 and Fashionable!

Romantique/ Wardrobe
Mummy Romantique and Rebel

Mummy Romantique and Rebel

 

Fashion isn’t only for  skinny girls in their twenties. With our blog, Rebel (aged 42) and myself (aged 34) want to show that you can have fun and be fashionable  well beyond your twenties and size zero. We inherited our love of fashion from our mum, aged 62, who  introduced us to the world of well made garments, precious fabrics and beautiful details. My earliest memories of fashion are of raiding my mum’s wardrobe and tottering around in her high heels.

Ari Cohen dedicates his popular blog, Advanced Fashion, to eccentric, older ladies who love style and fashion. While I adore the quirkiness and life lust of these ladies, I’m not sure I’d like to dress so outlandishly once I’m in my twilight years! My role model will be my mum, who dresses fashionably and trendily without being over the top. Understatement and style always win!

60 plus fashion fruit trousers

Our mum is wearing: White summer sandals with comfy foot bed from Prada. Fruit print trousers from Riani, orange t shirt from Esprit and dark green sunglasses from Chloe. Green Foot Nail varnish from Dior.

Photo Ari Cohen

Photo by Ari Cohen. Circus fashion is seldom flattering!

Our mum and me shooting

Our mum and me shooting

Read the full interview with Mummy R&R on her style through the decades here.

Do you have an “older”  fashion role model, a person’s whose style you admire and you’d wish you’d look like that person when you’re older? Is it your mum, an aunt or a celebrity?

Posted on June 2, 2013

Blue Gingham Vichy

Dresses/ Romantique/ Wardrobe
Vichy dress from Max & Co

Vichy dress from Max & Co

I never tire of gingham and stripey pattern – they are feminine fashion classics and are the best anti-aging garments: The pattern combination with fresh white always looks fresh and modern.

My blue and white gingham dress with a full skirt is from Max & Co SS2013.  I paired it with a cute straw bag and pointy BCBG flats with blue and white ankle socks.

Blue and white gingham dress

Sunglasses from Chloe

Prada gingham vichy dress Prefall 2013

Edgy romanticism: Undone hair and unbuttoned vichy gingham

After Miu Miu’s gorgeous Gingham collection in 2012, it’s now Prada’s turn to release a gingham collection for it’s pre-fall 2013 collection.  The romantic and relaxed dresses are mixed with undone hair and cool leather jackets to prevent the look from being too prim.

Gingham vichy blue white dress prada

 

Do you love the romantic gingham print? Read more posts on my favourite, romantic print!

Posted on June 1, 2013

Colourful Striped Retro Dress

Dresses/ Romantique/ Wardrobe

Antoni and Alison colurful striped dress

Shift dresses in A-Line are really trendy this summer and most flattering for all body types. Team them with bright colours for a happy summery feeling! I love the The Antoni and Alison dress I am wearing in primary colours. I paired it with red sunglasses from Versace and a straw bag from Misako. I simple cute bag that won’t steal the show of the colourful dress. In case you’re wondering, the turquoise nail varnish on my feet is “Nouvelle Vague” from Chanel.

Stripey 60s dresses

Twiggy showing us how to carry the dress into autumn: with colourful tigths in a colour that picks up the dresses colour! Bottom left: Kate Spade coloured stripey shift dress.

colourful striped dress antoni and allison

Horizontal stripes can make you look bigger so team them with heels to lengthen your silhouette. My excuse for not wearing heels is that I’m on holiday. Nude, pointy flats are great to make your legs look longer. Shoes from BCBG.

tousled hair and a warm breeze - wish I could be on holiday for the whole of the summer!

Tousled hair and a warm breeze – wish I could be on holiday for the whole of the summer!

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