The best new-in high street and investment buys brought to you each week by Stylist fashion editor, Polly Knight.
I love clothes. Which is helpful when you are a fashion editor and your job centres on clothes. There is, however, a common misconception about people who work in the industry – that just because we are fashion editors we are decked out in head-to-toe designer threads. Let me assure you this is not true. Or least, not for me. My wardrobe is a combination of 85% high street buys with the rest being more luxury pieces that I make sure work with everything.
I pride myself on the fact people often think my high street clobber is high end (I’ll take it!); for me, it’s all about shopping smart and not wearing faddy items. I have a checklist of sorts when I’m shopping: will I love this in a year’s time? Would I style this piece multiple ways to get optimum use out of it? Does it make me happy?
We are #blessed to have the great British high street, bursting with so many brilliant brands at our fingertips that people flock from all over the world to get in on the act.
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I love coming across those pieces that make stop on your tracks and think “Wow, that looks expensive”, or “That’s so on trend, it could have come straight of the runway”. My aim when I am dressing is to have an easy, luxe look but without the price tag to match, which means I have trained my eyes to spot these pieces in an instant. And that’s the 85%.
So, about that 15% - these are my investment pieces. The timeless classics I have saved for because I know they will never go out of style. They are the pieces I will wear now but know they will last me lifetime, the items I’ll never get bored with and that every time I wear them, they feel just as special as the day I bought them. These aren’t trend-led pieces, but rather the staples that I can dress up or down with the other 85% of my wardrobe and to be honest, they are worth every penny of my hard-earned cash.
And that’s how I shop. A big dollop of high street and a little dressing of luxury. Each week that is exactly what I am going to bring to you: the best of the high street peppered with a few investment pieces to make your wardrobe something you can’t wait to dive into.
Every summer dress H&M drops online at the moment is an absolute winner. My current obsession is this puff sleeve style, which also has a low back with supersize bow. Just add simple sandals to finish off your look.
If you don’t know luxury accessories brand Loeffler Randall, it’s time to get involved. From gorgeous shoes to hair accessories, Loeffler has you covered. Try this leopard print bucket hat for something super chic and practical - handy to fold down and pop in your bag.
& Other StoriesA white shirt is a wardrobe staple. Try this puff sleeve style with high-waisted jeans or shorts for a simple summer look.
Whistles X LF Markey
Pearls are trending. Forget a classic string of pearls, they’ve had a modern over-haul for 2020, often clashing with gold metal and in structural/minimal designs. Try this Zara necklace for size and layer with existing jewellery.
These white jeans are totally worth the investment and I absolutely love mine. They are mid-weight denim so thick enough for no show-through and loose fit for ultimate comfort.
Another throw-on dress I hear you cry? Yes, you can’t have enough of this style. Cool and comfortable, wear now with your dad sandals for a perfect wear-everywhere look.
Charles & Keith
If a basket bag just isn’t for you, too bulky for city life and you want something a little more streamline, then try this beaded bag from Monsoon, the perfect size for all of your everyday essentials.
Mix up your summer dresses with a playsuit, this utility style from All Saints will look great with your chunky dad sandals.
With Nothing Underneath
You need this brand on your radar; with Nothing Underneath make the most amazing boyfriend style classic shirts. Wear this summer with everything from your tracksuit bottoms and Birks, too your slouchy tailored trousers and heels.
I’m totally obsessed with this brand - Roop bags are made from remnants and vintage fabrics (keeping waste to a minimum - yay!) This gorgeous satin style is the perfect night out bag.
This is an investment buy, but totally worth it, Jade Swim is a brand that needs to be on your fashion radar. Chic, flattering and totally timeless, just throw a pair of shorts over this swimsuit for a look that will take you from the beach to the bar.
I’m obsessed with this shirred smock dress - the colour and the shape. Team zesty limes with fellow bold colours for a stand out look.
& Other Stories
I know we’re feeling all summery right now, so we’re thinking more basket bags than leather styles, but this & Other Stories black quilted bag is too good to miss out on.
Linen began trending last summer and this year I’ve decided to fully embrace it and not get hung up on the creases and crumpling. Roll up your sleeves, add your gold jewellery, and try a linen shirt as an alternative to your classic t-shirt.
When shopping linen keep to earthy tones, neutrals, burnt orange, khaki and navy rather than pastels.
I’m always on the look out for new huggy earrings that won’t break the bank to add to my collection, and these baguette cut style will add a little sparkle to your everyday look.
Everyone needs black summer sandals in their armoury.
I usually buy a new high street pair each year because the ones from last year are worn out, and you do need a breather from a style after you’ve worn them time and time again, so here they are!
We fall into two camps: the ‘everything but the kitchen sink tote bag’ or a ‘I’m hands free’ cross body kind of gal. Well, this style is for the former. Chic refined and big enough for your laptop and gym kit. This LK Bennett tote is a handbag win.
Porte & Paire
Finding a luxe shoe brand that isn’t going to break the bank is a really tricky feat, but Porte and Paire has piqued my interest. From cool flats to barely there square toe heels all the styles are timeless yet bang on trend.
Images: lead image Moeez Ali. All other images courtesy of brands.