Wearing: Phase Eight dress c/o Debenhams Topshop desert boots Zara jacket Gap hat Daniella Draper rings
When Debenhams got in touch and asked if I would like to take part in a styling challenge, I was both excited and a little nervous. The brief was to style a look; specifically a maxi dress, to be worn both in Britain and in Barbados. I was lucky enough to be able to choose the dress and a pair of sandals from the extensive collection on the Debenhams website and this made me feel a little less nervous, as I was sure I would be able to find something that worked with my own personal style. So often maxi's are floor length and brightly coloured, neither style of which features highly in the way I like to dress! So I was thrilled to find a summer-suitable dress in black from one of my favourite brands, Phase Eight. This elise ellipse hem dress is a maxi with a twist, it is long at the back (like a mullet!) but shorter at the front so you can show a bit of leg and not feel that you look stumpy (something maxis always make me feel, as I'm fairly short!) Also, no risk of tripping over the thing as you're striding along; fashion and function is perfectly paralleled here!
To style the dress for the British climes, I paired it with a jacket that would be completely unnecessary given the tropical heatwave currently gripping the UK; I actually took the 'Britain' photo's last week as the dress arrived before the shoes did and I wanted to get started. However, usually even in the British summertime a jacket is handy and this lightweight one from Zara is perfect to throw over the dress for evening. I added my ever-present straw hat and kept my jewellery minimal with a vintage bangle and Daniella Draper rings. I added the desert boots for a festival vibe and to keep the look quite casual. This would definitely be a day look that I would reach for; I'd probably swap out the boots for ballet pumps but I have worn my ballet pumps so frequently on the blog I thought it would be nice to show some different footwear for a change!
Wearing: Dress as before Carvela Sandals c/o Debenhams Zara bag ASOS sunglasses Bracelet as before Hat as before Whistles ring
Now, I've never been to Barbados so I wouldn't really know what to expect other than it would be hot! In retrospect I would probably tie my hair up as I think I would get far too hot with it loose and sticking to my back, ugh! This aside, I think this could be a good look for strolling in the city or chilling at the beach (although I'd kick off the sandals for that part!)
This dress is such an easy wear, you just chuck it on and you're good to go. I love this simple dressing, and I think when you are off on holiday it's important to have things you can just throw on and not worry about having to match with other things; you can just go and enjoy the holiday. I have quite eclectic style and I love to add in a quirky accessory; I have also styled these sandals with a wicker basket bag for a more traditional beachy look but I love the element of fun that this bright red bag from Zara brings to the outfit. It's playful and actually a really great size for everyday.
The Carvela sandals are definitely my new favourites; they have the perfect heel height to make them comfortable to wear all day and because they aren't a flat they dress the look up a little. I like the gold hardware especially and referenced it in my jewellery choices. The spike ring from Whistles adds an edgy vibe.
I really enjoyed this style challenge and I think I've managed to make each look quite different; I was worried that with the dress being such a simple piece that both looks would be too samey but I think I managed to make one dress two outfits!